If the youngest do not remember it, it is not their fault. Sade has been away from the media for so long that even the elders were beginning to relegate it to the dustiest corners of our memory. But how to forget it. After hearing his voice, impossible. Of course, here in Spain he did not pronounce his name well or the most cultureta: Shar-Day is said, and not Sade. She herself made it clear on the cover of her first album “Diamond Life” (1984), to avoid misunderstanding with a certain marquis.
Where is the first great diva of neo-soul now? What happened to her after sweeping the half-world sales charts?
Helen Folasade Adu had been born in Nigeria, but at the age of four his parents separated, and when he turned eleven he went to live with his mother England, where he became interested in music from a young age. At age 17 she was already playing the harmonica with a group called Arriva, and in 1983 a caztalentos discovered her singing while working at a street stall in the Camden market. This is how he formed his own band, Folasade, which later cut his name that we all know.
His first single, “Your love is King,” was his first big hit. But the next one, “Smooth Operator,” went much further and became one of the essential songs of the decade. Curious being the eighties: his letter launched a critique of materialism. Something that she herself would end up applying to her own life, in a fragile balance with her image of a hyper-stylish and fashionable woman.
In 1985, he published his second album, “Promise,” another bestseller followed by “Stronger Than Pride” (1988) and “Love Deluxe” (1992), two works that, although they did not have the goblin of the former, kept it in the highest of Olympus pop eighties. But then, with more than 40 million records sold and a brilliant track record, Sade decided to move away from the industry for the first time for eight long years. And the press of the time, which was made of gold every time he drew his ebony beauty on its covers, did not want to forgive him:
in a matter of months they began to appear
unverified or verified information, which assured that Sade had mental problems and even suffered a terrible drug addiction. Something that part of the public swallowed: what other reason would there be for rejecting success?
“I thought my daughter was more important than my career.” In all this time I have not stopped singing, but in my house, ”said the artist when she returned in 2000 with“ Lovers Rock ”. Her daughter, Ila Sade, was born in 1996, the result of her relationship with Jamaican producer Bob Morgan.
Despite her temporary retirement, no one had forgotten her: the presentation tour billed 30 million euros. But what did she do when she finished it? Retreat, this time, for longer: ten years. During all that break he only reappeared in public twice, you loved in 2002. Once to receive the Order of the British Empire and once to participate in the recording of a compilation of tribute to Fela Kuti, the great Nigerian hero of Afro-beat.
When everyone gave it up, Sade took his last blow of effect. In 2010 he returned to the record market with “Soldier of Love”, an album that, against all odds, was not at all decontextualized or sounded old fashioned. On the contrary, it was an overwhelming sales success, and the tour did not raise thirty but fifty million euros.
Sade just has enough money to live. You do not need the adulation of the press, or the industry, or its followers (it has a Twitter account that has not released a single message for two years), nor does it need to feel longed for. In these last ten years it has only reappeared twice. The first in April 2018, with a song for the Disney movie “A Fold in Time” entitled “Flower of the Universe”; and the second in November of the same year, also with an original song for the movie «Widows», called «The Big Unknown». Two years earlier, in 2016, her daughter Ila had announced to the world that she was starting a new life as a transgender man.
After these two releases, rumors about a new album were arranged in 2019. But we are already in 2020 and there is no news about it. “We understand his commitment to art, and he is not being pressured to release the album soon,” they say from their record label, Epic. «Sade is not interested in fame or anything similar. She is interested in taking art. So when it’s ready, it will come out ». Meanwhile, the first great diva of the neo-soul lives quietly in a small village in the English countryside, far from the worldly noise, preparing, perhaps, a new return. .