Beyonce, Janelle Monae, Thundercat + More Weigh In On The Legacy & Influence Of D'Angelo's 'Voodoo'
Beyonce, Janelle Monae, Thundercat + More Weigh In On The Legacy & Influence Of D'Angelo's 'Voodoo'

Beyonce, Janelle Monáe, Thundercat + More Weigh In On The Legacy & Influence Of D'Angelo's 'Voodoo'

Beyonce, Janelle Monae, Thundercat + More Weigh In On The Legacy & Influence Of D'Angelo's 'Voodoo'

[Image c/o RBMA]

'Round these parts, D'Angelo's turn-of-the-century masterpiece Voodoo gets all of the shine. Whether you chalk it up to the opus' uncanny musical meld of classic and contemporary gospel, r&b and soul or the subterranean lows or the unthinkable space in each and every one of those 12 gems that comprise the record. With his second coming and sophomore album's 15th anniversary already under way, there doesn't seem to be a better time to reminisce over the impact of the record that changed all of the games and probably had a helping hand in conceiving some of you millennials out there. We've already given you our countless love letters to the record (here, here and here) but there's another BK-based outlet --namely Saint Heron-- that's wrangled up some of their own D'sciples to tell deliver the man's sermon and speak to the record's legacy. Below you will find personal accounts of how Janelle Monáe, Beyonce and Thundercat absorbed the record and how it's embedded itself into their musical D'NA. But this is the shortest of the shortlist, so if you want to read about how Voodoo cast its spell on the likes of Solange, A-Trak, Dave Longstreth and so many more of Saint Heron's friends and fam, hit the link below.

>>>Read More Accounts Of Voodoo's Greatness (via Saint Heron)

Janelle Monaé:

"Voodoo was by far one of the best concept albums in music. From the start of the first interlude, I knew D’Angelo had created his own world and I wanted to be in it. Although I couldn’t understand a lot of the words –and still can’t — it made me fall deeper in love with his melody and his tone. The live musicianship through out was incredible and has definitely influenced me and my production team, Wondaland, to always bring in live instrumentation through our albums. For example the horns, guitar, bass and etc.

His harmonies and background vocals are still some of my favorites to listen to. I loved the way songs like “Devil’s Pie” right into “Left Right” seamless flowed. “Spanish Joint” opened my eyes to how elements and sounds from a different genre could work on the same album and still remain cohesive."


"I remember the first time I heard Voodoo. As a musician, I would listen with so much intent to understand everything I could about how it grooved. The combination of Pino Palladino and Quest Love destroyed my understanding of how hard I was suppose to lock in as a bass player. Overall, the whole album brought me so much perspective on my instrument. One thing I will say is that I hate what it did to drummers. Everyone wanted to be Quest Love and fell miserably short. I mean seriously. Some of their grooves would sound as if someone stuffed two combat boots in a dryer and put a microphone next to it. But none the less, it caused a generation of us to reach further. It felt nice to know that you could create magic like that in a time when everything is so dependent on electronics. So in closing I say thank you D’Angelo, Quest Love, Pino Palladino and the whole slew of musicians involved in that album. Definitely changed my life and its nice to have you back D."


"Voodoo is as relevant today as it was when it first came out. D’Angelo’s harmonies, instrumentation and arrangements are iconic and timeless. His song structure of mixing classic R&B with the true roots of gospel jam session still resonates today. It is an album you can listen to from start to finish. This is the DNA of black music; all the love, pain, social statements and rawness punctuated by his effortless vocal progression from his funky low register to his sexy falsetto. My favorite song on the album is “Africa” and “Untitled” definitely inspired my song “Rocket.”"