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Musiq Soulchild

Musiq Soulchild
Musiq Soulchild at WGCI radio Coca Cola Lounge in Chicago, 2009.
Background information
Birth name Taalib Johnson
Also known as The Husel
Born (1977-09-16) September 16, 1977
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
  • Singer
  • songwriter
Years active 1998–present
Notable instruments

Musiq Soulchild or Musiq (; born Taalib Johnson; September 16, 1977) is an American singer and songwriter whose style blends funk, alternative rock, blues, jazz, some gospel influences and hip hop.


  • Biography 1
  • Name origin 2
  • Career 3
  • Personal life 4
  • Discography 5
    • Studio albums 5.1
    • Singles 5.2
    • Featured singles 5.3
  • Awards and recognition 6
    • Grammy Awards 6.1
  • References 7
  • External links 8


Musiq was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, grew up in a strict Muslim household and is the oldest of nine children. At an early age, Musiq left home and dropped out of school at the age of 17. It was during that time Musiq started to build a reputation for being musically gifted, beat boxing for MC's, free styling on the open mic circuit, scatting at a jazz club, or just performing a cappella in the streets of Philadelphia, which is where he got the name "Musiq" and later added "Soulchild", which is intended to respect and represent the legacy and traditions of past soul artists. He cites as his inspiration such icons as Stevie Wonder, James Brown, Patti LaBelle, Billie Holiday, Sly & the Family Stone and Ray Charles.[1][2]

Musiq Soulchild has had 2 platinum albums, 2 gold albums and 7 hit singles. He has received awards from Billboard, BET, ASCAP, BMI, and Soul Train.[1] He has also earned award nominations from MTV, the American Music Awards, the NAACP, and 11 Grammy nominations, including 3 for his 2007 album Luvanmusiq.

Name origin

"There were people who knew of me but they didn't really know me; they just knew me as 'that music dude.' So after getting that so much, I was like 'Just call me Musiq.' It was so fresh to me because if I had to be called anything, I would have wanted to be called Music. That's how much I dug it; when you see me, I want you to automatically think of music."[1] The nickname Soulchild came from two ideas. Musiq quotes it as, "Musiq Soulchild is technically two ideas. 'Musiq' is the front man and 'Soulchild' is the idea behind it. It's basically me as an artist in this generation, representing the traditions and the legacies of the past soul stars."[1]


Musiq Soulchild released his debut album, Aijuswanaseing, in 2000. Its lead single was "Just Friends (Sunny)". Musiq's second single "Love" spent 22 weeks on the Billboard Hot 100 charts.

Musiq's second album, 2002's Juslisen, debuted at number 1 on the Billboard 200 and went platinum. The singles were "Halfcrazy" and "Dontchange".

In 2003, Musiq released his third album, Soulstar. It included the singles "Forthenight" and "Whoknows".

Musiq took a four-year break and changed his management to Solqi Management, as well as his record label from Def Soul to Atlantic Records.

In March 2007, Musiq's released his fourth album Luvanmusiq. Its singles were "B.U.D.D.Y.", "Teachme", and "Makeyouhappy".

He has also been featured in television and print ads for McDonald's, Nike, Inc., Coca-Cola, Levi Strauss & Co. and The Gap. He made a special appearance on The CW's #1 comedy The Game on Monday, October 29, 2007, as well as the UPN sitcom All of Us. On June 25, 2012, Musiq released a book on love and relationships titled "143 - Love According To Musiq".

His fifth album OnMyRadio was released on December 2, 2008. The lead single "Radio" was a complete contrast to the usual smooth neo soul Musiq fans were accustomed to. The following singles were the duet IfULeave featuring Mary J. Blige; and the ballad SoBeautiful. "SoBeautiful" marked the first collaboration between Musiq and the producer JR Hutson, after Hutson had spent "about eight months" trying to get Musiq to come by his studio.[3] According to Hutson, the two plan to work together again.[3]

In May 2010, he changed management to Victor Grieg.[3] " His latest album Musiqinthemajiq was released on May 3, 2011, available on CDs and also as a digital download. The first single was "Anything" featuring Swizz Beatz,[4] followed by "Yes".

In September 2013 he released a duet album with Syleena Johnson entitled 9ine. This album was a compilation of nine reggae songs recorded in nine days. Also in September 2013, Musiq Soulchild announced his departure from Atlantic Records and becoming an independent artist. He revealed he is now signed to record producer Warryn Campbell's label My Block Records.[5][6][7] Musiq previously worked with Campbell on his first two albums on Atlantic - 2007's Luvanmusiq and 2008's OnMyRadio.

Musiq Soulchild has featured on "Nothing at All" from Carlos Santana's album, Shaman. He has also made guest appearances on rapper Lloyd Banks's album Rotten Apple, Skillz's I Ain't Mad No More, Talib Kweli's Eardrum, The Roots's Phrenology, Black Ice's The Death of Willie Lynch. He performed "Reasons" on the tribute album Interpretations: Celebrating the Music of Earth, Wind & Fire and "Are You Experienced?" on Power of Soul: A Tribute to Jimi Hendrix. Soulchild has also appeared on the soundtrack to Tyler Perry's movie Daddy's Little Girls and performed with Ice Cube on his 2008 album, Raw Footage. He also lent a song from his latest album Luvanmusiq to the soundtrack for Perry's later movie Why Did I Get Married?. He then recorded a remake of Arrested Development's song "People Everyday" with British rapper and singer Estelle for the soundtrack to Tyler Perry's Meet the Browns entitled "People Everyday (Metamorphosis Mix)".

Personal life

He dated singer Kameelah Williams (of 702) in 2009. They welcomed the birth of their son on March 30, 2009.[8] She is the inspiration for his song "SoBeautiful".[9]

The musician is almost always seen wearing sunglasses. One of his eyes is not normally positioned, possibly deemed exotropia. He admitted in an interview that at the age of two his uncle accidentally stabbed his eye with a fork.[10]


Studio albums

Title Details Peak chart
(sales threshold)
Aijuswanaseing 24 4
  • US: Platinum[13]
Juslisen 1 1
  • US: Platinum[14]
  • Released: December 9, 2003
  • Label: Def Jam Recordings
  • Formats: CD, LP
13 3
  • US: Gold[15]
Luvanmusiq 1 1
  • US: Gold[16]
  • Released: December 9, 2008
  • Label: Atlantic Records
  • Formats: CD, music download
11 1
  • Released: May 3, 2011
  • Label: Atlantic Records
  • Formats: CD, music download
8 3
9ine (with Syleena Johnson) 54


Year Song US Hot 100[2] US R&B[2] Album
2000 "Just Friends (Sunny)" 31 6 Aijuswanaseing
"Love" 24 2
2001 "Girl Next Door" (featuring Ayana) 85 28
2002 "Halfcrazy" 16 2 Juslisen
"Dontchange" 17 3
2003 "Forthenight" 53 18 Soulstar
2004 "Whoknows" 65 23
2007 "B.U.D.D.Y." 36 2 Luvanmusiq
"Teachme" 42 2
"Makeyouhappy" - 68
2008 "Radio" - 55 OnMyRadio
"IfULeave" (featuring Mary J. Blige) 71 6
2009 "SoBeautiful" 81 8
2010 "Silky Soul" - - Silky Soul Music
2011 "Anything" (featuring Swizz Beatz) - 31 MusiqInTheMagiq
"Yes" - 24
2013 "Feel the Fire" (with Syleena Johnson) - - 9ine

Featured singles

Year Song US
2002 "Break You Off" (The Roots featuring Musiq Soulchild) 99 55 59 Phrenology
2003 "Nothing at All" (Santana featuring Musiq Soulchild) - - - Shaman
2006 "Takeyatime" (Black Ice featuring Musiq Soulchild) - - - The Death of Willie Lynch
2008 "Why Me" (Ice Cube featuring Musiq Soulchild) - - - Raw Footage
"Chocolate High" (India.Arie featuring Musiq Soulchild) 114 19 - Testimony: Vol. 2, Love & Politics
2010 "Forever" (The Floacist featuring Musiq Soulchild) - - - Floetic Soul
"Hope for Haiti" (Kim Burrell featuring Musiq Soulchild, Michelle Williams, Lil' Mo & Tye Tribbett) - - - Charity single
2012 "Ah Yeah" (Robert Glasper Experiment featuring Chrisette Michele & Musiq Soulchild) - 86 - Black Radio
2013 "Still Believe in Love" (Demetria McKinney featuring Musiq Soulchild) - - - Non-album single

Awards and recognition

He has received awards from Billboard, BET, the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers, BMI, and Soul Train. Musiq has also been nominated for awards by MTV, The American Music Awards, the NAACP, and has had 11 Grammy nominations.

Grammy Awards

Year Recipient/Nominated work Award Result
2002 "Love" Best Male R&B Vocal Performance Nominated
2003 "Halfcrazy" Best Male R&B Vocal Performance Nominated
Juslisen Best R&B Album Nominated
2004 "Forthenight" Best Urban/Alternative Performance Nominated
2005 "Are You Experienced?" Best Urban/Alternative Performance Nominated
2008 "B.U.D.D.Y." Best Male R&B Vocal Performance Nominated
Luvanmusiq Best R&B Album Nominated
2010 "SoBeautiful" Best Male R&B Vocal Performance Nominated
"IfULeave" (feat. Mary J. Blige) Best R&B Performance by a Duo or Group with Vocals Nominated
"Chocolate High" (with India.Arie) Nominated
2011 "We're Still Friends" Best Male R&B Vocal Performance Nominated


  1. ^ a b c d
  2. ^ a b c d e Billboard: Musiq Soulchild
  3. ^ a b c "Interview With JR Hutson".  
  4. ^
  5. ^ "YKIGS Live: Musiq Soulchild Talks Signing with Warryn Campbell, Supporting Meelah on R&B Divas, Contributing to All Genres". You Know I Got Soul. Retrieved 2014-09-14. 
  6. ^ Rucker, Jermaine. "Warryn Campbell signs Musiq Soulchild to My Block Inc.". Gospel Break. Retrieved 2014-09-14. 
  7. ^ Murray, Jawn. "New Musiq: Soulchild signs with Warryn Campbell". Always A List. Retrieved 2014-09-14. 
  8. ^ [5]
  9. ^ [Interview] Musiq
  10. ^ [6]
  11. ^ "Musiq Soulchild Album & Song Chart History - Billboard 200". Billboard. Retrieved February 13, 2011. 
  12. ^ "Musiq Soulchild Album & Song Chart History - R&B/Hip-Hop Albums". Billboard. Retrieved February 13, 2011. 
  13. ^ certified awards"Aijuswanaseing"RIAA - Gold & Platinum - February 13, 2011: .  
  14. ^ certified awards"Juslisen"RIAA - Gold & Platinum - February 13, 2011: .  
  15. ^ certified awards"Soulstar"RIAA - Gold & Platinum - February 13, 2011: .  
  16. ^ certified awards"Luvanmusiq"RIAA - Gold & Platinum - February 13, 2011: .  

External links

  • Official website
  • Antigua Music Festival
  • Musiq Soulchild Black Planet page
  • Musiq Preps Atlantic Records Debut
  • Musiq at
  • Musiq Soulchild's AllMusic page
  • Exclusive Musiq Soulchild Interview
  • Luvanmusiq Album Review
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