Erykah Badu seems like a pretty awesome mom. I got a solid glimpse of as much first-hand about a week back when interviewing the famed Queen of Neo-Soul and proud Dallasite as part of a Dallas Observer Music Awards preview story that's going to run as the cover in this week's paper.
About halfway through our interview, our conversation was interrupted: Badu's two-year-old daughter, Mars, had just returned from her first-ever trip to the State Fair of Texas, and Badu put the interview on hold to welcome her home. Then, at Mars' request, her mother put the famously born-over-Twitter two-year-old on the phone. As for Mars' visit to the State Fair? She says she had a lot of fun because she got to see Big Tex and she "got to ride an airplane!"
Laughed Mama Badu when the brief side interview as over: "She probably rode the same old, rickety-ass airplanes I rode there as a kid."
Tonight, Badu will treat her progeny to another something special: She'll be making a "surprise" guest appearance on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon tonight, performing alongside The Roots and the absurdly popular and music-supporting cast of Nick Jr.'s Yo Gabba Gabba!, of whom Badu is already a well-documented fan.
Point is: Be sure to set those DVRs.
Interestingly enough, however, this is just one of a number of high-profile collaborations Badu currently has in the works.
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After tonight's televised performance, you can catch the Lady of White Rock Lake again on the tube tomorrow night, when BET airs their 2011 Hip-Hop Awards Show. In that pre-recorded telecast, she'll be assisting Lupe Fiasco in a performance of his politically charged "Words I Never Said" single, stepping in for the Skylar Grey, who sings the hook on the record.
In addition to these televised collaborations, Badu also recently joined forces with superproducer Mark Ronson, as well as members of The Dap-Kings and The Preservation Hall Jazz Band to record a song that will be released as a free download in conjunction with a documentary being put together by Hyundai and The Grammys about some oddball collaborations that those organizations have commissioned. Badu's collaboration seems to work, at least; few of the others make much sense (see: Skrillex collaborating with members of The Doors).
Badu is also currently wrapping up the recording process for her vocal efforts in her upcoming collaboration with Damon Albarn (Gorillaz, Blur) and Red Hot Chili Peppers bassist Flea. Don't expect to hear much on that front until 2012, though.
Oh, and don't forget: Badu will also be performing at our free-to-attend Dallas Observer Music Awards Ceremony on Tuesday, October 18, at the House of Blues, headlining a night that too should see its fair share of intriguing collaborations.