From C+C — The one-and-only Erykah Badu showcases her famous, brilliant, fearless sense of style inside GQ Magazine‘s November 2011 issue.

In her interview, she opens up about her upcoming album, her role as a mother to three and the surprising way Steve Harvey helped shape her career.

Check out an excerpt below:

On her upcoming album:
“I’m recording an album right now, with [experimental music producer] Flying Lotus. I’m touring. But things are slowing down now ’cause my children are in school again. [Badu has three children: a son with Andre 3000; a daughter with rapper the D.O.C.; and a daughter with rapper Jay Electronica.] This is the time of year when we all nest in our little home in Dallas and cook breakfast and all those things we been doin’ on tour, just in one place. I’m kind of a recluse when it comes to going outside.”

On how Steve Harvey helped her career:
“When I was 23 or 24, I was rapping and emceeing a lot with Free, but I was also working at Steve Harvey’s comedy house. He was my boss—the best boss ever. Funny, generous, considerate, and he knew I was an artist. When I started working there I was a waitress, and somehow I became a hostess. When he knew he could trust me, he moved me to the ticket booth. I handled money and helped organize transportation and hotel reservations for the comedians that came in. I noticed Steve didn’t have a stage manager, so I got that job, making sure everybody was taken care of. I love being of service to people—the whole act of it is really great to me. One day Steve was late going onstage, so I went out to the mic and threw out some jokes and stuff. People were laughing and heckling and having fun and Steve came onstage and scolded me in front of everybody. It was so funny. We started doing it every night. [Laughs] It felt like, This is where I want to be. Steve was really inspirational in that.”

What do you think of Erykah Badu for GQ?

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  • S.

    GORGEOUS pic!

  • okthen

    oh.

  • Angie

    Love Erykah!

  • KrissyG

    Is it just me, or does the world seem to be devolving into some sort of a slave fetish era? It’s subtle in this image, but it’s there. Keep watch my people!

    • African Mami

      I see a woman with a beautiful fro, nice looking legs. I don’t see a massa, or chains…..what makes you think that way?! Your observation is veryyyyy interesting!

    • KrissyG

      Have no illusion – the context is paramount. And clearly my observation isn’t based on one isolated incident. If these images were in a black magazine, I’d agree with you. But this type of depiction in yet another white magazine (after other notorious shoots this year with Kobe in LA Times mag, Rihanna in GQ, and the blackface depiction in French Vogue) ain’t no coincidence and should sound the alarm. Let’s not even get into Italian vogue stating that slavery is a hot trend and reports of Kerry Washington’s role in the upcoming slave comedy. As Dead Prez say: I don’t playa hate, I stay awake.

    • isolde

      “But this type of depiction in yet another white magazine (after other notorious shoots this year with Kobe in LA Times mag, Rihanna in GQ, and the blackface depiction in French Vogue) ain’t no coincidence and should sound the alarm.”

      @Krissy

      Tell us more, and please be specific? What controversial Rihanna and Kobe shoots are you referring to? Rihanna hasn’t covered US GQ since Jan 2010, and I don’t recall it having slavery undertones, and the Lara Stone French Vogue blackface flap was in 2009, no?

      To me, this is a quintessential Erykah outfit, post Window Seat video, now that she’s seemingly more comfortable showing skin.

    • isolde

      *correction, Rihanna hasn’t covered US GQ since Jan 2009, not 2010

  • GQ is like my quilty pleasure. She looks GOOD. She always does in her own way. I love how GQ features classy women like Janelle Monae and Erykah and find them attrcative when other male magazine never seem to feature anyone without Double D’s megawatt smiles and 2 inch waistlines.