Kehlani’s ‘Can I’ Quarantine Video Is an Ode to Black Sex Workers

Kehlani dropping a video off her recent sophomore album, It Was Good Until It Wasn’t, has become a near constant during quarantine, and we’ll simultaneously feel impressed that she made something so good amid all this and wonder what we’ve done in the past few weeks that’s been remotely as good. And she did it again today with “Can I,” releasing her sixth “quarantine style” video.” The NSFW video cuts clips of Kehlani performing the song with Black cam performers, giving new meaning to “like a porn star.” The video ends with a quote from writer and activist Da’Shaun Harrison noting the increased difficulties for Black sex workers. “Black people — as well as Indigenous people and other people of color — deserve to be able to perform sex work without any limitations or stigmas attached,” they write. “And this means that everyone must commit to learning from sex workers about sex work and sex workers’ needs.”

“Can I” features Tory Lanez, the rapper who allegedly shot Megan Thee Stallion two weeks ago and is currently under investigation by the Los Angeles Police Department. Lanez wasn’t in the video, but it still featured his verse. “Full transparency cuz i believe in that with my following,” Kehlani tweeted. “His verse is still on the song, the video is solo. new verse on the deluxe.” In a since-deleted tweet, she added, “The album came out months ago i can’t remove it, doesn’t work like that. can only move forward.”

Kehlani’s ‘Can I’ Video Is an Ode to Black Sex Workers