Who: Philadelphia soul singer Jazmine Sullivan, who at the age of 21 has already gained fans like Kanye West, duetted with Stevie Wonder and released her first album Fearless.
Sounds Like: Sullivan’s voice recalls both Mary J. Blige and Lauryn Hill, and on the Missy Elliott-produced Fearless, Sullivan jumps from roots reggae on “Need U Bad” to the girl group sound of “One Night Stand” to the Winehouse-esque “Bust Your Windows,” a song that made Kanye West proclaim on his blog “This is my favorite song right now!!!”
• Sullivan got her start in music at a young age. She was offered a gospel contract at 11, then by age 16 she was dueting with Stevie Wonder at his grandson’s birthday party.
• After signing being dropped by Jive in 2005, Sullivan recorded a demo tape. Two years later, she found herself in Clive Davis’ office and ultimately signing a contract with J Records. “When I saw him, I thought, ‘This is the man who can make or break my career,’ Sullivan says. “But he gave me a hug and said ‘Welcome to the family.'”
• “Bust Your Windows,” as the title suggests, tells the story of a girl who breaks the car windows of a cheating boyfriend. “I had a boyfriend, a break up — I’d been through some stuff,” Sullivan says. As for whether or not she did take a crowbar to the windows, “I won’t say if I did or didn’t. But even if I didn’t, I wanted to.”
Hear It Now: Fearless is in stores now, and Sullivan will hit the road November 23rd as the opening act for Maxwell. Check out the video for “Bust Your Windows” above.