Royce Da 5’9 Addresses Anti-Vaccination ‘Tricked’ Lyrics & Drops Video
ft. KXNG Crooked
Longtime Royce Da 5’9 fans may have been taken aback by his decision to go against the societal grain and dismiss vaccines on his KXNG Crooked-featured single “Tricked.” You’ve been tricked. That’s what Royce da 5’9″ is telling us in his latest release from his highly-acclaimed new album The Allegory. The song finds Royce and former Slaughterhouse groupmate Kxng Crooked (also known as Crooked I) discussing the ways in which he thinks we’ve all been fooled.
This is an idea that has been discredited by medical authorities. The Journal of the American Medical Association points out that “a substantial body of research over the last 15 years has found no link between the MMR vaccine and ASD [autism spectrum disorders.”
But Royce stands by his position. According to the tenured lyricist, he started seeing evidence to be anti-vax within his own household. “I have a child on the spectrum,” he told Complex in conjunction with the “Tricked” video premiere. “All of my kids have been vaccinated. Within the last couple of years, I started being just real, real information junkie. I started doing a lot of fact-checking and a lot of reading-a lot more reading than I was doing. “You got the regular facts that get presented to you, and then you have the other facts that you got to go research. Well, I found that I was able to draw a correlation between autism and vaccination. I found vaccinations link back to autism in many ways. And my wife is not anti-vax. So if I was ever going to have any more kids, we’d probably have to figure out a way to meet halfway. So I’m not in any way trying to encourage people to not get their kids vaccinated. I encourage you to believe what you want to believe.” On the self-produced lyrical PSA, Royce raps, “From day one at the hospital they target our children/Say they gonna immunize ’em they somehow get autism.”
The song appears on Royce’s eighth studio album, The Allegory, which boasts guests such as DJ Premier, Westside Gunn, Conway The Machine, Benny The Butcher, T.I., Vince Staples and many more.
Royce 5’9″is living his best life. “I’m at the happiest place I’ve ever been. I’m fearless, not worried about anything, and I’m completely at peace,” he admits. His last release, 2018’s The Book Of Ryan was a benchmark album that shed new light into Royce’s formative years. “Since my last album was so personal, I didn’t know if I had anything else to say,” he shares. So,Royce opened Heaven Studios as well as a label by the same name. Then, fate took over. “This is the first album that’s ever happened to me.”In the period following Book Of Ryan, Royce began dabbling in production. Known for rocking to beats by DJ Premier, Nottz, Mr. Porter, Eminem, and others, Nickel tried his hand, purchased equipment, and chipped away at creating his own sounds. The lessons began with DJ Premier. “DJ Premier sat on Facetime for hours and showed me how to use MPC Studio,” he says of his PRhyme partner. While Mr. Porter supplied years of sounds. Expressing himself through a new medium finally compelled Nickel to grab the mic. “The beats started inspiring me with the pen.” It was an extension of the artistic identity. “Through therapy, I’m learning that the more you know about yourself, the better you can be at everything.”
When a friend gave Royce Allegory At The Cave by Plato, more inspiration flowed. “What I got most out of the book was human programming. I just had all these visions of the way you can draw parallels between the infrastructure of the government versus the music industry,” he says. “I’m passionate about where Black people stand in America. Filling these youngsters’ heads with information and sending them in the right direction is another passion of mine. Once I started being able to draw a correlationbetween the two, I started recording. The results are a bold and defiant album produced solely by Royce. He named it The Allegory. “That’s what an allegory is-bringing across subliminal messages that get across what an artist stands for.”Across 22 tracks, Royce offers wisdom for Black folks and creatives. Part of Roc Nation’s Inspire Change initiative with the NFL, the T.I., Sy Ari Da Kid, White Goldand CyHi The Prynce-assisted single “Black Savage” transforms a slur the media has used onBlacks and makes it a mark of excellence.
“Tricked” is an album turning point built around perspective. “It shows you the possibilities of somebody having layers, especially Black kids,” the artist says of his personal favorite song. “Hero” follows last year’s “Cocaine” with another revealing, human story about fathers and sons.For The Allegory, 5’9″welcomes a cast of skilled younger MCs to join him, including YBN Cordae, Oswin Benjamin, G Perico, and Griselda’s crew. “I’ve always had moments where I was embraced by the MCs that I looked up to. I want to pay it forward,” Royce states. He dismisses clout-chasing through features butwants to bridge the generation gaps. “If you look at Hip-Hop history, nothing that has ever been considered special to the culture has ever been like the other art surrounding it at the same time,” Royce says, pointing to an onslaught of classic albums. The Allegoryis nutritious food for thought, created with intent by an MC/producer who is the best place in his life, making hisboldest art to date.