Keke Palmer | Awaken Mixtape
By Peggy Oliver
Keke Palmer started chasing her dream of becoming a double threat entertainer since she was in grade school. And she had the advantage of developing her voice in her mother’s home recording studio. Once the very gifted Palmer (born Lauren Keyana ‘Keke’ Palmer) ventured out to make her dream reality, she went through the motions of various rejections, including her audition being edited out of American Idol’s short-lived spin off series, American Juniors.
The New Voices of Today Presents…
Chelsea Baratz | In Faith
by Brent Faulkner
It is always a ‘breath of fresh air’ to hear a young, new voice in jazz. This time, the new voice comes from über talented saxophonist and composer, Chelsea Baratz, who sounds like a seasoned veteran at the ripe ‘old’ age of twenty four. On her debut effort, In Faith, creativity runs rapid whether it be funk-oriented numbers or more cerebral, neo-traditionalist cuts.
Amber Ojeda | Here I Am
By Brent Faulkner
There is nothing like hearing a promising new singer who can be defined as ‘genre-bending’ by nature. Upstart Amber Ojeda exemplifies the title of ‘genre-bender’ with her strong first effort, Here I Am, a nine song set that is consistent from start to finish.
Gail Pettis | Here in the Moment
by Peggy Oliver
When a jazz singer revisits a standard that has been tackled time and again, it is quite the task to express their musical personality without having to alter the integrity of the original. The experienced jazz vocalist should set the tone for his or her self and their accompanists to create a colorful musical canvas for their audiences.
Tracey Harris | Love 365
by Peggy Oliver
Tracey Harris is one of those soulful voices many may not be familiar with. She was first introduced professionally alongside a now popular contemporary jazz player who was also making his debut. Harris sang background on “Feels Good” and the title track of Najee’s 1986 Grammy Award-nominated, Najee’s Theme.
Soul Unsigned, The Urban Soul Connection, Vol. 1
Soul Unsigned is exactly what it sounds like to the ear – a group of soul artists who are
‘upstarts,’ unsigned to a record label, or signed to independent labels. This compilation in …
Change | Change Your Mind
by Marv D.
Change had a good run in 80’s starting with R&B Legend Luther Vandross singing the “The Glow Of Love”, which eventually launched his singing career. And a lot more hits followed. Their last album “Turn On Your Radio,” also had several hits… and that was it. After that, there was no more Change. The careers that came after the recording days allowed them to become major stars now.
Various Artists – C Notes for Haiti
By Peggy Oliver
It seemed like just a minute ago when a cross-section of urban entertainers from Stevie Wonder to Wyclef Jean were making music for one of several fundraisers to collect money for the aftermath of the January earthquake in Haiti. Other famous artists stepped in to produce fundraising singles on behalf of the Haiti earthquake victims. Kirk Franklin and a choir of gospel’s finest under the umbrella Artists United for Haiti asked the question, “Are You Listening.” Another superstar collective revisited the 1985 landmark anthem, “We Are The World,” also celebrating the 25th anniversary of the landmark recording.
L’Renee | Europe non-stop.non-pop
By Marv D.
As Founder and CEO of L’Renee Musique Inc, you have to wonder where does she find the time to record five cd’s and produce an artist on her own label. Her fan base, mostly women, have grown to a staggering 100k plus and still growing. L’Renee, who is very active in the community, has been a spokesperson for several causes.
Lynn Riley | Too Cool
by Terrill Hanna
Just a taste of contemporary jazz, I believe, is a statement Philadelphia native Lynn Riley wanted to leave on the minds and palates of music listeners through the album, “Too Cool”. Gently swayed with an aura of island fresh, breezy musical overtones along with a personal dedication to one of jazz’s trademark players in Grover Washington. Ms. Riley shares an inspiration to culture & influence from her extensive travels throughout various places around the planet & transcended those measures into a 10 track collection of upbeat, romantic & peaceful compositions.