Harlem-bred vocalist Kelis left her parents’ home at 16, but continued her education at the famed Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts. 2 years later with the support of producers The Neptunes, she landed herself a recording deal. In mid-1999, Kelis was singing alongside rap trouble- maker Ol’ Dirty Bastard on his cut “Got Your Money,” and her signature Technicolor-spiraled afro & color- ful style sparked critics’ interests. Kelis captured feminist desires on her debut album Kaleidoscope, released in December 1999. Two years later she released Wanderland. 2003’s Tasty followed and yielded the Top Ten Neptunes produced hit “Milkshake.” In 2006, her fourth album, Kelis Was Here, was released and led by the duly assertive “Bossy.” Flesh Tone, her fifth album, was described as a pop album that adopts electropop, synthpop, house and dancehall elements to form a “euphoric dance album” which tributes the birth of Kelis’ son. The record served as her debut with Interscope Records under the will.i.am music brand. “Acapella” was released as the album’s lead single and topped the U.S. Dance/Club Songs and UK Dance charts as well as peaking at top-ten on mainstream single charts in Europe. “4th of July (Fireworks)” served as the second single reaching top five on the U.S. Dance/Club Chart and number six in the UK Dance Chart. The album was on NME’s list of the “Top 75 Albums of 2010”. In 2011 Her collaboration with Calvin Harris “Bounce” became the tenth top 10 single, on the UK singles chart for Kelis peaking at Number 2. Kelis has worked with some of the biggest names in the industry – having recorded with willl.i.am, Bjork, Outkast, Raphael Saadiq, Moby, Enrique Iglesias, David Guetta, Burnz, Diplo/Switch & Breach to name a few.
2014 saw the release of Kelis’ sixth album titled simply FOOD. Produced by Dave Sitek (of TV on the Radio), the record mints a sound that’s rootsy without ever being self-consciously retro, that pitches live horns and gospel-y organ against electronics, that for all its classic soul, funk, and Afro-beat influences, couldn’t have been made any time but now.
The album garnered Kelis some of the best reviews and chart positions of almost two decade career. To promote it, she hit the road with a 12 person live band and a horn section bringing to life the organic sound of FOOD and reinventing her own past hits with a new, soulful feel.
Following FOOD, Kelis has pursued her career in the culinary world. A Le Cordon Bleu trained chef, she has two television specials aired on Cooking Channel and a cookbook on the way. An entrepreneur, Kelis has created a line of her distinctive signature sauces called Feast.
My Life on a Plate tells Kelis’ personal story through the food she creates. Her style has been moulded by her culture, her travels, and all the people she met along the way. This book is a collection of her favourite recipes. It features a mix of foods from her Puerto Rican heritage, such as Pernil (Puerto Rican Pork Shoulder), Arroz con Gandules, and the Shrimp Alcapurrias which she passed her chef dissertation with, along with dishes she created after discovering them on her travels around the world such as Malay Curry Chicken and Swedish Meatballs.
Published by Kyle Books, 3rd September 2015
Available at Barnes & Nobles and Amazon.
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