Team Natural respects her. Funk runs through her veins. And the Billboard charts like Janelle Monae pretty well, too.
Her hits include "The Electric Lady" (16 weeks on the charts, peaked at number 5) and the album by the same name stayed on the charts for 28 weeks, peaking at number 3. The ArchAndroid: Suites II and III album lasted on the charts even longer for 44 weeks and peaked at number 4.
But before she was showing women how to style their hair into pompadours and dancing like James Brown, she was the one people curiously looked at in the back of Big Boi's golden Cadillac in the "2006" single "Morris Brown." While she did the Cabbage Patch and enjoyed the company of a purple dog, everyone else wondered, "Who's this?"
Hardcore fans know her previous alias was Cindi Mayweather with an EP entitled The Chase. Others may have not made it to the year 2719 to check it out. However, Diddy and Prince had first-hand seats to watch her progress. Diddy signed her to his record label, Bad Boy Records, in March 2008 with the promise that she'd be able to keep her own style. Her mentor, Prince, worked with her on "Givin Em What They Love" on her 2013 The Electric Lady CD.
Unlike other Bad Boy artists who had a good run but quietly disappeared (Day 26, Danity Kane, Donnie Klang, Total, 112, Craig Mack, The Lox, Mase, etc.), Janelle Monae is one of the few artists who has been able to do her own thing without Diddy poking his way into all of the music videos and songs. She might single-handedly be the artist to resurrect the reputation of established artists on the label.
She's also gotten a salute from the Grammy's with a nomination in Best Contemporary R&B Album after Bad Boy repackaged her original EP. The Electric Lady literally proved how much fun she's having making music after being featured on the acoustic version of Fun's "We Are Young."
COVERGIRL eyed the Kansas City native and made her one of their new faces for the makeup brand in 2012. Janelle Monae proved — with a full-body tuxedo and popping red lipstick — that it is possible to be a successful female artist without compromising a woman's morals. She just chose a funkier way to teach the music industry that lesson.