By Aaliyah Roulhac
For those who follow the Indie/Soul/R&B songstress, Solange, we know that she had been working on music for quite some time through various posts on her Instagram page. What we did not know however, was that the project that she was creating would be so influential and so prevalent in the time that it was released. The album titled, A Seat at the Table was released on September 30, 2016 and took the music industry by a storm.
Solange has never been shy about being unapologetic when expressing herself through her music, fashion and even through her writing, so this album that is so unapologetcally black and woman and intersectional, should not have come as too much of a surprise for audiences across the nation.
The singer who grew up in Houston, Texas and relocated to New Orleans, Louisiana in her adult life, drew inspiration from her southern roots as well as from artists who are New Orleans natives like Lil Wayne and Master P. Lil Wayne provided a verse on the song “Mad,” which verbalizes the constant struggle that black people, particularly women, face when being justified in their anger because of discrimination and injustice, but also trying to rebut the “angry black girl” stereotype.
Master P., a hip-hop mogul and entrepreneur provided bits of wisdom from his own experiences growing up and in the music industry, which were sprinkled through the album via interludes, helping to tie the bigger story (that is, A Seat at the Table) together.
While Solange worked with different artists to put this unprecedented project together, there were several artists and celebrities who swooned after the release of the album like the rest of the fans:
— Missy Elliott (@MissyElliott) September 30, 2016
— Alicia Keys (@aliciakeys) October 5, 2016
— kerry washington (@kerrywashington) October 3, 2016
Solange’s album, that she tweeted she began writing “almost 4 years ago” is in a lane of its own because of its purpose, its timing and its resonance. In songs like F.U.B.U., the singer explicitly states that this work is for the black community and that is so important given the tragic cycle of grief and injustice we have been existing in. A Seat at the Table is raw and honest and it truly serves as a voice for the voiceless, while also giving listeners something to nod to. The praise of this album has not gone unnoticed by the singer as she took to twitter to express her gratitude:
I am completely overwhelmed with gratitude and humbled by your love and support for #ASeatAtTheTable. Completely overwhelmed with gratitude.
— solange knowles (@solangeknowles) October 3, 2016
Salute to you Solange, for not only providing A Seat at the Table but for also reminding the black community that they belong at the table just as much as anyone else.