James AnthonyGrammy award-winner Estelle is releasing her fifth album in September, and it shares the same name as Sade’s 2000 triple-platinum album, Lovers Rock. It turns out that Estelle’s dream was to record with the iconic singer.
“Sade is the queen. I pay homage,” Estelle tells ABC Radio. “I wish she could have been on this album.”
“Lovers rock” is also the name of a smooth, romantic style of reggae which began in London in the 1980s. Estelle says Sade made the style popular, and it became a major inspiration for artists in Great Britain.
“We all owe a debt, if you are a British artist, to the lovers rock genre because it was sweet, beautiful R&B over real bassy reggae. I don’t anyone else who has done it,“ the 38-year-old singer says. “I’m actually doing lovers rock on the album, so it is more inspired by that.”
Estelle is a big fan of Sade, but she wants her fans to know that her new album is a tribute to the lovers rock style, and not a new version of the Sade album of the same name.
“I think the only correlation was that she was absolutely around and blowing and doing really, really well in the lovers rock era in the U.K.,” Estelle comments. “I literally named it after the sub-genre of music that I think she kind of started in the 80s.”
The “American Boy” singer says she doesn’t really remember a world in which Sade wasn’t a big deal.
“She was already a star when I was born,” Estelle says. “At the time I was eight years old, she was Sade.”
Lovers Rock is Estelle’s fifth album, and her first since 2015’s True Romance.