She may not be the most visible these days (outside of a love for social media and a smash rework of Drake‘s “Hotline Bling”) but the incomparable Miss Erykah Badu appears to have a whole lot in the works to quench your thirst for that ism in the coming weeks and months. A new interview with Noisey proved to be fertile ground for discussing those queued-up items, which includes (as she previously hinted at) the forthcoming mixtape BUT U CAINT USE MY PHONE, a play on her Clapton-channelling ballad “Tyrone”, promised to arrive next week. Elsewhere in the interview she reflects on the current state of hip-hop, championing the Drake vs. Meek beef (and rap-beef at large) as a pillar of the culture since its baby years, gives props to fellow Soulquarian D’Angelo for his latest masterpiece Black Messiah and draws lines between the conquer-all movement that is Odd Future and the work that was done by the OKP all-stars in the late-90s/early-2000s as masters of their many mediums. Really, it’s a well-crafted and earnest update on all things Badula, leading up to both the tape, her gig hosting the Soul Train Awards and her rapidly-approaching one-woman show debut, slated for a run at in her hometown this weekend. Read a few excerpts from the interview below, then hit the link for the full script and get ready for plenty of Erykah Badu transmissions.
Badu on Black Messiah:
“I love it. I love the atmosphere of it. It feels rich. I didn’t know how much I missed his voice and his mark until I heard it. There are a few songs on that album that I play repeatedly just to live inside of it. It also gave me a little boost or a little spark.”
On the one-woman-show:
“I’m actually from the theater. I grew up doing theater and majored in theater in college at Grambling State in Louisiana, and I’ve been a part of the theater all my life. It’s been a big part of my career, even as a stage performer. I’ve traveled eight months out of the year for the past 18 years, and the stage is my main place, but being by myself there… I don’t know why that stresses me out, but it does. I’m sure that nervous energy will turn into something really honest that I’ll end up sharing. But I don’t know what’ll happen, so we’ll see. The show is improv.”
Props to Odd Future:
“I love Wolf Gang. The whole Tyler, the Creator camp. What they’re doing in music as a whole with Frank Ocean and Earl Sweatshirt and the Internet… Syd the Kid. The whole movement is awesome.”