All Articles Tagged "erykah badu"
Believe it or not, today is Erykah Badu’s 43rd birthday. And in honor of all that she’s contributed to the world, we’re celebrating the 10 ways Erykah Badu has changed the game since she first stepped on the scene.
Algebra Blessett Releases New Album, Schools Fans On How To Find More Happiness Than They Ever Fathomed
We first met Algebra Blessett and her soul-infused honey-like voice in 2008 when she dropped the single “U Do It For Me.” Like her music, Algebra is real, honest and sincere about the art she makes, which is why today she’s releasing a new album, “Recovery,” with no inhibitions. We had a chance to chat with Algebra about her sophomore release and what it means to recover from circumstances, even if the changes you go through are ones of happiness. Check out the Q&A here:
Would you still describe your musical style as neo-soul?
I was signed to Kedar Massenburg’s label and he initially coined the phrase “neo-soul.” He had D’Angelou and Erykah Badu on his label so because I worked with him I automatically got put under that umbrella. For me, I will always perform rhythm and blues but I have a live band and perform with my guitar. It depends on the platform. I do R&B, but to be honest I never knew what “neo-soul” was suppose to sound like. I just felt I was performing good rhythm and blues because it was not pop, locking and dropping. Neo-soul is stories and evoked emotions.
What can you tell us about your new album “Recovery”?
“Recovery” is my sophomore album and it was a strategic process in my musical journey. I knew what subject matters I wanted to talk about and how I wanted to convey certain things. Just like the album’s title, the album is about going from one place to another. Of course the album talks about recovering from heartache or other sorrows in our lives. I also talk about thinking you are so happy in your life and then something happens; you had no idea you could experience another level of happiness. All of that is a recovery process- going from being used to something to actually accepting and reveling in the possibility of being even happier. And just letting it be, because sometimes when you get into a place of not knowing how to function after things change, whether it is good or bad, it takes time getting used to.
For the “Nobody But You” music video, you took the visual aspect of Lucy and Schroder from Charlie Brown. Why is that?
I am a big cartoon fan and I absolutely love Charlie Brown. So my team and I talked about it. The song represents a woman professing her love to this guy who you may or may not know and whether he is insecure or just be ignoring her. That storyline reminded me of Lucy and Schroder from Charlie Brown because Lucy loves Schroder so much. She needed counseling, that is how much she loved him and Schroder didn’t notice it. He was so involved with his love for the piano. Sometimes we can miss out on certain types of love because we “know” what we love but we are not ready to experience other types of love.
In an article by Boombox, you shared your main purpose of this album was to remain true to yourself. How difficult is that asa female singer in the music industry?
It’s very difficult, especially if you lose sight of your initial purpose. You have to stand firm on what you want to sing, how you want to dress or how you want to look. I am natural and I hardly show that much skin even though I have a smaller frame. If I choose to show it all, I can. But that is my power within those boundaries. If I want to cover up and just show my lips and nose, I have the power to do that if I want to. So those become the top layers of the nuisances we have to go through as women especially in the industry. In certain fields you have to dress the part that comes with your occupation. For me, I have been able to create my own part, do what I want to do, say what I want to say and sing what I want to say. Most importantly, I am able to just be honest with me. If I look back on it, the moment I didn’t do what I was suppose to do, I regretted it.
Who is your dream artist to work with?
I enjoy seeing new artists come out because I remember what that felt like even though I am still kind of new. There are so many journeys in becoming the artist you want to be. I would love to do a song with Jill Scott. I like her so much– I love that she is a lyricist. She is a sound bite and I like her energy. I think she is a beautiful person, too. I enjoy Kendrick Lamar and I would like to sing with Drake, Andre 3000 and Cee-Lo.
It’s not surprising at all that the late, great Michael Jackson (and his sister Janet) topped Business Insider‘s list of having the costliest music video of all time — Scream (1996). With a funky wardrobe, a futuristic spaceship, and black and white visuals, Scream cost a whopping $7 million!
But as I scrolled through the list, I was shocked that the King of Pop’s Thriller – arguably one of the most spectacular music videos ever — was absent. Diddy’s Victory (1998), not nearly as memorable and enduring as Thriller, made the list and cost $2.7 million! Clearly dropping excessive amounts of cash on a video doesn’t necessarily mean it will resonate with the public.
So this brings up a new question: Which videos have a low budget, but made a huge impact on the musical landscape? On the flip side, which videos cost an arm and a leg, but were mediocre at best? Let’s find out!
Being in love is always a great feeling and it’s even greater to share it with the world, like these artists who weren’t shy about having their boos star in a music video with them for all to see.
Usher and Chilli
In 2001, Chilli made a lot of women jealous after she started dating Usher. Although their relationship only lasted for two years, that was enough time for Chilli to appear in two of Usher’s videos: “U Got It Bad” and “U Don’t Have To Call.” After their relationship came to an end, many speculated the songs off of Usher’s Confessions album (which hinted of an affair and a love child) were about their relationship, but the TLC member revealed that Jermaine Dupri’s love life was really the inspiration behind it all.
Tags:50 cent, andre 3000, ashanti, beyonce, bobby brown, brandy wanya morris, carey hart, celebrity couples, chilli, Ciara, Common, erykah badu, future, Ginuwine, Jada Pinkett Smith, james franco, Jay Electronica, jay z, jeezy, Jermaine Dupri, john mayer, kanye west, Katy Perry, keyshia cole, kim kardashian, music videos, nelly, paula patton, pete rock, pink, robin thicke, serena williams, Solé, Usher, whitney houston, Will Smith
New year. New hair. At least, that seems to be the trend for the rich and famous.
For her R&B Divas “Fan Appreciation” party in Atlanta, Wyatt showed up with a short black cut (don’t forget the red glittery lips) with a long blond piece in the front that she made into a layered bang. But she had the look days earlier and showed it off on her Instagram for fans, this time with the piece in large curls. Check out more images of the look below from her Instagram account.
As for Varner, the beauty hit up the SWV Reunited premiere party in New York with new blond locks. I’m willing to bet this is a wig, but either way, it fits the singer very well. She shared images of the new look on her Instagram, and while some followers/fans felt going blonde made her just like every other famous black woman out right now (the NeNes, the MJBs, the Beyoncés), others loved it, even saying she looked like a young Faith Evans.
So what do you think about both of their blond styles? I’m on the fence about KeKe’s, but I think whether wig or real, Varner’s look is hot! Share your thoughts below.
Leave it to Erykah Badu to keep it funky fresh. Whether it’s her threads, her music or her hair you can always expect something new. Yesterday, the soul singer took to Facebook and Twitter to debut her latest do. It’s an oldie but goodie.
The FatBellyBella had her locks trimmed into a very impressive high top fade.
She posted the picture on her Twitter with caption: “Faded…High”
And then she showed the back …
…and captioned it “Pyramids and vortices.”
We’d be remiss if we didn’t note the flyness of the four full-fingered rings.
By now you know Erykah is one of those women who can pull off pretty much anything when it comes to hair styles. And this is no exception. Love this look on her.
What do you think? Are you digging it?
How cute is this little lady? She’s the daughter of one of music’s most creative and gifted singers, as well as a legendary rapper from Dallas, known for his work with the Fila Fresh Crew and N.W.A. Her mom was a force in bringing about the neo-soul genre of R&B, and her beauty and chic style has helped her become the face of fashion and beauty campaigns for both Givenchy and Tom Ford. When this child’s mother isn’t singing, she’s busy being a midwife, taking care of her two other children, doing charity work in her hometown of Dallas, living a vegan lifestyle, and aging flawlessly. So whose cute kid is this?
Erykah Badu has always been an icon, not only for her music, but for her style. I mean, c’mon, nobody was trying to rock the gravity defying hair wrap and arm cuffs like Badu was back in the day (except for maybe Nina Simone, but I digress). And her style has evolved into some very eclectic ensembles as time has passed. But we’ve taken notice, and so has Riccardo Tisci, the man behind Givenchy, known for dressing everybody who is anybody these days. The designer picked Badu to front his new collection in ads, including this stunning one shot by photography team Mert & Marcus. He spoke to Style.comabout why he wanted the neo-soul queen to be the face of his new campaign.
“Erykah, she’s an icon—come on!” Tisci said by phone from Paris. “What I want to do with my advertising campaign is spread the love. Already now it’s been three seasons that I’ve been using people that express something—they are great artists, or beautiful women, or stylish women, or models that I really believe in. It’s kind of a family portfolio.”
Tisci had known Badu slightly but had never worked with her. Still, he said, he’d had her image in the back of his mind when he was designing the Spring 2014 collection, a mash-up of African and Japanese influences. “She’s one of the most stylish women I’ve met in my life,” he said. “She’s got such a good sense of proportion, of colors.”
Tisci also opened up about always trying to diversify his models during runways shows and with his campaigns. He said the complaints by many about a lack of black faces in fashion, including Naomi Campbell and Bethann Hardison, were needed:
“I discovered Joan Smalls, I discovered Maria [Borges]. I discovered a lot of black girls, and I’ve been always supporting them. For me, I grew up in a family and I grew up in a culture, an education, that we all are the same.
It’s 2013. Everybody’s being so cool about Instagram, about Facebook, any media—everybody’s being so open. At the end of the day, why are not so many black girls or Latin girls in shows? When you have an American president who is black! When I see this happening, it’s quite sad, I think. People can be so avant-garde, so advanced, but actually not, because people are still making differences between skin color.”
What do you think of Tisci’s comments? And are you feeling Badu’s first ad for Givenchy? As one of the few neo-soul artists who didn’t go on a lengthy “Where’s Waldo?” sabbatical off of the face of the earth, I can appreciate that to this day, Erykah Badu is still getting so much shine.
It really sucks when one of your favorite artists releases a good album, and then decides to take their sweet time releasing a follow-up. Sometimes it can be blamed on a sabbatical, not liking the direction of their new music, or an artist simply just playing games. No matter what the reasoning behind such delays, for fans, it can be maddening, especially when folks (and their reps) keep saying it’s on its way. Enough with the lies! Just drop the music already! Here are nine examples of albums we’ve been waiting on and yet they still haven’t seen the light of day (and some probably won’t).
Has anyone else noticed that when it comes to today’s R&B singer, people only speak on Beyoncé and Rihanna? And when they do, a majority of the time, it’s to have a debate about which diva is better. Somebody has to be ‘on top.’ In the year 2013, women in the R&B game (if not all of music) can’t seem to co-exist to fans; they have to be at the top, or they need to find a new job. Only one can be the head you-know-what in charge, and it’s not based on actual talent anymore, but who sells the most songs, albums and tickets for their tour, and who has a wealth of outside projects bringing them money. Being a successful brand has trumped being an-all around gifted singer/musician. It absolutely sucks.
I miss the days when singers and female rappers hopped on each other’s tracks. I miss when they made cameos in each other’s videos. I miss when they could show the world their talent and sell records with their clothes on, and in the case of someone like Aaliyah, with baggy clothes on at that. And most of all, I miss the days of R&B singers actually dropping R&B tracks and not going completely pop and electronic dance to sell some singles. The day of the talented R&B singer and her soulful music has shifted drastically, and instead of showing solidarity, half of the time, folks are beefing with each other on Twitter over frivolous drama. It’s sad when you consider the bevvy of singers that were around making moves in the ’80s and ’90s by themselves and in groups.
This realization came, not after watching yet another twerk-filled video, but after having a conversation with a co-worker who came to the conclusion that the R&B game is getting smaller and weaker. We were talking about a particular artist who despite some light buzz, still hadn’t had an album released by her label, and was somewhat “famous” for just being seen. My colleague wound up saying, “I just don’t care about R&B singers anymore,” and that kind of made me sad.
In my mind, I thought about how geeked up folks would get about a new Mary J album back in the day. I thought about people’s excitement over Jill Scott and her sound, singing in unison “I’m getting tiiiiiired of yo s**t” to Erykah Badu, blasting Lauryn Hill (though she was also Hip-Hop), jamming to Zhané, dancing to a Janet track, trying to do the Toni voice, and cooling out to Sade. Now, as previously stated, it’s either Bey or Rih. Anybody else gets limited love because for one, everybody’s trying to do MORE than just sing (they want to be on TV and act and take forever to put out new albums). It’s also because we, the media, give a majority of shine to the women only on top, and also because these big names won’t take a break from the spotlight because of fears of fading out of importance and getting a tad bit irrelevant. How long was Bey really on maternity leave? And I think we’ve all come to expect an album a year from Rihanna (she’s got three months left to drop something).
But another big part of it is that the singers looking for shine are lacking star power. They might be able to sing their behinds off, but their label won’t drop their album and would rather let them resort to mixtape after mixtape because they don’t have the “It” factor that singers from back in the day had. Most R&B singers and female lyricists had their own unique style and sound years ago (though in the ’80s everybody and their mom had to do big curly hair). Today, everyone looks the same (you either have a cascading weave or a short cut shaved on the sides with a lot of hair at the crown), everyone’s dressing the same and then blaming each other for stealing old styles, and the tracks don’t necessarily stand out (everybody’s writing angry love songs or boring ones). So the women, in turn, don’t stand out.
Aside from gifted singers who don’t receive as much shine as they should (Janelle Monae, Elle Varner, Melanie Fiona, etc.), R&B is on struggle mode. And if it wasn’t hard enough, some folks doing well who should be considered R&B are trying to act like they’re more rock or dance so they won’t be stuck in a box. The sound has changed with the times, and I don’t know about you, but I’m not all that impressed. I want that old thing back…