Soul Singer Mavis Staples Takes On Racism In New Album, ‘If All I Was Was Black’

The new album will be released on November 17th.

The legendary soul singer Mavis Staples has returned with a new and timely album, If All I Was Was Black. Recent events that have formed a cruel divide within our nation have driven Staples to produce an album that ultimately promotes unity. “We are not loving each other the way we should,” expressed Staples. “Some people are saying they want to make the world great again, but we never lost our greatness. We just strayed into division.”

If All I Was Was Black observes the nation’s current state of racial conflicts and links it to prior times, revealing how America’s horrific past is repeating. The album will consist of 8 songs written by songwriter-producer Jeff Tweedy, and 3 co-written by Mavis Staples, including the title track.

“I’ve always thought of art as a political statement in and of itself – that it was enough to be on the side of creation and not destruction,” said Tweedy about the new record. “But there is something that feels complicit at this moment in time about not facing what is happening in this country head on.” He continued to say that this multigenerational collaboration was inspired by “the love I have for Mavis and the desire to be part of some kind of positive change.”

As with many of us, Mavis Staples ultimately wishes to see a positive change in America, pushing towards understanding, peace, and love. With If All I Was Was Black, she hopes to “bring us all together as a people. That’s what I hope to do. You can’t stop me. You can’t break me. I’m too loving. These songs are going to change the world.”

Listen to the title track, If All I Was Was Black, below:

If All I Was Was Black will be released November 17th on Anti-Records.

Pre-order at:


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