For the magazine’s March issue, friends and family of the four-time Grammy winner describe Badu’s enduring and otherworldly influence. The beloved singer also gives us a sneak peek at her 2023 to-do list, which includes continuing her work as a doula, breaking into the cannabis industry, and a number of exciting collaborations.
“One thing I brag about all the time is that my sister is probably the only artist I know who easily sells out arenas despite not having put out an album in almost a decade,” Erykah’s sibling Koryan told Vogue. “And to me this moment feels like her re-blossoming.”
Step inside Erykah Badu’s home studio—or “Badudio”—where everything makes music. In the latest installment of Vogue’s #ObjectsOfAffection series, the neo-soul singer is sharing her sacred space with us.
— Vogue Magazine (@voguemagazine) February 8, 2023
Badu on her enduring influence:
“I feel I’ve poked this hole in the dam. It’s this little hole and all this water is seeping through. Now all the people who have the same energy are able to experience what I experience. It’s a rebirthing process, and I feel like I’m a midwife.”
On exploring the fashion world:
“I didn’t know all the houses and names of designers until I was in my 30s or 40s. What I had was a good understanding of look and shape, the way I did with paper dolls when I was a child. For me, it’s about seeing things coming together, like making a cake from beginning to end.”
On the 1996 Soul Train Awards:
“I remember being among an elite group of young people who were really embracing what it meant to be an African here, generationally. We embraced locs and ’fros and our natural state, our fabrics and jewelry. It was a beautiful time.”
Friend and collaborator, Francesco Risso, creative director of Marni, on Badu’s creative process:
“I’ve worked with celebrities in the past, and there are times that you struggle with them because it’s so much about the body, or how it looks in a picture. With Erykah, it’s a completely new world. I was blown away seeing her playing with clothes, just jumbling everything up. It’s just so innate. With her, it’s not just about making music. She’s iconic because what comes with her is a lifestyle, it’s a complete world.”
As for Badu’s 2023 to-do list, one of the things the musician has expanded into is dropping a collection of smoking accessories and her own blend of marijuana. She’s also gotten into the business of being a doula, helping another popular R&B name, Summer Walker, give birth to her twins.
“I’m kind of antsy, walking around making sure I have all my things,” she says about being a doula, also mentioning her daughter, Puma, will assist her in the role. “Puma is a very giving person. I really like the lady she’s becoming.”
Check out Erykah Badu’s Vogue cover story in full here.