Many artists have spoken of meeting their idols once they have reached a certain level of esteem, but the rest of us aren’t necessarily as lucky. In his new music video for his latest single “Will,” Joyner Lucas shows his idol, Will Smith, gratitude for his influence on him.
Lucas raps about his idol Will Smith in “Will,” chronicling his inspiration from his career and life choices. Lucas then visually and creatively builds on this homage by dressing up as different Will Smith characters and reenacting moments of each of his performances as he moves through different film sets while rapping.
Through this, Lucas has broken new ground. He has simultaneously created a way to show his appreciation while also producing a piece of art that proves his ability to his idol he desires to impress. Lucas even gets the opportunity to seek advice indirectly. He does so by comparing the relationship he wants to his reality. Through his art, he gets to do what we all wish we could as he expresses his insecurities with the hope of an enlightening response. Lucas raps:
“I wanna get married, but none of my shorties remind me of Jada / Or maybe I’m just too afraid to settle; I wish I was plannin’ it different / I think It’s a phase; I’m very conditioned / I’m stuck in my ways and scared of commitment.”
He describes himself as a work in progress in his love life. But then Lucas gets on to showing how he believes his ability as a father measures up while displaying how Will has influenced his fathering approach through entertainment and life. Lucas raps: “I look at my son, I feel like I’m dreamin’, he truly a blessin’ / I’m really elated; I pray that he grow up like Willow or Jaden / I know that he will / I hope he look up to me like we used to look up to Phil.”
He describes the father-son relationship he saw between Will and his Uncle Phil on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air along with Will’s raising of his own kids and how that has made him a worthy parent. With both of these sets of lyrics, Lucas can provide the full scope of Will’s influence on his choices and expectations. The idea in itself to use his music as a vehicle for this expression is one that we all wish we had the opportunity to take advantage of.
Later in the song and video, as Lucas transitions out of every character replication, he gets into the core of the reason for the song. He raps: “And we never know just when it’s our time, the legends are gone, and we don’t know why /So before they go, look here go a toast, so give ’em a rose while they still alive.”
Lucas feels an urgency to express his gratitude due to the recent loss of legendary figures, including people like Nipsey Hussle, Mac Miller, and, most recently, Kobe Bryant. He creates the full embodiment of a tribute to his idol, who he feels most scoped his choices and trajectory in visual and lyrical form, encouraging us all to create a personal way to do so.
Throughout the video, Lucas re-enacts Will Smith’s roles in The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air, Bad Boys, Men In Black, Wild Wild West, I-Robot, Shark Tale, The Pursuit of Happiness, I Am Legend, Concussion, and Aladdin. He then sees himself in the mirror as Will but in his own clothing. We attempt to embody our idols in any way that we can to benefit our growth.
Joyner Lucas now preps to drop his first solo album, ADHD.