Sunday, October 22, 2006

New Soul Legends: British Soul Contenders Part 2

Here is the second heat in the British Soul contenders competition thing. All these artists appeared in the Observer newspaper on Sunday. I would like to know, what do you think? You can base your comments on comparison with classic soul, or from a modern perspective. I leave that up to you. Then, pick a favourite, and I will collate the comments and declare a winner of the Complete And Unbelievable imaginary BEHM Awards! Yay!

I have an idea who I would vote for from yesterday, but it was a hard decision! What about today? Click on their name and you'll go to a myspace page, where you can listen to tracks. Don't forget to leave a message for them if you like it! Then come back here and tell me what you thought?

Natalie Williams was born in Berlin, and moved to London for college. She listened to Sarah Vaughan and Aretha Franklin as a child. She formed an 11-piece band to tour, and likes to try for a classic soul sound.

Bembe Segue, was born in Staines near Chertsey. She has been described as 'the queen of broken beat'. She brings in soul, drum and bass, jazz, Latin, hip-hop and afrobeat influences. She was inspired to enter music by seeing George Clinton and the funkadelic Parliament.

Terri Walker I have heard of before, having been nominated for the Mercury Awards a few yeras ago. She is rebelling against the mainstream rnb she was encouraged to record, and has joined a minor label to take a new direction. Quoting the Staple Singers, she pleads jokingly, "This is the real Terri. Don't leave me! Stay with me!"

Eska Mtungwazi has no record deal, but sells out her gigs. She doesn't consider herself a soul singer: "I don't want to be stuck in academic terms like soul and jazz. I just want to make good music... Is Jamelia soul? Why? Because she's black? Her music doesn't sound very soulful." She has worked with Courtney Pine, Nitin Sawney and Soweto Kinch. She is also a Mathematics MA!

Vote vote vote! Don't be shy! There is no wrong answer!


Rob Whatman said...

A few votes... hmm.

Well, Eska has apparently decided to capitalise on her national media coverage by hiding all of her song streams!

Alice Russell lives in my town. And I know nothing about it, as usual...!

And if you are lurking...

Vote! Or no more Nashville Soul! I'll do it!

:) I can't stay mad at you... :)

Darcy said...

Thanks for these posts. I read the Observer article on the plane last Sunday night and was going to keep it for future reference but then left it behind in the hotel!
I had been thinking that musically I've maybe been stuck in the past a bit too much lately and ought to open my ears to more new music. The Observer article was therefore timely.
I too had only heard of Terri Walker. Have only sampled Alice, Natalie and Bembe so far (would like to check out Eska). All sound pretty good to me. On first impressions Bembe gets my vote, just. Has she the best voice? maybe not, but the whole jazz/latin/broken beat vibe grabs me. "Cosmic Spaces" on her myspace page is great. And I do detect a dash of parliafunkadelicment madness down deep in the mix.

Great site btw.

Rob Whatman said...

Thanks, Darcy. Likewise!

I always feel behind the times! I seem to have a record collection my Dad should have :)