Indie neo-soul stylist Carmen Rodgers teaches us the wonders of humanity behind relationships with Hello Human, Volume 1, her first project in six years
Every opportunity for an artist to wear the heart on the sleeve allows them to go as deep as they desire. From her debut CD in 2004, Free, Carmen Rodgers exercises her songwriting rights to create fascinating journals of the complexity behind relationships.
Love Always Wins
An Album Reflection by A. Scott Galloway
Singer/songwriter KEM (Kim Williams) returns with his first album in 6 years since Promise to Love in 2014. As one of Black music’s preeminent love troubadours, the artist continues his richly textured pledges of the heart in a set that fans will surely find well worth the wait.
Playboy Jazz Festival Celebrates 40th Anniversary at The Hollywood Bowl
by A. Scott Galloway
Under clear blue skies, 80-degree temps with a sweet breeze blowin’ on both days, the “Playboy Jazz Festival” celebrated its 40th anniversary with days split almost squarely between World Music leaning on Saturday and Jazz on Sunday.
Saturday June 9 began with the traditional Los Angeles County High School For The Arts Jazz of promising young students followed by Columbian party band Monsieur Perine’. Things got really interesting when blind 17 year-old organ prodigy Matthew Whitaker and his trio wowed the crowd with the passionate and eclectic set list of his original “Play it Back,” the `60s pop hit “More Today Than Yesterday” by Spiral Staircase made famous on the jazz side by Charles Earland, the Brazilian gem “Mais Que Nada,” John Coltrane’s “A Love Supreme,” and the finale of a dual medley of Earth Wind and Fire’s “In the Stone/September” with Stevie Wonder’s “As/I Wish” – what a prodigious talent and people-pleaser.
Sy Smith Blossoms into Full Singer/Songwriter Bloom on “Sometimes a Rose…”
A Record Reflection by A. Scott Galloway
Sy Smith has been a work in progress as a most valuable session and touring singer for others, and a developing artist in her own right with four acclaimed albums behind her. Her latest, Sometimes a Rose Will Grow in Concrete, is her first since 2012, its title foreshadowing that a sister has been through some things but come out the other side steeped in artistry, ancestry and ‘Les Fleur de la Corazon.’
Maysa | Love Is A Battlefield
by Peggy Oliver
Since her instantly recognizable voice graced the British Soul/Jazz outfit Incognito and Stevie Wonder’s Wonderlove, Maysa Leak continues to energize her own career by recording idyllic vocal treats for faithful international audiences.
Soul Basement featuring Jay Nemor | What We Leave Behind
by Peggy Oliver
The embodiment of music, when a vocalist or musician so emphatically chooses, can express how we can observe the world around us and what we take from those experiences in life. The latest work from Soul Basement entitled, What We Leave Behind, crafts a journal that reflects personal retrospectives that speaks to several issues.
Bell Biv DeVoe, Three Stripes
Review written by Brent Faulkner
The 1990s was a time when urban music was flourishing. R&B was hot – particularly New Jack Swing. Hip-hop itself was becoming a massive force. Bell Biv Devoe hail from the glorious 90s, laying claim to one gargantuan, multiplatinum album (Poison) and two gold albums (Hootie Mack most notably).