The many looks of Erykah Badu

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Back in 1997, Erykah Badu — born Erica Abi Wright — was introduced to the public with an album titled “Baduizm.”

Well, “Baduizm” is as a good a word as any to describe the neo-soul singer’s ever-changing hair and attire. (She has been identified as the Queen of Neo-Soul and the First Lady of Neo-Soul.)

Apparently, Badu doesn’t like looking in the mirror and seeing the same thing twice. In that sense she has much in common with a select few others who change their appearance constantly, such as Lenny Kravitz, Christina Aguilera, Grace Jones, Prince, Nicki Minaj, Cher and, of course, Lady Gaga who is in a category unto herself.

Often times, Badu’s choices have an African flavor, and as such recall a songstress who was even more eclectic — the great, iconic Nina Simone.

“I try to be honest and I keep moving,” said Badu. “I am an artist in every sense of the word.”

Clearly, Erykah Badu has a penchant for getting attention, and a proclivity for things (especially hair) that are oversized. Her fans, who can be counted on to be at her concerts, regardless of whether or not she has a current album on the charts, would be profoundly disappointed if she were to walk out onto the stage looking like…well…anyone else.

Where does the four-time Grammy winner get her ideas? Maybe “Tyrone” can answer that.

Early in her career Badu was known for wearing very large and colorful headwraps. Sometimes they were so tall that they seemed to be reaching for the sky.

No doubt, Badu would concur with Bette Midler who said, “Cherish what makes you unique because you’re really a yawn without it.”

Badu is sure that her hard-core fans “get her” but has noted that the public in general could be a lot more open-minded with regard to those who are different, either by nature or choice.

“I think a lot of people have lost respect for the individual, the people who don’t conform,” said Badu.

It is safe to say that Erykah Badu, who describes herself as “a complete human being,” will never conform. To do so would go against her reality. She’d be bored too. — SVH

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