It’s been a while since we have heard any new material from Frank Ocean, then yesterday he broke his musical silence with an enchanting cover of The Isley Brothers classic, ‘At Your Best (You Are Love)‘, which he has expressed is a tribute to the late Aaliyah on what would have been her 36th Birthday.

The cover is stripped back, understated and hears Frank Ocean’s vocals sounding hotter than ever. There is no word of any other new recordings from the artist as yet, however he did sign under new management last summer so hopefully we won’t have to wait too long for that much anticipated follow up album to ‘Channel Orange‘.

@CarlyMond

Frank Ocean – At Your Best

RnB family the wait is FINALLY over!!! 14 years after the release of his last album, ‘Voodoo D’Angelo has today released his new project entitled, ‘Black Messiah.

The album is a force field of Funk, Soul, Rock, Hip Hop and Neo-Soul, it’s experimental and energetic, fans of ‘Voodoo‘ won’t be disappointed and it feels like a natural step up progression from that album.

Black Messiah is charged with political and social connotations but also delves into the realms of love and sex with fluidity and finesse, collaborations on the album include Questlove, Q Tip, James Gadson and Kendra Foster who co-wrote many of the albums tracks.

Every now and again you hear an album that you know is an instant masterpiece, D’Angelo’s Black Messiah is definitely one of them! Cop it on Itunes or stream it on Spotify now!!!!!

Listen to and download first single entitled, ‘Sugah Daddyhere

@CarlyMond

It’s been a big year for the TDE signed singer, songwriter, ‘BJ The Chicago Kid‘, starting with his collaboration on the Schoolboy Q track, ‘Studio‘ he has gone on to drop solo tracks like, ‘Real Love Never Dies‘ and ‘Perfect‘, generating critical acclaim and demand from fans for a new album.

His new E.P ‘The M.A.F.E Project‘, features 12 new tracks, boasting features from Freddie Gibson and Schoolboy Q and production credits from Da Internz and Hip Hop duo Mike & Keys (formerly ‘The Furturistiks’).

The E.P is a perfect blend of RnB and Hip Hop with a bit of Mowtown flava mixed in. BJ The Chicago Kid pays homeage in style and lyrics to the likes of Jodeci, James Brown, Aaliyah and Bone Thugs-N-Harmony, whilst maintaining a freshness with his musical style. High points of ‘The M.A.F.E Project‘ are the raw and bluesy, ‘Real Love Never Dies‘ and BJ’s version of the Aaliyah classic ‘One In A Million‘ which he geniusly mixes with Jodeci’sFeenin‘ making the track a must for 90’s RnB fans!

The M.A.F.E Project‘ has something for everyone and is definitley a highlight album of the year, you can download it for FREE via BJ The Chicago Kid’s website, click on the link below and enjoy!!

http://bjtck.com/

Carly – ann (@CarlyMond)


BJ The Chicago Kid – ‘One In A Million’

 

 

 

It’s been a while since we’ve heard the soulful stylings of Jamie Foxx, after delivering huge RnB hits on his 2006 album, ‘UnpredictableFoxx failed to make an impact with his follow up 2010 album, ‘Best Night of My Life‘.

Sounding back on top form Jamie Foxx has dropped a new track today entitled, ‘Ain’t My Fault‘ produced by singer and producer Mario Winans. With a smooth,seductive vibe and Jamie’s vocal’s sounding on point, the track is a must for all RnB fans. Unfortunatley there is no official word on a new album, so until we here more just hit repeat on this one!

Carly – ann (@CarlyMond)


Jamie Foxx – ‘Ain’t My Fault’

 

 

 

Hey my R&B family,

it’s one you need to know about.

Soul-Jazz songstress Chrisette Michele unleashes this sweet freeness for your listening pleasure.

It’s the first single from the upcoming album, The Lyricists’ Opus! and t’is a beauty so click the pic, DL and enjoy.

R x

Chrisette-Michele-Super-Chris

Arguably one of the most highly anticipated albums of 2014 is released today, Jhene Aiko has just dropped her debut album entitled, ‘Souled Out‘.

Jhene Aiko is no stranger to the RnB scene, having started out in the industry in 2002, aged 12 performing backing vocals on B2K tracks. She stormed into the spotlight last year when she featured on Drake’s album, ‘Nothing Was The Same’ and released her acclaimed EP ‘Sail Out‘ later in the year.

This debut album showcases Jhene Aiko’s impressive songwriting skills, with writing credits on all 14 tracks, she also boasts a production credit along with several others including No I.D and Fisticuffs both of whom worked on ‘Sail Out’.

Souled Out stays true to Jhene Aiko’s distinctive style, exploring a more ‘indie’ side to RnB, similar to the sounds of Miguel and SZA. She keeps her hip hop vibe alive on track, ‘Pretty Bird‘ which features Common, she opens up about her personal life with ‘Promises‘, which is dedicated to and features her 5 year old daughter, while the rest of the album flows between the dark and haunting style of previous single, ‘The Worst‘, uplifting melodies and laid back, soulful vibes.

If you are a fan of any of Jhene Aiko’s previous work the album will not dissapoint, if you’re yet to get familiar with this ecletic soulstress go cop the album for a refreshingly unique and soulful experience!

Carly – ann (@CarlyMond)


Jhene Aiko – ‘Spotless Mind’ featured on the album ‘Souled Out’

 

 

 

The music industry is tough right now, with the landscape of how artists create music and market themselves changing almost daily. Talented artists with proven longevity are rare, independent artists with longevity are even more rare which is why independent singer, songwriter and producer Eric Roberson should be especially proud of the release this week of his 10th studio album ‘The Box.

Eric Roberson boasts a music career spanning 15 years, he has an established sound and a dedicated fan base which brings with it high expectations from new album ‘The Box‘ and he does not disappoint. For anyone out there looking for ‘real’ music with soul, instrumental exploration and impeccable songwriting, Erro’sBox‘ contains all of this and more!

Upon first listen two things struck me about the album, the first being how incredible the variation of live instruments on many of the tracks is, so much care has been taken over the production and ‘sound’ of each song with talented musicians blending with Erro’s vocals, each track feels really alive, like they could burst out of your speakers! There has been a lot of criticism of late that music has become too over-produced with an absence of instrumental emphasis, this album fills that void. A great acheivement in production, credit must be given to producers Brett “Bdubb” Baker, Aaron Hardin, Jeff Murrell, Erro himself and more who have created the flawless sound of the album.

The second realisation (as I tried to listen to ‘The Box‘ at work) is that this is not an album for passive listening, Eric Roberson is a storyteller and as much as you might try to use music for ‘background’, his deeply personal and evolving lyrics will steal your attention and embrace you back into the songs. Erro himself describes the album as ‘grown’ and his lyrics are just that with songs like, ‘Lust for Love’ and ‘Im Not Trying To Keep Score No More‘ exploring the rarely talked about challenges of long term relationships. The motivational ‘Don’t Hide Your Wings‘ boasts the knowledge of a man who understands the pressures that women face and the battles many have with self esteem, ‘The Pill‘ explores fears of commitment whilst ‘Do The Same For Me‘ expresses the contentment of a happily married family man (if you reach the end of this track without shedding a tear check your pulse!).

The Box ebbs and flows across different musical styles, from the hip hop vibe of ‘The Cycle‘ which features Pharoahe Monch, to the infectious swing sound of ‘Pill‘, ‘Haunted‘ has a classic jazz flava then Erro brings the funk with help from Dave Hollister on ‘The Box‘. One of the most distinctive tracks on the album is ‘Just Imagine‘ which touches on a more indie style of RnB and features the hauntingly beautiful guest vocals of ‘King‘.

The range of styles on this album could divide fans, but whether or not you think that this is Erro’s best album it is undoubtedly his most confident, it is bold and experimental whilst keeping within the genre which his audiences know and love him for. His vocals are stronger than ever on The Box, we hear him demonstrate a lower range as well as exploring a raspier, funk style to his voice on tracks such as ‘Pill‘.

The Box is bursting with soul and variety, more than an album it is a musical journey through RnB styles and Eric Roberson’s life, it will make you sing, laugh, dance, and cry and have you reaching for ‘repeat’ to experience it all over again! If you’re a Music Fan First you need to get yourself a copy of The Box – it will not disappoint!

Carly – ann (@CarlyMond)


Check out Eric Roberson’s first single from ‘The Box’ – Mark on Me

 

 

 

In the past I have not been the biggest Beyonce fan, Destiny’s Child never really did it for me and when the ladies went solo I always preferred Kelly Rowland’s music. However there is no disputing the fact that ‘Queen B‘ is an absolute superstar! Her recent genius move of releasing a suprise visual album on ITunes demonstrated that not only is she on top of her game musically, she is ahead of the game when it comes to marketing herself and understanding the music business.

Things were all going so well; she had smashed another international #1 album, sold out a global arena tour and then came the ‘elevator’ incident with husband Jay Z and sister Solange – which did not look good for anyone involved! However Beyonce handled the fallout like a pro, publicly stating that she is part of a normal family and sometimes people fall out!

In a genius move she has addressed the issue head on in the lyrics to this fresh new remix of ‘Flawless‘ which features Nikki Minaj, where she explains, ‘We escalate up in this bitch like elevators, of course sometimes shit goes down when it’s a billion dollars on the elevator.’. I always think it’s an admirable thing when artists address negative publicity head on and aren’t afraid to talk about it, not only is this a great track, co-produced by Hit Boy and Boots but it shows a ‘human’ side to the international icon.

Exploring the flaws of her recent family feud has definitley propelled Beyonce one step closer to being ‘Flawless’….enjoy!

Carly – ann (@CarlyMond)

Beyonce feat Nicki Minaj – Flawless Remix

 

 

 

Straight off the back of his killer feature verse on Ty Dollar Sign’s ‘Oh Nah‘ remix The Weeknd has dropped a new track!

Often‘ is true to The Weeknd’s signature smooth style, his vocals sounding as strong and distinctive as ever! Details about the track and the artist’s highly anticipated new album are still sparse at the moment, so until we hear more news you can just enjoy the vibe of ‘Often‘…..

Carly – ann (@CarlyMond)


The Weeknd – Often
http://youtu.be/B_wMhoNuSZM
 

 

 

 

This week RnB / soul fans have been blessed with this sensational collaboration of soulful Talent! For those who are unfamiliar – Lil John Roberts is one of the most respected RnB drummers in the industry, he has performed on tracks with Snarky Puppy, Musiq Soulchild, Robert Glasper and Jill Scott to name a few, as well as touring with the likes of Stevie Wonder!

Lil John is currently working on his debut album entitled, ‘Heartbeat‘ which will feature tracks with Mint Condition, The Robert Glasper Experiment, Eric Roberson and a number of new RnB artists. ‘Space’ is the first single from this album and features vocals from Eric Roberson, Stokely (of Mint Condition), Anthony David and Musiq Soulchild whose voices blend beautifully together!

The track is uplifting with a jazzy edge, the collobration is genius – showcasing true RnB finesse and artistry. The standard has been set high for the release of ‘Heartbreak‘ in July and it is nice to see that with the likes of Lil John and Robert Glasper musicians are finally getting the spotlight that they deserve!

Carly – ann (@CarlyMond)


Lil John Roberts feat Eric Roberson, Stokely, Anthony David & Musiq Soulchild