Black Music Month

Icons Speak: Teena Marie Talks Beyonce, Lil Wayne and more..

Often dubbed ‘Lady T’ by soul music enthusiasts, former Motown star Teena Marie has stood the test of time in what might be called a fickle music industry. Nearly thirty years after her “Wild and Peaceful” album debut, Marie has come full circle to present a thirteenth release entitled “Congo Square”. Sitting down with Singersroom in an exclusive “Icon’s Speak” feature, Marie not only discusses her journey but, the state of music today and yesteryear. She even reveals her personal favorites including, a recent Grammy Award-winning Hip Hop artist and certain “Unbreakable” singing/songwriting sensation.

For Teena Marie, the journey started in the mid 1970s as a signed Motown back up singer. By the mid 80’s Teena Marie had climbed the -then- black singles chart with long time friend and collaborating artist Rick James. Nearly twelve albums later, the former “Fire and Desire” singer is still going strong with the 2009 release “Congo Square”.

While Marie reveals the inspiring story behind the title “Congo Square” in exclusive video at New York’s Beacon Theatre, it is her mindset on music that makes us think about the day when you could turn on the radio and instantly be imploded with unmistakable sounds of Earth Wind and Fire, Chaka Khan and Rufus.

“When we turned turned on the radio we instantly knew it was Earth, Wind and Fire, Led Zeplin, Crosby Stills and Nash, or Aretha Franklin or Chaka Khan and Rufus. Now there are great artists but you have to filter through a lot to get to the good ones,” says Lady T.

With that said, we asked Teena Marie who she enjoys amongst today’s recording stars and her reply was somewhat surprising:

“Amy Winehouse and of course I love Alicia Keys, she is a great songwriter. I love Beyonce and I’ll say I love Wayne (Lil Wayne). I listen to all kind of music you know. New music and old music. I love the 70s early male vocal groups like ‘The Dells,’ The Dramatics’ and ‘The Moments’ and stuff like that.”

For more of Teena Marie’s exclusive “Icons Speak” interview, Click Here.

—— By: Singersroom

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