Black News, Entertainment, Style and Culture - HuffPost Black Voices
iOS app Android app More
August 30, 2014

Chicago Business Learns Little Leaguer Is Homeless, Offers To Pinch Hit And Pay Family's Rent

Jackie Robinson West
Raymond Boyd via Getty Images

Police Allegedly Assault Black Father Waiting For His Kids

Chriss Lollie
Courtesy Chris Lollie

Remembering Madam CJ Walker As Organizations Aim To Preserve Estate

Cj Walker
Craig F. Walker via Getty Images

UN Condemns U.S. Police Brutality

453768716
Scott Olson via Getty Images

Ebola Spreads To Another Country

Senegal Ebola
SEYLLOU via Getty Images

Ferguson Protests Reach White House Doorstep

White House Ferguson
Alex Wong via Getty Images

Ray Albers, Cop Who Threatened Ferguson Protesters, Resigns

Albers
YouTube

LAPD Identifies Two Officers Involved In Ezell Ford Shooting

Ezell Ford
Matt Ferner/HuffPost

Most White People Don't Have A Single Black Friend

Interracial Friends
Kerstin Geier via Getty Images

Powerful Hands Up United Video Honors Michael Brown

Hands Up Michael Brown
Joe Raedle via Getty Images

'Exodus' Director Addresses Casting Controversy

Exodus Gods And Kings
Fox

In Ferguson, A Sense Of Normalcy Returns To A City Still On Edge

Ferguson Protests
Ryan J. Reilly/The Huffington Post

Outside Chiefs Called To Help Ferguson Police 'Make Better Decisions'

Ferguson
Chip Somodevilla via Getty Images

This Hundred Year Old African-American Tradition Could Go Extinct

Gullah Geechee
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Family Sues Atlanta Cops After Death In Custody

Gregory Towns Jr
DigitalJournal

This Is How Much Jail Time Prosecutors Want For Renisha McBride's Shooter

Renisha Mcbride
Thurswell Law

Lawsuit Claims Police Brutality At Ferguson Protests

Ferguson Police
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Hillary Breaks Silence On Ferguson

Hillary Clinton
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Amber Alert: 6-Week-Old Baby Kidnapped At Gunpoint

Delano Wilson
Handout

5 Reasons Why Black Lives Matter

Ferguson Michael
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Former USC Football Player Accuses Coach Of Being Racist

Anthony Brown Usc
Jonathan Moore via Getty Images

New Lifetime Show Will Make You Cringe

Girlfriend Intervention
Richard Knapp / Lifetime

Alumni Rally Round NYC's Top Public Schools That Admit Very Few Blacks

Stuyvesant High School
ASSOCIATED PRESS

Ferguson Children Sent Inspiring And Educational Gift

Black Kid Abc
Wavebreakmedia Ltd via Getty Images

Newspaper Under Fire For Incredibly Racist Headline

You7
TWITTER/Hossam

Privileged White Guys On Fox News Agree: There's No Such Thing As White Privilege

Bill Oreilly Sean Hannity
Fox News

Follow HuffPost

    1. HuffPost
    2. Black Voices
    1. HuffPost
    2. Black Voices
    1. Most Popular on HuffPost
    2. Latest News
    3. Black Voices
    4. View all RSS feeds

The One Film You Must See This Weekend!

Through A Lens Darkly
Film Forum

LISTEN
Hip Hop Heavyweights Dedicate ‘Don't Shoot' Track To Michael Brown

Michael Brown Funeral
Pool via Getty Images

This Summer's Movies Were Even Worse Than Thought

Spilled Popcorn
Ghislain & Marie David de Lossy via Getty Images

5 Reasons Why We'll Always Remember Michael Jackson

Michael Jackson
Associated Press

Terri J. Vaughn Talks 'Girlfriends' Getaway'

Terri J Vaughn Girlfriends Getaway
Elise Romany

Hip Hop Moves As Strong Force For Michael Brown

Chuck D Public Enemy
Mick Gold via Getty Images

Mystery Donor Gives Money To Vandalized Stores In Ferguson, Keeps Town 'Hopeful'

Money In Wallet
Jonathan Kitchen via Getty Images

Nick Cannon: I Like A Woman Who 'Knows' What She Wants

Nick Cannon
HelloBeautiful.com

WATCH
SWV Singer Discovers Devastating News

Swv
WE TV

Beyonce Holds A Chanel #Surfbort In CR Fashion Book

Beyonce Fashion Book Cover
Pierre Debusschere

Colbert: Why Can't Black People Can't Be More Like Cliven Bundy?

Colbert Ferguson Cliven Bundy
Comedy Central

Jeezy Pleads Not Guilty

Young Jeezy
Tim Mosenfelder via Getty Images

Mathew Knowles Says Beyonce, Jay Z Divorce Talk Is 'Jedi Mind Trick'

Beyonce Jay Z
MTV/MTV1415 via Getty Images

Tim Howard Talks U.S. Soccer, His Favorite World Cup Meme And Helping Kids Conquer Tourette's

Tim Howard
ASSOCIATED PRESS

'I Gotta Find A Place Where They Don't Kill Black People, Jon'

Daily Show Ferguson Michael Che
Comedy Central

Iyanla Vanzant's Intense 36-Hour Visit To Ferguson

Iyanla Vanzant Ferguson Missouri
OWN

BET Suspends Producer For Making A Joke About Blue Ivy

Blue Ivy
ROBYN BECK via Getty Images

D'Angelo: Did Sex Symbol Status Kill His Career?

Comments (53)

By Karu F. Daniels, BlackVoices.com



It was recently reported in Black Music Notes that D'Angelo has signed a record deal with J Records to release his long awaited third opus this fall.

But many still wonder what the hell was the reason for his near ten year recording hiatus anyway.

Yeah, the Richmond, Virginia native has had his run-ins with the law. But so have many of his contemporaries and fellow musicians.

Some have still managed to contribute to their musical repertoire in between prison stints, legal woes, rehab jaunts and other dubious activities.

But not D'Angelo (real name: Michael Eugene Archer).

His last full length music project, 'Voodoo,' was released Jan. 11, 2000. And he has been virtually absent since the promotion of that masterful platter subsided from radio playlists.

The biggest track from the opus was the sensual Raphael Saadiq-produced single 'Untitled (How Does It Feel?),' which seemed to have taken on a life of its own.

Have some tell it: the sex-charged single and its equally stimulating music video (where the chisel-chested singer/songwriter, arguably, simulated receiving fellatio) is what was the beginning of the end of D'Angelo, who at that time was considered a progenitor of the burgeoning neo-soul music movement.

"'Untitled' wasn't supposed to be this mission statement for 'Voodoo,'" his former manager Dominique Trenier said in the August 2008 edition of 'Spin' magazine. "I'm glad the video did what it did, but he and I were both disappointed because, to this day, in the general populace's memory, he's the naked guy," he continued, even admitting feelings of his own "guilt."



Now being known as a sex symbol is considered a gift to some. Ask Paris Hilton and Kim Kardashian.

But for the 'Brown Sugar' crooner, who with his career-defining debut album came across as a pudgy piano playing prodigy, it seems to have been the ultimate curse.

"We couldn't get through one song before women would start to scream for him to take off something," recalled in-demand horn player Roy Hargrove, who performed on the groundbreaking album and on the road with D'Angelo. "It wasn't about the music. All they wanted him to do was take off his clothes."

That was a tall order for a man Trenier referred to as not "a sexy dude" but a "real musician who wears glasses and plays video games."

"He'd get angry and start breaking s--t," recollected revered Roots drummer Ahmir "?uestlove" Thompson – who is an intimate associate and longtime collaborator of D'Angelo's. "The audience thinking, 'F--k your art. I wanna see your ass!' made him angry."

Since the release of 'Voodoo,' the only record many people know from D'Angelo, the son of a Pentecostal preacher, is a police record.

Here's a run-down:

In January 2005, he was arrested and charged with possession of marijuana, possession of a controlled substance, and driving while intoxicated. He pleaded guilty to the DUI and marijuana charge and, on April 13, was given a fine and suspended sentence and his driver's license was revoked.

On September 12, he received a three-year suspended sentence on the cocaine possession charge.

On September 19, 2005, just a week after being sentenced for cocaine possession, D'Angelo was critically injured in Powhatan County, Virginia when the SUV he was riding in hit a fence, ejecting him from the vehicle. He reportedly was not wearing a seatbelt.

In August 2006, D'Angelo was confirmed to have exited Eric Clapton's exclusive Crossroads rehabilitation stint on the island of Antigua.

On August 10, 2007, he was sent to court on charges relating to a car accident that occurred two years prior. He reportedly pleaded guilty to these charges and was ordered to pay a $1,250 fine, in addition to forfeiting his license for 15 months. He also received a nine-month suspended jail sentence.

"I didn't realize how vulnerable he was and how deep his issues ran," tour manager Alan Leeds told 'Spin.' "He's cursed now with fretting over how much his fan base is because of how he looked as opposed to the music. It took away his confidence, because he's not convinced why any given fan is supporting him."

Deepness.

Things may be looking bright for the father of neo-soul diva Angie Stone's son.

According to his new manager Lindsay Guion, he's on track to finish recording by the end of the month.

That should make the big-wigs at J Records – and countless of D'Angelo's truest fans -- happy.

Until then, an enhanced 'Best Of' collection recently arrived on store shelves via EMI -- boasting digitally-mastered versions of his hits such as 'Lady,' the aforementioned 'Brown Sugar,' 'Cruisin' and the fateful 'Untitled' track. The video clip is even featured on the DVD version of the collection.

So proceed with caution.





Comments: (53)

Add a comment

Page 4 of 6

Add a Comment

Please keep your comments relevant to this blog entry. Email addresses are never displayed but they are required to confirm your comments. When you enter your name and email address, you'll be sent a link to confirm your comment, and a password. To leave another comment, just use that password."