For years, there has been a tongue-in-cheek urban legend that soul singer Erykah Badu has some mystical power over men. Fans often claim the transformations of some of her famous ex-boyfriends as examples: namely Andre 3000 of OutKast and Chicago emcee Common. Both men adopted an “artsier,” more unorthodox musical approach and public image while they were dating Badu; and Common spoke about Badu’s “power” in a recent interview with “The Combat Jack Show.”
“Yeah, the ‘Badu Box’ is real,” said Common. “It can take you to another universe. But seriously that’s when you meet somebody that’s real special and you’re like, “Man, this woman got … she got something else man.’ It ain’t just the sex. It ain’t just the looks. It’s like something that’s kind of like spirit-wise where you’re like, ‘This woman got something else.’”
Common notably changed his look and musical approach around 2002, when he and Badu were still in the midst of their relationship. His album Electric Circus was dismisssed by many fans because of it’s eclectic approach; but Common says Badu wasn’t the reason for his musical and stylistic shift at that time.
“She definitely was not like, ‘wear this,’” said Common. “Moving to New York, I had the aspirations to do something new, to change, to grow, just try new things. She definitely was an influence … She introduced me to certain people that were creative artists, but as far as my choice — it was my choice to say, ‘I want to do this. I want to do that.’”