Okayplayer, the news and culture site founded in 1998 by The Roots front-man Questlove, launched a new initiative honoring Black resilience called “PASSAGE: The Practice of Healing.” The mental health and wellness program includes an EP produced by MMYYKK and featuring guided meditations by Big K.R.I.T., Kwasi Kessie, Kenji Summers, and others; a four-minute thematic Visualizer directed and edited by Andrew Morrow (Black is King, Homecoming: A Film by Beyoncé, Lemonade), and an “In Conversation” interview series focused on the healing journeys of Black creatives led by Okayplayer VP of content/editor-in-chief Rachel Hislop. The first conversation will take place on February 9th at 7 PM EST with GRAMMY-nominated rapper Vic Mensa. RSVP for the digital event can be found here.
“Passage is a celebration of resilience, positivity, healing, and a safe space created in support of millennials of color. We know what processing Black pain and trauma looks like, we are all too familiar with it. We have been inundated with a stream of negative messaging associated with identifying as a person of color in this country, while also fighting dual pandemics,” said Rachel Hislop, VP of content/editor-in-chief. “The last four years have been hard, but they have been exceptionally hard for Black and brown communities and it’s clear that our responsibility to heal will be ours alone, so we wanted to do our part to contribute to that collective healing.”
“Passage is a true labor of love and collaboration that we hope will serve to amplify the collective stories and healing practices for people of color, by people of color.”
Tentpole moments of the ‘Passage’ rollout will include wellness-focused audio/visual content, editorial programming, and an apparel collection championing self-care:
- “Passage,” The EP: The EP consists of 8 original guided meditation tracks voiced by artists and influencers, including Big K.R.I.T. Kwasi Kessie, Kenji Summers, and others; for people of color, by people of color. The EP is available across all major streaming platforms here.
- Visualizer: The thematic visual opus introduces the 360-degree wellness initiative and features soundbites from the EP, here. Directed and edited by renowned visual artist Andrew Morrow, the four-minute, forty four-second video harkens the tone of healing through gratitude and mindfulness.
- “In Conversation” Interview Series: A three-part intimate conversation covering the healing journeys of Black creatives, which will kick off Feb. 9, at 7 p.m. ET, with a special live-streamed discussion with Vic Mensa (RSVP here) – with additional celebrity guests to be announced.
- Monthly Self-Care Sessions: Rejuvinative programming will feature experts, therapists, and wellness practitioners leading conversations and practices for audiences to learn, engage and interact with, including:
- Therapy Sessions
- Soundbath Meditations
- Black Business Spotlight: Supporting local Black-owned health and wellness cafe, partner:
- Aunts et Uncles: Plant Based Cafe/Bar (NYC)
- “Passage Sounds” Playlist: Compilation of tracks intended to induce calm, inspiration and entertainment, and curated by Okayplayer editors and special celebrity guests. This is available on Spotify.
- “The Heal Good, Feel Good” Collection: Features an assortment of limited-edition self-care products and apparel available at OkayShop in March.
- Thematic Editorial:
- Monthly Digital Features: Editorial content will cover the revolutionary shift in perception of mental health in communities of color
- Print Zine: A forthcoming limited-edition print zine that will feature the personal essays, affirmations and interviews of , creatives and artists who have made healing their refuge. From moments of vulnerability to their healing practices, we will learn how their lives have been forever shaped by their courage to look within. The Passage zine will be available for purchase at the OkayShop.