Coping with loss as we age is sadly inevitable; it’s an unavoidable part of the circle of life. While I can’t speak to losing a loved one, I’ve come to understand that everyone has their own way of processing grief.
Of the many different ways to cope with grief, rapper Token turned to what he knows best–storytelling. Last month, Token released “A Prayer,” a cathartic open letter to his father who tragically passed away this year. Unlike his other songs that are powered by his sharp wordplay, crazy graphics, and head-turning hooks, he strips the song down to nothing but a soft guitar and melodic hook.
His lyricism is raw and the music video evokes a strong emotional response. By just looking at the video’s 1.9K comments on YouTube, the song hits home for many of his fans who’ve also lost loved ones. The comments express nothing but support and some go as far as sharing their own personal stories of losing loved ones. In an interview with Token, he says throughout the years, his fans have come to know a lot about his life, but said nothing had really been this big. “It was a new thing for me of like I’m not in a rush to tell anybody, so it was really for me making the song,” Token says.
“I made a ton of songs about it. I don’t know what’s to be released. I don’t know where the songs will end up. But this one, I chose to release because it felt general enough that other people could relate to it and other people could maybe get something out of it,” he says. Before releasing the song, Token says he felt nervous sharing this with his fans. “I just didn’t like the idea about talking about my dad’s death and then there’s like I’m having phone calls about it or there’s like a view count on it, or just like anything like career-related,” he says.
After releasing the song, he flew out to see his father’s mother after five years of not seeing each other. “So I felt very like connected to him when I released it. I reacted to it better than I thought I was going to,” he says. While his journey to healing continues, his passions for creating music burn brighter than ever.
“A Prayer” follows his last single “I Was In Hollywood” and his breakthrough album, Pink is Better, which includes features from JID, Rico Nasty, Lil Skies, and Benny The Butcher. On top of it all, his newest single “Ain’t It Funny” is the first song he’s released since moving to the sunny state of California. He says the song is about what life has been like in L.A. so far but “mostly the fun parts.” The track is fast, wild, and his flow never ceases to amaze me. If you haven’t checked him out, I recommend you give him a listen.