Janelle Monáe Reveals Genre-Bending Debut Album

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Grammy-Nominated Artist Janelle Monáe to Unleash New Music, Including First Single, “Tightrope (Feat. Big Boi)”

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Janelle Monáe is set to take on a series of major market residencies in May this year. The 2010 Lilith Tour is programmed in for this summer. “The ArchAndroid,” is due for release all over the USA next month.

Wondaland Arts Society/Bad Boy recording artist Janelle Monáe finally releases the debut album, her fans have been waiting for. Look for “The ArchAndroid” in stores and at all DSPs on May 18th.

The first single, “Tightrope (Featuring Big Boi)” premieres almost a month earlier than the album, on Thursday, February 11th on Pitchfork.com. “Cold War,” a companion song from the album debuts the following day through the official website, www.janellemonae.com. Both songs will be available for purchase exclusively at the site beginning February 12th, and then at all DSPs on February 23rd.

janelle monae.
Janelle Monae in flight.

“The ArchAndroid” is an “Emotion Picture” by Janelle Monáe and the Mad Minds of the Wondaland Arts Society. The legendary Big Boi of OutKast, renowned poet Saul Williams, psychedelic dance-punk troupe Of Montreal, punk prophets Deep Cotton, and the Wondaland Arch Orchestra are all part of the star-studded cast.

Atlanta Georgia is home to Wondaland Studios, but what do all these cities have in common? Atlanta, Moscow, Prague, Istanbul, Berlin, Amsterdam, New York, and the Palace of the Dogs? These are just some of the cities where the album was written. And one city stands out from the rest. That city is Atlanta where all of the recording was done.

Monáe says “The ArchAndroid” was inspired by the energy of those places, and also by revolutionary musicians and artistic visionaries such as Salvador Dalí, Walt Disney, OutKast, Stevie Wonder, Octavia Butler, David Bowie, Andy Warhol, and John Williams.

Executive Producers for the album were Nate Wonder, Chuck Lightning, Janelle Monáe, and Sean “Diddy” Combs, with Co-Executive Production from Big Boi of OutKast.

Monáe’s style is really inventive. She combines a refined pop sensibility with a postmodern mash-up of soul, funk, and rock ‘n’ roll. Like Sly Stone, Prince, and OutKast, she proves that innovative music can jam, and she invents new concepts and sounds.

Monáe is a ground-breaking, genre-blurring singer, songwriter, producer, and performer.

“The ArchAndroid” is her first album, but it was preceded by two EPs, both of which were released in 2008. Both were called “Metropolis,” and both received extensive critical praise. First, there was  “METROPOLIS: THE CHASE SUITE (SPECIAL EDITION)” and that was followed by “METROPOLIS: SUITE I OF IV.”

Monáe is slated for a variety of live dates and TV appearances surrounding the release of “The ArchAndroid.”

Her previous tours teamed up with No Doubt, Paramore, Erykah Badu, and Raphael Saadiq. Next, she will tour through cities across North America and join the 2010 Lilith Tour this summer. Monáe joins a star-studded array of female artists including Sarah MacLachlan, Norah Jones, Mary J. Blige, Loretta Lynn, Tegan & Sara, Sara Bareilles, Colbie Caillat, and many others.

The “Tightrope” Music Video

Janelle Monáe, a 21st Century musical phenomenon, has a compelling cybersoul sound. Based in Atlanta, Georgia, she first captured national attention collaborating with Big Boi on OutKast’s “IDLEWILD.”

Vogue magazine called her “a very different kind of diva.”

Creative Loafing wrote, “Monáe creates this futuristic world of hers by synthesizing past inspirations: the operatic pop and hornlike sharpness of Shirley Bassey, the energetic funk of James Brown, and the breezy rock and soul of OutKast.”

Big Boi says of her, “What I love about Janelle is that she has a magical ability to bring folks together.” His partner in OutKast, Andre “3000” Benjamin says, “Ms. Monáe has one of the most enchanting voices of our generation. She’s a living, singing babydoll. Darling … just darling. Ha.”

Prince said of Janelle, “She is so smart.” Sean “Diddy” Combs had a lot more to say. “Janelle Monáe is one of the most important signings of my career. She is a true visionary, with an original sound and a mesmerizing presence. I can’t wait to watch the future unfold for Janelle.”

Alan Gray is the Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of NewsBlaze Daily News and other online newspapers. He prefers to edit, rather than write, but sometimes an issue rears it’s head and makes him start pounding the keyboard. Alan has a fascination with making video and video editing, so watch out if he points his Canon 7d in your direction.