Pierce Freelon, hip-hop, soul, and electronic musician, professor, entrepreneur, and more, just dropped his first single from his debut family album, D.a.D., a family music album inspired by his experience of being a Black millennial father living in the South in advance of the album’s release, which comes out on July 31. The album, which features samples of his children and himself speaking, melodies and beats that he wrote and enhanced, and fun lyrics, largely is about his own dad, the late Phil Freelon (who also speaks on the album) and Pierce’s role as a father.
Fatherly is exclusively sharing the music video to “Daddy Daughter Day,” a strong celebration of fatherhood, and a fun, hard-hitting anthem on two dads treating their daughters to a day of self-care and fun. Banana splits, tennis, and bragging to mom are all on the cards in this fun track, which Fatherly is exclusively debuting.
The whole album is dedicated, top to bottom, to fatherhood in all of its forms, iterations, struggles, and joys. The album features four voice memos recorded over 10 years — the voice memos are recordings of him playing with his kids and parenting his children at home. Several songs feature his daughter, Stella, — one of which touches on the struggle of negotiating bedtime, singing about monsters in the closet, and telling bedtime stories.
One Hip-hop and rock track is an inventive new way to get kids to clean up after themselves — the song, titled “Gather Your Clothes,” is thematically similar to “clean up, clean up, everybody, everywhere” except it doesn’t make you want to bash your face in — it’s a brand new way to help get your kids clean up. Other songs include “Space Jam,” a love letter from father to daughter, “Movies and Popcorn and Video Games,” about gamers and movie fans, and “Ascend,” a track dedicated to Phil Freelon, Pierce’s dad, who was the architect of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture and recently passed away after a fight with ALS.
Pierce Freelon is more than a musician: he’s also an Emmy-award winning producer and a professor. When he wasn’t working on his debut album, he was running his Beat Making Lab, a PBS-web series that’s won an Emmy, and taught at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in music and African American studies. He also composed, wrote and co-directed the History of White People in America, an animated series that was a selection of the Tribeca Film Festival, which also premieres in July, setting the already-busy dad up for a very busy July. Freelon is also the frontman of The Beast, a jazz and hip hop quartet, and the founder of Blackspace, a digital makerspace for youth who want to learn how to tell stories through music and film. Consider D.a.D. another monumental achievement for a man who has already achieved so much. Listen for the music, stay for songs like “Tooth Bruh” and “Make New Friends.”
Check out more from Pierce here.
And here’s a direct link to the song.