“Testify” is the fourth single from rapper Common‘s 2005 album Be. Clocking in at just above two and a half minutes, it is the second shortest track on Be (after the album’s intro). It is produced by Kanye West, whose beat heavily utilizes vocal samples from “Innocent Til Proven Guilty” by Honey Cone. Spence D. of IGN.com comments on this saying: “‘Testify’ […] features an intricate layering of vocals which provide such an hypnotic backdrop that you almost forget to listen to Common’s compelling storytelling.” The song’s story is about a woman who manipulates a judge and jury to find her partner guilty of a crime she committed. After the case is settled, she starts laughing that she is the criminal. Sean Malcolm of AllHipHop.com considers Common to have “paint[ed] pictures of extravagant court trials” on “Testify.” The song was a critical hit garnering a nomination for Best Rap Solo Performance at the 48th Grammy Awards.
A remix featuring soul singer Darien Brockington and a different beat was recorded.
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