The single was released on Friday (July 22) and sees the duo going the distance lyrically as they both trade rap verses and sing a melody or two. Russ and Ed Sheeran make mincemeat of their musical composition as they switch flows throughout the FRED-produced track.
“The god in me, that’s what I’m constantly summoning/ I love the climb, I don’t care where the summit is/ Funny when pеople be sayin’ I peakеd,” Russ boasts in the song’s first verse. “Retired my parents, they live at the beach/ Models and freaks is my track record/ I made my homies my staff members/ Got myself lit to give y’all the light/ Usin’ my mind to attract better.”
Ed Sheeran follows through with an uppercut-like verse, seamlessly weaving through rapping and a sing-songy delivery.
“I stay off the road, live in the sticks/ Put my profit into mortar and bricks,” Sheeran says, disclosing his financial strategies. “You know I got good advice from a couple guys/ To leave more than just stress for my kids/ Well isn’t it blissful, baby/ Sittin’ in like we made it?/ It’s kinda mad how the game is/You celebrate it and hate it.”
The Jake Nava-directed video begins as Russ hops off a private jet and into a luxury car driven by Ed Sheeran. The two drive through the city en route to a restaurant where they’re met with other loved ones just in time to celebrate vitality, blessings, and the life of their recently deceased friend, British music mogul Jamal Edwards.
Russ spoke about the song’s inception in a YouTube comment underneath the video shortly after uploading the video to the video-based platform.
“I’m so grateful for this moment. I walked up to Ed at a restaurant (Carbone) and assumed he didn’t know who I was. Next thing I know I’m eating pasta and drinking wine at his table talkin bout everything,” expressed the self-proclaimed DIY King.
“Fast forward, and we had this song, and we wanted to shoot a video to it, so he introduced me to Jamal Edwards, a brilliant visionary and special soul who wrote the treatment for the video.”
Russ stated he received the news that Jamal had passed away a day before he was supposed to fly out to London for the song’s video shoot.
Yet, the rapper, Ed Sheeran, the video’s director, Jamal’s mother Brenda, sister Tanisha, and producer Ali, all rallied together to make Edwards’ vision come to life.
Watch the “Are You Entertained” video above.