Mateo | Love & Stadiums

Album Review: Mateo | Love & Stadiums
By Susan Mutharia

I liked his voice when I first heard him sing Til She Goes.  I developed a crush on his voice when I heard him sing Complicated. I knew it was love when I heard him sing Don’t Shoot Me Down featuring Goapele & Ab Liva.  After the release mixtape Love and Stadiums, I affirmed my deeply rooted love and appreciation for the music of the incredible new voice of Mateo.

Mateo to me represents the power and effect of social networking. I first learnt of his work after reading a tweet from the actor and author Hill Harper. As much as I love and appreciate music, I must confess that at first I checked him out because I thought he is hot. Then I heard him sing and thought, “…wow, he can sing too.”  Later, I came to learn that Hill Harper was indirectly responsible for getting Mateo signed to his former label MySpace records.

Long before Myspace records, the universe had its way of highlighting the path of Mateo’s destiny. After decoding his genetics, I learned that music is encrypted in his DNA. His paternal grandmother was a touring singer, a person whose counsel he has sought on numerous times. His maternal grandfather on the other hand was a legendary blues and jazz guitarist who played at King’s record where James Brown recorded.

While attending the prestigious Morehouse College in Atlanta, Mateo tried to get an internship with the Boston Consulting Group. Interestingly enough, his first interviewer was John Legend who at that time was working for the group. He was also doing some music stuff like playing for Lauren Hill which Mateo thought was cool. Were these signs from the universe?

While rubbing the right shoulders helps, one has got to have a good voice, great perception, great work ethic, integrity and determination to make a mark in the musical jungle. Mateo has it all. It was after graduating and completing a couple of internships that Mateo realized how much he really loved music (and not so much his job). He quit his job and music became his full time love.

Love and Stadiums features a couple of new tracks and also some tracks from mixtape series Underneath The Sky. The album was produced and released under Krucial Entertainment and features various collaborations including the incredible voice of Goapele, Andra who has her own mixtape (LoveIs4Suckaz) and rapper Ab Liva.

His music recipe stirs in some R&B, Soul, organic piano, pop and alternative mix. The combination of his sultry voice, piano skills and an award winning production team bring a fresh spin to some familiar songs in the tracks Empire State of Mind and Bad Romance. It is songs like Paris and Doubt showcase his vocal range while managing to keep us engaged.

Five years from now, I hope not to be listening to Love and Stadiums mixtape but to be showing some love in large stadiums at sold out Mateo concerts. He has the skill, he has the talent, he has the support and he has us, the fans who are willing to listen. His new album Love and Stadiums can be downloaded for free (Yes, I said free) by clicking here. Please tell us what you think after you listen to the album.

Susan Mutharia
The Urban Music Scene

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