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Mama's Gun

4.5 out of 5 stars 322 customer reviews

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Mama's Gun
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Audio CD, November 21, 2000
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Frequently Bought Together

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Amazon.com

A true tour de force, Mama's Gun is that rare sophomore album that shows a maturing artist at her best. Erykah Badu's voice was always her main attraction--its unique sound has been compared to Billie Holiday and Chaka Khan. Here, it's her skill with that voice that shines. Badu shapes her instrument to suit her material (all of it written or cowritten by her). A full range is represented: On faster, danceable tracks like "Penitentiary Philosophy" and "Booty," she sounds gritty and funky. On softer, more introspective tracks, like "A.D. 2000" and the single "Bag Lady," she shows amazing restraint, letting her voice travel lightly over the notes, allowing the songs' emotions to guide her performance. The high point of the disc is Badu's duet with Stephen Marley, "In Love with You," easily the sweetest, truest love song of the year. That alone is reason enough to buy the disc--and you won't regret having done so. --Courtney Kemp
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (November 21, 2000)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Motown Records
  • ASIN: B00004YKUI
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (322 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #11,262 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Amazon's Erykah Badu Store

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By A Customer on November 22, 2000
Format: Audio CD
Eryka (and Kedar) have done it again! Guest appearances include Ahmir Thompson, Ron Hargrove ans Roy Ayers. Steven Marley is melodic on "In Love With You" where he and Erykah go back and forth describing love at its best (lion to lioness). "Orange Moon" is by far one of the best tracks, very mellow and laid back as it appears to describe her sun (son). "Cleva" is a tight bass-heavy jam. "Bag Lady" is a different version than what has been cranked out on the airwaves - a little slower but serves the same message. "Didn't Cha Know" is so very fly-only takes one listen to love this groove. Eryka mixes melody, R&B, jazz, funk & straight blues all together which brings this follow-up album to the forefront of soulful music. Serious airplay needs to be devoted to "Green-Eyes" where Badu describes the little green monster in all of us and how she copes with it. The music is great. "Booty" describes another womans' man that desires her but the feeling is not mutual. There is a great flute player on serval pieces of this project and they deserve some serious credit. This is a must have in any collection and previous fans will appreciate all that it offers.
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Format: Audio CD
While an argument could be made for D'Angelo's "Voodoo" and Jill Scott's "Who is Jill Scott?", Erykah Badu has produced the best album of 2000. I am astonished by the criticism of this project in this forum. Every aspect of this album - production, composition, vocal and instrumental performance, even recording is, dare I say, perfect. Badu and her fellow Soulquarians have transcended the neosoul genre and have produced a classic. I was very curious about how she would follow-up the remarkable "Baduizm" and she exceeded my lofty expectations. Badu plays an extremely important role in the advancement of modern soul music - all hail the queen of neosoul! Frankly, I think the album version of "Bag Lady" is better than the single version - the deeper subtlety is devastaing. And the track listing discrepancy is a non-issue. The correct order is listed on the disk, where it should be. So don't be distracted by whether the tracks are listed correctly or not - this album is a bonafide work of art. The last track on the album - the spectacular multi-movement "Green Eyes" that showcases the remarkable James Poyser on acoustic piano and Roy Hargrove - the Soulquarian trumpet - complimenting Badu's enchanting vocals, is my song of the year. And Seven is an adorable little boy. Enough said. Buy this album and support modern soul.
Comment 12 of 12 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Audio CD
Everyone I know warned me about 'Mama's Gun' - they told me to skip it. I listened to their warnings, but when I heard "Penitentiary Philosophy" I was sold. It's a rock track, with a 70s-ish Sly & the Family Stone/Zeppelin appeal, and it impressed me because it was different. That's what I wanted to hear...something different, so I bought it.
I'm glad I own it, especially because of the second half of 'Mama's Gun'. The best songs start with "Kiss Me On My Neck", a funky, self-confident jam in which Ms. Badu lays out her requirements for love. Then on "A.D. 2000" we get a real quaint, smoothed out, Stevie Wonder styled melody with an ever-so-subtle voice. Next we have "Orange Moon" (my favorite) and we get a perfect mix of jazz, soul, and R&B. "Orange Moon" sounds so sweet, soothing, and romantic - trust me. I'm listening to it right now...(how good it is, how, good it is...)
We then have singer Stephen Marley joining Ms. Badu for a soaring "I'm In Love With You" which is brilliant. The album version of "Bag Lady" is more musical, and her voice at the end of this song (if you really just let it sink in) is soul stirring...and then we get two more tracks, one of which is in three parts, called "Green Eyes" - and it ends the album perfectly.
So, you won't find "Rimshot" on here, or "Next Lifetime" (my favorite track off Baduizm - cuz it's so true...) but I still really enjoy this one. R&B music is really experiencing a great moment right now. If you like this I also recommend Musiq and of course, Ms. Jill Scott. If you can get into some more conventional R&B don't miss Dave Hollister either. Peace!
Yours,
Andrew Knyte
Comment 15 of 16 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Audio CD
This is a very mature production. Badu has written and performed some wonderful material. I especially found "Didn't Cha Know," "My Life," "& On," "A.D. 2000," "Bag Lady," and "Time's A Wastin'" moving. These songs are particularly sensitive and tesitfy to life's struggles. They tell us to continue fighting and to let go of our defeats (without looking backwards or feeling sorry for ourselves - like the Bag Lady).
Many people have criticized the album as being "unlike" Baduizm and as not being "instantly memorable." These critiques are FLAWED. Real artists experiment with different styles; we confine them in boxes when we insist that all their albums sound the same. Furthermore, the fact that this album is not instantly memorable only means that it is an intelligent production. Erykah chose not to include simplistic "radio tunes" (like most "artists" today) and instead delivered textured selections that require the listener to think, digest, and interpret. Confused? Good! Those who insist on simplicity should listen to "& On" where Erykah herself mockingly challenges her critics ("What good do your words do if they can't understand them. Don't go talkin' that s***, Badu, Badu..."). You should also study the history of jazz. While so many people claim to like "Neo Soul" because it is "jazz-influenced," they obviuosly do not appreciate the improvisation, syncopation, and fluidity of jazz. True jazz is not "instantly memorable."
Erykah, I understand your words and your message, and I like what I hear. Just don't point that gun at me; it seems fully loaded.
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