Erykah Badu - BluesFest 2012 Review
When the queen of all things sultry arrived on stage as part of Bluesfest 2012, and followed the musical instructions of a meticulous metronome, we found ourselves involuntarily bobbing on...and on...and on...and on.
The Dallas Diva who proved to be every bit the ambassador for her home town, arrived on stage a sour thirty minutes late - a slight contradiction for the self acclaimed 'digital girl in an analogue world'. After taking some time to familiarise herself with her workstation, and a couple of introductions later, Badu was redeemed, and with her pardons for tardiness in toe, she maintained the night with the good vibes birthed earlier that evening by London talent and opening act, Lianne La Havas.
She swung straight in to a slow-paced version of the hit, 20 Feet Tall, and continued ferrying us down memory lane with modern classics, such as I Want You, and Apple Tree. The majority of her set paid homage to hits from her 2003 underground release, and beyond, as there was no new material to promote.
Nonetheless, Erykah failed to disappoint, and reinvented each track in a refreshing, post modern way, while encouraging audience participation by leading us to guess each song as she tapped the beat on her drum pad.
Sporting an oversized orange hat, and demonstrating her acquired knowledge on 'all things trendy', Ms E sailed through the night in true colour blocking style. Her traditionally bemusing attire choice now seemed a distant series of the past, as her new found 'mature' deli case was being served on the menu that evening. The sophisticated theme seemed to have secreted through to her backing vocalists, who, not only sounded phenomenal - they looked the part.
In between the drum pad demo sessions, and the generous solo opportunities dished out to her breathtaking band, including the infamous Thundercat on base, and YouTube star Durand Bernarr amongst her B.V's, Badu ceased many an opportunity to remind us all of just how effortless and powerful she, and her music really are.