The NFL has brought back its Songs of the Season campaign, and it kicked off with the song "Heavyweight" by hip-hop artist Blackway. The song made its debut during the Monday Night Football broadcast featuring the Los Angeles Chargers and New Orleans Saints, and additional songs from different artists will be selected throughout the year. Blackway recorded "Heavyweight" specifically for the NFL.
Growing up in New York City and Ghana, Blackway said "Heavyweight" is a high-energy track that is intended to make people feel like superheroes. Blackway is one of the rising stars in the music industry, being nominated for a Grammy Award earlier this year for his song "What's Up Danger," which was featured on the soundtrack to the film Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse. The soundtrack was nominated for Best Compilation Soundtrack for Visual Media. In a 2017 interview with XXL Magazine, Blackway talked about his goal in hip-hop.
"When I was young I felt like everybody's goal was to be the greatest rapper to ever rap," Blackway stated. " When you in high school, everybody talks about being the greatest rapper ever. So subconsciously, even if I don't know it or say it, that's gonna be one of them. I want to be recognized as the person who has 'the greatest bars I ever heard.' I want a group of people to be able to say that about me. Internally I feel like that's gonna be my goal—that's gonna be any rapper's—any actual spitter's—goal. But as the mature me, I'd say [I want the] accolades, the Grammys. I'm going with the flow." And when asked about his hip-hop style, Blackway compared him to two big-name stars.
"As far as rap, more recently I've been compared to Kendrick and Eminem. In my younger years I was compared to Big L a lot. As far as music overall, I've heard weird things like, 'The African Kendrick' [or] 'a rapping Akon.' I had a few sessions with [Busta Rhymes] and he said I remind him of Drake a little bit."
Songs of the Season highlights superstars and emerging recording artists of all genres, incorporating their music into game broadcasts throughout the 2020 season. Last season's artists included Lecrae, Royce Da 5'9", and SASH. The series supports Inspire Change, the NFL's social justice initiative focused on reducing barriers to opportunity in four priority areas: education, economic advancement, police and community relations, and criminal justice reform.