CIA Student Helms Rapper Riz Leigh’s New Music Video


  • Courtesy of Riz Leigh
After a four-year break, rapper Riz Leigh has just released Metal Jacket, a self-produced album, and a music video for the single "Bad" that local filmmaker and artist Violet Maimbourg directed.

Leigh started recording in 2010 and collaborated with Violet Maimbourg on numerous music videos from 2013 to 2015.

During his hiatus, Leigh worked as a teacher, and Maimbourg spent those years in "self-reflection" and came to terms with being transgender and transitioning. Maimbourg also began attending Cleveland Institute of Art for Sculpture + Expanded Media.

She intends to be a special effects artist in the film industry.

Leigh says the album title is a reference to the "tough exterior that he portrays to the world."

“I think everyone has a 'metal jacket,'” he says. “It means going into the world unafraid of what people might think of you and being your true authentic self. Violet [Maimbourg] has always had a vision, and believed in my music.”

“Being able to work with [Leigh] again has really been a gift,” says Maimbourg, who shot the video locally in Asiatown (and yes, the snow in it is real). “I was so worried about what he would think of me or how I could create a music video after transforming my entire life. Our creative bond has always been strong, and I think we created a kick-ass comeback video.”

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