I'm all about inspiration and self-motivation. It's very important that we recognize that we have to sow the seeds in order for our dreams to come true. Stay focused and be kind to yourself..."
- Adina Howard, RNB Junkie Interview (2020)
Adina Howard has been injecting sex positivity into urban music and culture since before it was cool. The R&B star broke through big in the 1990s with tantalizing tracks like "T-Shirt & Panties" and the monster hit "Freak Like Me," and she's one of her generation's most revered sex symbols. Her discography belies the ever-shifting muse of a well-rounded artist, and she's done everything from culinary school to acting.
She's capable of breaking the internet with a single photoshoot, so we wanted to take the time to salute the forever badness of Ms. Adina.
"I don’t strive to be different; I just strive to be me," Howard said in 2019. "My music will always have a common theme. I don’t think that I have to give you something different in order for you to pay attention to what I’m doing."
"I stand with courage coursing through my veins.#noweaponwill ever be successful in the destruction of this Queen that is before you. I will forever shine even in the darkest of hours."
"You are not a unicorn, there is nothing special about you. You have problems just like I have problems. It’s just get over it and figure it out. If you genuinely really want it, you will sow the seeds that needs to be sowed in order for your dream to come to fruition."
"Your blessings are yours, your lane is a your lane. You just have to figure out how to make it all happen and successful for you."
"The whole point and purpose of 'Freak Like Me' in '95 was to express myself in a manner that brought about my bold stance in being a sexual woman," Howard said on the Making Adina Howard 20 The Podcast Series. "I think that it's great that young ladies in 2020 and 2021 and so on can take that song and get something from it."
"Every artist is different. Some need an outline, some need a little direction, some are just like, 'Let me go, I’ve got it.' You just have to allow people to do them, within reason."
"I deal with heart ache, disappointment and anger. Whatever I do, it’s always going to accomplish the things that I go through on my journey because we as human beings do not just stay on one level. There are ups and downs; it’s a rollercoaster ride."
"People will talk about you, but when you're talking about yourself, that's the worse you could ever receive, as far as I'm concerned, because there's a conflict to where you can't get away from yourself. So be nice to yourself. Talk kindly to yourself. Love yourself."
"I actually cringe every now and again when I listen to that album," Howard told RNB Junkie in 2020. "Only because, vocally, I have come such a long way. When I listen to it, I'm just like, 'Oh God (laughs).' Can I say this? With all due respect, it's not for me to enjoy. The album wasn't done for me."
"There is a line that says 90% business and 10% show. Focus on the 90% business, because with the 10% you will always be able to show up and show out. If you don’t know the business, what’s the point of you even being in it, because you’re going to end up back at ground zero because you haven’t paid your taxes, you haven’t saved any money – so know the business side."