I am sitting in a coffee shop with my headphones as I am writing this music review – immediately after pressing play, I noticed my head couldn’t stop moving and my feet were tapping on the wooden floor – people were looking at me a little bit, but I didn’t really care, because “Little Bird” is one of those tracks that want to make you move unapologetically. Hot Potato Band set out to create a unique sonic texture by combining great pop and R&B with funk and “Big Band” sounds. Think of what would happened if Maroon 5 where to jam with Vulfpek!
The result is a driven, eclectic and bright sound with a positive atmosphere and a really stunning groove, perfect to appeal to listeners of all walks of life.
The song has a driven and edgy feel, but it takes a step back in the bridge, toning it down a notch only to bring it back later on into the mix! It’s not easy to create catchy music without sounding trite and without compromising on the integrity of the musicianship, but Hot Potato Band certainly nailed it on this track!
Lovin’ is nothing less than the sound of soul music moving with the times. Free Soul Effect, a duo from Indiana, are all about deconstructing the genre and rebuilding it from the ground up using electro beats, R’n’B groove, pop brassiness and they even find space to thread some rap through the centre. What they never lose sight of though is the inherent passion and euphoria upon which the genre has always relied.
Free Soul Effect sit a crossroads, one where a road which joins retro-soul with the future of EDM crosses one that connects R’n’B grooves with the commercial potential of the pop market. It is here that they currently build their tantalising sounds but from such a location they could head out in any new direction that they chose. Or just stay here and through a party on their own terms.
Tee Noah is a rare phenomenon in today’s musical climate. Someone who is able to blend accessible R’nB, dance, pop, even rap and hip-hop vibes together into songs which are both familiar yet fresh and on top of that create something which rises above mere commerciality. He has found or rather deftly created that magic combination of tracks that are infectious and accessible, and at the same time mature and exploratory. Not something you stumble across that often in a genre normally aiming for the quick buck.
But his debut ep, Out of My Mind is a brilliant showcase of how you can play to both ends of the market. The pop kids and club goers will certainly find a lot to love in its sultry grooves and vibrant moves but his ability to wander way outside the usual generic boundaries, throw in rock guitars and neo-classical harmonies will also appeal to those looking to see where popular music goes next.
Contrast would be the best word to describe singer-songwriter/producer Rushes. Growing up in a small rural town in Ireland isn’t something you normally associate with soulful cutting edge electronic sounds. The time had finally come for Rushes to fly the coop and explore his opportunities by moving to Dublin permanently to refine his craft and link up with innovators who understood his vision.
In 2017, Rushes joined creative collection Diffusion Lab, who has the likes of Soulé and Jafaris in their ranks to bring his diverse ideas alive. Rushes draws inspiration from artists like N.E.R.D, D’Angelo, Frank Ocean, Radiohead, Jai Paul, Kanye West, Marvin Gaye and Prince but never limits his sonic palette.
Rushes debut single “Wild High” droped on May 26th. An alluring blend of electro-RnB infused with smooth wavy vocals and perfectly polished production.
With “Wild High”, Rushes launches himself into the eye of the music industry with the intent of being heard. For visuals, he teamed up with Gorilla – Nathan Barlow, responsible for Soulé, Jafaris recent music videos.
James “GNRA” Douglas is a spark that reminds us of something more than a trend bound by a generation. He provokes an exercise in nostalgia because he reminds you of the last time music made you feel this way. His voice is a thoughtful gift, which upon hearing makes an undeniable impact much like those soulful artists that came before him. And much like those who came before him, there’s a level of detail in the inflection of his tone that is a blend of the gift and being a conscientious student of the art form. There’s a texture of grit that hints at the journey of his experiences. There’s credibility. You can hear that he’s been somewhere.
Born to a Jamaican-Irish dad and Norwegian-Irish mother, GNRA’s parents were ministers in a gospel band that frequently traveled for the sole purpose to sing God’s praise. His mother was the first to recognize that he had an ability to sing. At the age of 5 she asked him if he knew the words to one of the songs and after demonstrating that he could memorize them, she allowed him to sing with them. The opportunity was electrifying and he knew then that this is what made him happy. Although he continued to perform with his parents’ band, it wasn’t until he was 10 that he was given formal direction on how to sing from his diaphragm. The tutelage he received at this age gave him the most valuable lesson he could receive: Outside of being coached on the science behind singing, he was never pushed to sing in a particular style and was told he will find the right note once he believe in his voice. It was from this training that he developed range and began building confidence in his ability to sing. He found his passion.
He pursued opportunities to showcase his vocal ability and was met with success that reaffirmed that he was on the right path. His voice proved to be seasoned. His next greatest triumph also proved to be his greatest test. A classmate and a teacher, who knew he could sing, encouraged him to audition for X Factor during its first run in America. It was during his experience there that he became more assure of himself and his ability. When interviewed about his experience on the show, in the Speakeasy column of the Wall Street Journal, music mogul LA Reid, CEO of Epic Records and a division of Sony Music Entertainment recognized his potential for stardom. Reid stated, “there are people I’ve seen audition already that I hope make it to the finals b/c I really want to work with them. James Douglas was the kid I liked the most. He may be my favorite so far, I wanted it for him.”
However, after being dismissed after making it into the top 20 he lost faith. It was this loss that made him doubt whether he was truly as great as others thought he was. Hurt, he decided to attend college to pursue engineering but found that he was just going through the motions. There was a void that existed and he no longer knew what his purpose was. Still in a rut, he skipped classes and wasted his days in college by making poor choices and experimenting with drugs. In search of the high that music provided, he found himself to be in a state of depression longing to sing while stuck in the prison of the thought that he was no longer capable of performing at a higher level. He found himself in a fog. His parents gave him an ultimatum to get some help but what truly turned him around was divine. Having been raised in the church, among the things that he gleaned that proved to be a sign was the statement that God does not give anyone things they cannot handle. It was clear to him that he could not handle experimenting with drugs any further. This clarity gave him the drive and fortitude to start the process of turning his life around.
GNRA knew all along the gift he had and realized now more than ever it was all he wanted to do. Once he identified with his purpose again, he began to have faith in himself. He was finding the right notes in his life. He stayed clean, pursued studio time and worked with his brother to make music. Others who knew he had talent recognized a change in him. He was serious about his craft. He was ready for opportunity and it found him. After listening to a few demos, Grammy Award-Winning music producer & executive Torrance “Street Symphony” Esmond immediately knew that GNRA was special. He recognized the difference in the power, complexity and soulfulness in the texture of his voice versus others in his age range. Esmond knew GNRA represented a sound that will appeal to the hearts of many. The distinction was clear. GNRA was not a trend. Now given the right direction, Esmond knows the possibilities and wants to share GNRA with the world. Literally.
GNRA’s addition to the music industry is a nod to why music exists. He uses his voice as an instrument to translate his life as he experiences it through song. He believes in his art and his place in it. With every song he wants you to fall in love with music. He wants you to question. He wants you to lose yourself. He wants to inspire. He wants you to understand you as he exposes his fears, triumphs and lows. He can be the soundtrack to your life. Be bold enough to listen. No bias. It will change your life.
Yemimah is an Urban R&B/Pop singer/songwriter who resides in Canada. She is Equatorian, which is East African Sudanese & Arabic decent; the main languages Yemimah speaks are English, Kakwa tribal language and Arabic, which she incorporates into her music.
When Yemimah turned 10 years old she started to write music and learned to play hand bells, electric guitar, and the flute thru her after-school music class. After she had written all of her music her father had brought her to Calgary to record her music at Alchemy Studios. She was discouraged after hearing the recordings because she had never had any experience recording in a studio before. Taking that experience she kept on writing and recording music and coming back to the city every so often to record more music.
Yemimah’s main influences are Jennifer Lopez, Shakira, Rihanna, and cultural influences such as East African & Sudanese artists, watching her Uncles and aunts perform music, play tribal instruments in church back when she lived in Africa. Mixing these influences had led to her singing in English, Arabic and Kakwa, but using a pop, r&b twist to it. These influences are noticed in Yemimahs songs today.
Yemimah released her first r&b/pop songs “It’s Over Now” and “Cycle onto Reverbnation in Sept of 2012, which helped her draw attention from her management team headed by Thomas Williams. Her top single “Make Me Feel” was such a hit that it landed her radio interviews with LCF-RADIO around North America, Brazil, and UK from Carlito Truelife Radio Host and music opportunities from HIP VIDEO opening doors to all types of fans .
Yemimah released her first music video to her hit song “Make Me Feel” following her success with the song she released another hit track “Tell Me Something” Ft/ Jaynova which was released as a music video in June of 2014. The song “Tell Me Something” is a unique blend of pop/ethnic and rap sounds which helped her grow a buzz and recognition for the unique Urban music Yemimah creates today.
Rhea Monet, Recording Artist/Songwriter was born 12th January 1993 in London UK.
Rhea Monet started singing at the age of 6 years old. She was heavily influenced by artists such as Mariah Cary, Whitney Houston, Aaliyah, Alicia Keys, Jill Scott and many more.
Rhea Monet has taken part in performing arts from an early age attending performing arts clubs at weekends during her primary school years, before attending Susi Earnshaw Theatre School for performing arts at a secondary level in North London.
Rhea Monet attended further education at City & Islington College achieving a BTEC National Diploma in Music. While in her first year of college Rhea Monet also attended a summer school at the Musicians Institute in Los Angeles and was the youngest student.
Rhea Monet finally took the leap and moved to the US to pursue her music career and enrol at the Music Institute in Los Angeles and study the Independent Artist Programme.
Rhea Monet has the opportunity to work with people in the industry including Devine Evans and Amir Swain.
Rhea Monet’s Caribbean/ African heritage and her British birth has seen the fusion of her unique sound. Rhea’s love of music has enhanced her electric sound and her experimenting of different genres such as Neo-soul,Urban and R&B sounds being her main influences.
Rhea Monet has performed live in the UK and LA where she develop her stage performance. Rhea is currently releasing new music this year for the world to hear.