Juvenile and Mannie Fresh joined forces with rapper Mia X to encourage COVID-19 vaccines by recreating a late ’90s classic with a twist: “Vax That Thang Up.”
The rap trio partnered with BLK, a dating app for Black singles, to encourage young adults to get vaccinated. The release of the song and video on Wednesday came just after President Joe Biden missed his goal of making sure 70% of adults in the U.S. had at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine by July 4.
Juvenile and Mannie Fresh memorably released their popular hit “Back That Azz Up,” featuring Lil Wayne, as a single in 1999. Juvenile said he elected to recreate his classic hit because he wanted to do something to help.
“I just wanted to do something positive for my people and to stand in the front to show that I’m willing to sacrifice my life not just for me but also for my family,” he said according to a press release. “We don’t know what we’re facing right now but we really do all need to be vaccinated so we can continue to do our thing and survive.”
The video for the new project, which BLK released in partnership with marketing agency Majority, begins with the same music from the original song, except Juvenile raps in the chorus: “Girl you looks good won’t you vax that thang up / You’s a handsome young brother, won’t you vax that thang up.”
Check out the “Vax That Thang Up” video below:
BLK’s press release cited a June Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that found adults ages 18 to 29 were seeking out COVID-19 vaccines at a slower rate than older adults.
“The song may be playful and fun, but the underlying message is as real as it gets,” Jonathan Kirkland, head of brand and marketing at BLK, said in the release, noting that BLK reaches that younger group.
The dating app also unveiled a “Vaxified” badge that allows users to promote their vaccinated status.
Many government officials across the U.S. have continued to promote the safety and urgency of getting the vaccines.
Polls and surveys released in the spring showed that vaccine skepticism was more widespread among white evangelicals than almost any other major bloc of Americans, The Associated Press reported at the time.
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