I think this song connecting with the spirit of the moment than the last song. I can believe that Alicia Keys honestly feels sad and afraid at “the violence everywhere”.
In the song she asks why this is happening. People rightly felt scared and despair because they felt there were people belittling the black voice and the government that seemed not to care about their outrage. She acknowledges that pain but the song isn’t just about that sadness. The song has a second to empower those afraid. She sings that “We are extraordinary people/Livin’ an ordinary life/ one extraordinary question/ Are we gonna run or fight?/ So we gotta pray”. I feel this line is supposed to assure balck citizens that they are worth a great deal and that their voice deserves to be heard.
The call for prayer is a nice callback to the religious songs that were used in the Civil Rights Movement. I can also see this song transcending the religious context as a just a song that’s calling together all people of all or no religion to stand against hate and violence.
I love Alicia Keys. I think she is a much more talented artist and more than just “a female John Legend” I think she has a talent with her lyrics and songwriting to really connect with an issue. I can believe that she has friends and family who could be affected and that she genuinely wants to use her position of fame to make a difference and unite a scared people. I love this song, and I am glad to have gotten the chance to hear it.