If I was to name the most pivotal albums when it comes to my maturation as a music listener, Me’Shell Ndegeocello‘s 1993 debut, Plantation Lullabies, would easily be in my top ten. In the two decades since that album’s release, the singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist has consistently left me slack-jawed by her fearlessness and her restless musical identity. Much like her hero Prince, Me’Shell is somehow able to deftly take on any musical genre she feels fits her at any given time. Her sales have not been commensurate with her influence or the quality of her work, but she possesses one of, if not the, most consistent catalog of any artist that’s debuted since 1990, with Kanye and maybe Radiohead running directly behind her.
Less than 18 months after releasing her last album, a tribute to the similarly fearless Nina Simone, Me’Shell is returning with Comet Come To Me. Scheduled for release in June, Comet appears to largely be a solo affair, unlike the last album, which boasted guest performances from the likes of Toshi Reagan and Sinead O’ Connor.
One thing I’ve not seen much of over the course of Me’shell’s career is footage of her explaining her craft and talking about her influences. She’s quite engaging and funny (as anyone who’s seen her live can attest to.) In this clip, she talks a little about the new album, gives props to Prince, and pooh-poohs the notion of her sexuality being anyone’s business. It’s a refreshing and frank (if short) discussion, and leaves you wanting to a) know more about her and b) revisit her illustrious catalog.
2014 is shaping up to be a pretty awesome year musically. Can’t wait to hear what Me’Shell has in store for us…