billboard.com: Erykah Badu will be the woman of the hour when Essence honors the four-time Grammy Award winner at its eighth annual Black Women in Music celebration. The magazine’s invite-only gala will take place Feb. 9 in Los Angeles.
The Grammy Week event, presented in collaboration with The Recording Academy, will also salute the nominees for the 59th annual Grammy Awards airing on Feb. 12. As part of the Black Women in Music festivities, Roc Nation-managed Nigerian artist Tiwa Savage will perform.
Sponsored by Lincoln, this year's celebration coincides with the 20th anniversary of Badu’s game-changing debut album Baduizm. Released on Feb. 11, 1997, the set spun off the No. 1 R&B hits “On & On” and “Next Lifetime.” Bowing at No. 1 on Billboard’s Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums and No. 2 on the Billboard 200, the set ultimately won a Grammy for best R&B album at the 40th annual ceremony.
“From the time that she first hit the scene with Baduizm, we all fell in love with the genius that is Erykah Badu,” said Essence editor-in-chief Vanessa De Luca in a release announcing the annual celebration.
pitchfork.com: On February 18, an event called Soulquarius will be held at the Observatory Grounds in Orange County. Billed as “an R&B jam,” the festival will feature performances from Erykah Badu, the-Dream, the Internet, R. Kelly, DMX, Ja Rule & Ashanti, Too Short, Brandy, Monica, Kelis, Ying Yang Twins, Lloyd, Mya, Jhené Aiko, and more. Find the full lineup below, and find more info here.
For this week's episode of Get Sweaty, we went down to Dallas to visit the one and only queen of soul, Erykah Badu. While there we visited the Lone Star Circus school, which Badu recently joined after her daughter, Puma, inspired her to get involved. It wasn't your average workout by any means, and it involved a lot of flailing and falling, though we eventually got the hang of it and landed some pretty impressive moves. While trying not to die, we spoke with Erykah about everything including her high-alkaline diet, hosting this year's Soul Train Awards, and her upcoming EP with recent collaborator D.R.A.M.
ew.com: Like a true artist, Erykah Badu already has the components to make her final moments iconic.
On the latest episode of Entertainment Weekly: The Show, Badu joined senior editor Kevin O’Donnell to discuss her upcoming returning hosting gig of the Soul Train Awards, her greatest musical influences, and what the end of her career would look like.
In a round of rapid fire questions chronicling the artist’s career, O’Donnell dives into what Badu’s final moments would look and feel like. “How about the music that would play at your funeral?” he asks.
The singer-songwriter thinks for a moment, but says she has to describe the funeral itself before the song choice would make sense. “I want to be butt naked. I want my arms to be glued to my chest like this,” explains Badu, motioning with her arms crossed across her chest. Badu clarifies the body wouldn’t actually be there, just a wax figure that would represent her. Read more.
Erykah Badu in a Midtown Manhattan hotel on Tuesday. Her jewelry includes a gold string hanging from her mouth, which she calls her “floss,” made by the jewelry designer Bijules. Credit Andre D. Wagner for The New York Times
nytimes.com: “Sometimes you think you are at the end, and you are just further deep in. Like a relationship,” Erykah Badu said while untangling a pile of gold and beaded necklaces on a recent cold night in New York City. “And when you finally come to an end, you feel bad about it.”
It was a night in for Ms. Badu, 45, a singer who also assumes any of the following names or in some cases personas: She Ill, Badoula Oblongata, Sara Bellum, Manuela Maria Mexico, Annie the EL, Mary Magnum, Automatic Slim, Butchy Knife Betty, Analog Girl in a Digital World, Lowdown Loretta Brown.
When asked, she can rattle off all of these melodically, without missing a beat. “You will come to realize my sense of humor is morbid and dry,” she said, laughing. Before her first album, when she was about 24, Ms. Badu worked at Steve Harvey’s comedy club, starting as a waitress, making it to the writer’s room where she wrote a few jokes that he used.
“This is my typical night,” she said from a Midtown Manhattan hotel room that seemed meditation-ready with strawberry and sandalwood incense burning and “Feel Better, World! ... Love, Ms. Badu,” a mixtape that she uploaded to Mixcloud about a year ago, playing from her laptop. Read more.