Janelle Monae’s third studio album, Dirty Computer, carries a bold, some may even say brazen, message. The star appears to be calling for our attention with a strong statement of an independent, assertive, and empowered young woman.
Monae is a multi-talented singer, songwriter, rapper, with an amazing voice and even a flare for the guitar. She’s always been a hard worker in the industry, which is shown clearly in her performances. She’s even a reputable actress, appearing in award winning films.
The first single I heard from this album carries a provocative title in Django Jane, derived from the line in the song where she raps “Jane Bond, never Jane Doe and I Django, never Sambo”. This isolated phrase outlines the tone of the whole song. Monae expresses herself as what could be deemed a no nonsense woman and even echoes sentiments of the current “me too” movement as she mentions ‘starting a pussy riot’, ‘putting them on a pussy diet’, and even references the term “mansplaining”.
In the five years since her last release, Janelle Monae has had plenty of time to fine tune her brand. She goes a step further with the song “Pynk” which seems to be a strong allusion (and maybe even an ode) to the female genitalia. The new single “I Like That” (not to be confused with popular artist Cardi B’s new single “I Like It”) rounds out the narrative with a message of self-esteem.
Music, and any art form, has always been an outlet for expressing revolutionary or even just unorthodox ideas. Janelle Monae seems to be taking full advantage of her artistic expression in this moment. Based on the story these singles tell, the project is sure to bring a message of women’s empowerment.