Badu starts 'Nu' on double-disc album


NEW YORK -- Erykah Badu revealed the new title of her fourth album, "Nu AmErykah," to a small room of fans in New York's Electric Lady studios last Thursday. The set is due Feb. 26 via Universal Motown.

In reference to the prior provisional title, "Kabbah," Badu says that that name was never final and that she prefers to wait and title her albums once they're finished.

"I named this album 'Nu AmErykah' because I'm dealing with whatever is to come instead of what was," said Badu, decked out in jeans, a red kimono and her trademark afro. "In taking on a project like this, I'm taking the responsibility to talk for my race and my planet. I'm sure the record company will make their money and they've given me the blessing of time."

Badu's last EP, "Worldwide Underground," arrived in 2003 without much fanfare, but it still sold 609,000 copies in the United States, according to Nielsen SoundScan. "I didn't feel like doing the whole promotional circuit for that record," she admitted. "I'd just had a baby."

Making up for lost time, "Nu AmErykah" includes 18 songs that will be spread over two separately sold discs. The first single, "Honey," was produced by 9th Wonder and the '70s soul-tinged "Soldier 7" may be the follow-up track.

"We've waited almost 10 years for this album to come," said Universal executive vice president and Motown president Sylvia Rhone. "She inspires, sets trends and does music that no one's done before. Male, female, black [and] white can listen to her and come away with something."

Here is the track list for "Nu AmErykah":

"American Promise"
"The Healer"
"My People"
"Soldier 7"
"The Cell"
"Love Me"
"Don't Be Long"
"Hot Slow Jam"
"Jump Up in the Air"
"Loretta Brown"
"Dirty Dirty"
"The Healer Outro"