Are you ready for a visual jam session with the electric lady? The essence of Janelle Monae: capes, top hats, suspenders & green lights. A true artist, the CoverGirl gives her absolute all on stage. Excellent showmanship! Music mogul Sean “P.Diddy” Combs once admitted that when he saw the “Q.U.E.E.N” singer perform for the very first time, he cried. “He came to my release party in Atlanta for my EP Metropolis: The Chase,” says Monae in an interview with Pitchfork,”which we released literally out of our trunks. He said, “I know you guys have your business going on and I’m not trying to be involved creatively, but I just want people to know what’s going on in the underground.” So we formed a partnership. It’s not a direct signing– creatively and monetarily, we control things. He’s a smart man. I don’t want to sound cocky, but if I was him, I would definitely be trying to get involved with Janelle Monae. I’m his boss! He’s not mine.” The icon himself Prince called her over to his house immediately after hearing her latest record. Her talent speaks for itself, without taking off much clothes or showing skin at all. What a rarity!
Her latest performance was at the South By Southwest Festival in 2014, and as expected, she blew everyone away. Read this review from DFW.com:
Monae took the stage in her customary fashion — bound in a straitjacket and wheeled in on a dolly — before tearing loose and … immediately confronting some technical difficulties. (Prior to her arrival, a member of her entourage asked the room to observe a moment of silence, to memorialize the two people killed on Red River early Thursday morning.) The first two songs of her set were mostly inaudible, thanks to some sound issues, but the problem was resolved and she didn’t miss a beat, delivering large chunks of her sterling sophomore album, The Electric Lady.
But it was the finale that put her over the top.
During “Come Alive,” the final song of her hour-long set, Monae had already ordered the room to drop to the floor as the song built towards its climax. Everyone did, but then she darted off the stage and toward a side exit. There was some confusion and then someone shouted “Come on!”
Before anyone knew it, we were out — on the sidewalk, in the street, turning from Lavaca onto 5th. It was exhilarating and a little bewildering — the police didn’t exactly stop Monae and her minions from leading this impromptu mob almost all the way down 5th to Colorado — and unlike anything I’ve ever seen and/or participated in over 10 years of going to shows. When it was over, and the audience was piling back inside the club as the band finished the song and unplugged its instruments, there was a dizzying sense of “What just happened?”
Take a look at some of the best shots of the pint-sized 28-year-old powerhouse as she performs.