Soul and Jazz and Funk Latest


Wednesday, 26 August 2015 19:32 Bill B E-mailPrintPDF

Billionaire_on_Soul_Street.4.1We don't have actual access to his bank records but on his latest release, the effervescent NARADA MICHAEL WALDEN would have us believe that he's a 'Billionaire On Soul Street'.

Released on Tarpan Records (Narada's own label), the upbeat, feel-good tune is the lead single from our man's upcoming 'Evolution' long player which is set for release on October 23rd.

Narada Michael Walden needs no real introduction here: but to summarize... he's produced countless big, big names including: Aretha Franklin, Steve Winwood, Ray Charles, Whitney Houston, George Michael, Mariah Carey, Barbara Streisand, Lionel Ritchie, Elton John, Sting, Carlos Santana, Shanice Wilson, Tevin Campbell, Lisa Fischer, Stevie Wonder, Tom Jones, Jeff Beck and The Temptations. He was awarded Grammys for Producer of the Year in 1988, Album of the Year for the movie soundtrack 'The Bodyguard' in 1993 and the R&B Song of the Year in 1985 for Aretha Franklin's 'Freeway of Love'. Billboard Magazine also named him one of the "Top Ten Producers with the Most Number One Hits".

Narada is also a top artist in his own right. Beginning as a drummer with the pioneering Mahavishnu Orchestra (replacing Billy Cobham at 19 years old), Narada also toured with Jeff Beck, Tommy Bolin, and Weather Report before setting off on his own trajectory. He's now recorded twelve solo sets and performed in the world's top concert halls... most famously at the wonderful 2012 White House Show with B.B. King, Buddy Guy, Mick Jagger, Trombone Shorty and Booker T Jones.

'Billionaire On Soul Street' is big, fast paced number that oozes optimism and energy... it's available now from the usual download portals! Great cover shot too... love the drums!

Last Updated on Wednesday, 26 August 2015 19:36



Sunday, 23 August 2015 17:48 Bill B E-mailPrintPDF

G_Era_PhotoG'ERA is the odd but current working name of a Detroit band who were formerly called Bernard Gibson and Liv-N-Proof.

Mr Gibson has a long music pedigree. In 1974 he formed his very first group – The Expos. Made up of Bernard, his brothers Arthur and Willie, brother in law Anthony Pilgrim and a friend Lucien Thompson, they cut one single for Detroit's Stall label. Then as the Exportations they recorded a whole LP for United Artists and a pair of collectable singles for Vir-Ro.

By the end of the 70s the group were using the Liv-N-Proof name and recording for Ju Par though to complicate matters Bernard also sang with Five Special (managed by Dramatic, Ron Banks). He was so well thought of in and around Detroit that he also worked with various incarnations of the Floaters, the Jacksons and Dennis Edwards Temptations Review.

After the deaths of his brothers and brother in law, Gibson formed G'Era with Gregory Palmer and Douglas Gaddy and the trio went on to cut a couple of songs for A J Sparks Detroit-based Black Smoke Productions.

Both songs – a beaty, Temptations style ballad 'Loving You' and a harmonic 'Making Love' (more Temptation flavours) – have just been licensed by UK soul specialist, SOUL JUNCTION RECORDS and they're now available as a limited edition 7" single. Both songs are a real throwback to Detroit's Golden Era – a fact underlined by the fragile falsetto of Douglas Gaddy on 'Loving You'. It bears a remarkable likeness to a certain Eddie Kendricks!

Find out more @


Last Updated on Sunday, 23 August 2015 18:09



Sunday, 23 August 2015 17:45 Bill B E-mailPrintPDF

nc'THE NEW COOL' is the title of a new collaborative effort between one half of smooth jazz outfit, Fourplay.... pianist BOB JAMES and bassist NATHAN EAST.

The idea for the album came from Chris Gero, head of the Yamaha Entertainment Group who invited East and James to Nashville to record with state-of-the-art Yamaha instruments. The duo accepted and came up with an audacious 11 tracker that might surprise those who know them chiefly via their work with Fourplay.

The music on 'The New Cool' is, well, way cooler... more straight ahead jazz than the smoother sounds that Fourplay are rightly famous for. That fact is evident from the start with the album's title cut – pastoral piano wanderings engaging with meandering bass lines.

The album is largely a two hander though the strings of the Nashville Recording Orchestra star on several cuts - notably the cinematic 'All Will Be Revealed' which also features a touch of East's celebrated vocalese. Then on the climatic 'Turbulence' and the Latino-flavoured 'Canto Y Danza' there's welcome input from percussionist Rafael Padilla and drummer Scott Williamson.

Biggest surprise, however, is the cover of Willie Nelson's 'Crazy'. The Nashville strings add plenty of sweetness while Vince Gill (yes, we're in Nashville, remember) offers his usual authoritative vocal and it's clear that James and East were having great fun here.

BOB JAMES & NATHAN EAST'S 'The New Cool' is released on September 18 on Yamaha Entertainment Records.

Last Updated on Sunday, 23 August 2015 17:58



Sunday, 23 August 2015 15:07 Bill B E-mailPrintPDF

lgFor a short time in the early 70s pop star LESLEY GORE (remember 'It's My Party' and 'You Don't Own Me', both, by the way, produced by Quincy Jones) was pacted to Motown's Mowest imprint.

She cut just one album for Gordy's West Coast experiment ... a lushly produced 'Someplace Else Now'. Produced by Joe Porter and released in 1972, the 12 tracker, like most of Mowest's product, bombed and till now the set has never been reissued.

Now US reissue specialist Real Gone Music have made the album available with the full co-operation of Motown/Universal.

Musically, it's a very middle of the road affair and heavy on the ballads – some more dramatic than others. It's the kind of thing that Diana Ross was working on at much the same time, though with a little more conviction and a bit more success.

Highlight here is the jaunty 'Don't Wanna Be One' (a hint of the Bacharachs) while 'No Sad Songs' is the most soulful ballad.

Lesley Gore died earlier this year aged just 65 and we're sure that her fans will be delighted with the reissue of 'Someplace Else Now'.

Last Updated on Sunday, 23 August 2015 17:59



Saturday, 22 August 2015 16:04 Bill B E-mailPrintPDF

powerEARL YOUNG and DARRYL GRANT'S '(Don't Underestimate) The Power Of Love ' has taken the soul world by storm.... scaling all the credible soul charts. Little wonder ... the tune, crafted by the Trammps' drummer and sometime Spectrum front man, melds the very best of classic Motown with the special sound of Philadelphia.

The duo call their sound 'MoPhilly' and that flavour is brought out further via an upcoming remix of the song from Nigel Lowis. Lowis says that he aimed to "capture the "purity" and "essence" of the powerful sound that Norman Harris , Ronnie Baker, and Earl Young created on the floor of the city of Philadelphia's Sigma Sound's Studio A back in the 1970's." I think he's succeeded.

Earl Young & Darryl Grant - The Power Of Love - Nigel Lowis Remix - DSG - Released 28th Sept

Last Updated on Saturday, 22 August 2015 16:12




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