Janelle Monae takes her out-of-this-world sounds on a tour of Earth

Janelle Monae and her Androids are taking over the Electric Factory. (Photo Credit: Marc Baptist)
Janelle Monae is on tour.
Credit: Marc Baptist

Though rising R&B star Janelle Monae sometimes seems absorbed in a futuristic world of androids and clones, she pays homage in song to two real-life female groundbreakers on her brand new album, “The Electric Lady”: astronaut Sally Ride and actress Dorothy Dandridge.

“’The Electric Lady’ are the ladies who are out there in this world and should be respected,” Monae says.

Dandridge in 1954 was the first African American to be nominated for an Academy Award for best actress, for her role in “Carmen Jones.” Monae extols the virtues of the actress in the jazzy “Dorothy Dandridge Eyes.”

Ride’s service on the crew of the space shuttle Challenger in 1983 made her the first American woman in space. Monae’s rock ‘n’ roll ballad “Sally Ride” on “The Electric Lady” is a funky space oddity.

“She was definitely working as an astronaut during a time when women were not being accepted, she was the minority,” Monae says of the late Ride. “I thought it was important to pay homage to her and tell her story and also she was in a same-sex relationship for a while … and women who were in same-sex relationships would definitely be fired or discriminated against because of their sexual orientation.”

It’s all part of the “Electric Lady” concept.

“It’s important to show female appreciation,” Monae says. “You don’t have to necessarily be sexually attracted to a woman to appreciate her or to value her.”

Monae is a Kansas City-born, Atlanta-raised chanteuse who gained the support of OutKast’s Big Boi and Sean Combs to emerge as a solo artist with 2007’s “Metropolis: Suite I (The Chase).” “The ArchAndroid,” her 2010 album, saw her profile rise, as did her contribution to the Fun smash “We Are Young” and her being named as a CoverGirl spokeswoman. “The Electric Lady” debuted at No. 5 on Billboard’s album chart last month.

The new record, which features guests Prince, Erykah Badu, Miguel, Solange and Esperanza Spalding, is a happy swirl of R&B, disco, torchy ballads, rock ‘n’ roll and soul microwaved in a time machine. She’s now taking the show on the road.

“It’s going to be an interactive experience,” Monrae says. “There are going to be lots of androids from Metropolis who are going to time travel and you’ll get a chance to meet them.”

Philadelphia
Sunday, Oct. 13, 8 p.m.
The Electric Factory
421 N. Seventh St.
$25, 215-627-1332
www.ticketmaster.com

Boston
Wednesday, Oct. 16, 7 p.m.
House of Blues
15 Lansdowne St., Boston
$25 to $45, 888-693-2583
www.livenation.com

New York City
Friday, Oct. 18, 8 p.m.
Apollo Theater
253 W. 125th St.
$35-$75, 212-531-5305
www.ticketmaster.com



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Girl, 10, dies after being pulled from water…

A 10-year-old girl died after being pulled from the waters off Coney Island Beach in Brooklyn on Tuesday night, police said.

News

NY judge throws out lawsuit by Empire State…

A New York state judge has thrown out a lawsuit in which longtime investors in the Empire State Building claimed they were shortchanged out of hundreds of millions of dollars…

Local

Mysterious white flags appear over Brooklyn Bridge

Two white flags mysteriously appeared over the towers of the Brooklyn Bridge yesterday in place of the American flags that are a traditional fixture.

National

Judge sets January start for murder trial of…

By Elizabeth BarberBOSTON (Reuters) - Former New England Patriots player Aaron Hernandez will be tried in January for the murder of semi-professional football player Odin…

Television

'Pretty Little Liars' recap: Season 5, Episode 7,…

Drunk girls and ghost brownies: here’s your weekly ‘Pretty Little Liars’ recap by way of Q&A. Q: do they really not check for feet under…

Arts

Don't miss 'Charles James: Beyond Fashion' at the…

Have you been meaning to see "Charles James: Beyond Fashion"? There are only two weeks left to get to the Met and catch this amazing American fashion designer's collection.

Television

Zac Posen talks 'Project Runway' and what it…

We talked to Zac Posen, judge and designer extraordinaire, about the new season of "Project Runway" and what keeps him coming back after three seasons.

Television

'Face Off' contestant David 'DOC' O'Connell sounds off…

David "DOC" O'Connell tells us about getting cast on Season 7 of Syfy's "Face Off," premiering tonight at 9.

NFL

David Tyree hiring has gay rights advocates angry

Former Giants Super Bowl hero David Tyree will re-join the franchise as its new director of player development.

NFL

Ben McAdoo's new offense has Giants excited to…

Even Tom Coughlin feels he has a lot to learn about offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo’s new offense, which makes the veteran coach very excited.

MLB

MLB Power Rankings: A's, Angels, Dodgers, Brewers lead…

MLB Power Rankings: A's, Angels, Dodgers, Brewers lead pack

NFL

2014 NFL season betting odds: Which team will…

2014 NFL season betting odds: Which team will win Super Bowl?

Tech

Learn Braille with these gloves

U.S. scientists have designed high-tech gloves to help users understand Braille in a matter of minutes.

Home

5 New Ikea products that will change your…

We round-up the latest must-have products.

Food

Recipe: Wolfgang Puck's Buttermilk French Toast

We recently spent some time chatting with restauranteur/celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck at his Wolfgang Puck American Grille in the Borgata in Atlantic City. Puck wanted…

Style

Go retro with your sneakers

The best of wacky new sneakers.