Music News

Janelle MonÁe

Although she got her start in her home town of Kansas City, Kansas, Janelle Monáe gained a much wider audience after she relocated to Atlanta. There she met OutKast's Big Boi and struck up a mutually beneficial creative friendship. In the wake of the release of her inventive 2010 recording, The ArchAndroid, Monáe toured the country with artists as varied as Erykah Badu and Of Montreal (and contributed vocals tracks to the latter's False Priest album). The singer's larger-than-life shows and soulfully psychedelic music draw immediate comparisons to Prince and Jimi Hendrix, both for her audaciously creative use of sound and the sheer charisma of her performances. Monáe may just be getting started, but she's already proving herself worthy of her heroes.

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Tom Murphy is a writer, visual artist and musician from Aurora, Colorado. He was a prolific music writer for Westword and a documenter of the Denver music scene.