R&B songstress Adina Howard pushed the envelope in 1995 with her hit single “Freak Like Me”. There hadn’t been a solo female R&B artist to come out with such a bold and overtly sexually themed song. Along with becoming one of the highest selling singles and most played music videos on MTV and BET in 1995, Howard’s hit allowed young women of color and future recording artists to express their sexuality freely without shame. Howard’s song enabled women to feel liberated and to express that this (sex) is what I want to do, how I want to do it, and the fact that I want to do it. In the past in society it would seem as if sex was what men wanted to do, and that a woman was doing it for the man; it was so secretive. When Howard came onto the scene she believed that women were only sexy and sensual when men wanted them to be, and she refused to be in that category. She opened the doors for women to be who they wanted to be and to be free spirited.
“Adina Howard 20: A Story of Sexual Liberation” shares Adina’s story through her own words as well as the impact that she made during the 1990s and thereafter through the thoughts of fellow entertainers, educators, feminists, family, and fans. The documentary film gives an intellectual look into the inside of the highs and lows of the life of a platinum selling singer’s life despite the polarizing feelings towards her.
Howard speaks on the banning of her music video from BET, landing a cameo role in the movie Waiting to Exhale, her relationship with Tupac Shakur, working with Jackie Chan and Jamie Foxx and the sudden halt to her career due to her comments about record exec Sylvia Rhone.
Check out the trailer below!