But André tells VIBE that Badu’s jaw-dropping showing was long in the making.
“[Badu] knew of the tour already,” said the celebrated MC and budding actor born André Benjamin, who is currently making media rounds to promote his portrayal of guitar god Jimi Hendrix in the independent film .
It was one of the most talked-about moments during Out Kast’s historic, star-studded homecoming shows at Atlanta’s Centennial Olympic.
The three late September gigs featured a who’s who of Southern hip-hop royalty and beyond, including members of the influential Goodie Mob; veteran Memphis rhyme duo 8ball & MJG; UGK’s respected orator Bun B; new age Mississippi spitter Big KRIT; critically acclaimed visionary Janelle Monae; Run The Jewels’ mighty Killer Mike; ATL’s current street king Future; and left-field drifter Kid Cudi.
But the sold-out crowd during the tandem’s headline-making stand was shocked to witness funk-soul priestess Erykah Badu join ‘Kast’s André 3000 and partner Big Boi on the underrated cut “Humble Mumble.” As the charismatic Badu hugged her former significant other Three Stacks she hilariously mused, “That’s my baby daddy!
” It was a clear nod to the now legendary union that produced their son Seven.
The video has already become an internet hit, attracting over 300,000 views on You Tube – and the attention of the Dallas police, who have charged the singer with disorderly conduct for “disrobing in a public place”. One of the most interesting and iconoclastic figures in popular music, she was born Erica Wright, but rejected this as a slave name, choosing the new version after a jazz scat: “shu-badu-badu”.
Having graduated from performing arts school, where she trained as a dancer, she switched to music in 1997 with her outstanding debut album Baduizm.
This lush, elegant record, with its barefoot feel of Seventies hippydom and ineffably laid-back rhythms, spawned a movement, nu-soul, and with it a hundred imitators.
“We joke a lot,” André says of his relationship with the unpredictable siren. It’s funny to us now because it’s such a talked-down type term. It’s totally a punch line.” One person that finds the pair’s relationship off-the-wall is Seven.
“Our son is about to be 17 and he tells us, ‘You guys are nuts,’” André laughs.
In the video for her new single, Window Seat, 39-year-old singer Erykah Badu walks through the busy streets of her native Dallas taking off her clothes item by item until she’s naked.
When she reaches the grassy knoll near to where John F Kennedy was assassinated, a “shot” rings out and she collapses.