Janelle Monae Recruits Marching Band, T.I. for 'Electric Lady' Video - Rolling Stone
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Janelle Monae Recruits Marching Band, T.I. for ‘Electric Lady’ Video

Estelle, Esperanza Spalding, Monica, T-Boz and Kimbra also appear in dance-heavy clip

The ever-unclassifiable Janelle Monáe has shared the music video for her funky single, “Electric Lady.” In the futuristic clip, Monáe hits up an “Electra Phi Beta” sorority house party, which erupts into choreographed dance routines (complete with lightsabers), marching band guest spots and cameos from musician friends T.I., Estelle, Esperanza Spalding, Monica, TLC’s T-Boz and Kimbra.

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The video even features an opening appearance from Monáe’s real-life mother, who asks with concern about her daughter’s social life (“I ain’t never heard of no sorority called Electrifying Ladies”) before the singer leaves her house. 

The song itself, from 2013’s The Electric Lady, is a perfect showcase for Monáe’s eclectic talents, as she praises the mythical title woman over soulful horns and a shapeshifting groove. Midway through, Monáe even demonstrates her underrated rapping skills: “Whether in Savannah, K-Kansas or in Atlanta / She’ll walk in any room have you raising up your antennas,” she rhymes. “She can fly you straight to the moon or to the ghettos / Wearing tennis shoes or in flats or in stilettos.”

Back in May, Monáe shared the inspirational clip for her cover of David Bowie’s rock anthem “Heroes,” which features a group of young outcasts battling school bullies and finding shelter in the pages of a superhero comic book named JANELLE! The song was recorded for Pepsi’s football-inspired LP, Beats of the Beautiful Game, which was released in June. 

The multi-talented singer recently appeared alongside the Roots, Busta Rhymes, DJ Premier and a full orchestra for one date of Dave Chappelle’s three-night stint at Radio City Music Hall


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