Time sure flies when you’re at the top. Ask Alicia Keys. Despite her debut seemingly hitting stores just yesterday, it has – in actuality – been 10 years since ‘Songs In A Minor’ catapulted the singer-songwriter to superstardom.
To celebrate this milestone, Keys and her label are releasing a commemorative edition of the LP, which will be supported by an exclusive New York gig, a performance slot at this year’s BET Awards, and more.
Now isn’t this the picture of a happy family? Alicia Keys, Swizz Beatz and their children hit the streets of New York City yesterday. The couple kept a close watch on their new baby, Egypt Daoude Dean, as Swizz’s elder song (Keys’ stepson) looked on Prince Nasir. Swizz’s ex-wife, Mashonda, was not present.
At the time when R&B music was arguably at its peak in the mid-2000s there was no other female artist as consistent as Alicia Keys. This week’s From The Vault selection, ‘Diary’, demonstrates the key (no pun intended) elements of her success during that era – soulful vocals, true musicianship and superb songwriting.
This live version of the track was filmed during Keys’ set on ‘MTV Unplugged’ and released as part of her ‘Unplugged’ on album on October 7th 2005. The collection set records on the Billboard 200 by becoming the 1st ‘Unplugged’ album by a female artist to debut at #1.
Watching this performance is a bittersweet experience. It depicts a time in Keys’ career when she was still relatively new to the industry and her sound was unique as well as quite refreshing. Today, however, her music is far less impressive as she has become rather redundant in her persistent quest to emulate the R&B/Jazz sounds of her idols, Sade, and make it her own.
Perhaps motherhood will inspire Keys to refocus her artistry and strive toward reviving the refreshing elements of her early career. Maybe that will help her to have both successful singles and albums instead of just the latter.
Alicia Keys attended the Knicks vs Heat game at Madison Square Garden in New York City last evening. Also in attendance were the singer’s husband, Swizz Beatz, and fellow hitmaker Kanye West. See more images below:
Here is a special behind the scenes look at the making of Alicia Keys’ ‘Speechless (Ft. Eve)’. The video shows how the songstress composed the track which is dedicated to her son. Peep the footage below:
The top 10 best-selling albums of 2010 have been announced. Not surprisingly, Lady GaGa nabbed the #1 spot with her ‘The Fame Monster’ release which managed to sell over 5.8 million copies worldwide during the last 12 months. ‘Monster’ serves as the followup to GaGa’s debut album, ‘The Fame’, which has has sold an astounding 12 million units since August 2008.
Other artists who managed to score top honors in 2010 include Eminem, Justin Bieber, Sade and the Black Eyed Peas. Rihanna’s ‘Rated R’ failed to make the top 10 despite having one of the largest promotional campaigns of the last year. Check out the full lineup below: