Neneh Mariann Cherry (10 March 1964) is a Swedish singer-songwriter, rapper, and occasional DJ and broadcaster. Blending hip hop with other influences, Cherry experienced mainstream success with several of her recordings.
In London, Cherry joined the punk rock band The Cherries. She moved through several bands, including New Age Steppers, Rip Rig + Panic, and Float Up CP. She also DJ'd, playing early rap music on the reggae pirate Dread Broadcasting Corporation.
She began a solo career with "Stop the War", a protest song about the Falkland Islands. She also worked with Jonny Dollar, The The and musician Cameron McVey (a.k.a. Booga Bear), who co-wrote most of her debut album Raw Like Sushi, and whom she would eventually marry. She was intimately involved in the Bristol Urban Culture scene, working as an arranger on Massive Attack's Blue Lines album, through which she met Dollar. Both Robert Del Naja and Andrew Vowles of Massive Attack contributed to Raw Like Sushi.
Cherry's second album was Homebrew, but it was not as commercially successful as its predecessor. The album had some success on the dance charts with songs "Buddy X" and "Trout." "Buddy X" was a bigger hit years later in a remix by Dreem Teem and on college radio the "Trout" duet with Michael Stipe was popular. Homebrew included the work of Geoff Barrow (on "Somedays"), who would later become part of Portishead.
Her most recent solo album, 1996's Man- produced by McVey and Jonny Dollar -was led by the track "Woman", her take on James Brown's 1966 track "It's a Man's Man's Man's World." It featured the worldwide hit single, "7 Seconds", featuring Youssou N'Dour; and "Trouble Man" a cover of a Marvin Gaye track. "7 Seconds" remained at number 1 in France for a record seventeen weeks in 1994. Another track, "Together Now", featured Tricky. Cherry received her second Grammy nomination in 1994 for "7 Seconds". In the MTV Europe Music Awards in 1994, "7 Seconds" won the Best Song title.
In March 2011 she joined the experimental jazz group The Thing, who had derived their name from a track by her stepfather, Don Cherry. Their album The Cherry Thing was released in June 2012. During a June 1, 2012 interview with Kirsty Lang, broadcast as part of the BBC's Front Row Daily podcast, Cherry discussed this jazz-inspired album, saying that The Thing were fans of her stepfather (jazz artist) Don Cherry's work. One of the songs from this album - "Golden Heart" - was written by Don Cherry himself. Cherry went on to say that the album, although primarily a jazz album, is also inspired by modern music (for example the work of rapper MF Doom, as well as The Stooges) stating that "it needed to be relevant. I try to ignore all the borders of music, as much as I can". She also discussed the "tacky over-sexualisation" of women in modern-day music, hoping for a reaction to "pole-dance pop".