I’m not saying I can read auras or anything, but when I saw Davie’s new short film — which acts, in part, as a music video for multiple tracks from his new EP, All In the Family — I got this sense of warmth. Like sugar cookies out of the oven. Slapping down Uno cards on mom’s dining room table. Arguing over who’s on dish duty.
Perhaps what it conjured could best be dubbed “nostalgia.” But, with the holidays here, there was another layer. The images and music left me with excitement to see with my own family. It inspired me to seek out the sort of connection and comfort that the video portrays so lovingly.
All of this is by design. Davie — who’s made a name for himself as a soul artist whose voice can transmit meaning and feeling in equal measure — set out to write songs and make a short film that captured some of the love he feels for his own family (both birth and chosen). Even the setting was driven by these feelings.
“First of all, I just wanted to tell my story of my grandmother’s home,” he says. “It’s always been a vital part of activities with friends and my family, so I wanted to feel like the star of the film was this house. I wanted to show a safe place to have fun.”
But the familiar location, faces (the video stars the artist’s real friends and relatives), and imagery don’t shrink the scope of the project. In fact, that focus allows Davie to speak to massive issues facing the country this year (and every year since its inception).
“Last year we saw Black tragedy,” he says. “Black injustice. With this project, I felt that it was my job to push forward Black joy and to lift people’s spirits with light imagery.”
He goes further, explaining that it wasn’t just the joy he wanted to portray but also the normalcy of that joy.
“When it comes to Black folks in media, we often see an imbalance with Black superheroes like LeBron or horrific tragedy,” he says. “It’s often just those two. I just wanted to show a Black family and friends just being — smiling, playing, dancing, cooking, writing songs. I wanted to create an art piece that showed joy but without the choreography or grandiose budgets.”
The fact that the All in the Family short film, which can be seen above, is launching the day before Thanksgiving is not lost on Davie. At its heart, the project is about connection — real and in person. Ideally, that’s what the holidays are, too.
“I feel like the art of conversation and sitting with chosen family or birth family has been lost in the glorification of hustle,” Davie says. “But if there was anything we learned from last year, it’s that nothing is promised. I took inventory when the world came to a pause and realized that the strong bonds of friends and family are what get us through hard times. I look forward to having conversations with the people I love. The people I want to build community with.”
When asked about his own Thanksgiving plans, Davie offers a shoutout to mac & cheese before growing reflective.
“I would encourage people to take care of one another this year,” he says. “Look out for each other. Try to find your people. Try to find those friends. Take time to have a meal with the people you want in your life. Be open to family, stay open to having difficult conversations — maybe something beautiful can come out of it.”
Davie’s own openness to family, reflected in the video above and the All in the Family EP (available on all streaming platforms), has already created something beautiful. And its warmth is sure to be felt by anyone who takes the time to sit with it in the days and weeks to come.