“Included alongside Dee C’rell in these recordings are: Norwegian child prodigy and Jazz Trumpeter, Audun Waage. Richelle Claiborne, who is considered as one of the most outstanding poets of her generation from America, and the improvisational vocal techniques of Jon Martin from the United Kingdom; known for his work as Pizzaman with Norman Cook and as a photographer living in New York.”
“Claiborne is nothing if not honest; she certainly isn’t saying nothing, but the gal knows that her melodic and lyrical territories are more than simply well-worn—they’re paved and crowded with the likes of modern soul music updates like Amy Winehouse, not to mention every female writer that has ever referred to herself as “empowered.” But the beauty of Claiborne’s music is found in the presentation and delivery rather than the substance itself, the wrapping paper more interesting than the gift.”
“This. Is. Not. A. Test.” Richelle Claiborne belts out those words in her trademark throaty, love-mama style on the homepage of Soul Sledge, the metal band she fronts. They could well serve as the motto for Claiborne herself, a multitalented artist who in the past year has made it clear that her dress rehearsal is over. Singer, songwriter, poet, actress, director, producer, teacher, costume designer—Claiborne has that multihyphenate thing working overtime. She is, as Ronda Hewitt likes to say, a “force of nature.” … She’s so good, in fact, that it might just be a matter of time before the brighter lights of the big city lure Claiborne from here. But for now, as she comes into her own, Charlottesville can count itself lucky that ours is her stage ”
"My first encounter with Richelle Claiborne was at the Live Arts production of The Wiz earlier this year in which Richelle played the role of the Scarecrow. Her mighty natural hair, so elegantly napped up in a wholesome 'fro, added miles to the make-up job. She sang with such soul and passion that it was hard not to be completely entranced by her performance. Since then I have run into her on multiple occasions. Even as a guest at someone else's show, she captivated the audience, taking control of the stage and the moment for the short time she had. In my opinion, there are two types of artists: those who have "it" and those who don't. Granted, there are numerous subcategories under these two headings, but for the sake of simplicity in this column I choose to remain general. Performers who have "it" can communicate with an audience merely by standing on stage. Their aura demands attention, and their energy demands respect. When I think of "it," I think of Richelle Claiborne. "