Erykah Badu is the originator of good vibes. She's let the world in on her personal ideology of Baduizm and she's still spreading positivity, maybe even a little too much, two decades later. In an extensive interview with Vulture, Badu dishes on what she thinks of music and the world at large now, and there's some pretty wild shit going on here.
With more than 20 years under her belt, Badu has remained a revered figure in music, mainly because of her ability to tap into the minds of the youth. She tells Vulture, it's about understanding that younger generations interpret things differently than she's used to, and that's okay.
What’s interesting to me about music and the younger generation is that what we hear on the radio is more about frequency and sound than words. People talk about “mumble rap" but that’s because they don’t understand that the important thing is the vibration, not the words. The kids need vibrations, because their attention span is about three seconds.
She discussed how her son's Seven's taste in music has rubbed off on her, lending her ears to newer artists like D.R.A.M, Lil Uzi Vert, and XXXTentacion. Given the allegations of abuse surrounding XXXTentacion, Badu was vocal on whether or not she separates the artist from their art.
I would have to really think about it and know the facts in each of those situations before I made a judgment. Because I love Bill Cosby, and I love what he’s done for the world. But if he’s sick, why would I be angry with him? The people who got hurt, I feel so bad for them. I want them to feel better, too. But sick people do evil things; hurt people hurt people.
In the interview she even managed to say something nice about Hitler, calling him "a wonderful painter," and wasn't shy about on her thoughts about the president.
The thing about Trump is that he’s a bad guy to the point where it looks manufactured. Are we playing games here? He can’t really be that bad. I’m not a conspiracy theorist at all—I don’t give a shit about that stuff—but it looks like Trump’s just trying to spark division. It looks like a game. Why are we being toyed with?
When asked about the prospect of new original music, she didn't let too much out of the bag.
I went to South Africa and recorded drums from Soweto, from Johannesburg, just gathering sounds. That’s what I’m interested in right now — sound vibration. If I put out another project, it’ll be like that. Maybe I’m humming or primal wailing or tribal moaning. You know, I haven’t written anything in five years.
The whole thing is pretty crazy. Read the rest at Vulture.
Kristin Corry is a staff writer at Noisey. Follow her on Twitter.