WHATUPRG ‘New Hollywood’: Album Meaning & ‘KIDS’ Breakdown

We were given some fresh information on WHATUPRG and his upcoming album New Hollywood. The following info is from a press release from his publicist that not only sheds more light on the single “KIDZ” but also on the full project.

With his second album, New Hollywood, releasing shortly, WHATUPRG is emerging from the Christian music scene and onto the world stage. Through his new song and video, “KIDS,” he sends a message on the behalf of the unaccompanied migrant children being kept in cramped government detention facilities on the US southern border with Mexico at the time of the song’s recording. “I want them to be released from physical captivity and I want all kids freed from the expectations that they be anything other than themselves.”

RG has had his own personal experiences with the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). In his music video, “4AM, he shared his emotions. At the age of 16, at four o’clock the morning ICE, came knocking down his door. They were in search of his Mexican immigrant father. Terrified, he along with his mother and younger sibling, tearfully watched as ICE cuffed, detained, and then deported his dad for violating U.S. immigration laws.

The video for his new single and song, “Kids,” uses Mexican imagery (the children wearing luchador masks) to give a subtle nod to the experiences of Mexicans in America. In contrast to the immigration policies which have resulted in children being locked in cages at the southern border, in the video, you see them floating in the air, symbolically freed from bondage. The masks the children wear in the video were originally worn by the luchadores (wrestlers) and have become an iconic symbol of Mexican culture.

“I used to jump off my dad’s ladders to my trampoline, ‘cause I wanted to be like Jeff Hardy or Rey Mysterio,” shared RG. “I wasn’t afraid of falling, I was just being a kid. Looking back, I was fearless, and that’s the same energy that I wanna approach life with.  I want to jump off the top of the ladder and be bold in who I am as a child of God.  Through my music, I want people to know that you don’t gotta pretend to be anything you’re not. Whether you got it all together or not, who you are is enough in God.”

“That’s where the idea for free the ‘Kids’ was born. If you have a dream, go for it: be fearless and trust that God put those desires in your heart.”

He expounds even further in a series of Tweets captured here.

RG has been processing his own coming of age through battles with depression through which he has determined to create and become something beautiful. His next album, New Hollywood, captures the true nature of what listeners desire from the musical artform: an experience in which the trained artist channels his or her ability to respond to deep human emotion.

“In NEW HOLLYWOOD the emotions run deep. Each track is a visceral experience. Every chord, every bassline, every lyric, and melody each contribute a delicate stroke of paint to the album’s canvas of human experience. The picture develops into a masterpiece that is just as specific as it is universal. Pain is universal, but we each must know it for ourselves in order to develop the empathy necessary to be ourselves and accept others who feel pain as well. His previous EP’s Pleasant Hill and the self-titled Raul have proven his capability to channel his personal experiences and journey through faith to offer something substantial to the zeitgeist. New Hollywood is a project that proves pressure plus time produces hope.”

WHATUPRG says, “I wanted to create music that could be a friend for people. I wanted to help them know when they hit rock bottom, even then, they’re not alone.”

He continued, “New Hollywood is a place where you don’t have to act and you can just be yourself. Being yourself is enough.”

What do you think?

Justin Sarachik

Written by Justin Sarachik

Justin is the Editor-in-Chief of Rapzilla.com. He has been a journalist for over a decade and has written or edited for Relevant, Christian Post, BREATHEcast, CCM, Broken Records Magazine, & more. He also likes to work with indie artists to develop their brands & marketing strategies. Catch him interviewing artists on Survival of the Artist Podcast.

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