Less than six months after his death, Juice WRLD’s first posthumous solo release, “Righteous” has arrived. On Thursday (April 23), the track was unveiled via a statement penned by the late rapper’s mother, Carmela Wallace, and his label, Grade A, an imprint under Interscope Records.
“Juice was a prolific artist who dedicated his life to making music. Choosing how to share his unheard with the world has been no easy feat,” the letter read. “Honoring the love with Juice felt for his fans while shining a light on his talents and his spirit are the most important parts of this process to us.
The message went on to say Juice recorded the song at his home studio in Los Angeles, adding, “We hope you enjoy this new music and continue to keep Juice’s spirit alive. Stay safe everyone.”
Shortly after the announcement, his girlfriend Ally Lotti took to Twitter with a message of her own.
“I’ll never forget that night...Broken heart. We played this over [and] over the next couple weeks,” she wrote. “It’s a very emotional song for me to listen to but I [know] how much we both loved it and I [know] how much J would [be] proud of this. All of y’all, all of us.”
The single was accompanied by a music video. The Steve Cannon-directed visual follows some of the 21-year-old Chicago rap artist’s final moments performing on stage and at work in the studio. The emotional, three-minute track finds Juice opening up his struggles with anxiety.
“All white Gucci suit, I'm feeling righteous, yeah / I know that the truth is hard to digest, yeah / Five or six pills in my right hand, yeah / Codeine runneth over on my nightstand /Takin' medicine to fix all of the damage,” he rhymes in the chorus. “My anxiety the size of a planet / Holes in my skull, over time / My heart's over ice.”
Juice WRLD, born Jarad Anthony Higgins, and best known for his hit “Lucid Dreams” died Dec. 8 after suffering a seizure upon landing at Chicago’s Midway Airport. He was 21. An autopsy determined that he died of an accidental drug overdose, according to the Chicago Tribune.
On Wednesday (April 22), Wallace announced that she has established the Live Free 999 Fund in honor of her late son, according to Variety. The philanthropic organization will provide support to programs aiding young people battling with addiction, anxiety, and depression.
Listen to "Righteous" below.
(Photo: Scott Dudelson/Getty Images)