Friday, September 5, 2014

Luca Dimoon "Nonsense"

Italian soul singer and musician Luca Dimoon is back with yet another teaser from his long awaited upcoming album "Telescopic". This time it's the infectious "Nonsense", what he calls his "ode to the absurd" but judging from my ears, this groove is anything but. Smooth, feel good jam with a little stutter in the drums that makes you put that extra shoulder in it. Check out the wonderfully shot video filmed in Tokyo below and get a free download of the single via his soundcloud page. The download is for a limited time so you betsta hurry. Now Luca, no more teases lol. We are so ready for the full album.


Thursday, June 19, 2014

Heathrow To Kansai: The Class Of '94


The year 1994 seemed to be a very transitional year in my life. Didn't return to Columbia College. I was 23 and had to finally face the reality that holding on to my job at McDonald's, where I'd been since my senior year high school, wasn't gonna suffice. Found a higher paying job that paved the way for me to finally get my own apartment and officially join the rat race. This new job came with strenuous hours and even more strenuous work duties that often left me mentally and physically drained resulting in me having little to no time for a social life. Beforehand, I was the nightlife king. All I had for my refuge was my love for music but at this point, music was also going through a transition.

The house music scene that I was pretty devoted to for more than ten years was in disarray thanks in part to stagnation, new zoning laws and tourism. The airwaves were pretty much dominated by new jack swing and the pop side of r&b aimed at the young urban streets with sounds built more around beats first and instrumentation, if any, second. Live bands simply didn't exist. Any of my favorite soul or jazz funk artists from the 70's & 80's classic periods, who were lucky enough to be still recording, found themselves clambering for spots in the crowded field of adult contemporary and smooth jazz. Not to say I didn't like any of it, (well I wasn't a fan of new jack swing much at all lol) but I felt something was being lost in the music. It had become watered down. I was hearing it but not feeling it. What's a soul music lover to do?


A few years earlier upon still buying new dance singles on a regular basis, I stumbled upon the music of two bands from the UK that seemed to be oh so inspired by the soul, jazz and funk I grew up on, Brand New Heavies (whom I first bought thanks to Lil Louis dropping "Dream Come True" in his set at Coconuts) and Jamiroquai. I clung to those two bands with all my might hoping for more from them and often wondered if or when they were coming with sophomore albums. Furthermore, being that they were both from overseas, I often wondered were there more artists out there like them.

Enter Gramaphone Record store and the newly formed acid jazz section. I was unclear what acid jazz was initially but if those two bands were filed there, I wanted know who they were filed next to. Perusing I go. DAMN these albums are expensive lol. All imports from the UK and Japan of artists I'd never seen or heard before. The album covers are speaking to me but how do I decide on who to try?

Enter a magazine called Straight No Chaser. This mag was the holy grail of all good things soulful, funky and jazzy in music. This mag became my bible. It seriously opened me up to a whole new world. Artists, dj's, producers, record labels and soulful culture from all around the globe, from the UK street soul and funk jazz movement ie Incognito, Young Disciples, James Taylor Quartet, Outside, Drizabone etc all the way to the movement in Japan ie Monday Michiru, Mondo Grosso, United Future Organization, Kyoto Jazz Massive etc. I was blown away. I felt this movement was tailored just for me. Music that was progressively nostalgic, drawing heavily from the era that shaped my palate but with a freshness making it timeless. Had me hooked, line and sinker lol. My mission was to buy every release I could find, especially those on the Talkin' Loud, Acid Jazz, Dorado, Idyllic, Lollop or 99 Record labels. Took my paycheck every week LMAO.

The downfall, in a sense, was the community of others who felt this music as I did, in Chicago, was a small one. There weren't many outlets in the manner of nightlife that fed this music and movement so I'm thankful to DJs like G-Most, Daniel Givens, Jesse de la Pena, Tone B. Nimble and a handful of others who took the movement to places like the Elbo Room, Lava Lounge, Liquid Kitty and the early days of Red Dog. This era grew me up musically. Through it, I learned so much more about black music history especially jazz. It's crazy how it took the oversea market to introduce to me to the music of labels like Black Jazz, Strata East, Tribe etc. I learned more about Blue Note and just American jazz and funk as a whole. And if it had not been for this era and Gramaphone filing The Roots "Organix", Guru's "Jazzmatazz" and Digable Planets in the acid jazz section, I would have never given hip hop my ear. This led me to the jazzy boom bap side of hip hop. This era would also serve as the precursor to what would become the neo-soul (side eye) era.

*I should note that there were a few labels, artists and college radio stations like WCLK in ATL, Groove Collective, The Solsonics, Ubiquity & Giant Steps who held the movement down in the states.

This year, many classic albums from this era turn 20* and I felt it my duty to create this special podcast episode as a tribute to those albums and this era that shaped me fully into the music lover that I am today. Check out the collage of 20 of my favorites released in 1994 and give this episode your ear. I think the music is as fresh today as it was when I first heard it but then again, I have super fond memories attached to it. I hope you don't mind my reminiscing LOL.
(*Outside "Almost In" & Izit "The Whole Affair" were released in '93 but stateside in '94)

Also, this podcast exist and is made possible because of loyal listeners like yourself. To help it continue, if you are able and willing, please send a donation of any amount to soundrotation@yahoo.com on https://www.paypal.com/


01. Weather Storm / Massive Attack
02. Morning Loving / Carleen Anderson
03. Searching / Nobukazu Takemura ft. Dee C Lee
04. Friendly Pressure / Jhelisa
05. Things Will Be Sweeter / Dee C Lee
06. Life So Free / The Federation
07. Magic Wand Of Love / United Future Organization
08. Daybreak / Brand New Heavies
09. Izit Everywhere Pt. 2 / Izit
10. Brightest Star / Drizabone
11. Invisible Man / Mondo Grosso
12. Lucky Fellow / McKoy
13. Interlude - Little Boy / Omar
14. All In Your Mind / Swing Out Sister
15. When You Call My Name / Jessica Lauren
16. Stillness In Time (vinyl version) / Jamiroquai

17. 144 Brooklyn Palace Mansions / Outside
18. What Is Jazz / Monday Michiru
19. Somewhere Not Here / Bahia Sunsets (Kyoto Jazz Massive)
20. Idyllic / Spiritual Vibes

Monday, May 26, 2014

Mark de Clive-Lowe presents Church

Keyboard wizard, producer Mark de Clive-Lowe is back with blowing our minds once again with his new full length inspired by his highly successful L.A. and NYC club night "Church" and like the event, the album finds him doing what he does best; blending cosmic jazz and electric dance grooves through a mix of live instrumentation and electronics creating some of the most soulful and progressive tunes of the 21st Century. And no "Church" experience is complete without a stellar cast of guest singers and musicians including emcee John Robinson, Miguel Atwood Ferguson, Jamire Williams, theeKIDICARUS, first lady Nia Andrews and many more. This album will surely land on my Best Of 2014 list. COP IT NOW!


Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Sorceress "Dose"

After being blown away by their 2012 debut album "Chequered Thoughts", I have eagerly anticipated a follow up from the unit, once known as Funkommunity. At last, they're back with that follow up under a new name and boasting a deeper sound. Now called Sorceress, the New Zealand based group led by producer Isaac Aesili and singer Rachel Fraser, continue to cast spells and work their music magic with "Dose", their new album that will surely having you overdosing on it all summer. With their style of electrosoul intact, Sorceress take it deeper and more energetic with grooves a bit more melodic and tight. Danceable at times, fun and free flowing throughout. I highly recommend you take a "dose" of this goodness.


Daniel Crawford "The Awakening"

In the fall of  2012, Daniel Crawford got us to swallow the "Red Pill". Reeling from that high, a year later, we felt the "Side Effects". Now, we are prepared for "The Awakening". On this highly anticipated sophomore album, Daniel offers up his most cohesive project to date and that's saying a lot given that his previous releases were stellar. On The Awakening, he draw heavily from jazz, soul and fusion of yester years, like using a rear view mirror. to guide his travels ahead bringing forth a modern classic with hints of ancestral rhythms throughout. Including the much buzzed about single "Home" that features Cleveland P. Jones on vocals, his tribute to the late, great George Duke and appearances from Vikter Duplaix, Amp Fiddler and flautist Monet, this album will definitely land top 10 on my Best Of 2014 list. Did I mention his killer covers of Prince and Fela Kuti? Yeah Daniel did NOT play around. Check it out below and cop NOW!


Friday, May 2, 2014

NEW ARTIST ALERT: James Tillman "Shangri La"


Ever so often an artist seemingly comes out of the woodwork and just blow my mind, and in 2014 that artist name is James Tillman. The D.C native dropped his debut ep this week and my ONLY gripe is that with only four songs, it leaves me wanting more. Built on his love of music and listening to his parents collection that consisted of everything from Joni Mitchell to Afrika Bambataa, his debut ep "Shangri La" is a glorious blend of jazzy soul with a hint of folk with a vocal delivery and tones that flows a like a river. Word on the street is he's working on a full length so get this slice of beauty below and prepare. It's the best four dollars you will ever spend in your life.COP IT NOW!


Monday, March 3, 2014

Zo!: We Are On The Move (Black Coffee Remix) / A Choice of Weapons

Detroit native multi instrumentalist, producer and The Foreign Exchange member Zo! has been riding high since the release of his last album "ManMade", which landed on many Best Albums of 2013 list including ours. Continuing to make the album do what it do, Zo! and +FE label just released some special hotness, a remix to the latest single "We Are On the Move". (You should remember the latest video with him Eric Roberson, Zo and Darien Alexander on some Whispers ish). The remix come courtesy of the king of the South African house movement Black Coffee who adds the right amount of mellow and percussion making it a melodic jazzy affair. And as an added bonus is the non album groover "Choice Of Weapons" featuring SOUNDROTATION fav Nicholas Ryan Gant and Carmen Rodgers. Pure greatness. Check em below and then head on over to itunes to cop.

   Zo! - We Are On The Move (Black Coffee Remix) / A Choice of Weapons by +FE Music

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Mar: Form EP

After turning it up a notch with the house oriented single "Man x Woman", Amsterdam based singer, musician Mar is slowing it down a bit and bringing it back to "Form" on this new two track ep. Starting with "A Simple Go" co-produced by his longtime collaborator Full Crate, mellowing out the groove while Mar spell out the (not so) simplicity of couple being where they wanna be. Then the Malin Genie produced "Ode To Her" takes us on a scenic ride down a long road while Mar express his admiration and seemingly infatuation with this heavenly being. And it's available as a free download. Get it below.

   Mar - Form - EP by BDMNR

Jesse Boykins III: Plain (Lyric Dance Video)

Jesse Boykins III is truly the hardest working man on the global underground circuit and she shows absolutely no sign of slowing down anytime soon. Today the soul prince posted a lyric video to a new dance oriented song "Plain" produced by Machinedrum. This tune brings us one step closer to the long awaited release of his second official full length album "Love Apparatus". Plain and simple it's fun, fun, fun. If you need a little pep in your step, a little pick me up, press play on this video and I'm sure you feel a little bounce.


Ruth Koleva: R U T H

Having already made this biggest noise on music scene in Bulgaria including becoming the youngest recipient of GRAZIA's Woman of the Year award and Best Female Singer award at 2012’s BG Radio Awards, Ruth Koleva has her sights on domination of the globe with the worldwide release of her sophomore album "R U T H". The album find the singer working toward that goal as it has already been heralded by the likes of Mark Ranson, Richard Bona and is already threatening to take a position on my Top 10 albums of 2014 list and it's only February. Refreshing modern soul and nujazz accompanying her beautiful light tones with with guest production and co-writing from SOUNDROTATION fav's Diggs Duke, Colonel Red, Richard Spaven and Vincent Helbers of Seravince. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED. One listen to the snippets and I'm sure you're going to run to purchase the cd or the digital on itunes.

   R U T H (Album Preview) by Ruth Koleva

Snarky Puppy: We Like It Here

Fresh off a whirlwind of a year with extensive touring, the highest buzz thanks to a video from their live cd/dvd "Family Dinner" going viral resulting in a Grammy win, Snarky Puppy is on top of the world and they are proclaiming "We Like It Here". The latest project finds the collective showing their best side once again, live performance. Recorded with a studio audience over 4 nights in the Netherlands, this cd/dvd combo proves to be another winner as the Snarky crew offer up another fresh batch of experimental and cohesive soulful jazz fusion. Funky most of the time and orchestral throughout. I don't think the fellas will be slowing down anytime soon. Click the link below to purchase in all formats.


The Hue: Heat Gamma

What happens when Houston's most heat seeking progressive soul and hip hop units collide? A sonic explosion. That's just what happened when SOUNDROTATION fav's Radio Galaxy and H.I.S.D. combined to form The Hue and the aftermath of the explosion can be felt worlds away. "Heat Gamma" combines the two forces uniqueness with its otherworldly electric soulful production and skillful lyrical flow. This amount of heat has the capacity level the playing field. You have been warned. Download below.



Also included in the download is more residue from the explosion,  H.I.S.D. "Beta"  

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Record Breakin Music presents Sound Traveler Series #2 w/ Columbia Nights

The ever so progressive Record Breakin' label is back with the next installment in their Sound Traveler series. Next up to bat is SOUNDROTATION fav's Columbia Nights. Inspired by their sessions referred to as Vinyls Fridays, a record listening session where they gather to absorb, converse and be inspired, the trio compiled the most impressive mix for the series filled with the baddest soul, jazz funk and fusion ever recorded from the likes of George Duke, Herbie Hancock, Stevie Wonder and many many more. Check the tracklist and download the mix below.

Tracklist:
George Duke - From Me To You
Jaco Pastorius - Kuru/Speak Like a Child
Dexter Wansel - The Sweetest Pain
Norman Connors - Captain Connors
George Duke - Rashid
Yusef Lateef - Eastern Market
Cortex - L'Enfant Samba
Bob James - I Want To Thank You (Very Much)
Patrice Rushen - What's the Story
Les McCann - Sometimes I Cry
Herbie Hancock - Trust Me
Jon Lucien - Gaku
Sly & The Family Stone - Africa Talks To You "The Asphalt Jungle"
Shuggie Otis - Not Available
Miles Davis - Call It Anything
Band of Gypsies - Who Knows
Weather Report - Manolete
Weather Report - Boogie Woogie Waltz
The Controllers - Hello!
Ed Green - My Love For You And The Ugly
Ronnie Laws - All For You
Darwin Jones - On A Lovely Night Like This
Steve Arrington - Beddie-Biey

Stevie Wonder - Race Babbling
I-Level - Give Me
Columbia Nights - All In

   Sound Traveler series #2 ft. Columbia Nights by Recordbreakin

Daniel Crawford: Home (Africa) ft. Cleveland Jones

Daniel Crawford is steadily building the buzz for his highly anticipated sophomore album "The Awakening". Today the L.A. based musician, producer offers us another peak into the project, the tribally jazzy "Home (Africa)". Channeling the energy of ancient ancestry, this track dig deep into the soil of self discovery as its tribal groove frantically search and yearn to return to the state of natural being. The state of true awareness, with the message sung eloquently by Cleveland Jones, who's orchestral voice just soar into the heavens. Truly can't wait for the album to release but for now, savor this winner of a single and cop it below.


Friday, February 14, 2014

NEW ARTIST ALERT! Zetroc: Atrophy

Shout out to my homie, graphic designer Graham Haynes for turning me on to this talented producer and singer Zetroc. Hailing from Louisiana  Jamey Brown aka Zetroc started in the studio back in 08 just experimenting. Six years later, that experimenting has turned into this glorious debut ep. Dealing with the ups and downs of life including the loss of his mother, Zetroc dug deep into his soul and "Atrophy" was born.

"Atrophy is somewhat of a running joke I had with myself about this record (sorry it took so long) and the title also serves as a testament to what I've learned and applied as a producer and individual. At the time I started working on this I had a limited amount of resources to create, However I felt that these compositions were born out of necessity rather than the luxury of having various tools at my reach. With every sound you may hear in this music; Every single one was a learning process. Which often times left me with mixed feelings of excitement and resentment towards this learning curve and the project in general. In "Atrophy", I wrote about experiences of mine within a particular six year period of my life. From losing my mother, to Deconstructing hopelessness, and finding love in someone who mirrors the worst parts of you as a person...and resenting them for it. Atrophy is my reaction to what could happen if I were to not use my creativity and expression as a means to actually feel alive. No matter how challenging or foreign the process may be, The most frightening thing is always is not knowing what could have happened"

Check out this amazing debut filled with experimental soulful goodness and I'm sure he'll stay on your radar.


Thursday, February 13, 2014

Max Kane: Out Of My Mind / Ebb & Flow

Bay Area producer Max Kane brought the heat with this double sided release.The first joint will certainly have you "Out Of Your Mind" and into the cosmos with its infectious electrofunk groove featuring fellow funksters Zackey Force Funk and Teeko on vocals and talk box.


The second track will take you from the cosmos to higher levels in the stratosphere. Featuring the killer vocals of SOUNDROTATION fav, St.Louis soul prophet Coultrain, "Ebb & Flow" is pure jazzy goodness with a heavy dose horns and live instrumentation added to the synth production. This double sided release was available last year on 7" vinyl via CrossTalk and now it's available digitally along with the instrumentals via itunes. A MUST HAVE!



Reva DeVito: Kisses (Prod.by B. Bravo)

Nice new track from Portland based singer Reva DeVito. Teaming up with Bay Area electrofunkster B. Bravo, the duo bring the sunshiny and bright "Kisses". And thanks to the good people at HW&W Recordings, this kiss of heaven is available as a free download. Get on it.


Ego Ella May: Breathing Underwater

Uk singer Ego Ella May is back with the follow up to her 2013 debut ep "The Tree" that landed in my Best EP's of 2013. On "Breathing Underwater" there is no sophomore jinx as she continue to push the boundaries of r&b with her brand of electronic future soul mostly produced by Mini-D and two tracks by Soulection labelmate IAMNOBODI. She surely will become a staple on the global scene. Check it out and download.


Expansion Sound Vol. 1

To celebrate the relaunch of the Expansions Collective, UK beat craftsman Mecca:83 compiled 30 hip hop, abstract, soulful and jazzy heaters from the some of the hottest producers and fellow beat craftsmen on the global scene including Dutchy, Kan Sano, Spinnerty, Question and many more. This comp can be purchase on a limited edition cassette or at a name your price option below. All proceeds will go to the fundraising campaign of ATL based producer BusCrates whom last week suffered bodily damage in an accident while riding his bike. So give from the heart.


Jairus "J Mo" Mozee: Bridge Through Time

Grammy nominated producer, musician Jairus "J Mo" Mozee (Anthony Hamilton, Jill Scott) uploaded his nice and smooth cover of Lonnie Liston Smith's lesser known song "Bridge Through Time" to his soundcloud page. Playing every instrument in the production, J Mo has put a nice 21st century polish on the joint. Check it out.


Nicholas Ryan Gant: Something Like Love

Love is definitely in the air on this day of Valentine and Nicholas Ryan Gant has gotten a whiff of it. Minutes ago Mr. Ghetto Falsetto posted a new song "Something Like Love" to his bandcamp page. The tune finds him crooning to a acoustic guitar accompaniment reminiscent of "Ms. Celie's Blues", about that carefree feeling. Check it out and download.



Little Dragon: Klapp Klapp

It's official, the Swedish outfit Little Dragon will make their triumphant return with their much anticipated fourth album "Nabuma Rubberband" on May 13th and from the sounds of the killer first single "Klapp Klapp", they show absolutely no signs of slowing down. It is every bit of the dope 21st century new wave that has made them a force to be reckoned with. Check it out below and get it by preordering the album on itunes.



Rachel Eckroth: Words Don't Mean

NYC based singer Rachel Eckroth is offering another glimpse into her highly anticipated album "Let Go". Produced by keyboardist, composer Jesse Fischer, "Words Don't Mean" takes you on a psychedelic trip with its mix of soul, rock and a hint of folk. Heavy horns strumming guitars, marching drum and a dark bassline pave the way as Rachel sing her song of clarity. Check it out and purchase at a name your price option below.


AB & 14KT: Can I Be Your Lover (Video)

The homies AB and 14KT drop the first official video from their collaborative album "Saturn Return", an album that made my Top 10 Soul Albums of 2013 list. And since the story of the album is predominantly about growing in the game of love and we are approaching Valentine's Day, it's befitting that they chose the sexy, boombapstic tune "Can I Be Your Lover" for this occasion. Follow this couple in the vid as they deal with the all realness that a relationship bring below and if you haven't, I URGE YOU to cop "Saturn Return" here and NOW!

Columbia Nights: Heart Aglow

SOUNDROTATION favs, DC based electrosoul group Columbia Nights are back just in time for St. Valentine. And in true CN fashion, they dig deep in the crates to put their fresh and modern spin on "Heart Aglow", an obscure song originally recorded by the early 80's British band I-Level.Check it out and get the free download.


Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Sun Circle: I Won't Let You Down

It's been five years since the release of UK producer Simon S and singer Deborah Jordan's debut album as Sun Circle. At long last the duo is back with new music. "I Won't Let You Down" is the first glimpse from their upcoming follow up and it keeps its promise. Simon's slow and moody production with dark strings set the pace with Deborah's airy vocals offering the light and beauty. Check it out and get the free download below.



The Decoders: Adventures In Paradise ft. Alice Russell

The Decoders are back in the groove with the next single from their upcoming album "Adventures In Paradise: A Tribute To Minnie Riperton". This time the L.A. based collective tackle the title track, which also is the title track of Minnie's third album, and in Decoders fashion, they take the song on a true "Adventure". Recruiting the powerful vocals of UK soul siren Alice Russell (Quantic, Bah Samba), they extract the funk of the original and inject it with afro inspired rhythms coupled with fiery horns making the arrangement full and powerful. Minnie would be proud. Check it out and cop the single below.


Giant Step presents Sonic Boom Vol. 4

Giant Step and Maiya Norton are back with with the next installment in their "Sonic Boom" series and like the previous, volume 4 packs a mean punch showcasing some of the hottest artists from the bubbling underground scene including some SOUNDROTATION fav's like Coultrain, Iman Omari, Muhsinah, Joya Mooi and many more. Get the free download below.


Jesse Boykins III: Amen Awoman (Prod. by Melo X)

The hardest working man on the underground music scene is back with a glorious new tune celebrating the true meaning of love and romance. Produced by friend and longtime collaborator Melo X, "Amen Awoman" brings the message of true oneness between the sexes. One not existing without the other. Check it out.


Monday, February 10, 2014

"PREMIER" Bobby Earth: Candyland (Video)

Houston based phenom and Dove Society member Bobby Earth premiered a new video today for his tune "Candyland". The video find the 19 year old singer, producer in adolescent romance mode as he catch eyes with a young lady in the candy store and a taste of sweetness send him to dreamland. Just in time for your Valentine. Check it out below and if you haven't already, stream/download "Bobby Earth's The Book of Genesynth" mixtape for free HERE!

 

Friday, January 24, 2014

Sandra St. Victor: Spirit Talk (Ty Macklin Alpha Omega Remix)


Enjoying the buzz from her long awaited return with her album "Oya's Daughter" in the fall, Sandra St. Victor is now gearing up to release remixes of song from the album. For the first, she returned to her hometown of  Dallas where her longtime friend and collaborator Ty Macklin put a soulful and jazzy drum n' bass spin on her tune "Spirit Talk".  Check out the snippet and prepare.


Thursday, January 23, 2014

Kan Sano: 2.0.1.1 (Preview)

I've had a love affair with the music of Japanese pianist, composer Kan Sano since meeting him some eight or nine years ago on Myspace. I even installed translator just so that I can read his posts online. 2014 is already looking to be a killer year for music and the announcement last week that he's coming with a new album sealed the deal.

From the preview, "2.0.1.1." is already threatening to make it on my Best Of  2014 list and it's only January and the preview is only five minutes. But in that short time span, I was wowed. You hear many elements comparable to his last project Bennetrhodes and so much more. This album make its rounds in jazz, funk, a little pop and a hint of classical influence with guest appearances from Benny Sings and Monday Michiru. If all of this happens in the five minute snippet, I surely can't wait til February 5th to hear it in its entirety. And did I mention that the cover art is ridic? Check it out.


Jazzanova: Now There Is We

The mighty Jazzanova is back with a new single. Keeping the momentum of their recent live recording "Funkhaus Studio Sessions" singer Paul Randolph returns to deliver an uplifting message on the soulful winner "Now There is We". This new single finds the collective dodging pigeonholes with its blend of soulful pop and nu disco utilizing a mix of deep bass lines, instrumentation and live drum programming. Check out the snippet and cop on itunes.


Tay Walker: Karma (Video)


After amazing us with his self titled ep and having his talents displayed on The Internet's blazing album "Feel Good" that landed in the top spot on my Best Soul Album of 2013 list, Tay Walker is back and setting the stage for an amazing 2014 with the announcement of his forthcoming project "25 Hours A Day". The first taste comes in the form of this soulful ballad about the game of love and reaping what you sow. Checkout the black and white video of "Karma" that follows the singer as he sits and reflect on the situation.

Slakah The Beatchild: Something About Her / Byram's Groove (Cut A Rug)


It's official, fans of Slakah The Beatchild will have to wait just a little bit longer for the release of his highly anticipated album "Soul Movement Vol. 2" that he first announced a year ago. The release date has been moved from January 28th to sometime in March. To get us ready (as if we weren't already LOL), the Toronto based musician, producer and the BBE label dropped an official two track single. Both "Something About Her" and "Byram's Groove (Cut A Rug)" are midtempo jams with an 80's flare. 808, synths, a little breakbeat and a lot of groove. Check them both out below and purchase them here.




Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Zara McFarlane: If You Knew Her


At last, Brownswood Recordings has released the much anticipated follow up album by UK chanteuse Zara McFarlane and I can assure you that there's no jinx with this sophomore effort. Aptly titled "If You Knew Her", this album shows Zara's tremendous growth as a songwriter and an artist as she go deep into her soul to deliver songs jazz, soul and folk tales of love, temptation, social injustice and self empowerment. Included is her highly sought after cover of Junior Murvin's "Police & Thieves" and the swinging, scatting "Angie La La" that features Leron Thomas on trumpet and guest vocals. Check out the snippets and cop now.


NEW ARTIST ALERT: introducing Bernie Levv


Introducing a fresh new face and voice on the scene. 19 year old Bernie Levv is already showing the maturity and versatility of an artist that's been in the game for years. the Chicago based singer has only just two songs on her soundcloud page, both of which serve as tasters for her upcoming project "Signs". Her most recent upload, "Without", finds Bernie lending her edgy and jazzy alto tones to a cosmic slow churning electrosoul beat courtesy of Amsterdam based beat craftsman L. Dinero. While her first release "Time" find the singer upping the ante with an uptempo groove with tribal inflections produced by Chicago based beatmaker WeDrillin. Checkout both below and stay tuned for more.



Rob Milton: Electric Feel


Rob Milton never ceases to amaze. The New Jersey based singer is starting his (and our) new year off with a bang with the release of his new album "Electric Feel" and advance warning, a neck brace is required. Hooking up again with producer Roman Norfleet of Black Fantastic fame, the duo craft soul tunes of the most electrifying order. Pulsating, cosmic and funky headnodders that knock hard. Lyrics full of nostalgia, love and hope for the future. Take the journey and cop below.


Bossa Zuzu: Under Leaves Under Sky


A glorious release and long awaited sophomore album from L.A. based band Bossa Zuzu. Led by saxophonist Dan Reckard and guitarist Capital Guitarra, the collective's second album "Under Leaves Under Sky" goes head on with its bossa grooves that recall the greats works of the legendary Brazilian artists including Antonio Carlos Jobim, The Gilberto's and Walter Wanderley. Pure sunshine and beaches.Produced by multiple Grammy winning jazz drummer Peter Erskine, this album is destined to be called a 21st Century bossa classic. Give a listen and purchase below.




Mndsgn: Inedia EP


Our good peeps at Fresh Selects dropped the second release on their newly formed record label yesterday. The "Inedia EP" serves as the companion piece to their first release as it is remixes to beatmaker Mndsgn's "Breatharian" tape. The ep include one new track and remixes from Black Spade, Zeroh, Iman Omari and Sonnymoon who all their bit of cosmicness to an already spacey project. Check it out below and if you haven't already, cop both.


Tara Carosielli: The Opposite Game


I love when I have down time to just surf the net in search of amazing new artist and new music. I stumbled upon the beautiful soprano voice of  Tara Carosielli and I couldn't be happier. As a fresh face on the British scene, Tara has already amazed in just a matter of months with the upload of three songs to her youtube and soundcloud pages. Her latest tune "The Opposite Game" is a killer soulful r&b track with and electropop edge. No word about future projects. For now I'll just savor what she has dropped so far. Check her out.




Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Dego & Kaidi


Dego McFarlane (4hero) and Kaidi Tatham (Agent K) are simply the Gods of UK broken beat and future funk. At this point, they're pretty much carrying the genre on their shoulders. Having recorded together for well over a decade, the duo drops a new project on the burgeoning label Eglo Records. This self titled ep is every bit of the classic jazz fusion, funk and boogie inspired future soul you'd expect from the pioneer with killer keyboard, synth bass and a hint of Jamaican funk. The digital release is January 27th but the twelve inch vinyl can be copped now here. Check out the snippets.


Read full review of Dego & Kaidi - Dego & Kaidi on Boomkat.com ©

Denitia Odigie: Weekend


And speaking of  NYC based singer Denitia Odigie, she also dropped a new single this month. "Weekend" is a beautiful jazz meets spacey soul inspired ballad with electric and acoustic guitar lines as its driving force. Denitia's voice and harmonies are pure angelic as she lay out her plans for a magical siesta. Check it out and cop it below.


Sly5thAve: Deme ft. Denitia


Musician, composer Sylvester Uzoma Onyejiaka II aka Sly5thAve has been heavy on my radar since being introduced to him through his collaboration with keyboardist Jesse Fischer just a few months back. His work as The Clubcasa Chamber Orchestra landed on my Best EP's of 2013 list and now he is getting in gear for the February 11th release of his debut album "Akuma". Last week he debuted the second single via Revive Music.

"Deme" is a glowing contemporary jazz fusion track that recall some of the best works on labels like Muse in the 70's. The track makes great use of the full ensemble. Haunting horn lines, stellar shuffling drum and percussion, the pulse of the upright, killer guitar work and sweet vocals harmonies from singer Denitia Odigie (denitia and sene.). Check it out and then head on over to the label's bandcamp page to preorder the album.


Tiombe Lockhart: Can't Get Enough


Singer Tiombe Lockhart (Cubic Zirconia) is back on the scene with a new song and video. Produced by Scottish producer Hudson Mohawke, "Can't Get Enough" will certainly leave you wanting more with its infectious tribal, electropop groove. The accompanying video will entrance you with its imagery and effects. A true afro surreal journey with Tiombe as the cosmic goddess. Check it out below and purchase the single here.

 

Coultrain: WARSOUL: Electro-Acoustic Beat Sessions


Check out this killer footage of St. Louis soul virtuoso Coultrain performing at the WARSOUL: Electro-Acoustic Beat Sessions in Warsaw. His second show while on his European tour supporting his latest album "Jumbo Mumbo Jumbo" which landed on my best of 2013 list. The band include his album's producer Ben Lamar on Korg, flugelhorn and percussion as well as Warsaw's own Night Marks Electric Trio.


He still has shows left on this tour in Switzerland and Belgium. If you're in those regions the 24th and 25th check his schedule here for venue and info.

Various Assets - Not For Sale 2013: RBMA NYC


The Red Bull Music Academy is back with the next installment in their "Various Assets - Not for Sale" series. Once again showcasing some of the eclectic music created by various musicians, producers and beatmakers during the academy's season. This time it's the class of NYC 2013 including Stephen "Thundercat" Bruner, Jameszoo, Throwing Snow, Louis Baker, Dam Funk and 52 other participants. 30 tracks total. Check it out and get the free download.

Also, if you're an up and coming musician, producer etc., RBMA is accepting applications for its 2014 workshops that will be held in Tokyo starting Oct. 12 thru Nov. 14th. You have until March 18th to apply here.


J. Mitchell: Rapture

I first fell in love with the voice of J. Mitchell through her track with Ta'Raach & The Lovelution back in 2006. Since then the L.A. based singer has collaboration with some that regions finest including Exile, Fashawn. Recently she had a few appearances on Coultrain's latest album "Jungle Mumbo Jumbo" and has also been an active member in Shafiq Husayn's band Dove Society. Summer 2014, Ms. Mitchell is promising to release her highly anticipated debut album titled "The Pharaoh's Parade".

To get the ball rolling, she dropped to the first taste on her bandcamp page. She describes "Rapture" as "a funky cosmic lullaby" as she sing her tale of infinite impossibilities over Shafiq's classic production. Check it out, get the free download and prepare.


Amp Fiddler: Basementality 2


It's been eight years since Amp Fiddler's last album (six since his collaboration album with Sly & Robbie) feeding his fans with every now and then guest appearances on projects including Trus'me and Hundred Strong. Last night Detroit's soul funk God set the music underground on fire with the announcement of a new project that dropped today.

If you recall, his first project in the new millennium that reintroduced the world to the one time Parliament / Funkadelic member, was the "Basementality EP". So breaking his silence with the release of "Basementality 2" just may be a sign of another rebirth and that we probably can expect more visibility from him in the near future.

Always keeping it soulful and funky, on part two, Mr. Fiddler steps slightly away from the "dancier" soul style he's been associated with in recent years giving a fresher and raw sound complete with heavy live instrumentation that incorporate elements of 60's soul, 70's funk and a little psychedelica. Even has a contribution from Raphael Saadiq on the track "Take It". Also include funk dance remix from L.A. based producer, musician Daniel Crawford. Long story short, the man is back and back with a vengeance. Take a listen and cop below.