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Natalie "The Floacist" Stewart is best known for her role as half of the British neosoul duo Floetry. Along with her bandmate and childhood friend, Marsha "The Songstress" Ambrosius, Stewart released three albums as Floetry and earned seven Grammy nominations.
After Floetry broke up in 2006, Stewart became a solo artist. Her second album, Floacist Presents: Floetry Rebirth, continues her journey in floetry — a blend of poetry and spoken word put to music.
"I really, really wanted to let it be understood that this album isn't about replacing Marsha," Stewart says. "I see The Songstress as completely irreplaceable. The album is really embracing and appreciating your past in order to, you know, strengthen your foundation in your present, in order to have a positive effect on your future. And by no means is this to compete [with past Floetry records]; I wouldn't be crazy enough to do that. It's just really to embrace everything."
Speaking here with NPR's David Greene, Stewart discusses her split with Ambrosius, the philosophy behind her new album and the confines of being a black musician in the music industry. To hear more of their conversation, click the audio link on this page.
The very theater where President Lincoln was assassinated 150 years ago is remembering the woman who felt that great loss most accutely — The Widow Lincoln.