Chaka Khan / Hello Happiness

First new album in over a decade • Exclusive orange vinyl edition

Chaka Khan will release a new album Hello Happiness next month.

The soul legend’s 12th studio album is her first since 2007’s Funk This is released on new label Diary Records (in conjunction with Island Records), the new label formed producer Switch with artist/songwriter Sara Ruba Taylor. The album features last year’s excellent single ‘Like Sugar’ and the equally great title track has just been made available.

The idea with the album seems to be to delivery something contemporary but at the same time have strong echoes of the past, such as the late ’70s New York disco scene.

Hello Happiness will be issued on 15 February and there is an ‘indies-only’ exclusive orange vinyl edition (i.e. not on Amazon) that you can order via the SDE shop. The vinyl comes with alternative cover art, a 24″ x 36″ poster and a download card. There is a CD edition also.

Hello Happiness is released on 15 February 2019.

Hello Happiness limited edition coloured vinyl LP

Side A:

  1. Hello Happiness
  2. Like A Lady
  3. Don’t Cha Know

Side B:

  1. Too Hot
  2. Like Sugar
  3. Isn’t That Enough
  4. Ladylike

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With only 7 tracks and 27 minutes running time, I wonder why wasn’t “I Love Myself” from last year included?

Clive Stirland

Got this and love it, so does my 6 year old daughter. Bit disappointed with the length of the tracks, I don’t mind the number but would have liked some extended versions. Also, at my age, disappointed with the small print of the track listing on the back of the CD.

Mike Williams

So, I thought that her next album (before Prince died) was going to be a tribute album to Joni Mitchell. Is that still in the cards? She has also said she has an unreleased Prince produced album.

also… (this SDE page is a source for the Wikipedia listing for this “Hello Happiness” album also)

James Giraffe

I’ve just listened. Yes, it’s short. Yes it’s very good. But!!! Track 7 “Ladylike” is an acoustic version of track 2 “Like A Lady”.

So, while it’s (only) seven tracks, it’s actually only six songs.

It’s a great album, but I do think it’s a bit stingy.


Since everybody is in here for the missus herself I’d like to add that this is a no brainer for me because Switch produced it. He’s THE man.

Auntie Sabrina

There’s a review in today’s (11 Feb) Metro. The album is only around 27 minutes long but a good ‘un

Sentron Nicholas

I love anything Chaka puts out, can’t wait, it’s been over a decade for a new project.
The cd cover not to thrilled about but won’t stop me from buying it.

Ian M

Extremely excited about this release! First 2 singles are dyn-o-mite! Love the coloured vinyl. Love the provocative cover too. Check out the vid for the new single! I’d prefer 7 A+ tunes opposed to 12 tracks with 5 mediocre ones anyday. Chaka at her funky best!!!!

Haro Musters

They should’ve added the Quincy Jones/Mark Ronson tune Keep reachin’ as a ‘bonus-track’!


Hmm, Amazon and iTunes aren’t showing the album for pre-order this morning.


I think she’s mixed too low – Sound like she’s singing backing, expected her to burst through
And her voice sounds synthesized too, shame about that
Good track though
Any Prince penned tracks? She did say she had unrelesed material


Last June it was reported she had penned half an albums worth of music with Prince which she would release this year.

Doesn’t look like these have been included. I would have thought they would make reference to them in the pre release advertising.

Wallace Gary

This project isn’t about the prince tunes. This is a dance project with Switch!


I love both songs! Yes it’s sad there are only 7 songs but Chaka is notorious for being hard to work with and has a long, sordid history of not showing up for recordings and being extremely hard to deal with personality wise. Arif Mardin (God rest his soul) wrote a whole thing about it. Maybe the producers of these songs finally said “that’s it!” and refused to do any further recordings. Who knows.

Wallace Gary

Jon … whoever you are you, you need to stop lying on the Arif Mardin! I Knew Arif and Russell Titleman and several other people that work with Chaka khan in the past on her hit records including Myself, and they’ve all stated that she was excellent in the studio including Quincy Jones! who I’m also friends with. I’ve been in the Stdio with her! Known and work with her for 31 years now, and the lies you spew are far fetched untruths! As a matter fact they said they’ve never worked with anyone who could come in and just sing a little bit some pieces here and there without even hearing it back and then when you pull it all up everything makes sense and fits like pieces of a puzzle.

They also stated that she could come in and record a full song Adlibs, backgrounds and extra lead vocals and be done in 15 minutes. All of which I have experienced with my own eyes and ears.

She’s gone in and record it full albums 1530 songs within 56 days all songs done, that’s not the working of somebody difficult to work!!!

So stop you’re lying.


It’s OK…it’s a known fact. This person can attack me all he wants, I’m not bothered by it.

Al Clark

Amen Wallace…
I don’t know who that clown Jon is and who she is talking about, but it ain’t Chaka!!!


Yes let’s attack me for offering something that has been said about Chaka for years. Only clown here are those who have to use name calling to make a point! I will no longer post anything on this website.

Pudding Pop

Been a hardcore Chakaholic for over 40 years now, heard lots of stories but never heard any producer claim C.K. was hard to work with. You must be getting her confused with Rachelle Ferrelle. George Duke was the only who could work with her (I guess because they were cousins), which explains why she only released 3 albums in 27 years. Arif executive produced 6 albums for Chaka. Both she and Arif had nothing but praise for each other.

Mister Stick

Sounds great to me, and if mastered well, should be a dynamite vinyl spin – in which case, the short length will do wonders for the sound. What is the resolution of the download? Thanks, Paul.

Mister Stick

“Don’t know any details on the download”… Well, let’s hope for something better than MP3. With something as dynamically hot as “Like Sugar”, it would be a crime to be saddled with a very lossy format. I’m looking forward to the vinyl, but for people who have made an investment in computer playback, too, the accompanying download format is a factor in whether or not to push the ‘buy’ button. As for the cover, debated elsewhere here… Some of you folks must be still be suffering from the Christmas cookie sugar rush. That snap of Chaka on the motel rail is, to quote a great American philosopher of the 1970s, “Dyn-O-Mite!”


This is really nice, and I love short albums. May be my second purchase from your shop.

James Giraffe

Good grief! They just played “Hello Happiness” on Radio 1! I am gobsmacked as I never thought in a million years that they would play Chaka on Radio 1!

el nino

Wow – doesn’t look like she has aged a day since the last album.


Weve all got longer E.Ps! This should be priced accordingly. How can she be away for so long and only come back with a 7 track E.P? I was expecting they would therefore be long dance tracks, but they couldn’t even bothered extending them to an equivalent 12 inch version! Bizzare.


Different era different expectations. I do this this would have been better aimed at the dance market, with extended tracks over 2 pieces of vinyl.


Priced accordingly? Amazon US has it listed at $9.99 as a pre-release (physical) and $7.00 (digital.) Prices tend to drop by release date, so I think that the price is fair.



So, priced accordingly then :-)

Wallace Gary

Actually back in the day there were only 7-8 tracks on album. But what not do t know is that the only get payed from 8 songs on a cd or album. All other tune are considered bonus songs at The are rust don’t get paid for them.

Sid Ceaser

Y’all are crazy. “Like Sugar” was a shot of Love last year and is worth the $20 alone. That song is fantastically catchy and feel good. Happiness is also great!

So the cover photo isn’t … all that great. There has been worse.

Chaka, big hugs girl. You have been missed. <3

Casper Janssen

I wish the put the fantastic track ‘Keep Reachin’ with Quincy Jones and Mark Ronson as a bonus track


I don’t know why some people are complaining about the playing time. Some of my all time favourite albums (Dirty Mind, Friends, Song of Innocence, Histoire de Melody Nelson, Arthur Verocai’s eponymous debut, etc.) clock in at around 30 minutes or less.


Wow. Her Music is not my style, but I would buy that for the hot cover photo. No, it’s not cheap, and doesn’t make her look like a hooker! I love it!!

Steven Cook

Those pictures are probably 20 years old, at least


Those pics are brand new. Lol


I’m not paying for only 7 tracks…. It’s trendy this time album of 6 or 7 tracks for 25 minutes of music whereas physical doesn’t sell… Very strange !


Here are the track lenghts (according to Quobuz.com):

1 Hello Happiness 03:56
2 Like A Lady 04:59
3 Don’t Cha Know 03:17
4 Too Hot 03:43
5 Like Sugar 03:59
6 Isn’t That Enough 03:31
7 Ladylike 03:44

Quite short, but these 2 tracks are great and I ordered the vinyl instantly


If the track timings on iTunes are correct, the album is only 27 minutes long.

Casper Janssen

I don’t mind it only has 7 tracks…. I’d rather have 7 superiour tracks instead of 14 mediocre tracks. The singles “Like Sugar” and “Hello Happiness” do sound very promising…. If the other 5 tracks have the same quality, then I’m more than satisfied! It’s about quality instead of quantity. The artwork is OK, allthough I prefer the LP vinyl cover


Billie Jean is not my lover…


I don’t play sleeves, I play records? If this album is like the lead track ‘like sugar’ it’ll be epic. One of the stand out tracks from last year and a staple on the Paul Weller tour bid


I play the sleeves. Problem is, they ruin my phone cartridges and sound scratchy. It is also difficult to insert them into those tiny trays on CD players.


Phono cartridges, not phone. Ugh. The joke is ruined by autocorrect again.


What yoke?

Charles Christopher

The cover is underwhelming, but at least it’s an actual photograph and not just a gradient or abstract pattern or something. And 7 tracks does seem a little stingy, but even if they’re only 4 minutes or so that’s a half hour of music. I suspect that’s what the actual attention span is of the casual listener these days, actually – and if the cover will mainly be seen about 1″ x 1″ on a screen, I can understand why the sleeve looks like it was done with minimal fuss.
At least the songs we’ve heard are promising.

Gareth Jones

Whilst 7 tracks seems a little sparse, we’ve yet to see the running times. Maybe some songs are like the full length version of Donna Summer’s l Feel Love?!


the songs are 3-4minutes long. the longest track on the album clocks in at 4:59. The majority of them are inside of 4 minutes.

Glenn Roger

I love the diva Chaka Khan! This album seems exciting and fresh. I love that it is being released on what looks like orange vinyl. That got my heart racing. I am a little taken aback that the album is only 7 cuts. I feel there could have been somehow more cuts, let me just say I will be very p.o.’d if the Japanese issue comes out with 12 or more cuts and you know how that goes, or the promotional remix cd’s of each hit will have 12-13 remixes by several remix artist’s, or my personal favorite, the original release goes through but then 4-5 months later, a “special edition” comes out fully loaded and with unreleased material. So one never knows.


I don’t get the cover at all. It has a prostitute at a cheap motel vibe going on. Imo.

Mike Williams

I agree that the Vinyl cover is Perfect & the CD cover is lacking. The vinyl cover is flattering, fits the album title & they should replace the CD cover ASAP while there’s still time!


I agree with both comments. The cover definitely has that candid street vibe that the 70’s Rufus albums had. My guess is these are 6-7 minute long disco songs, if anyhing this is a good sign.


I agree. Ditch the CD cover and use the vinyl. Love the 2 songs, btw. Noticed that much of her catalogue is out of print. Perhaps this album will bring the old albums back.


I crate-dig looking solely for those cheap prostitute/cheap motel covers.

Wife, “What’s the album like?”

Me, “Who cares, look at the totty on the cover!”


I loved Funk This, and I’ve been hoping for new material for a long time, but had almost given up. I like the two tracks posted here, but the vocals seem a bit over processed. Why all the layering?

Still, the production sounds pretty cool–it has a very post-disco 80s feel to me in some ways. Looking forward to getting the album when it comes out, though 7 tracks seems pretty short, especially after a decade-long wait. Maybe they’re long versions?


Funk This blows the two trax we’ve heard so far away. The new stuff is really generic studio 54 dance remix sounding.

Paul Kent

Early entry for worst album cover of 2019!


Like Sugar was one of the best songs of 2018.

Saar Freedman

I’ve always liked Chaka so will give this a try.
It’s weird that the album only has 7 tracks. You could get away with that in the 70’s maybe but nowdays we expect a couple of more tracks for our hard earned cash.

Maybe the Japanese edition with have something extra.

I am However glad that they did not fall into the ugly pitfall of trying to make her more contemporary or appealing to the ‘ it ‘ crowd by bringing in the hot new talent for, say, a 2019 Ain’t Nobody featuring Nicki Minage and Iggy Azeala, or whatever.

that would have been sad.
and not a word about Maddy.


Just seven tracks? That in itself is pretty retro. I like me some Chaka Khan but I’ve still not made it through all of the Rufus albums box I got a while back.


Welcome back Chaka,it’s been too long.

Geert De Wilde

Should have been right up my street, but I don’t like those two new songs. They sound like remixes of what could have been a Chaka Khan album. Pretty boring. So I’ll pass on this one, I’m afraid. (I loved Funk This …)