By Nelson George
Helen Folasade Adu, a.k.a. pop soul chanteuse Sade, had been a complete vegetarian for nine years when she spotted some lambs on her farm in England.
“I hate to say this,” she intones in the warm, husky voice beloved by her fans for the last 25 years, “but when I saw these lambs gamboling through the field and I started to salivate and I thought I should get to the tandoori shop quick before I pull a leg off one of the lambs. It’s weird. I just thought the natural thing to do right now was to eat meat. I went through the whole veggie period thinking that was a good thing, and maybe it was for that time.”
This whimsical shift in the 51-year-old singer’s eating habits provides some insight into the decision making behind one of the more enduring and idiosyncratic career paths in pop music. Since their debut album, “Diamond Life” in 1984, the band Sade, which also includes guitarist-saxophonist Stuart Matthewman, keyboardist Andrew Hale, and bassist Paul Denman, has sold over 50 millions albums worldwide, won three Grammys and had a No. 1 album this year with “Soldier of Love.”