Too Old Song and Artist of the Day: Janelle Monae
March 4, 2010
I heard her in the car for the first time today and I was impressed with her vocal range. It was a little long overdue, since she was signed about a year ago. It brings me back to the early 90’s when jazz was really blended well with Hip-Hop. For me, this was another case of “those who don’t know their history can’t possibly be ready for the future…” type moments.
Janelle reminds me of a female Andre 3000 mixed with Bog Boi, but that would limit and pigeonhole her too much. She is also a great stage presence in an era where the message is routinely privileged over the visual. I was shocked when on this radio interview, they quoted Puffy as saying that she was the one of the most important person ever signed to Bad Boy. The Guardian backs me up on this and this is a good review to read….
There are other men in Monáe’s life, and you may have heard of them. First, there’s Big Boi of OutKast, who brought her to wider attention after he invited her to sing on a track from his Got Purp? Vol II mixtape. Then there’s P Diddy, who contacted her via her MySpace, knocked out as he was by one of her songs, Violet Stars Happy Hunting, then streaming online. In fact, he was sufficiently blown away to sign her to his Bad Boy Records and allow her complete creative control. “Janelle Monáe is one of the most important signings of my career,” declares the Puffy one. “She is a true visionary, with an original sound and a mesmerising presence.”
That might have been the first time that MySpace was actually worth anything…
With that, we bring you Many Moons, a short film.