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Adriana Evans

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Adriana Evans, born as Adriana Madera, is an American R&B vocalist and was among the pioneers of the late-'90s and early-2000s neo-soul movement. She was born 1974 in San Francisco, CA, the only child of jazz recording artist Mary Stallings, who sang with Count Basie, and Dizzy Gillespie. Evans' godfather is jazz saxophonist and former John Coltrane band partner Pharoah Sanders. This childhood immersion in jazz was always apparent in Evans' later recordings. At the age of 18 she moved to Los Angeles, where she met rapper Dred Scott. Her friendship with Scott grew into a musical relationship. In 1993 this led to her appearance on Scott's single "Check the Vibe" off his Breakin' Combs LP. In 1995, the two wrote and recorded her pioneering self-titled debut album on Capitol Records. Changes at Capitol landed Adriana and her debut record on RCA/Loud Records and it was officially released in 1997. The album featured Scott's hip-hop-centric production backing Evans' jazz-influenced vocals -- combined with live instrumentation, it was a significant departure from the R&B of the day. It was more of a critical and cult success, reaching only the number 33 position on the Billboard Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums chart. Its two singles, "Love Is All Around" and "Seeing Is Believing," charted, with the former reaching number 65 on the R&B charts and the latter reaching number 50. Following the release of her debut record, Adriana became disillusioned with the music industry and took refuge in Brazil, and didn't record a follow-up until 2004's Nomadic, an album that dabbled in various genres, held together by a theme of what she described as "African music." The next year she released Kismet. In 2007 Evans released El Camino, an album that seems, more so than her previous records, more heavily influenced by her stay in Brazil. Evans' fifth LP, Walking with the Night, was released in 2010; "Weatherman" was the album's first single. ~ Vincent Thomas

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