Jay-Z wore a Colin Kaepernick jersey but otherwise let the music do the talking on the season premiere of “Saturday Night Live.”
The MC was joined by Damian Marley — who sported floor-length dreads — for a roof-raising version of “Bam” (which also displayed an Ethiopian flag throughout the entire song). Accompanied by three musicians, Jay performed before a camo backdrop, decked out in Nike kicks and a black Nike football jersey bearing the number 7, which he turned around to reveal “Colin K” on the back midway through the song.
The combination of social messaging with branding was a characteristically deft Hova move.
He stripped things down for the raw second song, “4:44,” possibly the most confessional song he’s ever done, wearing a plain white T-shirt and Pumas. Illuminated by three spotlights, he laid himself as bare onstage as he does in the song.
Both tracks are from his latest album “4:44”; the rapper begins a seven-week North American tour in California on Oct. 27.
But more importantly than any of this, Jay’s Tidal has put all of its weight behind relief efforts for the natural disasters in the Caribbean and Mexico in recent weeks. Earlier this week the company, in partnership with New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s Empire State Relief and Recovery Effort, announced an initiative aimed at filling a 200,000-pound cargo plane full of hurricane-relief supplies to Puerto Rico. All day Saturday the company, aided by multiple celebrities, collected donations at locations listed belong — which are accepting donations until Oct. 5 at least. The first plane is expected to leave on October 7 and carry 200,000 pounds of batteries, flashlights, portable lanterns, diapers, baby wipes, cases of water and feminine hygiene products. Monetary donations are being accepted at TIDAL.com/PuertoRico
The company is also providing hurricane relief through its third annual Tidal X: Brooklyn http://tidal.com/us on Oct. 17, headlined by Tidal owner Jay-Z, Jennifer Lopez, DJ Khaled, Kaskade and featuring many others — 100% of ticket proceeds will be donated to those affected by natural disasters including Hurricane Harvey, Hurricane Irma, Hurricane Maria and the recent earthquakes in Mexico. Bacardi is donating $1.3 million specifically to Tidal X: Brooklyn charities.
• Organizations TIDAL is supporting include: The Empire State Relief and Recovery Effort for Puerto Rico, Global Giving, All Hands Volunteers, Kids in Need Foundation, Direct Relief, One America Appeal, Greater Houston Community Foundation, American Civil Liberties Union, Miami Community Foundation, Habitat for Humanity in Puerto Rico, and more
Donation locations: The drop-off sites will accept donations every day between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. All items must be unopened and in their original packaging.
Empire State Plaza Main Concourse, Albany
Central New York
Senator John J. Hughes State Office Building
333 E. Washington Street Syracuse
State Police Zone Station
1155 Scottsville Road, Suite 400 Rochester
Perry B. Duryea State Office Building
250 Veterans Memorial Highway, Hauppauge
2 Quincy Place, Yonkers
Utica State Office Building
207 Genesee Street, Utica
Shirley A. Chisholm State Office Building
55 Hanson Place, Brooklyn
Jamaica Street Armory
93-05 168th Street, Queens
Roberto Clemente State Park
301 West Tremont Ave, Bronx
Department of Motor Vehicles
696 E Fordham Road, Bronx
85 West End Avenue, Binghamton