Meshell Ndegeocello on Prince, Her New Covers Album, and, Yes, Bruno Mars

Meshell Ndegeocello is as much a scholar as she is a creator of popular music. For an hour on Thursday, we spoke over the phone about everything from the spiritual underpinnings of the raging debates over cultural appropriation to finding compassion for LGBTQ musicians who don’t necessarily feel comfortable living as…

Kelela's Debut Album Take Me Apart Is Perfect and You Should Listen to It

“It’s topping from the bottom,” is how singer-songwriter Kelela described the subject matter of the title track of her debut album, Take Me Apart in an interview with Fader. The concept isn’t exactly novel, but the quote is telling—Kelela’s mind-expanding album of avant R&B is never not multivalent. Ambiance via thick…

Teyana Taylor Wears Only Body Paint and Gets Freaky in Her New 'Drippin' Video

“BOOBS” is, I suppose, the thing you’re supposed to take away from this new NSFW video for Teyana Taylor’s slow jam “Drippin.” But I don’t know, what leaves me reeling is how terribly mastered the sound is on this thing (the bass is so distorted it crumbles instead of booms)—it’s so bad that I initially assumed this…

Kanye West Releases Stunning 17-Minute Version of Beloved Slow Jam 'Bed'

The track embedded below is an exercise in contextual unlikeliness. It’s a remix of The-Dream’s unreleased demo of “Bed,” a song he wrote that was eventually recorded by J. Holiday and went on to peak at No. 5 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 2007. This new beat-less rerub stretches out for more than 17 minutes, as if one…

Mariah Carey Burns a Wedding Dress in 'I Don't' Video, Because Who Needs Clothes, Anyway?

If I had directed the clip for Mariah Carey’s new single “I Don’t,” it would have been one unbroken take of the diva preparing to and then lighting a wedding dress on fire. I think it would have been interesting to watch her negotiate her existence as a creative force with an element as powerful as fire (and it could…

The Definitive Ranking of Mariah Carey's Greatest Hits of the 21st Century

Mariah Carey has now been asked repeatedly why she signed up for her own reality show (though she’s adamant that it be referred to as a “docuseries,” as though that euphemism is for us, not her), though the answer is clear: Because she’s a natural spectacle. Though much of the early, mega-successful portion of her…

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