The sky is blue.
The square root of 64 is 8.
That Grape Juice.net is the best website of all time.
For many, if not everyone, the statements above are simply facts of life.
Unfortunately, Dawn Richard seems to have been partial to a little fiction recently when she claimed that she didn’t understand why so many “black people” compare her vocal stylings to those of her R&B sibling Brandy.
In an interview with British journalist Sope Soetan Dawn had this to say about Ms. Norwood:
I grew up loving Imogen Heap and Bjork. And one of my favourite female voices to this day is Alanis Morissette. Those voices really did something for me, growing up to me they sounded like cognac and cigar smoke, they had these cool tones that worked well with rock and alternative music. As far as what I do organically, I just go in and whatever feels good, feels good I don’t force it. Leads and adlibs are cool but my favourite thing to do when I’m in the studio is backgrounds. I can go on and on for days, there’s this sense of peace and chanting. Like an army of bad motherfuckers always behind me, like a 1000 people in believing me and 1000 people behind me every time doing these counter chants which are so African, so Creole and so New Orleans.
People want so badly for there to be Brandy-isms. I didn’t know about Brandy until college, I didn’t grow up on Brandy, I grew up on Bjork and Imogen Heap. So there was no influence but I respect her. I think she’s one of the dopest singers we’ve ever had in our time. When I found out about her through my brother, I was like this girls voice is on a whole other level so the respect of Brandy is definitely there. She to me is the vocal bible, but I don’t necessarily take her style or influence into my music. I don’t think of Brandy when I think of the formatting of my music and I think it’s funny that only black people think that.
Though we aren’t completely buying Richard’s attempts to distance herself from Norwood it is possible that their similarities are merely coincidental.
After all, fans of the late Karen Carpenter were just as surprised when her vocal doppelganger Rumer emerged on the scene and (like Dawn has done to Brandy) downplayed her obvious “borrowing” of the ‘Solitaire’ singer’s work.
It makes sense. Indeed, unlike a number of her contemporaries, Richard offers something unique and personal to fans with her music and would rain on her credibility’s parade if she admitted that it was Brandy (who she shares a number of similarities with) and not Bjork who inspired her sound.