What might compel a billionaire tech entrepreneur to record a song referencing a nearly 3-year-old meme about a dead gorilla? Hard to say, really. Though in 2019, it’s somehow not entirely surprising.
That seems to be exactly what happened on March 30, when Elon Musk tweeted out a link to a song on Soundcloud entitled “RIP Harambe.” The song had apparently been recorded and uploaded by Musk himself.
The single apparently references a dated internet meme revolving around the death of Harambe, a 17-year-old western lowland gorilla at the Cincinnati Zoo, which was killed in May 2016 after a 4-year-old boy fell into the gorilla’s enclosure.
The song features a digitally-modified voice and references the death of the gorilla in its lyrics: “RIP Harambe, sipping on some Bombay, we on our way to heaven, amen, amen.”
Musk tweeted the song link along with image of an album cover featuring a gorilla. Shortly afterwards, he tweeted, “I’m disappointed that my record label failed.”
Musk’s Twitter use has recently landed him in legal trouble, after the U. S. Securities and Exchange Commission asked a judge to hold the billionaire in contempt of court in February for violating a settlement requiring him to get Tesla’s approval before communicating material information to investors. In a Feb. 19 tweet, Musk said the company would make about half a million cars in 2019, before posting a few hours later that they would deliver only about 400,000.
Those tweets came less than five months after Musk settled claims that he had misled Tesla investors with tweets about taking the company private.