We often use the term “boho chic”, but at the root of that is the idea of a bohemian lifestyle, representing a free spirit. Amel Larrieux is a woman who embodies that idea and she is not only one of our favorite songstresses, but also a beauty inspiration.

Amel’s bohemian and inherently artistic nature is of no surprise considering she grew up in New York City’s Greenwich Village. Her mother is an author and a dance critic, thus she was always surrounded by creativity. She attended the Philadelphia High School for the Creative and Performing Arts, with some of her famous classmates including the members of Boys II Men and The Roots drummer, Questlove. Her love and study of music ultimately led her to form the duo, Groove Theory, along with Bryce Wilson.

Groove Theory became a favorite in the R&B world with hits including “Tell Me”, “Baby Luv” and “Keep Tryin” and their songs were featured in hit movies including Love Jones and Sunset Park. After almost ten years together, Amel decided to embark on her own journey and released her melodic album, Infinite Possibilities which she co-wrote and co-produced along with her husband. She was released from her record label after her solo debut because of creative differences and thus decided to create her own record label to distribute her music called BlissLife Records. Amel then went on to record a tribute album to Duke Ellington to raise money for AIDS awareness and other charities. Her albums Bravebird, Morning and Lovely Standards have been released since, garnering a Grammy nomination, feature in Why Did I Get Married? and a top five nod on the Top Jazz Albums chart.

Amel has always been a champion of black independent artists, pushing to have them recognized in the mainstream market, but always remaining true to her roots and her message. She reminds us all that beauty starts from within and that when you are true to yourself, people cannot help but to gravitate toward your authenticity. She is sexy without ever trying to sell it, much more talented than the music industry has ever recognized and a natural beauty inside and out.

What do you think of Amel Larrieux’s look and career? How do her free spirit and music inspire you?

-Faith Cummings

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