Friday, January 27, 2012

Exclusive: Homemadesoul - 'Inspired by a True Story'

It's been a while since I've highlighted some straight soul. It most certainly wasn't that I didn't want to. I just haven't heard any indie stuff come through my inbox. Well, that changed.

Homemadesoul is the stagename (Yes, just like that.) of Curtis Clark Jr. The Floridian singer/songwriter just released his first EP, 'Inspired by a True Story.' The project is a 9 song Classic Soul/R&B trip with some minor Jazz inflections. Homemadesoul delivers solid vocal performances, fantastic writing and some absolutely beautiful melodies and harmonies. His voice really shines when he's using his middle and upper register. The voice really opens up at those points and showcases a wonderful tone and timbre. "Heartbreak Hotel" and "Get This" are solid examples of how the quality of his voice changes as he moves through his range.

Mr. Clark has been heavy on his job promoting his work around the world. There aren't many independent artists that can say they've performed in Kuwait, Iraq, Guatemala and Japan in the last year! On top of the traveling, he was nominated for four 2012 Beachcomber Music Awards to close out the year 2011. The Florida local publication selected him in the categories of Best Male Vocalist, Best Singer/Songwriter, Best R&B/Soul Artist and Best Original Song for "Let's Stay Together." Play on, Playa! Winners will be announced on February 19th.

IBATS is a strong first effort. Very strong. At points, I would have liked a few tweaks to production but those moments are far and few between. I send this one out to you with a full seal of approval. Support this musician and Air Force veteran by checking out the stream below. Buy the entire release for as little as $1. One. Whole. Dollar.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Soope - "When You Come Home" Official Music Video

Damn, back to back posts containing the US flag! What a coincidence, eh? (NoCanadian)

If you've been following for a while, then you may remember this song from last year. It was as if Soope new what I needed in my life at that time. Here we are 8 months later and "When You Come Home" has resurfaced with an official video.

The video was shot in conjunction with some US troops' return to their home state of Illinois after a tour in Afghanistan. If you have served or know someone who has, then you know how tough those lengthy deployments can be on families. As a thank you for their service, Soope welcomed them home with a performance. He also signed some autographs and gave away copies of his latest mixtape, 'Where in the World is Soope?'

Check the video out and definitely give any soldiers you know the heads up.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

MaG - "Freedom"

It was a clear and concise introduction. Something to the tune of, "Good day. My name is MaG. Here's my song. I hope you dig it." Of course, I paraphrase. I appreciate that simplicity. It allowed me to get to the music quickly. The music...

Though MaG's home base is right here in NY, I had not heard of him or seen him out and about. Not abnormal at all given that this city is almost literally spilling into the surrounding waters with people. Yet still, I should have heard of MaG. As a matter of fact, if I find out any one of the many industry heads I know knew of this MC and didn't tell me I'm going to hold them personally responsible!

I hit the link and pressed play. The Ta-Ku produced track immediately grabbed my attention. That classic Hip-Hop lo-fi blaring sample thing gets me every time. I immediately got a visual. Big stage, bright flashing lights and thousands of hands in the air. Then a graffiti writer bobbing her head to "Freedom" as she threw up a crazy wild style piece. Then break dancers throwing some freakish power moves in Union Square while bystanders clap in time.

See, this song is so Hip-Hop. The way I knew it growing up. Loud. See all definitions of loud. The Bronx MC has plenty to say through his masterful handle of cadence. I don't need to break it down for you as you're all intelligent people. (That's why you read me, right?) Just listen to the track and hear living breathing Hip-Hop. The next time you hear someone say, "Hip-Hop is dead!" I implore you to play this track for them and then hit 'em with that old DX....

PremRock & Willie Green - "Jogger" Music Video

Man, it's been a long time since I last covered PremRock. Hell, he was still Premonition then! Yikes. A name change, string of releases and an independent deal signing later I have another dope release for y'all.

"Jogger" is a throwback in spirit. Old school story telling, laid back minimalist beat provided by Willie Green and wildly humorous and playful at points. From Prem's lisp filled opening bars to the jogger's acknowledgment at the videos close, I enjoyed it all. It's definitely refreshingly different. PremRock hit a homerun with this one.

Check out the video below and definitely support the album - available on iTunes NOW!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

TKFQ - "Free Ya Mind"

I love when dope music sneaks up on me like this. We all know that NYC is brimming with talent but I'm still surprised when I hear artists like TKFQ (Tha Kid From Queens). This 19 year old rapper, obviously, from Queens is mighty impressive with his flow, cadence and vocabulary.

Sitting right in the pocket of today's "Hipster-Hop" TKFQ has it all in place. Even production by MG is spot on. Using a brief vocal sample from The Matrix, he works out over a blaring funked out horn sample that screams 90s Hip-Hop. It's 100% dope. I will most definitely be checking for the young gunner going forward.

Check out "Free Ya Mind" below and let me know what you think in the comments. Is TKFQ on his way up?

ThaKidFromQueens-Free Ya Mind by ThaKidFromQueens

Monday, January 23, 2012

Cocoa Sarai Album Release Party

It goes down this coming Thursday, January 26th, 2012! Cocoa Sarai will be releasing her new album 'Black & White' at Dominion NY. This will be the independent album release party of the year. Come through for some incredible music and some power networking. Sponsored by & Rocawear. DJ Spynfo holding down the wheels of steel and Ev Ryan hosting. There will be some surprise guests and people from all corners of the entertainment industry. BE THERE!