Erykah "She Ill" Badu, also known as DJ Lo Down Loretta Brown, has shared a new minimix titled "+++Beats Bees Like for B-Boys and B-Girls+++." The "feel good high freaq mix" features cuts from Sun Ra, The Bee Gees, Deerhoof and Toro Y Moi, among others.
The 30-minute session premiered on Zane Lowe's Beats 1 radio show just before Badu dropped her telephone-themed But You Caint Use My Phone mixtape back in November, Thump reports. Months later, the R&B star has finally uploaded it to MixCloud.
Badu dedicates the mix to the bees. As FACT Magazine points out, the artist introduces the mix by stating: "Save the bees, else we aint gone have no where to fight and discriminate... cause they aint have'n that sh*t on MARS."
However, despite the depressing reminder that planet Earth's future depends upon protecting those buzzing little creatures, the mixtape is actually quite uplifting and demonstrates DJ Lo Down Loretta Brown's eclectic tastes--it truly is the bee's knees.
The tracklist ranges from the soulful to the experimental and manages to simultaneously pay homage to the old school with numerous throwbacks while embracing a cosmic, futuristic sound.
In the mix, DJ Lo Down Loretta Brown artfully weaves together The Bee Gees' soft disco, Sun Ra's cosmic jazz, Deerhoof's art rock and Toro Y Moi's synth-driven indie sensibility. She seasons the mixtape with some more futuristic soul cuts, including tracks by Hiatus Kaiyote and Thundercat. Then she ties it all together with some classic soul hits by the likes of DeBarge, Loose Ends and Das EFX.
Listen to the R&B star flex her DJ prowess on "+++Beats Bees Like for B-Boys and B-Girls+++," below.
When the mix dropped, Badu was already in the headlines: earlier this week, her former beau and longtime collaborator Andre 3000 dished on their recent reunion on "Hello," the final track on the But You Caint Use My Phone.
The rapper explained to Billboard that the duet came about when he and their son, Seven, were brainstorming songs related to the mixtape's phone theme when they came across The Isley Brothers' cover of Todd Rundgren's "Hello, It's Me." Andre 3000 suggested she make it into a new song and get someone to rap on it, and the rest is history.