Chicago poet and singer Jamila Woods is back with “Boundaries,” her first new solo music since 2020.

The follow-up to “Sula (Paperback)” was produced by BLVK and recorded at LA’s Complex Studios. On the track, Woods addresses the complexities of navigating the early stages of romance, floating over the beat with lyrics like, “If I let you come inside/ You’ll track in all the mud I’m bound to see/ It’s safer on the outside/ I’d hate to find a reason I should leave.”

In a statement, Woods explained the inspiration for the track. “‘Boundaries’ is a song about the negotiation between private and shared space in a new relationship, the risk involved in letting someone get close enough to see your rough edges,” she explained. “I think a lot about the Prentice Hemphill quote, ‘Boundaries are the distance at which I can love you and me simultaneously.’ The song is about learning the difference between erecting boundaries out of fear versus out of love.”


Stream Jamila Woods’ “Boundaries” via the lyric video below.

Woods’ last full-length was LEGACY! LEGACY!, which was not only one of the best albums of 2019, but also one of our Top 75 albums of the last 15 years. Over the past year or so, the artist has appeared on songs by Peter CottonTale, oddCouple, Mykki Blanco, and more. She also contributed to Jagjaguwar’s Join the Ritual covers compilation and a collaborative album from Neneh Cherry.