Über Meshell Ndegeocello
Ndegoecello's Plantation Lullabies came out like a breath of musical fresh air in the early 1990s, combining the crisp danceable production of modern hip-hop with funky, old-time Soul. Ndegeocello is a major talent in many areas, from her nimble finger-funk on the bass to her breathy, robust vocals and her continually developing, passionate songwriting. Though she's worked in a mellow acoustic format recently, Ndegeocello has excelled as a bandleader, drawing on the talent of jazz musicians such as pianist Geri Allen and saxophonist Joshua Redman for guest spots. She's founded her music around solid session work of ex-Herbie Hancock cohorts Bill Summers (percussion) and Wah-wah Watson (guitar). In fact, the song "Nocturnal Sunshine" -- a collaboration with Hancock on the Stolen Moments: Red Hot & Cool album -- is one of her best, wrapping her predilection for sensuality and social consciousness into one song. Ndegeocello frequently ends up with guest spots on albums by artists including the Rolling Stones, John Mellencamp, and Rahzel of the Roots, but her excellent work as a musician never detracts from the direct, polished quality of her solo albums, which continue to evolve and improve.