June 25th 2013 saw the release of R&B and Soul singer/songwriter India Arie’s fifth in-studio album, Songversation, much to her devoted fans’ delight after a four-year break. The album debuted in the top ten of Billboard’s top 200. Arie’s album also rose to the top of the R&B Album charts.
India Arie is a Grammy Award winning singer-songwriter, musician, actress, poet and record producer. Her debut album, Acoustic Soul made Arie a powerful force in the R&B and Soul genre and as a musician in general. This garnered a huge fan base, and a successful 8-year sprint culminating in millions of sales and accolades.
The 37-year old singer is renowned for her acoustically rendered R&B and heartfelt melodies delivered in a unique alto distinctive to Arie. In Songversation, the listener quickly picks up the artists’ heartfelt lyrics, a signature of Arie
Her debut album, titled Acoustic Soul came out in 2001 during a time when “neo-soul” was considered to be at its peak with fellow neo-soul artists D’Angelo and Erykah Badu releasing their offerings as well.
After 4 years of silence, the release of Songversation became a highly anticipated one, both from Arie’s fans as well as the media after the lacklustre performance of her 2009 album, Testimony: Vol. 2, Love and Politics. After 21 Grammy nominations, four Grammy awards and millions of album sold worldwide since the release of her first album, Arie felt that something was wrong and she pulled back. The disappointing 2009 Grammy awards ceremony left Arie shattered. She began to re-assess her life, took a break and came back from her self-imposed hiatus with the Billboard Top 200 debutant, Songversation. In this album, Arie sings about the wisdom of womanhood in songs like Nothing That I Love More, Life I know and SoulBird Rise. Songs such as This Love, Break The Shell and I Am Light help Arie convey a message of unbridled optimism of the re-purposed and newly-recharged artist that she now is.
And now with the success of Songversation, Arie has more than made up for her 4-year absence from the music scene. The album has many “feel-good” songs that portray how comfortable Arie is with her life right now. She shares, in songversation lyrics,: “When I look in the mirror and the only one there is me, every freckle on my face is where it’s supposed to be…I learned to love myself unconditionally, because I am a queen”.
Now Arie is hoping that by releasing Songversation, which features a heavy Turkish influence via collaborations with SezenAksu, she may actually have done a greater service to the music industry.
Watch the video to India Arie’s Cocoa Butter taken from SongVersation
Learn more about India Arie and her upcoming tour on her website