Its KEY

Icon in the Making

In Communication, Griot, Movies, Music, News, Self Improvement on October 20, 2013 at 3:03 pm

Janelle Monae’ inspires herself.

The new face of Afro-Futurism

The new face of Afro-Futurism

This is not to say that she’s an egoist or that she doesn’t take inspiration from life and objects around her. But it is to say that in her own struggle to complete the painting and to name the colorful woman depicted, she wound up jpenning an album. And not just a regular ole two-major-hits album, The Electric Lady offers 12 tracks of great listens.

Under Big Boi’s esoteric tutelage, she’s had several well received projects; however, the this is the one that will probablhy launch Monae’ , 27, from underground indie-cool popularity to NBA Finals halftime show superstardom. Yes, it’s that good, and yes, she’s that good live. It also doesn’t hurt that she snagged Prince as a collaborator and didn’t shy away from instructing him on how to improve his studio sound.

Nervy? Hell, yeah. But tha’s Monae’. “I love to collaborate with people I admire,” says the Kansas City, Kan., native and Cover Girl model, wearing her traditional black and white , topped off by a slightly cat-eyed pair of Prada sunnies. She partnered with Erykah Badu, Solange, Miguel and Esperanza Spalding on The Electric Lady. working with Prince was similarly “organic,” she says. “I’m still pinching myself. You need to have vision when you come to him. He does not do a lot of collaborations.”

Janelle Monae' said

As one of the young heralds of Afrofuturism, and old-yet-renewing movement embracing a combination of magical realism, sci-fi, space is firmly cemented. She’s been compared to Sun Ra, the creator of musical Afrofuturism. She loves Octavia Butler who wrote science fiction novels featuring Black characters and ex-anime Black history in the same breath. She’s a tremendous fan of Star Wars and performed at the recent wedding of George Lucas and Melody Hobson. And, as she ponders ideas such as time travel and androids, she paints futuristic sketches with images portraying us as “Electric” people wanting to be named, freed or discovered.

“I do Afro punk,” says Monae’ referring to futurism. “I have an Afro, so why now? I think it’s important to bring awareness. It’s important to show us a Black woman, as a Black people, in different lights.”

A common theme in all of MOnae’s music is a celebration of individuality, which is why her robotic focus on her debut studio album, The Arch-Android, was a bit ironic. She sticks to that motif this time around but is adding quite a bit of sass and sex, as is obvious in her MTV Video Music Award-winning vidoe for Q.U.E.E.N., with Badu.

Most ideas come after she works in her personally prepped recording studio utopia, Wondaland, in Atlanta.

“I’m dealing with politics, love heartbreak and sexuality, all those things we privately have,” says Monae’, describing her album in staccato. She then demurely declines to talk about her love life, only adding this: “It is about loving yourself as much as you can.”

[Ref. Source: Ebony Magazine]

divider blk_south

Janelle has it going on – the mic is her vocal toy.
How genius of her to hook up with ATL’s Big Boi.

He’s all about producing. His individuality is truly valiant,
and he rarely misses an opportunity to sign award winning talent.

I’m watching Big Boi and I am taking notes too,
I’m seeking talent to shape tomorrows film truths.

Talent must be bold, daring and trend set.
Must write and produce scripts they’ve never met.

Must surpass the Steven’s: Spielberg and King.
Must go forward like the will of OWN and reel the whole thing.

Be they eccentric or on some new stuff,
they must be resilient – the industry is rough.

Janelle is on it. She’s working within her purpose.
I’m Qui
On my joint too: shaping the youth via my surplus.

Icon in the making?
The role is yours for the taking.
Do you want it?

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