Jhene Aiko is revisiting her debut mixtape “sailing soul(s)” on its 10th anniversary!
The release of the mixtape on streaming services is the artist’s “thank you” to loyal fans who have been with her since the very beginning.
Describing the story behind the mixtape, Aiko thanked her fans for “sailing” with her for 20 years, saying: “I met with one record exec who told me I needed to do a better job at ‘selling’ myself when I came into meetings. Dressing like myself, singing like myself, talking like myself wasn’t enough. I thought ‘Why do I have to sell myself?…from that point on I decided I would never try to ‘sell’ myself. I would simple BE myself and whoever felt a connection would SEE ME and my worth.
“I wanted the cover to express me breaking free from that narrative of having to ‘sell’ myself,” she went on. “I wanted the broken chains to symbolize that freedom of feeling unanchored…free to be me…‘sailing’ my soul instead of ‘selling’ my soul.”
The mixtape was originally self-released via 2Fish, ArtClub, and Def Jam Recordings on March 12, 2011. It featured collaborations with Drake (“July”), Kendrick Lamar(“Growing Apart Too”), and Miguel (“Hoe”). The 13-track project marked Jhene’s arrival in LA’s burgeoning music scene, giving her national recognition and leading her to a major label signing.
The 10th anniversary re-release of the mixtape arrives just a few days before the 2021 GRAMMY Awards where the artist’s third studio album Chilombo is nominated for Album of the Year and Best Progressive R&B Album and her John Legend-assisted cut “Lightning & Thunder” is nominated for Best R&B Performance.
The album was an almost instant success making chart history as the biggest Billboard R&B debut from a female artist since Beyonce’s Lemonade in 2016.
Released in March last year, the release enjoyed two billion streams worldwide and topped the Billboard R&B chart twice last year. Chilombo features five gold and platinum tracks: “Triggered (freestyle),” “None Of Your Concern” featuring Big Sean, “P’$$Y Fairy (OTW),” “Happiness Over Everything (H.O.E.)” featuring Miguel & Future, “B.S.” featuring H.E.R., as well as the most recent release from it, “Born Tired.”
Jhene will host the premiere ceremony of the 63rd Annual Awards, which take place at 12pm PT and will be livestreamed internationally this coming Sunday (14).