As the queen of neo soul, Erykah Badu has been making sultry, emotionally powerful, and politically aware music that breaks down genre boundaries ever since her 1997 debut. At her 2013 live concerts, Badu treated ticket buyers to her highly personal live show, earning praise from audiences across the North America and Europe for her ability to make even the largest arenas feel intimate. Whether touring with a massive R&B backing band or taking the stage solo with nothing more than a drum machine as accompaniment, Badu's live sets span her entire career, including everything from early hits like "Bag Lady" to recent favorites like "Window Seat" and "Q.U.E.E.N.," her 2013 collaboration with Janelle Monáe.
With her dramatic head-wraps and traditional African clothing, Badu became a breakout star and neo soul icon upon the 1997 release of her chart-topping debut album Baduizm, which included the hits "On & On" and "Tyrone." Shortly after, she started exploring the world of hip-hop, appearing with The Roots on their 1999 breakout single "You Got Me" and spiting rhymes with the best of them on 2002's "Love of My Life," a duet with then-boyfriend Common. In the mid-2000s, she pushed into both motherhood and political music with albums New Amerykah Part One and New Amerykah Part Two, which included provocative hits like "Window Seat" and "Gone Baby, Don't Be Long." At her 2013 live shows, Badu treated fans to career-spanning sets of her signature blend of soul and hip hop, building anticipation for her 2014 tour dates.