Is planet Earth ready for Janelle Monáe? (I hope so!)

Chris Rock did a pretty hilarious bit on BET’s 106 & Park last month, openly mocking the lack of creativity he saw in the show’s offerings. “That was so original! All the videos on BET, none of ‘em look alike, ever…It’s unbelievable. How do they do it?!” The show’s host, Terrence, seemed a little uncomfortable with that line of humor, but Rock had a point. So it was a pleasant surprise to tune into 106 & Park again a few days ago and see up-and-coming artist Janelle Monáe introducing her new video for “Many Moons.” It was light-years beyond what you normally see on any networks’ remaining video countdowns. In fact, Monáe insisted on calling it a “short film,” not a video. Which is fair enough: What else do you call a six-minute sci-fi tone poem based on Fritz Lang’s 1927 landmark silent film Metropolis, starring Monáe in multiple roles as an assortment of futuristic androids? Just watch it (below), you’ll have a better chance of making sense of “Many Moons” that way.

Pretty far-out stuff, right? But the screaming teen audience seemed to love it, which gives me hope. Monáe’s been trying to get a foothold in the industry for a few years now; along the way she’s lined up co-signs from both members of OutKast, and she’s currently signed to Bad Boy, which is awesome as long as Diddy doesn’t try to make her the sixth member of Danity Kane or something. So maybe things are finally starting to line up for this wildly original artist. But you tell me — what do you make of Janelle Monáe and her “Many Moons”?

Comments (23 total) Add your comment
Page: 1 2
  • Dennis N.

    She’s without a doubt a protege of Andre 3000, as is clearly evidenced by the insane waistline and spastic, mike-stand-anchored dance moves. But she certainly makes it her own. I’m rooting for someone of her demure and powerful femininity to crack into the 106th & Park demographic.

  • Scott

    Janelle’s approach to the industry challenges more than just this film. Her whole album, Metropolis: The Chase Suite, looks at recording and releasing music from a different perspective and sounds pretty d*mn good, too.

  • TSD

    Janelle Monae is amazing. She used to sing with a group on my campus called BOF. Then, she released her own CD of singles, including the song “It’s Not Fair”. Since then, I have loved her. Her voice is amazing and R&B will never be the same now that she has arrived.

  • Anonymous

    Hey, where’s my Bones watch? I’m running out of work day.

  • annie

    i’ve been a huge fan of janelle’s before i even knew her name. my favorite track on the idlewild soundtrack by far is her “call the law,” and her first solo single, “violet stars happy hunting” is AMAZING!

  • collins

    i LOVE janelle monae! i live in the atl and she has a fierce following here in her hometown. what i love about her is she makes an ALBUM rather than culling together a bunch of singles. her music actually tells a story with sick beats, strings and horns. and that is sorely missing in this itunes 99 cent single heavy world.

  • Shasta

    Holy junk, where has this woman been all my life? She is amazing! For real, I can’t stand the booty-shakin’ videos that all look the same. Gimme more original thinkers like Outkast and this lady. Bring it!

  • jexx

    Wow. I’m not sure *what* I make of it, but I sat there mesmerized for the entire length of the clip. It reminds me of my guiltiest pleasure (The Fifth Element starring the most alien Milla Jovovich) along with the classic Metropolis. Love it. Want more, please.

  • christina

    One word: WOW.
    That was hypnotic, mesmerizing, and just plain fantastic!
    I can’t wait to hear more from her.

  • Houstonian Jen in DC

    I recognize her voice…wasn’t she on the “Idlewild” soundtrack. That movie didn’t have alot going for it, but her song on the album was fabulous!!
    By the way, that video was awesome. I’m heading to iTunes.

  • Houstonian Jen in DC

    Annie, thank you for reminding me of the title of her “Idlewild” song! I played that over and over for months after the release.


    it’s sad to say, but i first saw her on monday’s episode of “i want to work for diddy.” without hearing a single word, i did some searching and consumed myself with everything janelle. she’s amazing. i want it all!

  • Anonymous

    Is that the Haitian from heroes …and …no its not olivier martinez – but the haitian is hot.
    I heart ms Monae

  • Janelle Monae’s Best Friend..

    I knew she was destined to make something out of herself.. Growing up in the “trap” that we call home, Kansas City, Kansas its not easy to rise above expectations from outsiders trying 2 stop ur progression. I, as an artist on the rise knows what Janelle is talking about.. I write about thing we have to endure to make it famous.. Meeting Janelle almost 14 yrs ago showed me what intensity she had.. She was one of many who befriended me when I was picked on & treated like a social outcast.. I commend our friendship, loosely on knowing her kind words would help me.. So with that being said, Janelle, u continue 2 endure ur blessings.. Stay focused & positive.. Tell Mr. Combs, that u still are a “homebody” who loves seeing ur fam & “real” friends.. (which is me).. Ur number 1 fan since day 1.. Love always, Ur Best Friend

    • IV

      that was really sweet!



Page: 1 2
Add your comment
The rules: Keep it clean, and stay on the subject - or we may delete your comment. If you see inappropriate language, e-mail us. An asterisk (*) indicates a required field.

When you click on the "Post Comment" button above to submit your comments, you are indicating your acceptance of and are agreeing to the Terms of Service. You can also read our Privacy Policy.

Latest Videos


From Our Partners

TV Recaps

Powered by VIP