On Friday, James Blake shared his fifth album, Friends That Break Your Heart. In addition to appearances from SZA, JID, Swavay, and Monica Martin, the album also features several production credits from Blake’s girlfriend Jameela Jamil. This is far from the first time Jamil has contributed to Blake’s bodies of work as she can be found several times on his 2019 album Assure Form and the 2020 EP Before. Despite this, fans questioned the true nature of Jamil’s contributions to Friends That Break Your Heart after she was spotted on nine out of the album’s 12 songs.
In response, she slammed her critics in a lengthy message while receiving support from Blake himself.
A lot of mostly women insisting I couldn’t possibly have actually worked on my boyfriend’s music, and that he must have just credited me to be nice… I was a DJ for 8 years, and studied music for 6 years before that. You are part of the problem of why women don’t pursue producing
— Jameela Jamil 🌈 (@jameelajamil) October 9, 2021
“A lot of mostly women insisting I couldn’t possibly have actually worked on my boyfriend’s music, and that he must have just credited me to be nice,” she wrote on Twitter. “I was a DJ for 8 years, and studied music for 6 years before that. You are part of the problem of why women don’t pursue producing.” The Good Place actress spoke further about the matter in a post to Instagram.
“Man. James had to fight me to take credit on this album because I was so Preemptively sick of the internet,” she captioned the Instagram post. “An additional hilarious side to this misogyny is that they only don’t believe in my musical input when they love the songs. If they don’t like a song then suddenly I CAN produce and it’s all my fault, and I produced the whole thing alone!”
She continued, “I hope you’re taking credit for your work wherever you are in the world right now. I hope you know that if you’re not being believed over your achievements… that it’s not a reflection of you… it’s a reflection of people who are so underachieving, cowardly and insecure that they can’t fathom that you could be impressive.” To conclude her message, Jamil wrote, “It happens at every level in every industry. Even to me. Even when I don’t credit myself, my boyfriend just quietly credited me. We are in this shit together. Representation matters. It is not our responsibility to be believed, liked, understood or approved of.”
Blake himself chimed in with a message of support towards Jamil on Instagram. “F*ck yeah. Thankyou for the time you put into this record Jameela,” he wrote. “It wouldn’t be half what it is without the insane skill set you brought to it. Love you and I hope all this serves as an example to Women who are routinely discouraged by eye-rolling wankers that your work is necessary and important.”
You can view the posts from Jamil and Blake above.
Friends That Break Your Heart is out now via Republic Records. Get it here.