I love this album cover for Perfect Angel. For starters, it has an innocent feel to it, but that melted ice cream tells another tale. Plus, she outchea with the overalls with no shirt on. So it’s both innocent and sexy, with an afro for the ages. Once you consider that Minnie Riperton has a voice from the gawds—this album contains her biggest solo record, “Lovin’ You”—and you have the perfect storm of beautiful Blackness. Interestingly, the accent of melted vanilla ice cream just works.
You also have to wonder if Minnie was trying not to laugh on this album cover. Like, she really is sitting there with a melted ice cream cone in her hands, and I imagine that it must feel pretty silly in the moment. Even as amazing as that smile is that she’s rocking, I’d bet money this was not the take they were looking to get but ended up being the one that fit the perfect angel like a glove. Her eyes are telling a story, ya know?
This also happens to be another of those album covers that I knew before I knew what songs were on it. I know we had a copy of it and I remember seeing it and always thinking it was fun, and there was a lot of skin. A 13-year-old Panama loved to see a lot of skin. (Don’t worry, the Ohio Players are on deck.) Once I got more into music and realized who this was on the cover, my full appreciation for Minnie’s voice and her music came to full view. “Inside My Love” is still one of my favorite records and always will be.
RIP Minnie Riperton. A perfect angel, gone too soon.