Victoria Monét at the Grammy Awards at the Crypto.com Arena in Los Angeles on February 4, 2024. Photo by Gilbert Flores/Billboard via Getty Images.
Ten years ago, Victoria Monét, a 34-year-old American singer-songwriter born in Atlanta, Georgia, crossed paths with future pop superstar Ariana Grande and began working alongside her. She is the quiet force behind many of the star’s hits, including “7 Rings” (2019) and “Thank U, Next” (2019).
A message sent to the prominent producer Rodney Jerkins launched her career and allowed her to write songs for interstellar stars such as Chris Brown, Lupe Fiasco, Janelle Monáe, Nas, Kendrick Lamar, Blackpink, and the duo Chloe x Halle. After “Thank U, Next,” Victoria Monét decided to take some time away from her collaborators and focused exclusively— for the first time— on her own music and her album “Jaguar” (2020). Today, she has been named the revelation of the year 2023 at the Grammy Awards 2024. An unusual journey…
Victoria Monét was able to create an album with “Jaguar” that is filled with sensuality and dedicated to female emancipation, incorporating influences of R&B, funk, and disco. Some may say she has remained in the shadow of the major artists she has collaborated with, but the young woman has mainly reserved her best compositions for her personal project, consisting of nine polished tracks.
The fifth song on the album— also titled “Jaguar”— was produced with strings and brass. Victoria Monét plays with surprising orchestration and explores various musical genres. “Experience”— featuring Khalid and SG Lewis— serves as a demonstration: it is a festive piece, heavily influenced by the 70s, disco, and the group Earth, Wind and Fire that she admires. Through her music, Victoria Monét delivers a genuine message challenging the significance of skin color, gender norms, and stereotypes about sexuality in R&B.
Victoria Monét – On My Mama (2023).
With “Jaguar,” the singer explores sexual pleasure and reclaims the female body, which is often denigrated and objectified by men in the R&B genre. She plays with the clichés related to sexuality and the bodies of women of color through innuendos and subtle metaphors while firmly rejecting the concept of objectifying the female body in the “provocative” track “Ass Like That.”
The song “Big Boss,” on the other hand, allows Victoria Monét— who came out as bisexual in 2018— to create an anthem for female emancipation, encouraging all women to unite in their songs and to thwart the idea that they are constantly resolved to feed the male ego in music and in their daily lives.
With “Jaguar II,” her new album of sexy and hedonistic R&B (tinged with silky Motown sounds heavily influenced by the 70s), released in 2023, Victoria Monét confirms her talent as a solo artist. It includes the hit “Oh My Mama,” a girl power anthem that celebrates self-confidence and invites carefree swaying, featuring Barack Obama. In the accompanying, already iconic music video, the singer pays tribute to Ciara, black culture, and her mother. Just as charismatic as she is skilled at creating catchy melodies, Victoria Monét possesses all the qualities to shine in the spotlight.
“Jaguar II” (2023) by Victoria Monét, is available..