Hennessy is rap’s most popular liquor
Hip hop songs have often shouted out alcoholic drinks like Hpnotiq and Jay-Z’s D’ussé cognac, but Hennessy is arguably rap’s most popular liquor. It’s been shouted out by the likes of Drake, Snoop Dogg, Lil Wayne, and even Tupac Shakur.
A recent article for Zora magazine explores Hennessy’s place in the Black community in the United States, and how the cognac became a status symbol in the community and among the braggadocious culture of hip hop. Hennessy saw their popularity with Black Americans and sought to advertise toward them: they were the NAACP’s first corporate sponsor and the first liquor to advertise in Ebony and Jet magazines. They even recruited popular artists like Nas and Erykah Badu as brand ambassadors.
Beyond that, Hennessy has sought to provide financial support to the Black community wherever possible. They created a $10 million fellowship for historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) to help uplift the next generation of young Black corporate leaders. Last year, the brand launched the WE ARE series of Black History Month programming.
Hennessy’s parent company isn’t racially inclusive
Despite Hennessy’s apparent support for the Black community, that has amounted to very little support for Black employees — the reason behind Quavo’s call for a boycott. Just like other French cognac companies like Courvoisier, Hennessy has had an undeniable cultural investment in the Black community thanks in part to its use of prominent Black figures in its marketing. However, it still faces criticism for giving Black people little to no financial stake in the Moët-Hennessy company or its leadership.
Quavo isn’t happy with Hennessy
This year’s Black Lives Matter protests have made people hyper-critical of many companies, and some brands with overtly racist histories like Aunt Jemima have since started the process of rebranding.
Migos frontman Quavo’s call for a boycott of Hennessy has nothing to do with the company’s financial and performative support of the Black community over the last several decades. Instead, he’s taking aim at the people who run the company and their profiting off the community and culture without incorporating that support in their own home.
“My Folks Need To Stop Drinkin Hennessy,” Quavo tweeted. “They Don’t F*ck Wit Us! No mo Rapping about Henny.” He went on to pledge his loyalty to Martell cognac.
Quavo has rapped about Hennessy before
Like many other rappers, Quavo has rapped about Hennessy in the past. On the 2015 Berner song “Pass Me the Green,” Quavo says mentions taking a “double shot of Henn.” On Migos’ track “Brown Paper Bag,” Quavo raps, “I put your b*tch on Henny, on Henny and Coca.”
Even Quavo’s girlfriend, Saweetie, has also rapped about Hennessy. In fact, it’s part of the hook of her breakout single “My Type”: “Hennessy on my lips, take a little sip.”