5 Speculations from Childish Gambino's "Feels Like Summer" Music Video
BY MARK DEMAURO
On September 1st, Donald Glover, also known as Childish Gambino, released a surprise gem of a music video for his single "Feels Like Summer."
It is a nearly five-minute hand-drawn visual of Glover walking down the street he lives on, running into a bunch of other musical acts enjoying their day in the sun. These acts vary from The Weeknd, Frank Ocean, and Ty Dolla $ign playing tug of war against A$AP Rocky, Solange, and Willow Smith, to Rae Sremmurd splashing J. Cole with a water gun while he waters his lawn.
There is genuinely a lot to take away from this video. One idea could be that this is Glover's last walk down the lane of hip hop before he releases what he claims would be his last studio album. If there is another thing to take away from this video, it's that Glover buries the hidden meanings of events so well that the messages can easily fly over your head. Here's five moments that really stuck out and made us speculate:
1. Soulja Boy: The Teacher
The first two cameos shown in the video are of Lil Pump and Trippie Redd. It seems as if they are looking for some type of guidance from the last generation of hip hop artists for how to be successful in this new wave. In the video, they go to 21 Savage, Metro Boomin, and Kodak Black -- all of who refuse to help them. 21 Savage has been having a great time of success and he's even a financial genius, however, he is aware of the troubles the new generation has around their name and he wants to stay far away from it.
So, who does Young Pump and Redd go to once being turned down by the last generation? They go even further down to the one and only Soulja Boy. They can be seen enjoying an innocent picnic with him as he reenacts his famous interview with DJ Vlad. This cameo came as quite the surprise as we haven't heard much from Soulja Boy since early 2017, so why would they go to him? Because Soulja Boy knows how to stir something up and grab the masses' attention, even when there is no music to speak of. This is very much like how Lil Pump got famous with his colorful hair and white ethnicity as a rapper.
2. The Melting Ice Cream
Right after a still image of Beyoncé wearing a shirt in memory of deceased Chicago rapper, Fredo Santana, we see Andrew Gillum, Mayor of Tallahassee who is currently running for Governor of Florida. Gillum is sitting on a bench eating chocolate and vanilla ice cream. The ice cream then starts to slowly melt from the heat of the day. At first, it wasn't apparent the cartoon was Gillum. Others have speculated it to be a number of influential individuals, such as Barack Obama. The next question that arises from this scene is what is the purpose of showing the melting ice cream at all? Some have speculated it to be very familiar to the hair colors rapper XXXTentacion had in his infamous mugshot from jail. XXX was robbed and murdered this year in his home state of Florida while purchasing a motorcycle and the scene may be Glover's subtle tribute to him.
3. Kanye West's Feeling of Loss
The first fade to black scene we get in the video starts with Kid Cudi and then Kanye West. Both rappers exhibit distinct moods compared to how the other cartoon characters prior to them acted. They are both sad and look as if they are struggling with the positions they are at in life right now. This seems to be a nod to both Cudi and Kanye's severe mental health issues, which they have openly talked about in the past few years. These problems were reflected in a sense of creative healing to one another in their collaborative album, Kids See Ghosts.
However, Kanye's moment of pain in Glover's video gets much more deeper. He is seen in tears wearing a "Make America Great Again" hat. Then, out of the shadows, comes Michelle Obama to comfort and hug him. Kanye's crying ceases, immediately. The meaning of this could signify when Kanye's mother, Donda, passed away -- his support and overall sense of guidance. Since then, he seems to be lost in which way to go in life. Despite his marriage with Kim Kardashian, Kanye's current position in life has been criticized as being in the "sunken place" and he's even been called "crazy" for his recent antics. He hasn't had the same type of guidance in life his mother once gave him and this scene with Michelle Obama evokes the tragedy of that.
4. Snoop Dogg, Dr. Dre, Diddy, Wiz Khalifa and Jay-Z Dancing
A short, yet funny moment from the video shows legends such as Dr. Dre, Wiz Khalifa, Snoop Dogg, Diddy, and Jay-Z dancing over a laid-down and relaxed Gucci Mane. At first, it's a very random, but very funny scene and what it represents isn't noticeable. With further speculation, the main idea is uncovered: these guys, like Glover, are unbothered by what's going on in the hip hop scene and are just riding their own wave of fame and artistry. I mean, genuinely think about it, when was the last time you heard Wiz Khalifa had beef with someone in the scene? These are all legends that made a huge name for themselves with their music and/or business endeavors. For example, Diddy has had huge success with his Revolt network, and his Ciroc Vodka, he doesn't need anything else. Neither do the rest of them.
5. "What a Time" for Future and Drake
Back in 2015, rappers Drake and Future shook the world up with their collaborative track "What a Time To Be Alive," giving some noticeable attention to the Atlanta rapper, Future. Ever since that collaborative track, though, there was no word of more collaborations from the talented duo. There were a few tracks here and there, but relatively the world saw nothing else from the two. During this time, however, Future was riding down a path to becoming a superstar. Perhaps Future didn't need the help of Toronto megastar anymore for he seemed to be doing things on his own; one could say "Future took the business and ran it for him." In the video, this is further supported by the way Future rides off on a bicycle with Drake running after him.
This music video was another striking success from the mind of Donald Glover. It's a great recap of the past two years in hip hop with its highs and lows, hidden messages through its animation, and overall vibe of the song. It's also a great reminder as to why Glover is a top five creative of this generation for he puts so much effort into everything he does, whether it be directing, acting, writing, or making music. All in all, Glover is a big talent, and it's a shame to see his musical output of Childish Gambino being hung up for good in the video for "Feels Like Summer."
Lead Image Credit: Tumblr