Chill Moody | photo by Rachel Del Sordo for WXPN | racheldelsordophotography.com
Chill Moody looks to the day when we can “Smile More”
Philly rapper Chill Moody has stayed productive during the pandemic with Moody Mondays, his recurring series of new single drops. The latest, “Smile More,” is a spirit-lifting throwback jam reminiscent of Chance the Rapper, produced by Ben Thomas, and led by resonant piano chords, a saxophone melody, and Moody’s lyrical sentiments of hope.
It would have easy for Moody to release a single called “Smile More” with a look-on-the-bright-side solution to difficult times — easy, and also a mistake. Instead of going the toxic positivity route, Moody spends the first segment of the song acknowledging personal difficulties, situational struggles, and mental health tribulations.
Setting it up as a phone call from a friend, Moody raps how this person “lived in fear, felt like the end was near / I figured at least I could lend an ear and hear him out / where I’m from, emotions you don’t hear about / typically we bottle that in, he said he gon’ air it out.” We hear about living life when the deck is stacked against you, about struggling against income inequality. Chill offers his own experience, but remains grounded: “don’t lose faith, but don’t take this as me preachin’ to you / I ain’t above you, by your side, this is me reachin’ to you.” In the end, the hook of “Smile More” is not a command, it’s an aspiration for better times down the road.