Musiq Soulchild

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About Musiq Soulchild

Pronounced “music,” the first part of Taalib Johnson’s distinctive moniker grew out of Music Boy, a nickname Johnson gained as a teen who was keen to show off his gifts whether he was performing at open mic nights or beatboxing for local MCs in Philadelphia, where he was born in 1977. He added Soulchild to honor the many ‘60s and ‘70s heroes that have always inspired him: giants like Stevie Wonder, Donny Hathaway, and Marvin Gaye. He’s kept that torch burning strongly ever since he scored immediate success with 2000’s Aijuswanaseing(I Just Want To Sing), a deftly handled debut that established him as a leading light of neo-soul. On his further albums with Def Jam and Atlantic, Johnson maintained that close connection to soul’s golden age while skillfully incorporating elements of hip-hop, funk, and reggae. Collaborations with The Roots on 2002’s “Break You Off” and Swizz Beatz on 2011’s “Anything” prove he’s just as polished when it comes to bangers and club jams. A stunning double album released in 2017, Feel the Real shows the full range of his ability and imagination, leaving no doubt that this proud child of soul has become a master himself.

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