DID SOMEONE CALL FOR A LEGEND? WELL HERE’S ONE THAT IS A NATIONAL TREASURE.
Yvette Marie Stevens, who is known professionally as Chaka Khan, is the QUEEN OF FUNK MUSIC. Born & raised in Chicago, Illinois, Chaka was apart of the Black Panther Movment..& a huge lover of R&B music.
Eventually, she was the front woman for the amazing group Rufus. Chaka deserves her flowers because she’s a living legend with a career spanning five decades. Althougg she is very respected in the Black community, I feel as if her discography is under appreciated as a whole. Well this is why I’m here, right? 🤗
While this is a post appreciating her solo discography, it is very difficult to not show appreciation for her work with Rufus..which made her a household name. I’m going to take a quick glance at her career with Rufus:
While the quality of this video is not the best, this is one of my favorite performances! Tell Me Something Good is a bop!
Ain’t Nobody is a gem that should be appreciated in these streets!
A feel-good record! Do You Love What You Feel is everything to me. Auntie had time!
Can’t forget about Hollywood! This will be the song I play when I’m fresh off of a plane to L.A. for the first time.
I can go on and on with the memorable songs Chaka has recorded with Rufus, but let’s get back to her solo career!
Chaka – 1978
Highlights: I’m Every Woman, Roll Me Through the Rushes, Love Has Fallen On Me, We Got The Love, A Woman’s in a Man’s World, I Was Made To Love Him
Any debut album released is supposed to be memorable. Chaka came through and shook up the industry with hers. If “Chaka” didn’t do anything, it showed the world that she would stand on her own two feet without the group she came into the industry with. The feminist anthem I’m Every Woman starts the album, & is still a timeless record to this day.
I’m Every Woman was later covered by the legendary Whitney Houston, who was a background singer on Chaka’s earlier albums with her mother Cissy.
The rest of the album is what we expect from Chaka: incredible production, & that sweet voice that won us over when she was with Rufus.
Naughty – 1980
Highlights: Clouds,Get Ready, Get Set, So Naughty, All Night’s All Right, Papillon (a.k.a. Hot Butterfly), Our Love’s In Danger.
If you know me, you know that Naughty is my favorite Chaka album. Everything about Naughty is perfection: the cute album cover with her & her daughter, the perfect ass songs. MAN! You can tell that this album is everything to me 😂😍 Clouds, Get Ready, Get Set, Too Much Love, So Naughty, Move Me No Mountain is that essential Chaka that we love.
BUT CAN WE DISCUSS THE GREATNESS THAT IS PAPILLON (AKA HOT BUTTERFLY?) Papillon is probably the most memorable song from Naughty, but it is just so beautiful. I can listen to this song, & all of my life problems go away. If you listen to the song closely, it’s about a love that has faded, but what I get from it is reminiscing on a lost love that you miss. Well anyways, I feel as if Naughty is her album that needs more appreciation. It’s too much of a gen to be missed out on.
What Cha’ Gonna Do For Me – 1981
Highlights: I Know You, I Live You, And the Melody Still Lingers On (Night In Tunisia,) Heed the Warning, We Can Work It Out, What Cha’ Gonna Do For Me.
A treasure amongst Chaka’s discography, What Cha’ Gonna Do For Me is an ALBUM! One thing I love about Chaka is versatility within genres. With her, it’s authentic..& you’ll always receive gems with her.
Chaka Khan- 1982
Highlights: Slow Dancin’, Got To Be There, Be Bop Medley, So Not To Worry
This album is underrated if you ask me. So many gems rest here, including a collaboration with the legendary Rick James.
Echoes of an Era – 1982
Highlights: I Loves You Porgy, I Mean You, Take the ‘A’ Train, All Of Me.
This was a collaborative project, but Chaka was singing lead on jazz classics. In my opinion, this album showcased how she can seriously release a jazz album and prosper!
I Feel For You – 1984
Highlights: This Is My Night, My Love Is Alive, I Feel For You, Through The Fire
Her biggest album to date, I Feel For You is proof that Chaka doesn’t “get with the times. The times get with Chaka.” Chaka knows how to adapt in any music era and genre (this is showcased through most of her work,) but MAN.
I am a huge 80s fan, and when I tell you…this album is IT! From the lively “This is my Night,” to the timeless classic “Through the Fire,” Chaka was simply untouchable with this one. The title track I Feel For You is a cover of the late & GREAT Prince’s song from his second album. Although Prince will never be comparable, Chaka’s version of this song brought it to new heights, with it’s crossover appeal..& Stevie Wonder on the harmonica! Legendary.
Destiny – 1986
Highlights: Love of a Lifetime, My Destiny, Coltrane Dreams, Earth To Mickey, I Can’t Be Loved
Destiny is I Feel For You’s little sister, continuing the trend of crossover pop and that 80s touch!
ck – 1988
Highlights: It’s My Party, Eternity, I’ll Be Around, Sticky Wicked
ck is a pretty nice record, with it’s incredible cover of signed, sealed, delivered.
The Woman I Am – 1992
Highlights: Love You All My Lifetime, Telephone, Keep Givin’ Me Lovin, Everything Changes, Be My Eyes, This Time.
The Woman I Am is essentially what the 90s brought to the world of R&B: edgy beats, heavenly vocals & great visuals. A lot of gems rest here, and shows how Chaka is just simply remarkable.
Come 2 My House – 1998
Highlights: Come 2 My House, Don’t Talk To Strangers.
Come 2 My House is one of Chaka’s underrated albums, but it is GOOD THOUGH! Released on Prince’s label and is produced by him as well, Come 2 My House has way too many gems for y’all to miss out on. Listen to the album on YouTube!
ClassiKhan – 2004
Highlights: Round Midnight, Stormy Weather, Teach Me Tonight, To Sir With Love, I’m In The Mood for Love
Full of classic covers, ClassiKhan is a good LP if you want to sip on some wine and listen to Chaka get down!
Funk This – 2007
Highlights: You Belong To Me, Angel, Disrespectful, One for All Time, Back In The Day, Castles Made Of Sand, Super Life.
Her most recent album to date, Funk This has her working with the incredible duo Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis. They bring something out of Chaka that makes this album a gem! From the Mary J. Blige assisted Disrespectful to the funky cover of You Belong To Me with The former Doobie Brothers member Michael McDonald, Funk This showcases why Chaka is killed the queen of funk.
Chaka Khan will go down in history for having an amazing discography, but her voice is so special and unforgettable. There have been numerous tributes for auntie, and they are well beyond deserving!
Chaka’s flowers have been long overdue because..well you do the math: timeless records + timeless voice = a freaking legend. Stepping into many genres of music such as funk, R&B, pop and jazz, Chaka continues to electrify audiences around the world with her amazing talent. Hopefully the new generation will appreciate the four decades of music we have from our lovely Queen. Ain’t nobody..better than Chaka Khan. CHAKA KHAN!