Angie Stone has no problem calling herself a “has-been,” even though that term might as well be a relic itself. In music at least, it’s much easier for veteran singers to reclaim their former fame (Madonna, Janet Jackson and Missy Elliott recently), as long as the music is good. Still, when it was time to consider giving up recording altogether, Stone, now 53 years old, says, “I didn’t know whether I should do another album. I had in my own mind said, No, I’m done. I’m going back with my grown self and live with my mom.” Some divine intervention came along that led to her seventh album, Dream.
Even with songs about heartbreak, Angie Stone’s chill love music somehow effortlessly soothes you. Dream has songs like “Magnet,” a slow drip of a ballad about attraction to bad dudes. Angie describes it as soul for the grown-and-sexy, with a dusty retro vibe. It’s surprising to hear her reference Amy Winehouse as an influence, though, since Winehouse so blatantly drew most of her smoky tortured style from black music, including Stone’s.
“I love me some Amy Winehouse. I originally started out wanting to pay homage to what she was already doing,” says Angie. “She had the ear for the ’50s and the ’60s soul music. I kind of wanted to say, ‘Hey, she was on to something.’” When Angie initially stepped into our video room, dressed in black with a decorative necklace, I told her “No More Rain” and “Snowflakes” are low-key timeless gems that I still have in rotation. In the video above, watch her talk about Dream, Winehouse and the feeling of being unloved.
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