Windy City Media Group Frontpage News

THE VOICE OF CHICAGO'S GAY, LESBIAN, BI, TRANS AND QUEER COMMUNITY SINCE 1985

home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor
Donate

Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Meshell Ndegeocello on Sinead O'Connor, love of theater
NUNN ON ONE: MUSIC
by Jerry Nunn, Windy City Times
2012-09-12

This article shared 4817 times since Wed Sep 12, 2012
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


From singer and rapper to prolific songwriter, Meshell Ndegeocello brings an eclectic style of music to the table every time. She has received 10 Grammy nominations and has made 10 albums throughout the years.

Her duet with John Mellencamp, "Wild Night," brought her national attention, along with her own song "If That's Your Boyfriend (He Wasn't Last Night)." She has worked on a variety of soundtracks, from Love Jones to Lost & Delirious.

Her latest album, Pour une Ame Souveraine (or For a Foreign Soul) is a Nina Simone covers album following up last year's Weather.

Her contributions to AIDS organizations such as the Red Hot Organization and, now, with Howard Brown (with its Sept. 14 "Garden of Eve" event) have helped the LGBT community while entertaining at the same time.

Nunn talked to her as she prepared to visit Chicago again.

Windy City Times: Hi, Meshell. You are coming back to Chi-town.

Meshell Ndegeocello: Yes, and I am excited about the cause. I am always excited when there is a place where people can get health care for free. Of course I love Chicago, too.

WCT: You have been in the music business for a long time.

Meshell Ndegeocello: It has been 20 years if I counted.

WCT: The biz has evolved so much.

Meshell Ndegeocello: No—technology has, but the business hasn't really changed. There is always somebody trying to get someone else to pay for their art and there is always someone trying to make money off somebody. That never changes.

WCT: I read you have had 10 Grammy nominations.

Meshell Ndegeocello: I have. I just haven't talked to the right people so I haven't won one yet.

WCT: This latest album, Pour une Ame Souveraine, might win it for you.

Meshell Ndegeocello: Thank you but thank Nina Simone, oh my gosh.

WCT: Have you always enjoyed her music?

Meshell Ndegeocello: I didn't get into it until later in life, when I was about 23 and living in New York with a friend of mine. I wish I had grown up with amazing music like that. She is someone I have had an awesome admiration for.

WCT: You worked with other artists on these tracks, like Sinead O'Connor.

Meshell Ndegeocello: She is incredible. She's a big fan, too. I feel like everyone should be singing Sinead's praises. Her ability to captivate you with a song is something I have always loved about her.

Lizz Wright is my unsung hero. I love her. Toshi Reagon I grew up with. She is one my main and first mentors. The Cody ChestnuTT song is probably my favorite track on the whole recording. He's amazing. He's a very different kind of brother. I feel humble just being on the same recording with all of them.

WCT: How were connected to them? Through the various music labels?

Meshell Ndegeocello: I went to go meet Valerie June. I had only heard an mp3 and just fell in love with it. I wanted to find the voice and I went to one of her shows at South By Southwest. I met her after her performance. That was a highlight for me because it is great when just their voice enchants you—then you meet them and everything is about them is incredible. She might even open up one of my shows.

I had tried to get D'Angelo but he was too busy and my publicist, who I will thank forever, suggested Cody ChestnuTT. I wish I had thought of it because it is freakin' brilliant. He does so much for the song. When I sang it the song was very dire and dark. "To Be Young, Gifted and Black" has nothing to do with race but about being young and trying to find your place in the world. I really felt he brought that across.

WCT: How did you pick out what songs to put on the album?

Meshell Ndegeocello: I just picked my favorite out of the play list. If it were up to me, it would be three volumes. You could just go on and on. These are the ones that I thought I could do justice to.

WCT: I know you have performed at the Old School of Folk Music several times. Could you possibly bring the tour there?

Meshell Ndegeocello: I want to bring this Nina Simone project out with a full band. I just have to find the right venue to play in.

WCT: I know you have a new single with Miguel Migs called "Tonight."

Meshell Ndegeocello: I worked with him a couple of months ago. He's a strange dude but I love him. He's so mellow that it's scary.

WCT: You did a tribute album for Fela. Did you see the musical Fela?

Meshell Ndegeocello: Yes. My friend is in it. That musical is incredible. I wish it had stayed around longer. There is a lot of theater in Chicago, right?

WCT: Yes, Broadway in Chicago as well as tons of theater companies.

Meshell Ndegeocello: I loved Book of Mormon, too.

WCT: That's coming. I am jealous you already saw it.

Meshell Ndegeocello: I love the theater. That is the gayest part of me!

WCT: Would you want to make a musical?

Meshell Ndegeocello: I am working on one in my mind. I just have to put it together.

WCT: What will your performance be like for "Garden of Eve?"

Meshell Ndegeocello: It will be acoustic. I will just come across as a singer/songwriter and tell some stories. Hopefully people will give their hard-earned cash to a good cause.

WCT: Speaking of good causes, I read your work for the "It Gets Better" project with Dan Savage.

Meshell Ndegeocello: A lot people like to hide out and not talk about things. I love that he is just in your face with his ideas and wants to dialogue with people. I am glad he is on the planet.

Look for Meshell on our part of the planet during the "Garden of Eve" annual fundraiser to benefit Howard Brown Health Center Friday, Sept. 14, River East Art Center, 435 E. Illinois St., at 7 p.m. Visit www.howardbrown.org for tickets, including a VIP reception with gay foodie Ted Allen.


This article shared 4817 times since Wed Sep 12, 2012
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email

  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

Local benefit concert celebrates love and freedom 2021-12-07
- The concertmaster of the Momentum Chamber Orchestra lifted her bow high and slowly brought it back down. As the bow's feathers pressed against the strings of her instrument, its gentle shrill echoed inside the small, packed ...


Gay News

SHOWBIZ Gaga/Bennett, 'House of Gucci,' Leslie Jordan, Murray Hill, Lil Nas X 2021-12-05
Videos below - MTV announced that the special MTV Unplugged: Tony Bennett & Lady Gaga will air on the music network Thursday, Dec. 16, according to out.com. The performance, which was filmed in New York earlier this year, features ...


Gay News

THEATER Michael Dalke makes Pretty Woman: The Musical happy and gay 2021-12-04
- The fairy-tale story of Pretty Woman was brought to life as a musical by openly gay theater director/choreographer Jerry Mitchell in 2018. He debuted the original production of Pretty Woman: The Musical premiered in Chicago at ...


Gay News

Moises Kaufman takes audiences to 'Paradise' 2021-12-03
- Paradise Square is a new musical that opened in Chicago last month at the James M. Nederlander Theatre. This is based on a true story set in New York City in 1863, when Black and Irish immigrants lived together in a ...


Gay News

Hell in a Handbag Productions to present Christmas Dearest Nov. 27-Dec. 31 2021-12-03
--From a press release - CHICAGO (December 2, 2021) — Hell in a Handbag Productions is pleased to continue its 20th anniversary season with the return of one of its most popular holiday musicals: Christmas Dearest, featuring book and lyrics by ...


Gay News

THEATER 'Wicked' returning to Chicago in 2022 2021-11-30
- The blockbuster musical Wicked will return to Broadway In Chicago's James M. Nederlander Theatre, 24 W. Randolph St., on Sept. 28-Dec. 4, 2022. Now the fifth longest-running show in Broadway history—and featuring songs such as "Popular" ...


Gay News

Billy Masters 2021-11-29
- "The obvious one would be A Little Night Music. I know I could do that role very well now that I've gotten to this stage in my life, and you know it's a beautiful song in there. It's perfection."—Sarah Brightman reveals ...


Gay News

SHOWBIZ Netflix, Kal Penn, Dennis Rodman, 'The Voice,' 'Euphoria' 2021-11-28
Video below - Terra Field—one of the Netflix employees who organized the walkout around Dave Chappelle's comedy special The Closer—has resigned from the streamer, Deadline reported. Field, along with B. Pagels-Minor, organized an ...


Gay News

Broadway titan Stephen Sondheim dies at 91 2021-11-27
- Stephen Sondheim, one of the giants of Broadway songwriting, died Nov. 26 at his home in Roxbury, Connecticut, according to media reports. He was 91. Among the works in the legend's oeuvre are Company (1970), Follies ...


Gay News

EVENTS John Grumpy Co. presenting 'Black Sunday' Nov. 28 2021-11-24
- John Grumpy Co. is hosting "Black Sunday," which will take place at HVAC Pub, 3530 N. Clark St., on Sunday, Nov. 28, 9 p.m.-2 a.m.. This event will feature celebrity DJ Jamal Smallz. "Black Sunday" will ...


Gay News

MUSIC Grammy nominations announced; GLAAD comments 2021-11-24
- On Nov. 23, the nominations for the 64th Annual Grammy Awards were announced. John Batiste, the musician who also serves as the bandleader on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, led among all nominees with 11 ...


Gay News

MUSIC Controversial rapper DaBaby postpones shows 2021-11-24
- DaBaby's return to touring following fallout for making anti-gay comments at the Rolling Loud music festival in Miami this past summer has been postponed, The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported. The rapper's been promoting his "Live Show ...


Gay News

SHOWBIZ '9-1-1,' Billie Jean King, Lena Waithe, singer Mary Lambert, White Party 2021-11-21
- Actor Rockmond Dunbar left the Fox show 9-1-1 after four seasons over a vaccine mandate, Deadline noted. His gay character, Michael Grant, was abruptly written off in the Nov. 15 episode, leaving fans of the first-responder ...


Gay News

Rainbow Railroad plans 'When I Am Free' benefit concert to get LGBTQI+s to safety 2021-11-20
--From a press release. Videos below - Chicago, IL (November 12, 2021) - The annual Chicago 5 Lives Fundraiser hosted by Rainbow Railroad is proud to return this year with "When I Am Free", a benefit concert offering attendees a premier evening of ...


Gay News

MOVIES 'Dante and Beatrice in Florence' Nov. 28-Dec. 5 2021-11-19
- Porchlight Music Theatre is partnering with Hershey Felder Presents: Live from Florence and its second season of productions. The launch of this new season from Hershey Felder is the new musical film Dante and Beatrice in ...


 



Copyright © 2021 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 
 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS







Sponsor


 



Donate


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.