JID is riding high on the heels of his latest album, The Forever Story, and he brought the stellar LP to NPR’s Tiny Desk. The Atlanta native and his band jumped right into his setlist, beginning with “Galaxy” and “Working Out,” setting the tone for the mini-concert. Jazzy compositions presented a new dimension to the fan-favorite tracks.
The Dreamville artist brought the aggression with tracks “Off Da Zoinkys” and “Never” from his acclaimed projects, The Never Story and DiCaprio 2. He and his band capped off a high-octane performance with “Surround Sound,” which also saw a vocal performance from background singers Najinga Luster and Rashida Chitunda. The haunting chords then transformed into an angelic harmony in “Sistanem,” as JID affectionately rapped about his siblings.
The passion all came to a head when the rapper channeled his emotions and funneled them into his final song, “Kody Blu 31.” “I’m doing a little bit more singing on this,” he cautioned to the concentrating crowd. “So I’ma ask y’all to bare with me if I get a little pitchy.”
JID multi-hyphenate followed the cue from his band’s composition and followed through with tender vocals. “And as I lay myself to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep/ The pressure makes me, the journey takes me,” he vocalized with his hands buried in his locs. “To places where history can’t stop or break me/ You know it rains for somethin’, you know the pain’s for somethin’/ I hope a change is comin’, just keep on swangin’ on.”
Amid his awe-inducing performance, the rapper even gave a nod to Usher’s viral Tiny Desk meme. “Watch this,” he jokingly gestured to a laughing crowd. “We had to cut the Usher tension in here.”
Watch the performance above.