India.Arie’s sultry, soulful vocals soothe the crowd on Saturday night. (Photo: Special to The New Tri-State Defender)

It’s been nearly two years since India.Arie’s “Songversation” project, so when she finally dropped her much anticipated album “Worthy” this past February, it was her mission to send positive affirmations to her fans and beyond on finding their inner worth through a musical dose of clarity.

Speaking on topics of hate, self-accountability in the black community and love in the highest form, you can expect to be self-empowered by the time you make it to the final track of the album. 

Dalisia Brye (left) and India.Arie
Dalisia Brye (left) and India.Arie (Photo: Special to The New Tri-State Defender)

From a fan standpoint, throughout the years you can feel the presence of various transitions of India.Arie’s message grow stronger, but it’s something about this amazing body of work that really makes you sit up and pay attention.

Currently India.Arie is on tour promoting her eighth studio album.  She stopped by the Bluff City Saturday (May 4) at the Beale Street Music Festival to spread love and self-powering messages that left you feeling a sense of purpose. The New Tri-State Defender had an exclusive conversation with the soulful songbird as she talked about what’s next on her agenda. 

TSD: From “Voyage to India,” to “Songversation,” and now “Worthy,” how would you describe your growth between these albums?

India.Arie: It’s been 19 years and the main thing that I try to do is stay true to me. Coming into this industry, I was young and I had to find my way. I had to let some things go, and switch up some things. My peace is important. Maintaining that helps me to stay real and authentic in the message that I’m trying to convey. It’s imperative that I reflect that message.

TSD: So your project is called “Worthy.” Why is it so important to push the narrative?

India.Arie: Because society has made us feel that we must look a certain way, be a certain way, and act a certain way to the point we forget who we are. We’re all unique and special and people forget that narrative. People need to know and hear that they are worthy. We don’t hear it enough because of the stigmas of what society has placed upon us. I’m trying to get us back to that place of inner love, which requires healing, which is what I’m trying to do through my music.

TSD: So what’s next for India Arie? What can we expect in the future?

India.Arie: Well we’re finishing out the tour in which Charleston, N.C. will be my next stop. And we’re currently pushing my latest single, “Steady Love,” which is currently out on all streaming platforms right now.

TSD: We’re so excited. I also saw where you mentioned on Instagram that we’re expecting a video as well, right?

India.Arie: Oh yes! Most definitely, it’s dropping any day now and I’m just as excited. And guess what, David Banner is playing my love interest; he’s such a sweetheart!

 

(For more information on India.Arie’s latest project, visit www.indiaarie.com.)