nd on the third day of the Bonnaroo Music and Arts Festival D’Angelo rose again. The artist has been touring throughout Europe this year but surprised the neo-soul outta everyone at Bonnaroo when he joined The Roots during their set and killed (so I heard). After Questlove introduced him to the crowd (“I’ve been waiting 12 years to say this – ladies and gentlemen, D’Angelo!”), the artist formerly known as my sweet, sweet fantasy (baby) covered everybody from Led Zeppelin to James Brown. How did it feel to the crowd? Apparently, pretty damn good.
D’Angelo and his critically-acclaimed band did not bless the eager Bonnaroo crowd with new music (perhaps they’re saving that for his highly-anticipated performance at next month’s Essence Music Festival), but after they warmed up, he started to bring the house down. According to SPIN, he howled over Led Zeppelin’s “What Is and What Should Never Be,” cooed with Kendra Foster for the Beatles’ “She Came in Through the Bathroom Window,” screamed and yowled for Sly’s “Babies Makin’ Babies,” and channeled James Brown for the Time’s “My Summertime Thang.”
I cannot believe this actually happened and real, live people got to see D’Angelo perform. Am currently afflicted with the terrible disease of Jealousy. The only cure is to flashback to the days when D’Angelo was mine. Sort of.
I must have been about 15 years old when Voodoo (his follow-up album to Brown Sugar) dropped– along with the panties of girls, women, aunties, and grandmothers everywhere. Not mine, though. I was 15. And way too young to fantasize about making babies with him. Wayyyy too young to do that, or to start hating on neo-soul singer Angie Stone who did, in fact, make a baby with him. But we’re not here to talk about that.
In fact, D’Angelo’s rise to sex symbolism was really a large part of his downfall. In last month’s GQ interview (his first in 12 years) he recalls having dollar bills thrown at him during one of his post-Untitled (How Does It Feel) performances. He’d become a stripper, rather than a musician and there wasn’t a whole lot he could do about it anymore. Notice,even I couldn’t help but infuse this post with my semi-sexual D’Angelo flashback, and I promise from this post on to seriously think hard about being in the vicinity of trying not to do that again. It’s gonna be hard. Especially since the article had these accompanying photos:
But the GQ article was really well-done, and journalist Amy Wallace consulted D’Angelo’s industry friends to make up the bulk of the piece. Questlove, Chris Rock, Angie Stone , and even Janis Gaye (Marvin Gaye’s second wife) all weighed in about the artist, and what can make or break him as he returns. And I think it’s safe to say, he is returning. In the article, Quest describes him as “the last pure African-American artist left.”
Not exactly sure what that means, but I’m kind of inclined to agree.
Here’s my other favorite part of the interview:
When Madonna turned 39, she asked him to sing “Happy Birthday” at her party. One press report had her sitting on his lap and French-kissing him. In fact, two sources say that ultimately D rebuffed her advances at another gathering not long after. At that event, the sources say, Madonna walked over and told a woman sitting next to D, “I think you’re in my seat.” The woman got up. Madonna sat down and told him, “I’d like to know what you’re thinking.” To which D replied, “I’m thinking you’re rude.”
Help me welcome D’Angelo back with what I semi-promise is the last PITNB post featuring the Untitled video. Semi-promise… And for the true D’Angelo fans, a few more vids and pics in the gallery.
D’Angelo: Untitled (How Does It Feel)
D’Angelo – Untitled by DAngelo-Official