It is wholly appropriate that Lenny Kravitz’ 1989 debut album bore the title Let Love Rule, given that that particular sentiment has been a consistent theme of his recorded work ever since.
As the consciousness-raising title of his eighth album It Is Time For A Love Revolution makes clear, Kravitz remains fully committed to championing the cause of the transforming power of love.
He recalls how his simple philosophy of letting love rule met with a certain lack of understanding among some.
“I remember a lot of people saying, ‘Oh, that’s a very naïve statement, and why are you singing about love and all this stuff (that was popular) back in the ’60s?’ and I was like, ‘Wait a minute, how did love get put into one time period?’ Love is universal, it’s endless, and it’s what we were put here to do. We just turned everything around.”
Adds Kravitz, “Those that are not into it, they obviously have work to do in their lives, you know? You’ve just got to come at them with love, and calmly, and try to just let them feel it. You don’t have to be pessimistic. You don’t have to be cold and so forth; you know God loves all of us.”
If Kravitz’s love credo was an easy one for him to embrace personally, it had a lot to do with being blessed with a happy childhood. Born in Brooklyn to actress Roxie Roker (she played Helen Willis on the 1970s sitcom “The Jeffersons”) and TV producer Sy Kravitz, life for the young Kravitz was good.
“A lot of people just didn’t grow up with love in their lives,” he reflects, “and I was fortunate enough to have grown up with a lot of love in my life as a child which, I guess the more I talk to people, the older I get, the more I see that a lot of people want to forget their childhood. Luckily enough, because of my grandfather and my grandmother and my mother — I had a difficult time with my dad until the end — they provided me with so much love and encouragement and told me that anything that my mind could conceive I could achieve and were just really supportive.”
And achieve he did. From the time of his first big hit in 1991 (“It Ain’t Over ’Til It’s
Over”) Kravitz has been a frequent presence on the singles charts with hits that include “Fly Away,” “Again,” “Lady” and “American Woman.” His funk/soul/classic rock-influenced songs have proven to be a consistently winning formula.
Love Revolution was the highest charting debut of any album of his career, entering the Top 200 charts at #4. It is also an album that is earning him some of the greatest critical accolades of his career. In a dark, cynical world Kravitz aims to shine a light.
His love revolution as he defines it is “how we live our lives, and it’s what kind of energy we put out into the universe, and it’s just really simple, but a lot of people don’t see it that way; they see it as being, ‘Well, that’s really slow and that’s going to take forever.’ Well, it doesn’t matter how long it takes. The point is, when you wake up in the morning, and you put your feet on the floor, you have to decide what kind of person you’re going to be that day, and if you go out into the world and you put negativity out there, it’s going to affect you and all those that come into contact with you in your own little universe… (some say) it’s not an immediate fix in the world, but nothing is. But the beauty is it’s an immediate fix for you.”
Honesty is another consistent feature in the Kravitz oeuvre, whether it’s on the personal plane (in the soul-bari