Teena Marie sits down with The Couch Sessions (download)
Rare is the time when there’s an artist who remains timeless because of their ability to connect to people on as many levels as does Teena Marie. A brilliant songstress with an ethereal multi-octave voice, Lady T is one of the few singers left who was able to be groomed by the legends of the game. Smokey Robinson, Marvin Gaye, Diana Ross, and of course Rick James were all her mentors, and thirty years later, she has influenced so many, singers, and, possibly one of the most killer refrains in hip hop history, from The Fugees “Fu-Gee-La,” well, it wouldn’t exist without her 1990 hit “Oooh La La La.” Simply put, Teena Marie is a musician’s musician, a masterful writer, producer, arranger and someone that we should be overjoyed is still active, still viable and still as much a necessary part of the music industry as ever.
She visited Washington, DC with The Whispers last Friday night, and just prior to the event, I had the opportunity to sit with her for about half an hour to cover her new album, her past history, Motown, Rick James, her thoughts on her authenticity in soul music, and so, so, so much more.