Wyclef Jean recently filmed the video for “Bang Bang Bang” in order to raise awareness for the rampant gun violence present all around the world. Filmed in Chicago, which has been ravaged by gun violence in the last several years, the multiple Grammy-Award winner walks along a road in the video with a golden gun-shaped guitar in hand.
“Shoot first…think last…,” Jean sings on the song, which features Young Chop and Jack Red and appeared on his recently released “April Showers” mixtape. “I have always said that music is my weapon,” Clef says. “I want to talk to the kids and not talk down upon them. We need to send a clear message to bury the guns and not our youth.”
Jean hopes his music will touch the hearts of youths living through dangerous situations all around the world, specifically in Chicago. Even though his guitar is in the shape of a golden automatic weapon in the video, he used that imagery in order to show positive creative forces in place of the usual violent imagery evident in many popular songs today.
“We purposely choose to use the image and likeness of a gat or gun as a guitar or ‘GatTar’ in an effort to call attention to the gun violence that has swept the world,” Jean says. “By drawing attention to the ‘GatTar,’ our goal is to promote music as an alternative to violence with a collective goal to stop the killin’.”
Jean was a member of rap trio The Fugees, which became one of the most popular groups in music with the release of its second album, 1996’s The Score. Since then, he has been a prolific artist and producer, working with Destiny’s Child, Shakira and T.I., among others.
Beyond music, Jean has long participated in social activism. He founded “Yele Haiti,” a charitable organization that focuses on helping his native Haiti. In 2008, Wyclef partnered with the UN and Pan American Development Foundation to launch their “Together For Haiti” campaign in an effort to raise awareness regarding hunger issues and provide food and jobs in Haiti. Two years later, Jean launched an unsuccessful bid to became a Haitian presidential candidate.