First Impressions: Meshell Ndegeocello & Valerie June Give Nina Simone A Whirl

Thursday, July 26, 2012


Meshell Ndegeocello is doing a Nina Simone tribute album.

I repeat.

Meshell Ndegeocello is doing a Nina Simone tribute album.

Consider my mind blown. Blown to bits. As I pick up the pieces of brain matter (gross), let me just wave a church fan to how disgustingly perfect this combination is and how much I'm excited for it. 

On October 9th, Meshell will be releasing Pour une ├óme souveraine (For a sovereign soul), a 14-track set that will feature some of Nina's most iconic tunes such as "See Line Woman", "Feeling Good", "Black Is The Color Of My True Love's Hair", "House Of The Rising Sun", and yes, she's going to do, "Four Women" aka one of my all-time favorite songs in life. Guest spots on the album will include Cody ChestnuTT, Sinead O'Connor, and Lizz Wright, and they are purely a strawberry sauce topper to this lush cheesecake of dreams. 

It's strange but sometimes I had wondered while listening to many a Meshell joint how she could tackle a Nina Simone song considering their similar approach to vocals and style, and well, now I will have my answer fourteen times over. To wet our whistles, her version of "Be My Husband" is for listening pleasure at the moment. It heavily features vocalist and guitarist Valerie June, with Meshell creeping in her alto in the background. Actually it's more Valerie June's song than Meshell's and I quite like the twisting n' twangy tone of her vocals as it gives the song a new edge. Good looks all around. 

Take a listen below as well as take a peep at Nina Simone's original take at the Harlem Festival back in 1969 after the cut to give yourself double dose of sophistication. [H/T: JB]





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