Directed by Gerard Bush and Christopher Renz, the stylish visual features models and actors Maria Borgess, Jeneil Williams, Achok Majak, Riley Montana, Sira Kant and Adonis Bosso. Throughout the clip, they collectively obscure their faces with veils as they traipse around city streets, eventually proudly revealing themselves as Maxwell beckons them to abandon insecurities. “Feel no shame/ Feel no shame,” he sings on the hook. “Lay all night, all day/ Lay here with me/ Baby, with me/ Shamelessly.”
The song and video celebrate black beauty. “Black women – Black people – don’t see themselves heralded as a standard of beauty nearly enough in the media, especially in entertainment, high fashion and art. It’s getting better, but we still have so far to go,” the singer told Variety. “People of color have carried shame about our features, our hair, our bodies, our skin tone.
“As I said previously, this song is about removing the cloak of shame and opening up to love… including self-love and love of your culture. So we decided to pay homage to another beautiful video, George Michael’s iconic ‘Freedom’ – but make it black,” he continued. “The end result is gorgeous, powerful and stunning. This video is a love letter to my women of color. Feel no shame in your skin – you are beyond beautiful.”
Night will be the final installment of a long-gestating trilogy that Maxwell launched in 2009 with BLACKsummers’night. Seven years later he dropped the follow-up, 2016’s blackSUMMERS’night.