On Thursday, Dec. 28, JAY-Z announced that his next music video will arrive on Friday, Dec. 29. Naturally, fans are already wondering how to watch JAY-Z's "Family Feud" video without TIDAL. The rapper owns the subscription-based streaming service and tends to keep his family's work exclusive to it as a result. Something as huge as the "Family Feud" video, though? That should hopefully be made available more places.
Update: First-time subscribers to TIDAL will have access to the video thanks to the 12 Days of Free TIDAL promotion:
"Prospective members can activate a preview account on TIDAL.com beginning December 25, 2017 through January 5, 2018, using just an email address, no credit card required. Throughout the preview period, members will have access to TIDAL's full platform via mobile app, web player and desktop app."
Earlier: The teaser for "Family Feud" dropped on Instagram and Twitter, and the short video seems to reflect the nature of the song. "Family Feud" is generally considered to be a response to Beyoncé's Lemonade album, even including references to infamous "Becky with the good hair." JAY-Z raps, "Nobody wins when the family feuds" on it, which is one of the allusions that the entire album, 4:44, makes to him cheating on wife Beyoncé. Confirming the infidelity in a later interview with The New York Times, the rapper said,
"You go into survival mode, and when you go into survival mode what happen? You shut down all emotions. So even with women, you gonna shut down emotionally, so you can't connect ... And then all the things happen from there: infidelity."
To be honest, for something as significant as this video — one that seems to address the couple's marital strife from his point of view — it would be a savvy marketing move by JAY-Z to premiere the video exclusively on TIDAL and then turn it over to the masses. And there would be a precedence for that.
After all, three of his previous videos, including "Legacy," "Smile," and "Marcy Me," were all TIDAL exclusives. They were shareable and embeddable, so other outlets were able to repost them, but, in order to watch anything other than a trailer, fans needed a TIDAL free trial or login. Luckily, in the month or so since their release, JAY-Z made "Smile," "Legacy," and "Marcy Me" available to watch on YouTube.
The triple video release didn't make as many headlines as the highly-anticipated "Family Feud," but that could be for any number of reasons. They were all released as a batch, for one, instead of allowing fans to appreciate them individually. (Also, JAY-Z took more of a backseat in these videos, whereas the "Family Feud" trailer shows the mogul quite literally confessing his sins in church.) As SPIN notes, it's interesting that "the ["Smile," "Legacy," and "Marcy Me"] songs and videos feature Susan Sarandon, Jesse Williams, Ron Perlman, and Gloria Carter (Jay-Z’s mother)," which is an eclectic mix of personalities.
JAY-Z's other TIDAL-exclusive music videos can all be watched on his YouTube account, including "Moonlight," "The Story Of O.J.," and "MaNyfaCedGod," which bodes well for hopeful "Family Feud" viewers. But many fans might not want to wait that long, although it seems unlikely that Beyoncé's husband will release the initial video anywhere other than TIDAL. There could be another option, though: a television airing.
After all, Kanye West did it with his "Famous" video, and Taylor Swift did it with "Look What You Made Me Do." Like Hov, they had things to prove with their video, statements to make that demanded the widest possible audience. Considering Beyoncé and Blue Ivy both feature in the confessional video, there's no doubt that "Family Feud" will want to make a statement. So why only make it to TIDAL subscribers? Especially since almost everyone on the planet watches some sort of New Year's Eve countdown, so it would be smart to take advantage of that — even if it were to happen a full 48 hours after his video's premiere.
The television airing might be a hopeful stretch, but there's at least one thing for sure: once JAY-Z drops the "Family Feud" video, people are going to be watching any way that they can. That teaser already has them talking.