Behind the Mask
COVID-19 is now the third leading cause of death in the U.S. And, one study from the University of Washington showed that if 95% of the public wear masks, we would avoid approximately 34,000 more deaths by October 1, 2020. While the latest statistics show the coronavirus’ ongoing, devastating effects – particularly among communities of color – the debate around the efficacy of mask wearing continues to rise even as the cases themselves do. One organization, Hip Hop Public Health – through culturally relevant educational resources in the delivery of critical health information to help stop the spread – has launched Behind the Mask, an original new song and music video featuring recording artist Raheem DeVaughn and iconic hip hop pioneers Doug E. Fresh and Darryl DMC McDaniels. Behind the Mask is designed to increase the use of face masks as an effective means of stopping the spread of the coronavirus. And, with schools beginning to open up and people planning end-of-summer gatherings, the release of Behind the Mask could not be more timely.
Behind the Mask is actually the third installment in a trilogy of COVID-related music video PSAs produced by Hip Hop Public Health that began in April with the launch of 20 Seconds or More, and was followed by 20 Segundos o Más. Combined, these projects have reached more than three million people around the world.
The main theme of the Behind the Mask song is love. It’s essentially a love letter from the people of New York to everyone around the world with lyrics that literally bring people together with a message of love, unity, hope, and above all, safety.
By way of background, Hip Hop Public Health was founded in 2006 with the mission of fostering health equity by harnessing the power of music, art and science to save live and uplift communities that need it most. “Hip Hop Doc,” Dr. Olajide Williams is a leading neurologist and chief of staff at Columbia Presbyterian Hospital in New York. He co-founded HHPH with Doug E. Fresh, and is widely recognized for his expertise and insights on COVID-19 and its effects. Both he and Doug are available for interviews, as are recording artist Raheem DeVaughn, Darryl DMC McDaniels and others involved in the Behind the Mask movement. Hip Hop Public Health is a health-focus, arts and culture-forward organization that is a vital resource. Your support in helping to amplify the message about its vital work would be most appreciated, and, and do much to help raise awareness.