Sunday, 23 February 2020 19:07 Bill B E-mailPrintPDF

altWe kicked off 2020 enjoying a fab new single from MAYSA.... 'It's Gonna Be Alright'. We "hugely recommended" it ... and why not? Ms Leak is synonymous with soul quality and with input from Chris Davis, Kim Waters and the redoubtable Phil Perry, what's not to like?

We were told that the single heralded an upcoming LP on Maysa's own Blue Velvet Soul Records and while we wait for the album we can enjoy 'It's Gonna Be Alright' one more time in an ab fab new remix courtesy of Brit mix meister, Nigel Lowis. Mr L retains all the charm and smooth soul of the original but adds a few sweet touches of his own... there's a little feel of Quincy Jones's 'Secret Garden', some sophisticated Philly flourishes (well it is Nigel Lowis!) and a few other sweet surprises for good measure.

Without wishing to go over the top, I'd suggest that the Nigel Lowis mix of Maysa's 'It's Gonna Be Alright' will be one of THE tunes of 2020... is that going over the top???

Last Updated on Sunday, 23 February 2020 19:17



Sunday, 23 February 2020 19:02 Bill B E-mailPrintPDF

altFRANK ADDAI is a UK soul veteran. He was part of underground vocal group Nu-Soul and he's penned numerous songs for the Brit soul fraternity. Right now Frank is working with Ian Green ( aka IAM Musik). Green has previously worked with people like Paul Oakenfold, Michael Jackson, Madonna, U2 and Justin Timberlake and now with Frank he's created a sweet soul, Maze-like sophisticated groove, 'Enchanted Lady'.

Frank says: "The song stemmed from a simple phone call I had with I AM Muzik, about my desire to create some nostalgic, soulful music. We Just wanted people to vibe to the music, but also appreciate the musical sensibilities. I AM Muzik led on the production and writing on this record, and as soon as I heard the track, I thought it was a banger. I just had to record it and put it out there".

'Enchanted Lady' will be "out there" at the beginning of March and it's sure to set heads nodding and feet tapping... yes, a little a-Maze-like and a little Alex O'Neal going on too.... a winner!

Last Updated on Sunday, 23 February 2020 19:07



Sunday, 23 February 2020 18:54 Bill B E-mailPrintPDF

altBYRON WALLEN is a UK jazz trumpeter and he's just released his fifth solo album – his first for a very long 13 years! The new 12 tracker is 'Portrait' and Byron explains: "In 'Portrait' I am meditating on identity, culture and what it means to belong...the album pays tribute to the heart, soul and vibrant provenance of the community I call home".

I'm guessing that part of that community is Plumcroft Primary School. The school's choir helps out on three of the tracks – 'Spirit Of The Ancestors', 'Voice Of The Ancestors' and 'Banana Man'. Elsewhere the band is Rob Luft (guitar), Paul Michael (bass) and Rod Young (drums). Not sure though whether it's Young or Wallen on the drum solo track that is 'Warren To Arsenal'. The album credits tell us that the trumpeter/leader also offers percussion (as well as shells and piano) while the Arsenal reference is another nod to community. Byron, you see, has lived in and around Woolwich for some time and the connection is even in the album art work –the cover picture was conceived by Woolwich-based artist Marc Drostle.

BYRON WALLEN; 'Portrait' out now on Twilight/Jaguar Records.

Last Updated on Sunday, 23 February 2020 19:17


Jazz FM Awards 2020

Friday, 21 February 2020 15:05 Charles Waring E-mailPrintPDF

      altThe Jazz FM awards are coming back. They'll be returning to London's Shoreditch Town Hall  on Wednesday 27th May.

 Produced by Serious, the Jazz FM Awards began in 2013 and since then has established global renown as one of the most keenly anticipated nights on the international jazz calendar. A celebration of jazz, soul and blues music, it recognises emerging new talents, established stars and classic icons. Recipients of its wards have ranged from venerable masters such as Quincy JonesThe Rolling Stones, George Benson, Dame Cleo Laine, Blue Note RecordsAhmad Jamal, Ramsey Lewis and Hugh Masekela to rising stars in the shape of Jacob CollierShabaka HutchingsNubya Garcia, Steam Down, Cassie Kinoshi, Zara McFarlaneBinker & Moses. 

Nominations for the event and recipients of the Special Award categories will be announced very soon. Says Nick Pitts, the Content Director of Jazz FM:

“It’s fantastic that the Jazz FM Awards is back in our 30th anniversary year to celebrate the world’s greatest musicians, artists and venues from the past 12 months. We’re delighted to once again be working with our friends at Serious to create this monumental event. We aim to build on previous years’ successes and really shine a light on this creative and innovative world with an evening of live music and pin-drop moments.”

“As always, we are grateful to the jazz community for their continued involvement and also to our sponsors and partners who once again go above and beyond to support this now landmark event.”

The Jazz FM Awards is made possible with support from PRS for Music, PPL, Shoreditch Town Hall, Mishcon de Reya, Lateralize, Cambridge Audio, Arqiva and Oanda.

Last Updated on Saturday, 22 February 2020 16:58



Monday, 17 February 2020 16:08 Bill B E-mailPrintPDF

altGermany's TRAMP RECORDS are rightly known for their esoteric, rare soul and funk collections. Amongst their compilation series is a 'Movements' which has just reached its tenth edition and the 17 tracker is possibly the most interesting to date.

Amongst the many intriguing cuts is a sleazy, greasy jazz/soul version of 'Coming Home Baby' from Ronny Pellers Satin Sound, while jazz anoraks will recognize bassist Cleveland Eaton's early band 'The Kats' with 'Under The Covers'. While we're name dropping, the cut was arranged a by a certain Donny Hathaway! There's Latin soul a la Santana from Brazada ('El Mexicano') while you can also enjoy plenty of embryonic soul/R&B from the late 50s. Rarest groove on offer though is possibly Maxwell's 'Radiation Funk'... no not that Maxwell; rather a band who cut the blistering tune in 1979. Didn't do too much then, but it's now hugely in demand.

MOVEMENTS 10 is released on TRAMP RECORDS on 21st FEBRUARY

Last Updated on Monday, 17 February 2020 16:19


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