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D'Angelo

D'Angelo was one of the founders and leading lights of the neo-soul movement of the mid- to late '90s, which aimed to bring the organic flavor of classic R&B back to the hip-hop age. Modeling himself on the likes of Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, Prince, Curtis Mayfield, and Al Green, D'Angelo's influences didn't just come across in his vocal style -- like most of those artists, he wrote his own material, and frequently produced it as well, helping to revive the concept of the R&B auteur. His debut album, Brown Sugar, gradually earned him an audience so devoted that the follow-up, Voodoo, debuted at number one despite a five-year wait in between. The wait for his third album -- at one point tentatively titled James River -- was much longer.

Michael D'Angelo Archer was born February 11, 1974, in Richmond, Virginia, the son of a Pentecostal minister. He began teaching himself piano as a very young child, and at age 18 he won the amateur talent competition at Harlem's Apollo Theater three weeks in a row. He was briefly a member of a hip-hop group called I.D.U. and signed a publishing deal with EMI in 1991. His first major success came in 1994 as the co-writer and co-producer of the Top Five R&B single "U Will Know" on the Jason's Lyric soundtrack; it featured a one-time all-star R&B aggregate dubbed Black Men United. That helped lead to his debut solo album, Brown Sugar, released in July 1995. Helped by the title track, also a Top Five R&B single, a cover of Smokey Robinson and Marv Tarplin's "Cruisin'" (number ten R&B), and "Lady" (number two R&B), Brown Sugar caught on with R&B fans looking for an alternative to the hip-hop soul dominating the urban contemporary landscape. Along with artists like Erykah Badu, Lauryn Hill, Maxwell, and collaborator Angie Stone, D'Angelo became part of a retro-leaning, neo-soul revivalist movement. Brown Sugar received enormously complimentary reviews and sold over two million copies, and D'Angelo supported it with extensive touring over the next two years.

And then -- not much of anything happened. D'Angelo took some time off to rest and split acrimoniously with his management; meanwhile, EMI went under, leaving his 1998 stopgap release Live at the Jazz Cafe, London out of print. On occasion, D'Angelo contributed a cover tune to a movie soundtrack, including Eddie Kendricks' "Girl You Need a Change of Mind" (Get on the Bus), the Ohio Players' "Heaven Must Be Like This" (Down in the Delta), and Prince's "She's Always in My Hair" (Scream 2). He also duetted with Lauryn Hill on "Nothing Even Matters," a cut from her Grammy-winning blockbuster The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill. Still, fans awaiting a proper follow-up to Brown Sugar remained frustrated -- at first by no news at all, and then by frequent delays in the recording process and the scheduled release date. Finally, Voodoo with was released in January 2000 and debuted at number one, an indication of the size and devotion of D'Angelo's fan base. An extremely collaborative album, it was recorded at the same time as Erykah Badu's Mama's Gun and Common's Like Water for Chocolate and involved much of the same personnel, some of whom -- including D'Angelo, Badu, Common, ?uestlove, J Dilla, Q-Tip, and James Poyser --were dubbed the Soulquarians. The extremely Prince-like lead single, "Untitled (How Does It Feel)," was a smash on the R&B charts and won a Grammy for Best Male R&B Vocal; likewise, Voodoo won for Best R&B Album. Reviews of Voodoo were once again highly positive, although a few critics objected to the looser, more atmospheric, more jam-oriented feel of the record, preferring the tighter songcraft of Brown Sugar.

Throughout the remainder of the 2000s, D'Angelo made only a handful of recorded guest appearances. Most notably, he took part in a version of Fela Kuti's "Water No Get Enemy," recorded for the Red Hot + Riot compilation. Raphael Saadiq's "Be Here" and Snoop Dogg's "Imagine" were events by virtue of the artist's mere presence, while two versions of the Dilla production "So Far to Go" -- first heard on Dilla's posthumous The Shining, then reworked for Common's Finding Forever -- also reunited him with past Soulquarian partners. D'Angelo's sporadic creative activity, combined with publicized personal troubles, bordered on tragic. His third album, said to be titled James River, was originally due in 2009 but did not materialize. In January 2013, Billboard asked collaborator ?uestlove about the status of D'Angelo's long-awaited third studio album. He told the publication that "99% of it is done." Around this time, D'Angelo was performing more often, including European club dates and scattered festival appearances. In March 2014, Live at the Jazz Cafe, London, expanded and reissued through Virgin, served as stopgap product once more. During the second week of that December, cryptic posts on various social media platforms announced "Black Messiah is coming." One of the earliest warnings came from Nelson George, who had recently featured D'Angelo for his Finding the Funk documentary and conversed with the musician for a public conversation facilitated by Red Bull Music Academy. On the evening of the 14th, George hosted an exclusive listening party for Black Messiah, an album credited to D'Angelo and his backing band, dubbed the Vanguard. The sprawling set, more adventurous and outward looking than Voodoo, was released the following day on the RCA label. ~ Steve Huey & Andy Kellman, Rovi
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Comments

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This brotha is the truth! A musical genius
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Love this artist, would love to see him perform
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How does it feel, sensual and just the right tempo to go deeper
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D'Angelo D'Angelo D'Angelo what a man with a great voice love me some D'Angelo
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HE. HAS. THEE. PASSION. TO. BE. GREAT
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foreverkim
Happy Birthday D'Angelo!
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I just wanna flirt with him
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The man can sing, his sounds of music are unique, definitely his own style
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My favorite track...smoo t h , melodic music to my ears
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I just want to meet him...shake his hand and walk away
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♡ his voice an body
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Mr. Archer is fine w/me!!!
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This is the best ☀ music
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lulu_82_79
He is the true meaning of neosoul..lov e him!!
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D'Angelo not only had the voice but the body to go with it. I would put him in the same category as Price, Al, Marvin and James. Be deserves it would love to hear from him. I would love to see a come back. ; )
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This is my song
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Music is just sexy, puts you in chill mode.
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His style of music is rare & hopefully it'll make a come back
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mikedearmas1
Hmmn.
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1995
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Love it
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Get black messiah on here. Some funkiness as always. I love d'angelo his Brooklyn bowl performance with questlove is amazing. Find it on YouTube!
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Loving his new album. Just dropped on Dec 15,2014!!!!# B l a c k M e s s i a h
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In joy listening to his music
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shippy29
WHAT??????
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This is a great song. Although he looks so much like my brother he is quite the eye candy!!! Pray that you are better D' Angelo so you can continue to bring great music as before.
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I can barely understand what he's saying on the new album, but the band is TIGHT!!!!!!!
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blattrr
love D'Angelo and his new album
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His new album is out! YAY!!
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Ain't he Sexxxxxyyy ladie's Yesssss love him him love this cut by him never grows old to me
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This is my song
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Love this song..;D
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This is a old song but love it still
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desireej2k11
Mmm mmm mmm!!! This still the song
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Great song
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jakea84
It's a shame that I won't be able to hear his sexy a$$ voice again! Smh. He needs to come back n do his thing!
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Sing it Sing it Sing So So Dam Sexxxxyyy
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mzprissyp
Good memories
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Yasss!!!!... . H o w does it feel :)
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Untitled (how does it feel) by D'Angelo is and will always be one of my most inspirationa l song's to sing out loud with my girl
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I luv me some D'Angelo he says some words that can make u really think .come D keep it comming
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Wow l love this song
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When he was younger he was brown sugar
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traepar24
This song was the bomb!!!
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Wish they still showed the words to the songs i REALLY enjoyed D Angelo music.tina of Philly by way of BALTIMORE STAND DA F**K UP!!!!!!! #Hype as s**t
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shereepeters o n 9 0
I'm feeling all of him Maximize his Heart
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tanisha.samp s o n 4
I have been a D'Angelo Fan since the 90's. There is none like this man. I miss him so!! The VOODOO tour was CAPTIVATING ME AND everyone in a TRANCE.I hope they put him in the line for either the AZ, San Diego, or Las Vegas Jazz Festival 2015! I am so overdue to D'Angelo!
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Just saw him preform at soulfest with the likes of Maxwell Common Anthony Hamilton Musiq and others they were all amazing great music real music
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I miss the neo soul movement. Such a great feel of positivity, euphoria, calmness, black love and black unity.
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