One month into 2016, OC-bred rapper-turned-soul man Aloe Blacc is already having one hell of a year. Recently, the Weekly cover boy landed a Super Bowl opening performance and a single for a major historical biopic that will have audiences running to theaters. Today Grammy-nominated singer and songwriter released “Let The Games Begin” from the upcoming Focus Features film RACE, based on the story of legendary track star Jesse Owens, which comes out on Feb. 19.”
The film (starring Stephan James of “Selma” fame) is based on the incredible true story of Owens and his quest to become the greatest track and field athlete in history, which thrusts him onto the world stage of the 1936 Olympics, where he faces off against Adolf Hitler’s vision of Aryan supremacy.
But in true Aloe fashion, the song’s stirring emotional pull stems from it’s ability to find itself relatable to almost anything, sports-related or otherwise. From the opening horns that give a nod to Otis Redding’s rendition of Sam Cooke’s “A Change is Gonna Come,” the lyrics have us sprinting through a straightaway of inspirational one-liners (“This is the moment of a lifetime, made it through the dark now it’s time to let your light shine”) to the heart-pounding drums that bring you to the end of the song. Though it was tailored made for a track movie, it’ll fit the Superbowl just fine.
Catch Aloe Blacc performing “Let The Games Begin (From RACE)” when he headlines a free Opening Night concert at Super Bowl City on Monday, Feb. 1 at 6 p.m. PT. Blacc’s performance will be televised in the SAP Center in San Jose, Ca, as part of Super Bowl Opening Night Fueled by Gatorade and shown on the NFL Network and streamed at www.nfl.com.
Two years ago, we caught up with Blacc just after the release of his major-label debut album Lift Your Spirit March 11th, 2014 on XIX Recordings/Interscope Records, the album that took him from an indie darling on Stonesthrow Records to a household name with a major label deal. It debuted at #4 on the Billboard Top 200 chart. It was a perfectly-timed follow-up to Blacc’s collaboration as vocalist and co-writer on well-known DJ/producer Avicii’s track “Wake Me Up,” a song that hit the Top 5 on the Billboard Hot 100 and #1 on its Hot Dance Club Songs and Dance/Electronic Songs charts, as well as topping charts in more than 100 countries. Blacc’s single “The Man” topped the charts with more than 2.7 million singles sold and Lift Your Spirit received a Grammy nomination for Best R&B Album.
Check out the song “Let the Games Begin” below.