It’s everyone’s favorite soulful goddess, Sade Adu’s, birthday today! Our smooth hip rolling, guitar strumming Sade has vibrated through our houses on Saturday mornings, been a place of reference for love and life and has stained our hearts forever. I still remember constantly replaying my mom’s Sade Lovers Live DVD, studying every movement and every note of Sade. Known for her slick ponytails and hoops, her absolute timeless beauty and mystifying persona, she has influenced all genres of music and has even inspired fashion artists, such as Jean Paul Gaultier. It’s unarguably agreed that Sade and her discography has become a certified essential of life.
Born Helen Folasade Adu in Nigeria, the British raised singer started out dreaming of a career in fashion. While attending Saint Martin’s School of Art in London, she realized that she wasn’t as passionate for fashion as she once thought. Although fashion still carried with her throughout her career, she then joined a band called Pride, composed of Paul Denman, Andrew Hale and Stuart Matthewman, who has also influenced and worked with artists like Maxwell. Sade was the lead singer of Pride, which is how her career as a singer-song writer took off. Their first hit was “Your Love is King” in 1984 and soon after they were signed to Epic records after a live performance of “Smooth Operator”.
“You can talk about stuff and sing about stuff but if you don’t live it in the end then it’s all fake.” Sade, The Fader, 2001
Sade has grown, and so have we, through her many albums, from Diamond Life to Stronger Than Pride to the most recent Solider of Love. Shying away from fame, she goes into decade long hiatuses, attempting to reserve what little privacy she and her family may have left. Although mysterious, Sade was able to manage giving us just enough to make us feel but not too much to reveal herself through her music. The only most recent news of any trace of Sade is that she is living somewhere in the country of the U.K. and her daughter, Ila’s, proud announcement of transition in October of 2016.
Today, we appreciate and honor Sade’s elegance, sophistication, style, and influence on music and culture. We appreciate her vow to always stay true to her and not bending according to trends, even if this meant her singing through peep holes to protect her personal life.
Check out some favorite looks, aesthetics and sounds sade has pulled off throughout the years below!
**BONUS: Shoutouts to Yara Shahidi for nailing this tribute the other day!**
Love is Stonger than Pride (LIVE, 1994) (1988)
No Ordinary Love (1992)
Kiss of Life (1992)
Cherish The Day (1992)
Sweetest Taboo (1994)
By Your Side (2000)
Soilder of Love, 2010
The Moon and The Sky (LIVE, 2011), 2010