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Janelle Monae rocks Electric Lady

Janelle Monae at the 2014 Peach Drop Underground Atlanta
Janelle Monae at the 2014 Peach Drop Underground Atlanta
M&M Peanut brand

Janelle Monáe rocked the Peach Drop at Underground Atlanta on New Year’s Eve. The two-time Grammy Nominee along with surprise guest Big Boi sent the crowd into a frenzy when they performed her classic “Tight Rope.” In typical Monáe fashion, dressed in a pair of white jeans, white shirt and black suspenders, she slid, danced and wailed on stage to the sounds of Electric Lady, her latest album. The project features some of the most influential and creative artists to date such as Erykah Badu, Miguel and music Icon Prince. The project includes standout tracks like “Q.U.E.E.N” and “Primetime” that are gaining Monáe long overdue mainstream airplay.
“Electric Lady is the new 21st century woman. She’s bold and not to be marginalized,” Monáe explains. “She’s like electricity you never know what you are going to get from electricity. You never know the wattage until you plug it in. She is the change she wants to see in her community.”
The founder of the Wondaland Arts Society, a movement emphasizing excellence in musicianship and artistry, Monáe holds her own in the land of cookie cutter singers and song writers. She produced many of the songs on the album and says the biggest blessing is earning the respect of her peers.
“I love Solange. I’ve worked with many people on the album and I got a chance to produce them. To have them trust me enough to produce them was a blessing,” Monáe says. “I wanted to bring a sense of community when making the album. As artists we should stick together. I think these artists represent music integrity. These artists have important things to say and are saying important things. It’s important we build and cultivate that community.”
Monáe’s preference for futuristic music with messages beyond the lyrics often leaves her on the peripheral of mainstream radio waves, but she says it challenged her to create opportunities. Monáe caught the attention of music lovers with her debut album Arch Android in 2010 as a Bad Boy and signee. Now, she is also signed to Atlantic Records and is using her resources to compose works with the same integrity and more mass appeal.
“I love every song on the album. I would never put out a song that I didn’t like. I have been very blessed to be able to do that. There are some people are political and put songs on the record because of who wrote them. I don’t do that , I’m not on anybody’s time schedule, and as long as I feel comfortable and I like it, you are going her more music from me.”
Monáe’s musical approach is simple, if it’s good then she runs with it, taking out much of the hoopla she says is associated with the music industry. The Wondaland Arts Society Movement is a microcosm of a music revolution that can be heard globally, and Monáe is proud to be at the helm of progress.
“I have a lot of talented artists that are writing and recording. It’s about taking what has been successful and worked well and turning it into something unique and special,” Monáe explains. “I purposefully wanted to take a different approach. I want people to know there is no right or wrong way.”

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