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As a follow-up to August’s “SULA (Paperback),” Chicago singer-songwriter Jamila Woods recently released “SULA (Hardcover).” The sister songs are both based on Toni Morrison’s 1973 novel, Sula. Although the two tracks are are lyrically similar, the differing production styles position the tracks as distinctive sides of the same coin: “SULA (Paperback)” is soft, acoustic guitar-driven neo-soul, while “SULA (Hardcover)” features an off-kilter, funky drums and bass riffs.

Woods also released a video, directed by Fatimah Asghar, to accompany “SULA (Hardcover)”. “I’ve always loved SULA by Toni Morrison, and been particularly struck by the way that Sula isn’t understood by the people around her because of her sexuality,” Asghar explained. “Being in quarantine, connecting to my own sexuality in a way that I hadn’t before, re-reading SULA and listening to the song inspired me to think through the concept of the video.”

The video features Woods disrobing in the comfort of her own space — albeit in the outdoors — framing a juxtaposition between the intimacy of Woods’ nudity and reclamation of her own sexuality.

Watch the video for Jamila Woods’ “SULA (Hardcover) below. Content warning: this video contains nudity.

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