A Seat At The Table Review - Solange
Let's be clear. Solange is dope. Full of magic. Giver of zero fucks (hashtag, goals). But I am not a fan of her music...
...until A Seat At The Table. I almost didn't listen to it but I'm doing this thing where I try things at least once. The album has been in rotation since 11 am eastern time. This album is a beautiful work of art. From the opening, Rise, to the mini wisdom fill rants of Master P, to the pro black speech by Mama Tina, this is a perfect soundtrack to the year we call 2016. The digital book that accompanied this album featured lyrics, some breath taking pictures of Solange with nature as the background, and a bunch of fine ass black people. A. BUNCH. OF. FINE. BLACK. PEOPLE.
This album makes me want to:
Go to a bonfire.
Roll a fat one (read eat an edible because rolling isn't in my skill set), lay out and star gaze.
Dress up in a couture dress and dance in my living room.
Get up with my girls, beat our faces, and yell "FUCK YOU" to anyone who is mad about our infinite amount of magic.
This album reminds me that it's ok to love my blackness. You may not like it but guess what?! It's not for you. *Insert hair flip* Yet, you love every bit of it, until you feel threaten by it, but that's a story for another day. Solange reminds us that it's ok to give you some magic... "I got so much y'all, you can have it..." She sings acapella and she's right. Black people have so much magic.
A Seat At The Table makes me feel magical. Dope. Alien. Love. Peace. It tells me that sometimes it's ok to NOT be ok. Guess what? That's ok. People want our magic.
Our full lips.
Our rainbow of skin.
Our textured hair.
But it's for US. Mama Tina said that it's ok to be pro black. Master P told us, "We come here as slaves, but we are going out as royalty."
Tell me that's not a WORD!
What I love the most about this album? How it flows. It's like a river. 2016 is the desert. Solange brought the river through to quench our thirst and she did, extremely well.
My Track-by-Track Analysis:
1. Rise - This song reminds me to be a full version of myself. I shouldn't have to dim my light to make anyone feel better about themselves. You shouldn't either. Walk in your truth. Live it in all of it.
2. Weary - Chile. Aren't we all? Perfect analogy to 2016. She took the weight we feel every time we read about a new hashtag and made this track.
3. Interlude: The Glory is in You - First words from Master P, he's right, where is the peace. But listen, find your passion and find your peace.
4. Cranes in The Sky - Is she talking about a break up or being black in America? Either way, this song can go both ways. We run away when we don't want to deal, well I do. This is such a beautiful song.
5. Interlude: Dad was Mad - Papa Knowles being a child and being scared to die...hmmm sound like 2016. Same shit. You can feel his anger in this piece.
6. Mad - I LOVE THIS SONG! GUYS, ITS OK TO BE ANGRY. THIS SONG WILL GET ENDLESS PLAYS. STOP HOLDING ON. "TELL THEM WHY YOU MAD SON" TWEEET SOUNDS ANGELIC, BY THE WAY.
Sorry for the caps...back to normal. Lol
7. Don't You Wait - I just want to rock. I can't seem to concentrate on the lyrics to this one. Sue me.
8. Interlude: Tina Taught Me -LOOOOVE. Problack does not equal reverse racism. Love the skin you're in. This is a daily affirmation. Can I have this on a shirt?
9. Don't Touch My Hair - Don't. Touch. My. Muthafucking. Hair. The fact that we have to say this. But listen, our hair is our everything. It's my form of self expression, but that doesn't mean you are allowed to touch it. I want the lyrics to this in my house. It's heavenly.
10. Interlude: This Moment - Master P is dropping gems, my gawd. If you can't understand me right now, oh well.
11. Where Do We Go? But really, where? But shit I know this feeling. Post break up? You are feeling so weird. How am I managing without this piece? Shit. This woman is amazing.
12. Interlude: For Us By Us - FLAMES!!!!!! How many times have we UNDERSOLD our talents? You are ALWAYS worth it. EYE am.
13. F.U.B.U. - Don't come for us. I love the solidarity between Solange, The Dream, and B.J. CAREFREE black people talking their shit. Run it. My theme song the rest of the year.
14. Borderline (An Ode to Self Care) - This is perfect. Cuddles, anyone? It's ok to take a break. Universe, I hear you.
15. Interlude: I Got So Much Magic, You Can Have It - This is a word. You not even need my thoughts on this. The title itself is a word.
16. Julie - Another great beat. But not one I want to keep listening to. Amaze vocals, though.
17. Interlude: No Limits - Interesting fact about how No Limit was founded. Master P is such a hustler.
18. Don't Wish Me Well - Sis, wyd? Gurllllllllll. I actually really like the message for this song; I'll do all the way, and still leave the lights on for you, because I loved you that much. (Sidenote: Are her background vocals from angels?)
19. Interlude: Pedestals - Master P is speaking a word. We putting people on pedestals who aren't any better than us. Yes, that came from Master P. Where is his book???? I. Need. It.
20. Scales - This is for the black man. And I'm here for it. It's needed. Everyone wants to be you. Yes, sis. Talk that shit for black men. I really adore this.
21. Closing: The Chosen Ones - "We are going out as royalty." Absolutely.