Jazmine Sullivan released her debut extended play “Heaux Tales” on January 8, 2021, and I must say that it was totally worth the wait. With six long years between the release of her “Reality Show” album, “Heaux Tales” is a really nice gift for Sullivan fans.
Though the wait was long, the technique is genius. After the release of “Reality Show,” the ‘Lost One’ singer took an apparent hiatus, stepping out of the music scene for a while. We see that, just as with the Queen of H-Town Bey, she doesn’t release music too often anymore – and when she does, it is of full study, substance, and has a major impact on music culture. This is also true with Sullivan’s “Heaux Tales.” It seems she’s gotten into a different place, more aware and balanced. Creating from a space like that, this EP surely could be something she’s hella proud to have shared-out.
Having experienced lesson-filled relationships myself, taking-in “Heaux Tales” is a lot of fun – and for me, sort of therapeutic – and in it there’s plenty of truth about intimate relationships these days. The sassy single ‘Pick Up Your Feelings’ pretty much became my shower jam after hearing it for the first time. It was a beautiful, freewheeling and precise representation of how I felt when I was getting over my ex. The song alone spans a spectrum of love and hate, which is incredibly brave and honest.
Riddled with interludes from Antoinette Henry, Ari Lennox, Donna White, Cheryl White, Anitra Sasser, Precious Daughtry, Rashid Northington and Amanda Henderson bring this EP to renegade levels. I mean, these women are speaking truths that need to heard; especially as society stands up to division with a united soul. They’re aware of themselves, their power and their purpose – beings, who are not to be toyed with, not at this point in their lives. Without a strong, empowered woman, natural order is topsy-turvy.
No lie though, self-love ain’t selfish! And more & more women are stepping into their power – that’s totally clear in the latest releases from fellow songbirds Ariana Grande and Miley Cyrus. Now, what makes Jazmine Sullivan’s “Heaux Tales” so impressive, so familiar, is my connection it’s theme of self-awareness and internal growth.
Jazmine Sullivan’s throat chakra is no joke when it comes to rolling out music that shows exactly how she feels. It’s quite clear that she feels free to express herself with truth, love and gratitude. She’s grateful to be out of a bad relationship in ‘Pick Up Your Feelings,’ she’s aware of her pattern with men in the bold intro ‘Bodies,’ and she’s definitely aware of her worth in ‘Lost One.’
And without a doubt, there’s a more sexy side shown in ‘Put it Down,’ a Key Wane production. Sullivan’s new look helps animate this track. The lyrics tell me Sullivan likes what she likes. Sex cells super active in this song.
A wonderful concept of divine feminine resilience and strength, “Heaux Tales” is pulsing and carefree. The big truth in this concept album should be interpreted by it’s listener. When I watched Jasmine Sullivan’s Tiny Desk performance recently, I heard a flower continuing it’s bloom. Sullivan was riding the energies of her experiences, a luminous self-love. Every ear hears something different, so what do you hear here?
Stream “Heaux Tales” on YouTube today