Decades from now, we’ll likely look back at Erykah Badu‘s career and struggle for ways to possibly sum it all up–to somehow distill her singular talent, vision and daring into words. One moment that will certainly stand out, though, will be her “Window Seat” music video, a low-fi masterpiece in which the soul empress gradually strips herself nude as she walks the streets of Dallas, Texas. It’s a message of confidence and historical affirmation: the video closes with Badu lying down in the street almost exactly where President John F. Kennedy was shot, sending a message that her body and spirit as just as valuable as the politician who was gunned down there in 1963. She was ultimately charged with disorderly conduct by local police, to which Badu plead “not guilty.”
Thursday morning, Erykah Badu shared two minutes of video footage of her preparing for the “Window Seat” shoot on her personal Facebook page. In it we see a determined young mother in beaded braids, staring directly at the camera with a look of fiery purpose. As she nurses her child, an award ceremony statuette appears in the foreground. This is Badu–widely known and acclaimed, and yet at all times herself; a woman who takes empowerment from herself and upon her own terms.
The video was shot and edited by Coodie of Creative Control and was released with the following message from Badu:
The morning before I shot‘Window Seat’…I was Determined. Petrified.Calm.
Watch it below, and then watch it again on Facebook.