Erykah Badu Shows May Lead To Women-Only Concert Series

Recruits Alicia Keys, Macy Gray, Jill Scott for shows this month to determine viability of tour.

Erykah Badu will test the waters for a sort of soul sisters’ Lilith Fair
with a pair of all-star festivals this month.

Earlier this summer the bald singer announced she’d recruited Macy Gray,
Jill Scott, Sunshine Anderson and Zap Mama for the Marimba Festival in
Clarkston, Michigan, on August 8 (see “Erykah Badu Plans Tour And
One-Day Female Soul Festival”
). The show looked to be a one-off, but
she’s gone on to add a concert at Toronto’s Molson Amphitheater on
August 29 for which she and Scott will be joined by red-hot newcomers
Alicia Keys and Nikka Costa, as well as up-and-comers Jaguar and Divine
Earth Essence.

According to Badu’s agent, Cara Lewis, the shows will help determine the
viability of a full-scale tour in summer 2002. Ticket sales so far
indicate high demand, Lewis said. The tour would feature Badu as one of
the headliners, with a varying lineup of other female soul singers.

“When you look at Erykah Badu, there’s no classier performer right now,
and that is setting the tone for the full show,” said Elliott Lefko,
director of booking at House of Blues Concerts Canada, which is
promoting the Toronto show.

Badu’s friend Gray suggested one reason the lineup may fluctuate. While
she praised Badu recently for pulling together the Michigan lineup, Gray
added that the idea of a full outing with the girls isn’t all that
appealing.

“One of the best things about the music business is that it’s dominated
by men,” Gray said. “It’s a great opportunity to be around men all the
time. I loved that bill that she put together, [but] I don’t know if I
want to do an all-woman tour.

“If I happen to put together a bill that was real dope like that and it
happened to be all women, that’d be cool. But hangin’ out with dudes in
other bands is like the best thing in the whole world – like when we
went out with the Roots and Everlast, you have your little bowling
parties and you could have one-night stands in a bunk and stuff like
that.

“You just can’t do that on a women’s tour.”