Will you be electric sheep? Electric ladies, will you sleep?
Or will you preach?"
A reference to Phillip K. Dick’s Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep, a science fiction novel that Janelle has mentioned before—on Make The Bus
The sentiment here is reminiscent of her earlier work too, particularly Sincerely, Jane where she asks, “Are we really living, or just walking dead now (Are we walking dead now?)”
Will you sit idly or take action?
This line is also a great setup for the seamless segue which transitions from this song into “Electric Lady.”
Side note: Monáe seems to be fond of seamless transitions, because she uses this technique twice on The ArchAndroid: the first four songs are one contiguous piece, and “Cold War” goes right into “Tightrope.”
To help improve the meaning of these lyrics, visit “Q.U.E.E.N.” by Janelle Monae (Ft. Erykah Badu) Lyrics and leave a comment on the lyrics box