Welcome to the Kelis guest edit
Welcome to a week-long takeover with all things Kelis, as the legendary artist guest edits the site with some of her favourite things.
Show me the late 1990s and the 21st century in music without Kelis, and I will show you a very dead time. The New York-born artist has been consistently shining and shifting for over two decades now, leading the way in intergalactic pop music that is bold and unafraid to do things a little differently. Her takes on electronic, R&B and soul have always been a little weird, a little sexy – but also – crucially – her work always bangs, and has been definitive of so much pop culture since.
So, when we heard Kelis was coming back to release music with her first new track since 2014’s Food, we had to get an exclusive interview with the woman herself. When we speak to her, she’s relaxing on the ranch where she and her family live, enjoying the pause of being rooted after nearly three decades on the road. “It’s great to just be some place where you can hear the trees and the wind and the birds,” she says, “And it sounds crazy and sounds cliché, all these things, but I think as human beings there’s so much… we’re constantly being given information all the time, and everything moves so fast. So it’s nice to just be on the ranch and just chill, you know, in the farm and in the garden – I love it.”
“As human beings we’re constantly being given information all the time, and everything moves so fast…So overall it’s about quality of life. Impacting your mind and your body as much as possible with all the right stuff”
But none of this means she’s stopped making hits. The latest culmination of Kelis’ twenty years at the forefront of music, ‘Midnight Snacks’ is out now, as is our interview. And, while we had her, we wanted to know more about what makes Kelis tick. For years now it’s been clear the singer-songwriter has so much to offer us beyond the music: the aesthetics, the love of food, the fact that she now lives on a farm (to name just a few points of interest).
Today, we’re presenting the Kelis guest edit, a week of editorial curated by a living legend.
“Overall, it’s like quality of life, right?” Kelis explains when expanding on her choices, “Impacting your mind and your body as much as possible with all the right stuff. Because I think that we’re constantly impacting [ourselves] with all the wrong stuff. I do a lot of research, I read a lot about Black people’s history and our roles as Black people in society and culture all around the world, versus what we were told – you know, contrary to what we really are. All of that stuff, our roles as women in it. I spend a lot of time doing that.”
Check back in over the next few days to find out more about farming, her favourite reads, Instagram pages, hobbies and recipes, with conversations about everything from Black hair history to the work of Octavia Butler. Plus, we asked some of our favourite writers to get into Kelis’ style and artistry.
We’re so excited to share this with you. Hopefully you enjoy this ‘tasty’ week (I’m so sorry) and join us in giving Kelis her flowers.
You can check in at this link for all the Kelis guest edit items as they come in through the week.