Emerging rapper Chika performed her uplifting single “Crown” during Saturday’s star-studded Graduate Together special, which celebrated the Class of 2020 who were deprived a proper ceremony due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“Graduating is such an accomplishment that seniors everywhere are missing out on this year, and I hope this song can bring everyone a little more inspiration right now,” Chika said of the performance.
The politically conscious Alabama rapper, an Artist You Need to Know, spoke to Rolling Stone in March about how she was accepted into the Berklee School of Music but couldn’t afford the program. After a year at the University of Alabama, Chika left school to pursue music.
“People who have gotten known on the internet, they’re pigeon-holed as influencers, and looked at as an Instagram presence rather than as an artist,” Chika said. “And for me, I’ve been making music since I was two. Having virality and these moments that were really cool….it’s a process, I guess, in order for the actual artistry to shine through. I know my journey is far beyond what I’m doing currently.” The rapper’s Industry Games EP is out now.
The Graduate Together special also featured commencement speeches from LeBron James and Barack Obama, who shared a message of hope for the future to the Class of 2020. Earlier in the day, in a speech to HBCUs, the former president criticized the current administration’s COVID-19 response.