Ironically there are no textbooks or classroom instructions that could help one balance the equations of Kedar Massenburg’s newest protégé, ALGEBRA. The Atlanta native insists that one can only discover her sonically. As an R&B solo artist with such a simple solution, when mainstream success seems to be more about the right hair, nails and make -up, ALGEBRA’S debut album PURPOSE is the perfect curriculum for breathing life back in to a genre overwrought by factory made clones.
No stranger to performing, ALGEBRA has been lending her melodic voice to projects by Monica and Bilal for years. However, singing for other artists was about as out of character for her as having someone write songs for her. “Even when someone else wrote a song specifically for me, I felt like I was still being a background singer for myself”.
As the music scene in Atlanta became the hot bed of popular music, ALGEBRA taught herself to play guitar and performed regularly at open mics. This pivotal point in her career afforded her the time to develop her writing and performance skills even further without the harness of a prescribed format. “Soon you learn not to care what others think, you learn to perform for you. I would come back week after week and I learned to perform for balance and for freedom. I was becoming alive”.
This organic approach permeates her music. ALGEBRA can easily be pop, rock, rap funk or crunk, yet she can breathe ballads effortlessly. Collaborating with award-winning songwriter and producer Brian Michael Cox on “What Happened” quickly proved to be a true showcase of her brilliance. This soulful ballad is delivered so honestly and with such vulnerability that it sounds like it could be her autobiography. A song filled with PURPOSE.
ALGEBRA’S definitive voice and identity is one of full disclosure. “I don’t want to be boxed,” she asserts. The litmus test of what she would create lies in being relatable and in offering complete truth in every word she sings. On the song “At This Time” she pours her heart out, placing herself on display to someone whom she has waited a long time to unite with citing descriptive and colorful lyrics, “My arms brag to each other bout how you feel/From conversations I know what they feel is real”. The current single “Run & Hide” produced by the creator of the polka-dot error in hip hop himself, Kwame’ is a testament to all fellas that Miss ALGEBRA will not settle for just any ‘ol guy with lame game. Better come correct or don’t come at all.
As the first artist to be released on the revamped Kedar Entertainment Group, ALGEBRA enters the contemporary soul music landscape following legacies created by artists like D’Angelo, Erykah Badu and India.Arie all of whom developed under the watchful eye of Massenburg. However her sound is unique. ALGEBRA at first is unassuming, but it takes mere moments for you to recognize that she is not just a tempest in a teapot but more like the catalyst of a paradigm shift.
When asked the question, what does PURPOSE mean to her and this project that she has waited so long to share with the world; ALGEBRA replies “The defining moment of purpose is when you realize all that you have is worth less than nothing and still, life is worth living.” With there being only two universal languages in this world – Math and Music; fate would have it, southern songbird ALGEBRA represents both!