Meshell Ndegeocello

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Me-Shell plays songs from her latest album, Cookie: The Anthropological Mixtape during this session of Morning Becomes Eclectic. Released in June of this year, the album was three years in the making. Cookie is an improvisational in-your-face attempt to break away from the stagnant idea of what R&B; should be. &quotIt-s; free music, it grows, it builds and moves around."

Me-Shell chose to focus more on the politics of life thoughout her musical endeavors. &quotThis; album is sort of a critique of the culture and what it-s like to participate in it and also have to deal with it musically-and also the idea of the demographic which is based on a generalization of my race."

Growing up in the Wahsington D.C area in her teenage years during the 70-s, Me-shell started regular gigs at area clubs. She studied music at Howard University and later moved to New York City. After auditioning for such bands as Living Colour, Me-Shell was often found in clubs performing solo with a bass, drum machine and keyboard. In the early 90-s, she became one of the first female artists signed to Madonna-s label Maverick. Her 1993 debut album, Plantation Lullabies, won her three Grammy nominations and the hit &quotIf; That's Your Boyfriend (He Wasn't Last Night)&quot.; A year later, a duet with John Mellencamp became one of the years biggest hits, with the cover song to Van Morrison-s Wild Night.

Before the 1996 release of Peace Beyond Passion, Me-Shell found time to collaborate with Chaka Khan, as well as appear on such compilation albums as Lilith Fair, Vol. 3 and a movie sountrack. After her 1996 release, time was spent working on Girlfriend with rapper Queen Pen.

Bitter was released in 1999, and her latest album, Cookie: The Anthropological Mixtape, was shaped in part by the response to Bitter, which did not get sufficient commercial radio play because it didn-t fit the R&B; profile. &quotI; had a lot of people say its not a black record, but I wake up every day and I-m black." Enjoy.

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