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YouTube Uploader: iamkelis

'Jerk Ribs' Video from Kelis' album 'Food' - released 21 April 2014 on Ninja Tune.

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Jerk Ribs on Wikipedia
Kelis - Food.png
Studio album by Kelis
ReleasedApril 18, 2014 (2014-04-18)
  • R&B
  • soul[1]
  • electronic[2]
  • Ninja Tune
ProducerDave Sitek
Kelis chronology
Singles from Food
  1. "Jerk Ribs"
    Released: February 14, 2014
  2. "Rumble"
    Released: April 11, 2014
  3. "Friday Fish Fry"
    Released: July 14, 2014

Food is the sixth studio album by American recording artist Kelis, released on April 18, 2014, becoming her first album released under Ninja Tune Records. In 2007, Jive dropped Kelis, and she later signed to Interscope and Music Group in 2009, through the label she released her fifth studio album, Flesh Tone, which saw Kelis experiment with a dance sound. In 2011 Kelis began work on the follow up to Flesh Tone, however she left Interscope and signed to Federal Prism, before officially signing to the British independent label Ninja Tune for the release of Food.[3] Food is an R&B and soul album with a diverse musical style that incorporates funk, Afro-beat, Memphis soul, R&B and neo-soul. Its songs feature crackling horns, brass, earthy guitars, simmering electronics and vocals from Kelis that were noted as being breathy, smoky and sultry.

The album was viewed as a return to Kelis' previous music prior to Flesh Tone, and was described by Kelis as, "a kind of unspoken lovefest".[4] The album was written by Kelis, alongside David Andrew Sitek, and Todd Simon, and was entirely produced by Dave Sitek and features guest performances by CSS and Priscilla Ahn.[5] Upon release the album received mostly positive reviews from critics, who commended the album's production, composition and Kelis vocals. Commercially the album fared well making appearances on numerous charts worldwide, the album also entered the UK Albums Chart at number twenty, becoming Kelis's second highest peaking album after Tasty in 2004.[6] The album was promoted with the release of three singles—"Jerk Ribs", "Rumble", and "Friday Fish Fry"—and was promoted with a mini-concert.


  • 1 Background
  • 2 Recording
  • 3 Content
  • 4 Release and promotion
  • 5 Critical reception
  • 6 Track listing
  • 7 Personnel
  • 8 Charts
  • 9 Release history
  • 10 See also
  • 11 References
  • 12 External links


In late 2007, Jive dropped Kelis, and she was signed to Interscope and Music Group in 2009.[7] She released her fifth studio album, Flesh Tone, in May 2010. The album saw Kelis departing from her previous R&B sound, and adapting a new dance sound.[8] The album was preceded by the lead single, "Acapella", the album spawned three singles that achieved moderate success in the charts; "4th of July (Fireworks)", "Scream" and "Brave". Following the release of her album she collaborated with Scottish producer Calvin Harris on the song "Bounce", the lead single from Harris' third studio album, 18 Months.[9] The song was released in June 2011 in the United Kingdom and debuted at number two on the UK Singles Chart.[10]


In a September 2011 interview, Kelis said that her sixth studio album would be finished, "in the next few weeks".[11] According to Kelis's management firm at the time, Three Six Zero Group, the album was to feature production from Skream, BURNS, Tom Neville, Dan Black, and Caspa.[12] She said of the album, "I've been on a real 1990s vibe with this record, it's kind of trip- hoppish [...] it's more electro, it's a little deeper and darker".[13] The Skream-produced single "Distance" received its UK radio premiere in June 2012.[14] Kelis was featured on Skream's 2013 single "Copy Cat", which led to a dispute between the two after Kelis alleged that the producer refused to have her appear in the music video.[15]

In April 2013, following reports that Kelis had been working with producer Dave Sitek,[15] it was announced that she had signed to Sitek's own record label Federal Prism and was going to release two albums.[16][17] In late 2013, it was announced that Kelis had signed to British independent label Ninja Tune for the release of the album, titled Food, in April 2014.[18] Food is produced entirely by Sitek and contains influences of soul, funk, gospel, and Afrobeat—Kelis said of the album, "You know, those records in your life that your parents played and they resonate with who you are? They make you nostalgic. I wanted to find out how to get that feeling."[19] She has spoken about the possibility of a follow-up release containing the 90s/trip hop-influenced material from the initial recording sessions for the album.[20]

Kelis finished recording Food in late April 2013.[21] The full details of the album were unveiled on January 28, 2014.[22] It is entirely produced by TV on the Radio's Dave Sitek and was recorded at his house in Los Angeles.[4] According to the announcement on Ninja Tune's website reads, "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 and funk influences, couldn't have been made any time but now."[22]


The album was seen as a return to Kelis' previous music before Flesh Tone, its music was described by New York Daily News as being one of her, "most consistent and organic sound of her career", noting influence from Fela's Afro-beat, Memphis soul and classic R&B.[23] The album's music was described as "shapeshifting" through a variety of sounds, styles and genres; taking influence from neo-soul, classic pop and smooth R&B.[2] The album is predominantly a funk-soul album, with "warm, crackling horns" and intimate brass according to Ben Hewitt of DigitalSpy who continued to describe the album as having "a rootsy warmth to the classic soul sounds, a mixture of classy brass, earthy guitars and simmering electronics."[2] The production is characterized as containing a "dark bass, a warm organ, some spicy splashes of horns."[23] Kelis, vocals on the album were described as breathy, smoky and sultry, which had an "authenticity" that helped turn the album's "skittering groove" and horns into an "infectious, laid-back" body of work.[2]

The album's opening track "Breakfast" is introduced by Kelis' four-year-old son Knight Jones, who speaks the monologue; "Hey guys! Are you hungry? My mom made food."[24] Kelis' son is the inspiration of this track which Billboard magazine described as "breezy."[24] "Jerk Ribs" is a "feel good" song whose melody "soarover funky horns and whistles."[25] Andrew Hampp, of Billboard magazine, described the song as being a "brassy, funk-laced jam". The song also contains a live band and a full horn section.[24] "Let Forever Be" is a pop song with horns and strings layered "on top of a burbling synth line reminiscent of Stevie Nicks' Stand Back."[24] "Floyd", is a ballad that lyrically speaks about a "single mom looking for a man."[24] "Runnin'" is a down-tempo "slow jam" that lyrically speaks "about turning down the limelight for a simpler life". Kelis' vocals are described as being "torchy" and "surrounded by a full band and cooing backup singers."[24] "Hooch" contains "Stax-session soul" poured over "swoony midtempo" production.[24]

"Cobbler" is a dancefloor song which Billboard described as being "James Brown-esque funk" workout, which lyrically speaks about a man who "has left a sweet taste in Kelis' mouth", the song ends with a key change, which Kelis uses her whistle octave.[24] "Bless The Telephone" is an acoustic guitar ballad, which was originally performed by vocalist Labi Siffre, the song also doubles as a duet with Sal Masekela, who sings the melody along with Kelis.[24] "Friday Fish Fry" contains a "sexy, B-movie chorus."[24] "Change" is a "trippy" with a "cinematic" style, described as a "modern pop balladry."[24] "Rumble", references her marriage to Nas, "Rumble" finds Kelis in "emotional turmoil with an ex."[24] "Biscuits 'N Gravy" is a "hearty" song containing "hopeful, self-affirming lyrics" and "blaring" trumpets.[24] The final track "Dreamer" is an "ethereal" song that "floatover a futuristic soul arrangement with poetic platitudes."[24]

Release and promotion

The album's artwork was designed by Leif Podhajsky.[26] On April 7, 2014, Food (Amazon Artist Lounge EP) was released to download from Amazon for free. It contains live versions of "Rumble", "Biscuits n' Gravy" and "Bless the Telephone" performed and recorded at Metropolis Studios.[27]

On March 4, 2014, Kelis performed the entire album live for music critics at Metropolis Studios in London, UK. The mini-concert received critical acclaim.[28] To further promote the album, Kelis cooked and served free gourmet meals from her food truck to the attendees at the South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas on March 13 and 14, 2014. The menu included jerk ribs with jerk barbecue sauce, duck confit sliders with ginger sesame glaze, shredded beef sliders with cherry barbecue sauce, and coleslaw.[29][30][31]

"Jerk Ribs" was released on February 14, 2014 as the first single from the album.[32] The track was made available as a free download from Kelis' official website starting April 2013.[21] The music video for the single premiered on on February 18, 2014.[33] "Rumble" was released as the album's second single on April 11, 2014.[34] A few months after the album's release, in early June, it was announced that the 3rd single from the album would be Friday Fish Fry and would be available from July 14.

Critical reception

The album received mostly positive reviews from critics. Ben Hewitt's review for Digital Spy gave the album four out of five stars, concluding that it was "the most inventive dish she has served". In his review, Hewitt said "If music be the food of love, then the music of Food is a scoffer's indulgent delight". He also praised Sitek's rich electronic productions, that combined "earthy guitars" and "classy brass".[2] The Independent's Andy Gill concluded that Kelis sounded more comfortable on Food than she did on previous album, Flesh Tone. He remarked, "Kelis now washes up at Ninja Tune with an album more in tune with her natural strengths which blend rolling funk grooves with punchy horn riffs."[40] Fiona Shepherd, in writing for The Scotsman said, "It has been said that Food is not an R&B album. Maybe not as we understand the label now. But, like Janelle Monáe, Kelis harks back to old school rhythm'n'blues without playing the retro card and serves up some fine soul food instead."[46] Clash Music's Will Salmon also said "Food is a fabulous and immediate record, rich with muted brass and low-key electronics. It's also the warmest, most relaxed and purely enjoyable thing Kelis has ever done. Wonderful."[38]

Track listing

All tracks written by Kelis Rogers, David Andrew Sitek, and Todd Simon, except where noted. Production was also handled by Sitek.


Credits adapted from AllMusic.[36]

  • Todd M. Simon – backing vocals, flugelhorn, horn arrangements, string arrangements, trumpet
  • David Andrew Sitek – bass, celeste, drum programming, drums, engineer, guitar, keyboards, mixing, percussion, piano, producer, synthesizer, synthesizer strings, backing vocals, Wurlitzer, Wurlitzer piano
  • Zeph Sowers – engineer
  • The Stereotypes – vocal producer
  • Thomas Lea – viola, violin
  • Tracy Wannomae – backing vocals, bass clarinet, flute, tenor sax

See also

  • Kelis discography


  1. ^ Jonze, Tim (2014-04-07). "Kelis - Food: Album stream | Music". Retrieved 2014-04-16. 
  2. ^ a b c d e "Kelis: Food album review - 'The most inventive dish she has served' - Music Review". Digital Spy. Retrieved 2014-04-16. 
  3. ^ "Kelis Signs to Ninja Tune". Ninja Tune. December 11, 2013. Retrieved February 28, 2014. 
  4. ^ a b "Food / Kelis / Releases". Ninja Tune. Retrieved February 28, 2014. 
  5. ^ Hutchinson, Kate (March 1, 2014). "Kelis: from dance diva to soul queen and qualified cook". The Guardian. Retrieved March 8, 2014. 
  6. ^ "Paolo Nutini spends second week on top with Caustic Love". 2014-04-27. Retrieved 2014-07-10. 
  7. ^ Concepcion, Mariel (2009-12-01). "Exclusive: Kelis Signs To Music Group/Interscope". Billboard. Nielsen Business Media, Inc. Retrieved 2010-10-05. 
  8. ^ Bee, Sarah (2010-05-14). "A sensual and exhilarating album from a unique treasure". BBC. Retrieved 2010-12-03. 
  9. ^ Cragg, Michael (May 2, 2011). "New music: Calvin Harris featuring Kelis – Bounce | Music". The Guardian. London. Retrieved June 19, 2011. 
  10. ^ "Take That Progress Back To Number One and Example Holds Firm". The Official Charts Company. June 19, 2011. Archived from the original on August 9, 2011. Retrieved June 19, 2011. 
  11. ^ "Kelis Interview - AllSaints Basement Sessions: Bestival Special". YouTube. 2011-09-22. Retrieved 2012-12-14. 
  12. ^ Sellick, Liam (2014). Kelis", Voice 21.
  13. ^ "Kelis unveils new track– listen | News". Nme.Com. 2012-07-01. Retrieved 2012-12-14. 
  14. ^ "Kelis Goes the 'Distance' with Skream-Produced Single: Listen - The Juice". Billboard. Retrieved 2012-12-14. 
  15. ^ a b "Kelis rejected by Skream for 'Copy Cat' music video - Music News". Digital Spy. 2013-01-29. Retrieved 2014-04-16. 
  16. ^ "Dave Sitek's Label Stacks 2013 Releases With TV on the Radio, Scarlett Johansson, and More | SPIN | Music News". SPIN. 2013-03-11. Retrieved 2014-04-16. 
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  18. ^ "Kelis Details Dave Sitek-Produced New Album Food, Signs to Ninja Tune | News". Pitchfork. 2013-12-11. Retrieved 2014-04-16. 
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  20. ^ "Kelis Does The 'Trick' At BBC Radio's 6 Music Festival". SoulBounce. 2014-03-03. Archived from the original on 20 March 2014. Retrieved 22 April 2014. 
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  22. ^ a b "Full 'Food' Details Unveiled, Download "Jerk Ribs"". Ninja Tune. Retrieved February 28, 2014. 
  23. ^ a b "Music reviews: 'Love Without Fear,' 'Food'". New York: NY Daily News. April 15, 2014. Retrieved 2014-04-16. 
  24. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n "Kelis, 'FOOD': Track-By-Track Review". Billboard. 2014-04-21. Retrieved 2014-04-28. 
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  26. ^ "Kelis – Food". Retrieved March 8, 2014. 
  27. ^ "Food (Amazon Artist Lounge EP): Kelis: MP3 Downloads"., Inc. 
  28. ^ Alex Macpherson. "Kelis review – 'Dazzling and distinctive classic-soul style' | Music". The Guardian. Retrieved 2014-04-16. 
  29. ^ "SXSW 2014: Kelis takes her food van to the streets of Austin, Texas – video". The Guardian. March 14, 2014. Retrieved March 14, 2014. 
  30. ^ "Kelis Serves Up Jerk Ribs at SXSW Food Truck". Rap-Up. March 14, 2014. Retrieved March 14, 2014. 
  31. ^ Tan, Emily (March 14, 2014). "Kelis Shows Off Cooking Skills With Her Own Food Truck at SXSW 2014". The Boombox. Retrieved March 14, 2014. 
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  33. ^ Lansky, Sam (February 18, 2014). "Kelis Dresses Up, Gets Down in "Jerk Ribs" Video: Premiere". Time. Retrieved March 8, 2014. 
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  37. ^ Greg Kot 11:19 a.m. CDT, April 21, 2014 (2014-04-18). "Review: Kelis Rogers album 'Food'". Retrieved 22 April 2014. CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
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  39. ^ Dowling, Marcus K. "Kelis - Food | Read Hip Hop Reviews, Rap Reviews & Hip Hop Album Reviews". HipHop DX. Retrieved 2014-04-28. 
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External links

  • Food at Discogs

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