Despite the fact that they were never able to clinch the title on RuPaul’s Drag Race, Aja is winning. The 24-year-old drag star has quickly become a fan favorite, thanks in part to their debut EP from earlier this year, In My Feelings. Aja received critical acclaim for the hip-hop opus, making them one of the newest drag stars to see their star on the rise.
Aja continued that streak of success on Thursday (Nov. 15) with the release of the new single “Art Jesus.” A continuation of their song “Art God,” the new track puts society on trial, with Aja refusing to apologize for living their authentic life. “Penance, reconciliation/ No more abbreviations/ These bitches gone with the storytellin’/ Ain’t no place for interpretations,” they spit on the new verse.
In an exclusive statement to Billboard, Aja says the song is a rebuke of conventional stereotypes and an embrace of being as different as you want. “Being in a world that’s obsessed with conformity, I have found myself at many times in life trying to be something I’m not and not being authentic to myself,” they say. “Now I’m not afraid to be myself. I want people to know they shouldn’t be afraid to be themselves, even if it’s not popular.”
“Art Jesus” is the first track to be released from Aja’s highly anticipated upcoming album. Aja says that if In My Feelings was a pleasant surprise, then their new album is going to be a shock to the system. “The LP is going to shock people for sure,” they say. “A lot of people will expect something similar to my debut EP In My Feelings. I have taken a big departure from that style and dived into some sounds I’ve really been enjoying … I put a lot of my heart in soul into it and I hope people see that.”
Check out Aja’s new song “Art Jesus” below, and be sure to catch her in the newest episode of Billboard Pride’s “Spillin’ the Tea” here.