Published November 26, 2017
MINNEAPOLIS — On Thursday, November 30th, Anishinaabe Hip Hop artist Tall Paul releases the official music video for his new single Someone Great Who Looked Like Me, filmed by Mercies May. The song explores the life and legacy of Jim Thorpe, a Sac and Fox tribal member voted the greatest athlete of the 20th century by ABC Sports. Filmed during a cross country road trip while visiting various sites historically relevant to Jim Thorpe, the video is set to the backdrop of Kansas, Oklahoma, Ohio and Pennsylvania.
In the first verse Tall Paul remembers his own involvement in athletics. Highlighting the importance of youth having idols that they can identify with from a cultural and communal standpoint, he raps about the positive impact his older brothers had on him while teaching him the game of football. In contrast, he recalls that there were no widely known professional Native American athletes for him to idolize during his childhood.
In the chorus Tall Paul imagines a childhood spent watching Jim Thorpe on television, expressing his wish that Jim Thorpe received the same attention as athletes in modern times. Emphasizing the similarities between himself and Jim Thorpe, such as their shared love for sports and their history of alcohol use, Tall Paul expresses that these similarities empowered him in his sobriety and artistry.
In the second verse Tall Paul draws comparisons between his experience in foster care and Jim Thorpe’s time in boarding schools, referring to foster care as “the modern-day boarding school.” In the third verse he makes an argument for Jim Thorpe being the greatest athlete of all time, referencing Jim Thorpe’s Olympic gold medals and multiple sports Hall of Fame inductions.
Watch for the release this Thursday, November 30, 2017.