Jamila Woods is probably smarter than you. She’s certainly smarter than me.

Woods is a poet and vocalist from Chicago who studied at Brown University, has written books and been featured in poetry anthologies, is the artistic director of a non-profit, and designs curriculum for Chicago Public Schools.

Her debut album, HEAVN, came out in July with a Chicago-centric cast of collaborators including Chance the Rapper, Noname and Saba. “Blk Girl Soldier,” Woods’ first single from the record, shines with intelligence and power. She doesn’t shy away from the pain of the past, and celebrates the incredible drive and ambition of one of the most resilient groups in American history — black women.

It’s a protest anthem: It’s no coincidence that it ends with Assata Shakur’s famous quote that has become a mainstay of Black Lives Matter demonstrations. It’s also a great listen.

About The Author

Riley Beggin

Riley Beggin is the features editor for Jonk Music and a former senior writer. She's got a penchant for what the kids call "the jams," Dairy Queen Crunch Cones, and getting really worked up over historical debates.