‘SNL’: Jack Harlow Flies ‘First Class’ Back to 1977

After seeing Jack Harlow as a drunk frat guy dressed as giant tampon, his musical offerings felt like a revelation.

The Louisville rapper played three songs from his sophomore album Come Home The Kids Miss You, starting with the confessional booty call, “Lil Secret.” “I told my therapist about you, she always takes your side,” he sang, as angelic as his Diddy-white pantsuit. “Ain’t nobody I love more, I just need more time.” Harlow is lover not a fighter. As he told Rolling Stone in his March 2022 cover story: “I am poetic, but I want some ass.”

“Secret” slid right into the mile-high seduction, “First Class.” As it did, the disco ball dropped, the floor tiles illuminated, and suddenly Harlow was Tony Manero, the pizza-scarfing paint store employee turned disco king from 1977’s Saturday Night Fever. Given Harlow’s blatant Hollywood aspirations, (was it an accident that Tom Hanks introduced him?) framing Harlow as a Gen-Z John Travolta kind of makes sense.

But when Harlow closed out his set, there were no gimmicks or scantily clad backup dancers. It was just Harlow and the mike, rapping about going back to his hometown to show up all the teachers and haters who doubted him. The dark come-up anthem is something of a rite of passage in popular music across every genre, and Harlow’s has teeth. “Fuck the fame, from the jump, we ain’t been cut the same,” he raps. “I got so much, but I still think about what’s unobtained.”