I’ve loved this girl from the time she introduced herself simply as, “I AM Chrisette Michele” with her first album. I can relate to the church girl from Brooklyn, with a baby face and real women issues. Her words seem to come from the pages of my life, as she talked about the life of a “Good Girl,” and the wisdom that comes with knowing it will “Be Okay” after a failed relationship. I remember vividly singing her songs as if she wrote them for me. In the privacy of my car I sung, “Blame it on Me,” passionately; I envisioned telling “the latest dude” he could blame everything on me, just leave me alone.
Back then she wore her hair long and her clothes modest; she had a glow that reveal a certain innocents. However, she boldly approached a world where sex sells – and became the voice of good ole’ fashion love songs. While other artist gained their fans with lyrics that express numerous ways to please a man, Michele’s words held a subtle sense of sexuality that conflicted with her strong will to save herself for the right man at the right time in a simple melody – “If I Had My Way.”
She went on a hiatus after 2010’s “Let Freedom Reign” album, leaving her fans with, “I’m A Star.” I still like getting dress to this song; the beat bouncing off the walls, I’m putting my heels on, make-up done and I begin to I sing, “baby I am star tonight.” The lyrics playing in my head “Let myself drown, no, I will not – Smile on my pretty mug – I get right back on my horse and I giddy up,” becomes motivation to become a star in my own right.
Michele interview with Rolling Out magazine revealed that she stepped away from media not the music, “I’m big on taking some time off to figure things out,” she said. Her album “Better” is the result of her healing, processing and finding her way. Now she is back stronger and better than ever with life changes that include what Michele calls “earned” tattoos, vegan lifestyle, a new hair-do and an independent swag that says she is not only better, she is a star.
On June 11, 2013, S.O.B’s Summer Splash in New York, her family, friends and fans helped her celebrate coming back with her fourth album, “Better.” Her proud mom, Lynette Payne introduced her as the “best singer” out right now to a crowd in an intimate setting on the Luxury Infinity Yacht.
A confident Chrisette Michele grab the microphone and the attention of all those eager to hear her perform after two years. She had a glow, that says she is excited about life. She warned her audience that she was better and will have to sing “Blame it On Me” with a smile. Soon the crowd was like a mass-choir as they sung along word for word, she was in awe, “y’all going to make me cry,” she said.
“I am Leaving” and “Be Okay,” took Michele’s fans down memory lane. Then she performed from her latest album that came out that day, songs like “Charades” (featuring 2 Chainz) and the soulful sound of “A Couple of Forevers,” the crowd was hooked. She was a lot of fun. Through out her performance she told some of her story, gave God all the glory with a big “hallelujah” and interacted with her fans. While singing “Rich Hipster” (featuring Wale) Michele invited a lady on stage who’s casual look was perfect for the lyrics, “Home made t-shirt, tattoos, converse, uniform – Yet not the norm – Home made t-shirt, tattoos, converse, uniform – Look nice, yet not the norm…”
As the night came to an end, the boat pulled into the dock, it was clear that Chrisette Michele “Better” represents a woman who has come into her own and who is enjoying the journey. Once again I felt I could relate, I smiled at the thought of how much I will play this album.