Steve Arrington

Steve Arrington interview on Colourful Radio 23-Dec-2018

Steve Arrington, known for his innovative vocals on such funk classics as “Watching You” and “Just A Touch of Love,” with Slave, as well as his solo hits like “Weak at the Knees”, “Way Out” and “Nobody Can Be You”, and the top ten singles “Feel So Real” and “Dancing In The Key Of Life” Arrington’s songs have been sampled by the likes of Jay-Z, Jermaine Dupri, Tribe Called Quest, De La Soul, Snoop, LL Cool J, Mariah Carey, and N.W.A, Masters At Work, and even on Pitbull’s massive hit “Timber”.

In 1975, Arrington moved to San Francisco, hoping to take his music to a national level, and landed a spot in the renowned percussionist, Coke Esovedo’s band, and eventually moved in with the percussionist and his manager, becoming a Latin soul apprentice and protégé. Arrington went on to play with Escovedo’s older brother Pete and niece Sheila – now known as Sheila E – during his time in the Bay Area, which included a tour featuring guitarist, Carlos Santana.

As that tour was ending, Arrington returned to Dayton in 1978, to join Slave, as drummer and eventual lead singer, and for the next four years and four albums, he contributed to the innovative Dayton outfit’s most successful period, as dance floor classics like “Watching You,” “Just a Touch of Love,” Snap Shot,” and “Wait for Me” all bear his trademark tenor.

In 1982, Arrington left Slave and formed Steve Arrington’s Hall of Fame. After two Hall of Fame and three solo albums for Atlantic Records, which included “Dancin In The Key”, with three weeks at #2 on the dance charts, and “Feel So Real’’, with #6 on the UK Singles Chart. Arrington was nominated for the 1986 NAACP Image Award for Male Artist of the Year and in 2000 Steve won a Grammy for his contribution to “Money Ain’t A Thang”, performed by Jay Z and Jermaine Dupri.

Arrington left the music business in 1991, at the height of his career and joined the church, devoting his life to spirituality. He continued to study music, from gospel to jazz, classical to blues, electronic to world music, and Latin to hip hop. This fusion of spirituality and musical study resulted in the 2009 self released “Pure Thang”, his first release in nearly 20 years. In it, you hear the discovery of new ideas mixed with the musical legacy of those that came before him. “Ever since slavery, spiritual men and women have come to the fore and spoke,” he says. “It’s a legacy…Last Poets, Mahalia Jackson, the Impressions, Gil Scott-Heron.” Music still represented the desire for freedom, equality and love for Arrington, and this was to be his renewed mission.

He counts blues artists with longevity like Buddy Guy and BB. King among his heroes, and admires, how they’re embraced by new fans throughout the years. He respects innovators like Miles Davis, who embraced and absorbed the music culture of each new generation during his career, to create a continuously evolving musical legacy. As a fan, he is a musical adventurist, embracing everyone from Stravinsky and Bartok to Flying Lotus, Hudson Mohawke and Madlib.

Arrington’s current musical journey consists of embracing and connecting with new fans who are hearing his music for the first time, from 2013’s collaborations on the album “Higher” with Dam Funk and “1Question” with Snoop on the 7 Days of Funk album, to 2015’s collaboration with productions duo, Christian Rich (“What More” on “FW14”) and most recently, with Kool Moe Dee (“Are You Beautiful”, 2018). Steve received a standing ovation after his lecture at 2013’s Red Bull Music Academy in NYC – only the 2nd in RBMA’s 15 year history! In September 2014, Steve released “Way Out” (80-84), a retrospective album, which also includes a bonus of previously unreleased and unfinished tracks.

Steve is touring with a new band, as well as doing dates with artists like Public Enemy, DJ Quik, Chub Rock and Q Tip, who are more than up for the idea of sharing the stage with someone who influenced and inspired their careers, as well as classic RnB groups, such as, The Ohio Players, Original Lakeside, The Bar-Kays, Con-Funk-Shun, Cameo and Zapp. In early 2017, Arrington was in the studio with George Clinton, where he added his vocals to a few tracks, plus he’s working on a new album of this own due out later this year.

Judi Jackson

Judi Jackson interview on Colourful Radio 16-Dec-2018

The name Judi Jackson, is not widely known within the music industry, yet anyone that has met Judi Jackson or seen her perform live will tell you, look out for Judi, she is destined to be a big star.

Born June 1st, 1993, in Roanoke (pronounced, rOH-un-nOHk) Virginia, (USA), Judi’s early years were filled with challenges and obstacles, some of which most would never overcome. Her mother Nancy Lee Martin was a very intelligent writer, pianist, poet, and scholar. Her father, Alonzo Levi Jackson, was an African percussionist/conga drummer and also a historian of African culture and linguistics.

Although both of her parents attended university, only her mother continued on to graduate. Shortly after Judi was born, her parents separated leaving Judi to be raised by her mother who remarried to a very abusive partner. During this time, Nancy and Judi escaped to live at the Red Cross’s women’s shelter. This is where Judi first recognized her affinity for music. She would sing to the women during chapel on Sunday’s to lift their spirits. Whilst staying at the Red Cross, Judi’s mother became terminally ill, and had to be re-admitted to hospital. On this day during one of her grade school classes, Judi’s best friend, Ashley Jones, noticed that something was wrong. She took Judi home for a sleepover, that later they all would jokingly refer to as being “the longest sleepover ever.” Ashley’s parents, Edward and Stephanie Jones, lovingly took Judi in as their own child, and she was fully adopted into the family by the tender age of 12.

Judi is forever thankful to the Jones’s for their love and care, and refers to them as “Mom” and “Dad.” Judi would sing in church, being the first female to play “HARK”- in her church school’s rendition of “HARK the Herald Angel.” It was here that her desires, gifts, talents, and hard work in the music and theatre world continued to blossom. Her talents led her off to the University of Mary Washington, (Fredericksburg, VA), where she majored in Theatre with a minor in Musical Theatre. She shined brightly in college and excelled in all of her classes graduating cum laude. Judi could have played the victim during the difficult times in her life, however, she chooses to focus on her goal of becoming an accomplished multi-talented singer, songwriter, recording artist and musical theatre performer.

Through the Jefferson Center’s Music Lab in Virginia, Judi spent her early years immersed in a school for young artists and musicians to learn, practice, and perform their talents. In 2007 at the age of 14 Judi was fortunate enough to meet Wynton Marsalis at the Jefferson Center performance hall after a show. He sent her a box of music the following Christmas, that became the seed of inspiration for her development as a jazz vocalist. She began listening to and studying the sounds of Blossom Dearie, Billie Holliday, Sarah Vaughn, Miles Davis, Ella Fitzgerald, and Mahalia Jackson, amongst many other greats.

Judi continued studying over the next few years and started gaining more experience as a performer by opening for acts such as Mavis Staples, where Snarky Puppy saw her perform and snapped her up to record her original piece ‘Only Love’ as a guest artist on their Grammy-winning album Family Dinner – Volume One.

Kara Marni

Kara Marni interview on Colourful Radio 18-Nov-2018

21-year-old R&B powerhouse KARA MARNI is the next wave of break through talent for 2019.

Fusing elements of R&B peppered with classic soul, her exemplary debut EP release ‘Love Just Ain’t Enough’ has earnt praise from Vogue, Fader, Wonderland, Glamour, Music Week, Hunger as well as seen Kara support pop royalty such as Rita Ora, Ray Blk, Madison Beer and Raye on the live circuit.

Tipped as a One to Watch for the next 12 months, Kara’s rich, powerful, soulful sound is inspired by heritage artists such as Sade, Minnie Ripperton, Amy Winehouse and Lauryn Hill, fused with her own contemporary take on forward thinking R&B. Kara quotes “I love soul music, I love current music, and it’s the fusion of the two”.

Sabrina Francis

Sabrina Francis interview on Colourful Radio 14-Oct-2018

Born in the country side of Grenada to a music-loving family, music and song-writing have always been a way of life for Sabrina Francis.

Mind you, she wasn’t forced to practice the piano 8 hours a day or write entire symphonies, but she and at least four of her siblings were all taught to appreciate the simple beat of a drum and to take pride in the gratification that can come from expressing yourself with a pen.

Over the years, Sabrina’s has had a number of very memorable opportunities to share her voice with anyone willing to listen. Sabrina’s song “This Is Home“ was used by the Grenada Tourism Authority to promote Grenada as a holiday destination.

Sabrina and her band FLOM (For the Love of Music) started doing small annual tours in Europe, spanning over Switzerland, Germany, Austria and Italy so far.

Sabrina’s first album, “Think in Colour“ was recorded and produced by Samuel Baur (CH) in 2017. Once that was done, Sabrina Francis & FLOM had multiple opportunities to open on the main stage of the Pure Grenada Music Festival. During this festival Sabrina met English singer Joss Stone and did a small collaboration with the UK soul songstress.

Eshe Escoffery

Eshe Escoffery interview on Colourful Radio 07-Oct-2018

Eshe Escoffery’s musical pedigree is formidable. Her gospel roots gave rise to the internationally acclaimed sister group, ‘The Escoffery’s’ who entertained audiences worldwide for over 25 years.

Their 1991 debut Album ‘Opinions’ with Atlantic Records featured the single ‘Look Who’s Loving Me’ written by the late Sandra Escoffery & Marcus Johnson of The Ethnic Boyz, which charted in the top 20’s on both sides of the Atlantic and firmly established Eshe and her sisters on the music scene with their jazz inflected soulful sounds tutored by their father George Escoffery and supported by their mother Millie Escoffery who made many of their stylish outfits.

Inspired by her father, George Escoffery, Eshe was exposed to diverse musical genres and styles that he played in the family home, through the bass amplified Tannoy speakers. From gospel and jazz, to reggae and African music, her schooling was broad and these influences are reflected in this debut EP.

Sulpacio Jones

Sulpacio Jones interview on Colourful Radio 30-Sep-2018

Dynamic and authentically inspiring, Sulpacio Jones is a melodic and passionate artist, songwriter and producer who expresses her truth through the art of love and life experience. Born in San Diego, California and raised in Berkeley, California, this vibrant beauty captivates audiences with her unique funky sound and sexy musical undertones. As an independent R&B Soul artist, Sulpacio has established a strong presence in the music industry and continues to effortlessly create a synergy that reaches audiences in the United States and expands across the globe; topping reputable, international music charts and a catalogue which reaches fans Worldwide.

Her debut self-titled EP, released in summer 2013, immediately impressed industry professionals, catapulting her single, “Should I Stay,” to the number one spot on the Top 20 Independent Chart Show in London. UK’s Colourful Radio listeners voted Sulpacio as “BEST NEWCOMER” for her refreshing sound that keeps soul music lovers awaiting her next move. London’s Soul Brother Records states, “IT’S ONE OF THE BEST SOUL SETS OF 2013.” With over 100,000 streams since her debut, it is no surprise that Sulpacio holds her place steadily in the indie music scene.

After a successful tour, Sulpacio was eager to return to the recording studio for her sophomore album, “LIVE, LOVE FLY, HIGH”–a collection of edgy up-tempo bangers, alluring soulful ballads, and distinctive lyrical content. With the release of her latest project, “FUNKY LOVE”, a funk infused Neo-R&B set of sexy, delectable ear candy, her true fans will be more than delighted as it was well worth the wait. With song placements in various film and TV projects, Sulpacio has no plans of letting off the gas, and still stands true to her message: “No matter what’s trending and no matter how music or the demand changes, I want to consistently deliver the true essence of music to my listeners. This is what they want and it’s what I do!” she eloquently shares. And indeed Sulpacio Jones is doing it yet again.

LyricL

LyricL interview on Colourful Radio 09-Sep-2018

Lyricist, Singer-Songwriter, FeMCee, 2014 ‘Spokenword’ BEFFTA Award Winner and Artist-Tutor LyricL, is a jubilant, exultant performer, whose animated fresh style exudes joy, in a euphoric and beautiful way!

Born in London to Nigerian parents, LyricL’s early and enduring musical influences came from home. A drummer/DJ Daddy, who “loved African Jazz, Gospel and High Life, entertained with chest-tap percussion, beatbox and skillfully played his hands as wind instruments, as Mommy dances and sings in her own key of happiness to this very day.”

Wilderness, Southport, North Sea Jazz, Sabolai Music and the Toronto Jazz Festivals, have embraced her creative works. An eclectic catalogue that spans Hip-Hop, House, Jazz through to Afro and Broken Beat with a soulful edge, stirring grooves enhanced by her lyricism and Spokenword.

Support act to Patrice Rushen, Xantone Blacq, The Roots, Omar, Incognito, Big Daddy Kane, Black Thought, DJ Jazzy Jeff and Jill Scott, LyricL is an often sought after keen creative ally. Lighting up mics and stages with her performances, LyricL has been fortunate to both tour and record with a range of talented musicians and producers; MJ Cole (UK) Nathan Haines (NZ) KiloBeats & David Oscar (Accra, Ghana), Roots Soul, Kyoto Jazz Massive (Japan) and Guerrilla Science (Toronto).

Unapologetic originality, lyrical dexterity and openness, to innovate, elate and debate.

Kim Tibbs

Kim Tibbs interview on Colourful Radio 26-Aug-2018

What some may call “luck,” others call DESTINY. Since birth, Kim Tibbs has been honing her craft…Crediting her late father, Pastor Robert L. Tibbs for her musical ability, Kim has over thirty years of musical experience as an accomplished Arranger, B-3 Organist, Keyboardist, Lyricist, Pianist, Producer, and Songwriter. Kimberly is currently an Endorsed Hammond Artist with Hammond Organ Company USA, a Roland Artist with Roland Corporation US, a Peavey Artist with Peavey Amplifiers USA, and a Slick Audio Recording Artist; as well as a Staff Writer for the Songs of Love Foundation; Kimberly is also a Council Member of the Board of Advisers in the College of Arts located at J.C. Calhoun Community College. Kimberly holds a Bachelors of Arts and Science in Business Administration, Double Masters Degrees in Organizational Leadership and Masters of Business in Public Administration as well as currently working on a Doctorate of Business Administration in Leadership. Kim is also a Fashion Designer. Her fashion specializes in one of a kind bold, eclectic, and unique hand-crafted pieces ranging from women’s fashions to household goods.

As an Artist, Kim Tibbs has gained international acclaim with her forthcoming release, “…Kim.” Her first single, “I Need You For Your Love,” entered the Official U.K. Soul Charts at Number #24, November 6, 2016 and in two weeks, it skyrocketed to Number #1 separately along with the second single, “Soul!” staying there for Four Consecutive weeks; before ending the yearly chart at a respective Number #2 for both singles. The single, “I Need You For Your Love,” landed at Number #4 on the year end Official U.K. Soul Chart Top 100 Songs for 2016. The third, fourth and fifth Singles released called, “Drifting,” “For!” and “Move!” respectfully have been successful granting her movement the ability to now be traced in 36 countries and steadily growing to a wider audience daily, with “Drifting” and “For” both debuting on the Official U.K. Soul Charts at Number #9, getting to the Number #4 position on April 23, 2017. On August 25, 2017, the debut album,KIM, was released remarkably charting strong in 3 days on the Official U.K. Soul Chart at Number #7. By September 3, 2017, KIM moved into the Number #1 position on the Official U.K. Soul Charts with “I Need You For Your Love,” “Soul!,” For!,” “A Building That’ll Last,” “My Better Side,” “Drifting,” and “Come On By,” all charting at separate Number #1 positions alongside the album making 7 SOLID Number #1 charted songs along with a Number #1 Album and a total of 8 songs respectfully charting from the album; Staying at the Number #1 position for 4 weeks straight as a an album. KIM finished the year at Number #23 on the Official UK Soul Charts Top 100 Albums and Songs for 2017. Kim was nominated in November, 2017 for Best International Artist in the Bright Star Awards 2017/2018 for her album, work as an artist/professional musician, and won the Best International Artist 2017 award in the Bright Star Awards in London, United Kingdom, January 28, 2018.

Sheldon Senior

Sheldon Senior interview on Colourful Radio 12-Aug-2018

Sheldon Senior is a fresh and dynamic artist out of Mandeville Jamaica who is making his presence felt on the world music scene, assuring him a future in the global reggae industry. This extraordinary singer/songwriter has been creating deeply meaningful and thought provoking songs that capture the essence of an artist capable of achieving worldwide acclaim.

His musical roots were formed through listening and studying a wide variety of music from ska to jazz, reggae to R&B, negro spirituals and gospel music. From an early age Sheldon possessed the charisma and vocal power to reach an audience in a deeply soul-comforting way, leaving them wanting to hear more of this talented singer. His constant drive has allowed him to evolve from singing on sound systems to become the lead singer of the Conscious Rebelz, one of JA’s up and coming roots rock ensembles, as well as a solo artist. He has performed worldwide, from the streets of Mandeville to some of the largest stages in Europe.

Sheldon has recorded with some of the top producers in the reggae world; Jah Youth Productions of Hawaii, Shayne Green’s Forever Music based in Sly Dunbar’s studio, Pharfar’s Food Palace Music in Denmark and for his most recent release, Stephan Günther & Thomas Klick of XV Audio in Germany, who produced his latest EP, Break Through, available through all quality retailers. A video from the EP, Wise Up is to be released shortly.

The Danish press wrote of one of his performances on a 2010 European tour: The entire Aalborg experienced the best summer reggae stage show with Sheldon Senior. The energy level was so high that after his first song he had 70,000 massive waving their hands in the air. The born talented entertainer was so dynamic on stage you could feel him reaching the hearts of the enthusiastic audience with so much positive vibes that he had the crowd buzzing with excitement. It was a little bit of Jamaica in Aalborg with Sheldon belting out some of the best music from the island and a lovely reminder of Bob Marley.

Lov’Ellis

Lov’Ellis interview on Colourful Radio 15-Jul-2018

Lovella Ellis, known by her stage name as Lov’Ellis, is one of the wave of British singers with a Lover’s Rock, Roots Reggae, and a versatile Soul edge.

Her music credentials are seeped in a rich history of musical heritage as her father was none other than the late great Rocksteady legend, Alton Ellis OD.

Lov’Ellis was born to Sigma Ellis January 8th 1981 in London, UK.
Lov’Ellis discovered her craft from the age of 9 but kept it from her family until the age of 16 years old, she would harmonise songs word for word behind closed doors.
Lov’Ellis first performance was with her Father in 1999 was at the Spanish restaurant Pangea, on Atlantic Road Brixton. She recalls standing on a beer box as her first stage.
she went on to perform with her father again in 2001 at the Catford Theatre and the Metropolitan Hotel on Edgware Road London.

As time went by her love for the music industry heightened, and the passion for song writing blossomed naturally leading her to perform regularly at venues all over the UK, including the popular Jazz Cafe in Camden Town, London.

Sadly, on October 11th 2008 Alton Ellis passed away in Hammersmith Hospital, London. It was a sad and difficult time for Lov’Ellis and her siblings Dean Ellis & Christopher Ellis to watch their Father take his last breath.

Representing her Father
It was now time for Lov’Ellis to step up and keep the promise she made with her father, to try and continue the legacy he has left behind.

In November 2008 after returning from Jamaica, Lov’Ellis was then invited to represent her father as a special guest at the British Film Institute (BFI) where she performed two of his well known hits songs, ‘I’m Still in Love’, & ‘Breaking Up is Hard To Do’. Coincidentally Lov’Ellis had also covered these songs in R&B in 1998.

February 14th 2009 at the Hootananny, Brixton, Lov’Ellis & and her manager Jeff Thompson on behalf of the Ellis family held a tribute show in honour of her Father entitled ‘I’m Still in Love’. This was also a statement to the music industry that she would continue in her father’s footsteps come what may.
Lov’Ella then went on to record ‘Willow Tree’, in January 2009, as a tribute to the legend himself, and also ‘Love on Top’ which proved to be very popular with DJs in the UK and other parts of the world.

April 2009 Lov’Ellis graced the stage at the Coronet London, as the Opening act for Beres Hammond. Also appearing on the night was, Ken Boothe and Maxi Priest.

Gaining Recognition
Saturday 27th November 2010 an exclusive Concert, with Errol Dunkley & Lov’Ellis took place at The Black Grape. This was another chance for Lov’Ellis to exhale as an artist in her own right.

As a result of Lov’Ellis’s hard work recognition just kept coming. She won the Community Music Arts Award in 2011 for ‘Best Crossover Act’. In that same year came the release of the documentary ‘Story of Lover’s Rock’ of which Lov’Ellis had a featured part in. This Documentary was showed in cinema’s all over the UK.
Lov’Ellis had the pleasure of performing on the same stage in the UK with Artist such as. Heatwave, Rose Royce, Jaki Graham, Kenny Thomas, Omar, Junior Giscombe, Beverley Knight, John Holt, Freddie McGregor, Janet Kay, Carrol Thompson, Ken Boothe, Luciano, Gappy Ranks, Morgan Heritage, Mr Vegas, and many more.

In 2012 Lov’Ellis teamed up with Nereus Joseph, to cover the song “Come Out to Play” written by Ciyo Brown; it became an instant hit and stayed in Choice FM’s UK Official Reggae Chart for 4 weeks at number 2.

In February 2013 Lov’Ellis was awarded the Best British Female Newcomer by the British Reggae Industry Award (BRIA).
she was also nominated for the BEFFA as ‘Best Unsigned Act’ in 2013. To her surprise once again in 2014, Lov’Ellis was up for ‘Best UK Reggae Act’.

Debut EP Release
In 2013 Lov’Ella recorded her first album, “VERSATILE”. The album launch took place at the well know Jazz Café in Camden Town.

However, after reflecting over the production on a few of the tracks, she decided not to release it, and went back to the drawing board.
Since then Lov’Ellis has released her 8 track EP “I’m Getting Stronger” available on her website.

Lov’Ellis states, “It has not been easy being the daughter of a legend, due to the high expectations placed on me. I’m proud of the little I have done so far but I still have a long way to go”.
Lovella’s music has taken her to many places throughout Europe the West Indies and other parts of the world.

One of her important projects is to finish a ‘School Tour’ educating children about Domestic Violence (DV).
She has good acting abilities and is currently exploring the possibility of a career in film and television in the very near future.
Lov’Ella’s desire is to see all the singers in the Ellis family come together and create a foundation that will inspire a future generation.

Re-Branding
Lov’Ellis took time off the reggae scene in order to re-brand and maintain her own artist identity. therefore, changing her artist name from Lovella Ellis, Lov’Ella to. Lov’Ellis.

Her first come back single was an original song released February 14th 2016 entitled ‘Loving You Baby’ complete with an interesting video merging ballet and reggae. The song became an instance hit and went straight into the Mi-Soul Reggae Charts and reach number 1 knocking of Jamaican singer Nesbeth ‘My Dream”

Raheem DeVaughn

Raheem DeVaughn interview on Colourful Radio 08-Jul-2018

Three-time Grammy-nominated singer/songwriter Raheem DeVaughn, son of renowned jazz musician Abdul Wadud, grew up in Maryland and cut his teeth performing in clubs throughout the Washington, D.C. area. Originally signed to Jive Records, Raheem’s first three albums—The Love Experience (2005), Love Behind the Melody (2008) which reached #1 on the Top 10 R&B Hip-Hop Albums Chart and earned him two Grammy nominations (Best Male R&B Vocal Performance “Woman” and Best R&B Song: “Customer”), one BET Award, two BET J Virtual Awards for “Male Artist of the Year” and “Album of the Year.” The Love & War MasterPeace (2010) which has been deemed his most ambitious album to date and earned Raheem another Grammy Nomination in 2011 for his entire body of work for Best R&B Album of the Year, and resulted in chart-topping singles like “You,” “Customer” and the female-empowerment anthem “Woman.”

Stepping out as an independent artist for his 2013 release, A Place Called Love Land, Raheem remained consistent in his artistry and the same holds true with his last album Love, Sex & Passion (2015), having reached Billboard’s Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums at #4, Billboard’s Independent Albums at #2 and Billboard 200 at #31.

Gearing up for his 6th Studio album release this summer, Decade of a Love King (2018) promises to take listeners to new heights and celebrate the sound that the last 10 years have brought him to, creatively and sonically.

Anthony David

Anthony David interview on Colourful Radio 01-Jul-2018

Born and raised in Savannah, Georgia, it wasn’t until the aspiring musician moved to Atlanta in the 1990s that he began to gain momentum with his music. It was in Atlanta that he met R&B singer India.Arie who invited David to contribute a song to her 2001 album “Acoustic Soul”. David subsequently wrote the track “Part of My Life” which aided the album earning seven Grammy Award nominations. After touring with India.Aria on her supporting tour, David issued his debut full-length “Three Chord & The Truth” in 2004. Released on Brash Records, David supported the release as the opening act on India.Aria’s U.S. tour, greatly enhancing his popularity.

The singer-songwriter’s sophomore album “The Red Clay Chronicles” arrived in 2006, later spawning the single “Something About You” in 2007. The following year David co-wrote the song “There’s Hope” for Aria’s third studio album before inviting India.Aria to sing on his duet “Words”. Peaking at No. 53 on the Best R&B/Hip Hop Songs Chart and subsequently earning a Grammy nomination, the single epitomised the seductive R&B and soul of his 2008 full-length “Acey Duecy”. The album, peaking at No. 7 on the Top Heatseekers Chart, received widespread positive reviews and introduced the singer to a much wider audience.

It was three years before any new material found its release with the 2011 studio album “As Above So Below”. Featuring Shannon Sanders at the production reigns and vocal contributions from Little Brother rapper Phonte and Boyz II Men’s Shawn Stockman, the album found David in good company and was his best-selling record to date. “As Above So Below”’s lead single “4Evermore”, peaked at No. 18 on the Top R&B/Hip Hop Songs Chart, and was followed by the compilation album “#LocationLocationLocation” the same year. The singer’s fifth full-length “Love Out Loud” appeared in 2012, spawning the singles “Can’t Look Down” and “Sweet Pain”. Anthony’s most recent release was ‘The Powerful’ in 2016.

Winston Reedy

Winston Reedy interview on Colourful Radio 17-Jun-2018

Hailing from Jamaica, Winston Reedy is thought to be the most successful & popular UK based Reggae Artist. Reaching Back to the 1970’s When Winston was lead Vocalist of the Cimarons which led him to Jamaica in 1975 to make an album “ON THE ROCK” from this Album a version of Bob Marleys “TALKING BLUES” went to number 1 in Jamaica, the Cimarons went on to tour Europe, the Middle & Far East, Japan & Caribbean which enabled Winston to work with some of the Greats such as, Jimmy Cliff, Dennis Brown, Dennis Alcapone, The Pioneers & Paul McCartney to name a few, this led to Winston appearing in the Stevie Wonder & Paul McCartney Collaborative Video “EBONY & IVORY” a worldwide hit. The Cimarons also appeared in the film “BLACK JOY” on leaving the Cimarons.

Winston’s first Solo Single “DAUGHTER OF ZION” soared to the top of the Black Echoes Reggae Chart, In 1982/3/4/ for three consecutive years Winston was voted Best British Male vocalist by the listeners of BBC Radio London. He went on to tour with UB40 & signed a contract with UB40’s Label Dep International on the last tour with UB40 a video was made called “WINSTON REEDY LIVE” which was broadcast on the programme ‘CUTTING EDGE’ courtesy of US MTV.

Over the years Winston has appeared at The Royal Festival Hall, The Royal Albert Hall, The O2 Arena & Wembley Stadium alongside Bob Dylan, UB40, & Santana. He Released an album “LOVE THING” on his own record label Cherry& Lee. In 2011 he appeared in the BBC programme “REGGAE BRITTANNIA” along with Ken Boothe, Dennis Alcapone, Big Youth Brinsley Forde, Dave Barker, Neville Staples, Pauline Black & Dennis Bovell. He went on to make an album with French Band Donkey Jaw Bone titled “MAKE A CHANGE” and is available on Wagray Chapter 2 label.

A proud moment for Winston was when he was asked to appear at O2 Indigo Arena For Jamaica 50 celebrations. His latest double album Project “VISION IN LIFE” with Room In The Sky Producer M. Lewis & the Salute Band. has recently been released on Vinyl, CD & Electronic Download available from Lion Vibes Records London and https://roominthesky.bandcamp.com/album/vision-in-life Winston will be appearing in Africa before the end of 2018.

Jo Caesar

Jo Caesar interview on Colourful Radio 10-Jun-2018

Jo Caesar is a singer/songwriter from East london who has worked and performed with a variety of musicians and artists that include Luciano, Bounty Killer, Mafia and Fluxy, Gappy Ranks, King Sounds and Caron Wheeler, who provided the backing vocals on Jo’s first single ‘Sometimes released on her (then) own independant label ‘Sound Box Music’ in 2000.

She also spent time as a lead vocalist of a girl band (Boudica) managed by RonTom the founder of the sugababes but then decided to set sail on a solo project. 2001 she joined JetStar Record label, frequently featuring on the ‘Pop Hits Inna Reggae’ compilation album. Some of her cover versions included hits like: Mary J. Blige – Enough crying and Corrine Bailey Raes’ – Put your record on.

2005 Jo Caesar, Maxwell D and Junior Brat, formed a group under the name ‘Musketeers’ releasing a single with a video entitled ‘I’ll be there’ which played on MTV, Base and Channel AKA formally known as Channel U.

More recently, in 2015 Jo set herself a personal test and entered into a talent competition, beating hundreds of hopefuls from all over Britain to become the winner of a reggae version of X-factor held at London’s prestigious Shaw Theatre. It was her unique sound, stage presence and what seemed to be effortless but passionate delivery of Shirley browns ‘Used to be your house and an original song ‘Coming on strong written by Jo Caesar. [now available for download] She wowed the crowd and judges, earning her the title as RSF Winner of 2015.

Jah and Never see me cry were two other singles that Jo put out before she took a hiatus brake from music. Returning in 2018 with more passion, ammunition and focus she is equipped for success.

Now under new management (JAT MUZIC UK) Jo has already headlined at London’s Brixton Ritzy Cinema (upstairs) her very own one woman show. It was well received with a brilliant turn out.

She is now in the studio preparing her forthcoming EP of mostly original materials but has chosen by popular demand to put out her newly anticipated single, remake of Shirley Browns ‘Used to be your house’ available for download 29th June 2018 on all major digital stores.

Shinehead

Shinehead interview on Colourful Radio 03-Jun-2018

He began his music career by performing for different New York reggae dancehall sound systems in the 1980s, most notably Tony Screw’s Downbeat The Ruler, based in The Bronx.

His recording debut was in 1986 on the African Love Music independent record label with “Who The Cap Fits (Let Them Wear It)” from the album Rough & Rugged. In his early years, Jeff Buckley led his group on guitar and lent a hand with backing vocals. He appeared on Sly and Robbie’s 1987 album Rhythm Killers.

Shinehead was signed to a recording contract by Artist & Repertoire Representative Raoul Roach with Elektra Records in 1988, and remained with them until 1995.

His best-known single was the cover version of Sting’s “Englishman In New York”, re-titled as “Jamaican In New York” (1993). It reached #30 in the UK Singles Chart in April 1993.[1] The single featured on the Sidewalk University album.

He is largely credited as being one of the original acts to cross hip-hop with reggae music, now known as reggae fusion, with songs such as “Try My Love” in 1992. Shinehead’s vocal talent can be heard across various tracks on the “Unity” (1988) and “The Real Rock” (1992) albums. His rapid deejay chat style can be heard on stellar tracks like “Cigarette Breath”, “Gimme No Crack” and “Do It With Ease”. Shinehead’s melodic, Singjay approach is present in songs like “Strive” while he brings more hip hop flavor in tracks like “Chain Gang”.

His “Chain Gang” was the first video to be shown during a regular season episode of Yo! MTV Raps, in 1988.

He is still very active. He was part of the yearly Jamrock cruise in 2015. In 2015 he played at the CES in Las Vegas. Shinehead is multi talented and this is more clear than ever with the success of his sound system Kingston 12.

Lo-Key?

Lo-Key? on Colourful Radio DAB 18-March-2018

The R&B band/group Lo-Key? is comprised of André “Dré” Shepard (lead vocals), Darron “D” Story (vocals/trumpet), Tyrone “T-Bone” Yarbrough (vocals/bass guitar) and Tony “prof t” Tolbert (lead vocals/producer).

The group got their start at the 1989 Black Minnesota Music Awards Seminar where Flyte Tyme Records’ “Jimmy Jam” Harris was a panelist on the producer’s forum. During the discussion, former member and co-founder Lance Alexander said to Jimmy Jam, “How do I get one of those Flyte Tyme jackets?!”

The forum encouraged Lance and Tony to send Jimmy Jam and his songwriting and production partner, Terry Lewis, a demo of their work, and soon after they were hired as songwriters and producers for the company. Having composed for Alexander O’Neal, Shanice Wilson, Jane Child and Johnny Gill, the two producers earned enough respect to motivate the songwriting and production team to request that the two men form a group.

Lance and Tony didn’t have to look too far. Tony, Tyrone and Darron were initially members of the band Grand Jury in Kansas City, Missouri. After they moved to Minneapolis, the guys met André during auditions for Jesse Johnson’s group “Da Krash.” Thus, in the fall of 1990, Lo-Key? was officially recognized as Lance and Tony brought their group mates on board.

Featuring a throwback sound, the group’s first album “Where Dey At?” showed the guys were not like the other groups prominent at the time. Rather than try to sound like Boyz II Men or Jodeci, Lo-Key? featured a sound reminiscent of bands like Earth, Wind & Fire, Parliament Funkadelic, The Isley Brothers and The Dazz Band. The album’s first single “Attention: The Shawanda Story” didn’t didn’t receive much airplay, but its creative and comedic video continues to be a fan favorite to this day. With later singles “I Got A Thang For Ya,” “Sweet On You” and “Hey There Pretty Lady,” however, the group started making a name for themselves. The Gold single, “I Got A Thang 4 Ya!” reached #1 on the R&B charts and #27 on the Hot 100, while “Sweet On U” reached #13 on the R&B charts and “Hey There Pretty Lady” peaked out at #56.

In 1994 Lo-Key? released their second CD “Back To Da’ Howse.” The album continued the band’s unique “old school” sound, paying musical homage to the artists who had inspired them over the years. The singles “Tasty” and “Good Old Fashioned Love” are still considered R&B classics and continue to receive airplay throughout the US and the UK.

In 1995, the band took some time off to pursue other interests. Each band member went on to make his own impact in the industry. Lance and Tony continued to pen songs for artists like Alexander O’Neal, The Sounds of Blackness and Next, for whom the two are credited with penning their first hit, “Butta Love.” The two men went their separate ways in 1997, with Lance forming the label, Baby Honey Records and prof t. becoming the A&R director for Flyte Tyme’s new label and went on to work with Janet Jackson, Earth, Wind and Fire, The Isley Brothers, TLC, Solo and Jessica Simpson. D worked at BMG distribution and formed his own artist management and television production company, Intrepid Entertainment, T-Bone went on to write and form his own band, and Dré performed with the world famous Platters and Temptations.

Now Lo-Key? are back on the scene, picking up right where they left off and excited about collaborating with the talented Anthony Saunders. Some of Anthony’s credits include working with Boyz II Men, Joe, Justin Bieber, Tamar Braxton and Janet Jackson. The band is currently in the studio working on a new single, “We Grown,” to be released in the first quarter 2018 and is gearing up for shows in the UK in April 2018. With the music-buying public getting tired of songs without substance and “one-hit wonders” on the radio today, Lo-Key? is set to bring their unique blend of live R&B, soul, funk, rock, blues, gospel and jazz back to the music scene right on time!

Brenda Holloway

Brenda Holloway on Colourful Radio DAB 11-March-2018

Short Bio/PR

Motown international legend Brenda Holloway much-loved among UK Soul audiences – teams with one of her protégés, Rags Moody III on ‘Same Page’ an infectious, heart-stirring ballad produced by award-winning music man Preston Glass.

Take internationally-renowned Motown legend Brenda Holloway – known for her classic hits, “Every Little Bit Hurts,” “You’ve Made Me So Very Happy” and “When I’m Gone” – and one of her musical ‘discoveries’ Alabama-born multi-talented Rags Moody III, team, them with award-winning producer/songwriter Preston Glass and it’s a perfect combination!

Written by Brenda, Rags and Preston, the heart-stirring “Same Page” hearkens back to the golden duets of Peaches & Herb, Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell and Ashford & Simpson, with its infectious and memorable hook and soulful vocal delivery from Brenda – who remains much beloved particularly in the UK where she’s justifiably considered one of the true Motown greats – and Rags whose track “Family Man” from the recently-released “Preston Glass Presents: Love & Compassion” album – has garnered much appreciation from audiences who appreciate traditional soul music.

Another winner from SoulMusic Records (SMR) in association with Platinum Garage Recordings!

Long Biography

Born in California on June 26, 1946, Brenda Holloway grew up in Los Angeles and studied the violin at school, as well as singing at the local Church with her younger sister Patrice.

Recording for the first time whilst still a teenager she came to the attention of record shop owner Kent Harris who brought Brenda to the attention of Bob Keane, the head of Del-Fi Records. He was so impressed with the precocious youngster’s talent to have her record ‘Echo’ for the Donna label in 1962.

The same label later released ‘I’ll Find Myself A Guy’ by The Wattesians, an all-girl group put together by Hal Davis and featuring Brenda and Patrice.

The following year (1963) found Brenda virtually ever-present in the studio, recording various songs produced by Hal Davis with the exception of ‘Every Little Bit Hurts’, which was written and produced by Ed Cobb for potential release on Del-Fi but subsequently held back.

It was Hal Davis who helped get Brenda something of an audition for Berry Gordy, at which she sang a version of Mary Wells’ ‘My Guy’. Suitably impressed with her vocal abilities (and, it is said, equally taken by the tight fitting gold outfit she wore), Berry offered a recording contract on the proviso Brenda graduate from high school first. Her first Motown session saw her re-record ‘Every Little Bit Hurts’ somewhat differently. The flip side was to be ‘Land Of A Thousand Boys’, a song written by Brenda herself. Released on the Tamla label in 1964, the single would go on to become the biggest West Coast produced single for the Motown group of labels at the time, finally reaching Number 3 in the R&B chart and Number 13 in the Pop chart.

Its progress up the chart was helped by Brenda appearing on the Motortown Revue and Dick Clark’s ‘American Bandstand’, subsequently going out on the road as part of Clark’s ‘Caravan Of Stars’ tour that summer (unbeknown to Brenda, her presence on the tour helped get The Supremes the kick-start their career needed, for so keen had Dick Clark been to get Brenda on board, he accepted Esther Gordy-Edwards imposing The Supremes on the tour as part of the deal). As the tour progressed, so The Supremes’ record ‘Where Did Our Love Go’ moved up the charts and the group moved up the roster, displacing Brenda in the process.

However, the success of ‘Every Little Bit Hurts’ had given Brenda a toe-hold on chart material herself, resulting in her similarly Ed Cobb penned follow-up ‘I’ll Always Love You’ also making something of a dent on the Pop chart. Motown also rush released an album, ‘Every Little Bit Hurts’ in the wake of this success, with all but one of the twelve tracks being recorded in Los Angeles, the exception being the Clarence Paul production ‘A Favor For A Girl (With A Lovesick Heart)’ that was recorded on Brenda’s first trip to Detroit.

The album followed the then standard Motown formula; a hit or two, a few originals, a few covers from the Jobete catalogue and a couple of standards. Brenda’s voice stood out, particularly on the ballads. Her star was seemingly on the rise, helped by the sudden departure of Mary Wells for a contract with 20th Century; Berry Gordy quickly announced plans to make Brenda Holloway the new female star at Motown.

Gaining access to the same pool of writers and producers who had helped get Mary Wells to the top, including Smokey Robinson, who would write and produce ‘When I’m Gone’, a song originally intended for Miss Wells.

Brenda’s version made it to both the Pop and R&B charts and saw Brenda back on the road again, this time supporting The Beatles on their debut US tour.

The failure of the Berry Gordy penned ‘You Can Cry On My Shoulder’ to make a proper impact, followed by ‘Together ‘Til The End Of Time’ also missing out on the charts convinced Brenda that her career was not exactly as she envisaged, especially when her scheduled second album ‘Hurtin’ & Cryin’ was canned.

In March 1967 Brenda with her sister Patrice began writing work what would go on to become one of the most valuable songs in the company’s catalogue. ‘You’ve Made Me So’ was a very successful 45, returning Brenda to the Top 40, but Brenda had decided she was no longer a priority in the Gordy empire and left Motown. Her name made a return when the UK arm of Motown, Tamla Motown issued a compilation album, ‘The Artistry Of Brenda Holloway’ in October 1968 an LP that would go on to be one of the rarest vinyl LP’s for collectors and has recently been released on CD by Ace Records for the very first time.

Brenda would return to the recording studios in 1972 for Holland-Dozier-Holland’s Music Merchant label but again another whole LP of music went unreleased. Brenda was one of several former Motown artists to record for Ian Levine and his Motorcity label. Her most recent recordings saw her perform with Cliff Richard on his ‘Soulicious’ concept album.

Brenda still performs magnificently to this day and is still going strong.

Ivy Chanel

Ivy Chanel on Colourful Radio DAB 18-February-2018

Ivy Chanel singer-songwriter, producer, vocal coach, The Songwriters Academy Mentor and sister of legendary Hall of Fame inductee, Hip Hop legend DJ Cash Money, Ivy Chanel is an artist with a rich musical legacy.

The UK based Philly native was raised in the USA listening to a soundtrack of soulful gospel blends. Her music draws inspiration from her African American, French, and Native American heritage. Ivy Chanel is respected by some of the biggest talents in the industry and has worked with artists like Mo Pleasure, Omar, JLS, and Q-Tip. Ivy Chanel has also been invited to provided guest lead vocals for Miss Hoodoo’s and the Delta Boys, C+C Music Factory with Freedom Williams and The Motor City Motown Band to name a few.

Gizelle Smith

Gizelle Smith on Colourful Radio DAB 04-February-2018

Born to a Seychellois mother and an American father who was a band member of legendary Motown group ‘The Four Tops’ Gizelle was raised in Manchester, UK with a multicultural upbringing steeped in soulful music from the very beginning…

Pursuing a career in music was the natural path for her and in her formative years she became a composer in theatrical productions, a trumpet player in several big bands and a singing tutor all while earning an MA in film composition.

Before long, her singing became the main focus as her obvious talents began to attract serious attention in the funk & soul circles. After a first 7” release she was picked up and remixed by Grammy nominee producer Kenny Dope for a release on his Kay Dee imprint.

Soon after she came in to mainstream consciousness as the leader of the Hamburg based outfit ‘The Mighty Mocambos’ on their breakthrough collaborative album ‘This Is Gizelle Smith & The Mighty Mocambos’.

Gizelle excelled in the role of frontwoman which saw her dubbed the ‘Golden Girl Of Funk’ perfectly offset by The Mocambo brand of classic funk and soul centred around catchy dancefloor tunes. It proved to be an underground hit – charting and receiving specialist radio airplay across Europe while moving over 10,000 units of the album and the single ‘Working Woman’ being streamed in excess of 2million times on Spotify, all despite only being backed by a small indie label.

A serious touring schedule then followed which saw her entertaining audiences across the world including a main stage performance at Montreal Jazz Festival to over fifty thousand people.

2016 saw the recording process for her new album “Ruthless day” begin.
Before long there was well over an album’s worth of material and the cathartic nature of the writing process provided a collection of songs soaked in emotion.

Not simply recreating the classic style of the debut, the new record saw her develop a more expansive and progressive sound that exposes her vocal talents and arranging skills far more than before. This time around recruiting a talented crew of jazz-schooled musicians and incorporating a more adventurous approach to instrumentation that sees a wide array of strings, brass and synths added into the mix of the ‘traditional soul band’ set up.

The result is an energetic and harmonically rich, funk record with exciting arrangements that at times remind of Rotary Connection and Cymande in their prime. Yet it’s also undeniably modern and relevant at a time when new the new breed of progressive funk pioneers like Childish Gambino, Thundercat and Mr Jukes are all commanding significant media attention.

Proving she is now back to her best, Gizelle Smith is once again a force to be reckoned with…

Ruthless Day will be released on CD/Vinyl/Digital formats via Jalapeno Records early 2018 and Gizelle Smith will be embarking on a European tour shortly after.

Sa-Ha-Ra

Sa-Ha-Ra on Colourful Radio DAB 03-December-2017

Sa-Ha-Ra on Colourful Radio DAB 03-December-2017

Love So Fine by SA-HA-RA, is the enduring club classic, known to DJ’s and UK club goers alike.

SA-HA-RA (formerly Sahara), reformed in 2016 and immediately set to work on the long desired ‘Love So Fine’ LP.

The plan was to expand the SA-HA-RA sound and work with other top UK singers and musicians.

Featuring new and re-worked songs, led by Peter Hinds (ex Light of the World, Beggar & Co., Incognito), with partners Steve Sinclair and Kevin Ellis, they have written, arranged and produced, – Love So Fine: Past, Present, Future – LP, to be released on their own SHE Records label.

Side 1, the album opens with a timely message ‘Why The Hate’ with strong vocals by Jenny Ingram- Brown, over a trademark SA-HA-RA groove. The radio friendly and uplifting ‘You Are My Everything’, the philly inspired, mid tempo, sensual vocal, on ‘Let’s Be One Tonight’ and closing with the all time classic , mid 80’s boogie tune ‘Love So Fine’, now available on vinyl, for the first time since the original release.

Side 2, opens with the Pop dance, synth bass pumped, ‘ Let’s Get It On’, to the Chic styled bass driven, ‘How Long’.

Next , the minimal jazz set, sweet vocal ballad ‘Easy Come, Easy Go’ by Helen Louise Jones, featuring Kenny Wellington (LOTW) on Trumpet and Neil Charles on Double Bass. ‘Summer reprise’ hip hop driven drum led, breezy jazzy vocal by the late Jenni Evans and great Keyboard solo from Peter Hinds. And Lastly, ‘God’s Gonna Cut You Down.

This traditional folk song, has been re -arranged by the producers, Sinclair, Hinds & Ellis and set to a mid tempo 70’s soul groove, with stirring Gospel vocals from Yvonne Sinclair.

Heather Haywood

Heather Haywood on Colourful Radio DAB 19-November-2017

Heather Haywood current member of The Cool Notes a mid-1980s group who had a string of chart hits in the UK between 1983 and 1991. The band, who formed in South London, consisted of seven members of both vocal and instrumental talent.

They are best known for their UK number 11 hit, ‘Spend The Night’. Heather started her musical journey in lovers Rock reggae band with hits namely, The Cool Notes with reggae hits ‘My Tune’, ‘I Will Always Love You’ , ‘ I’ve Got To Let Him Know’ , ‘It’s Not Unusual’ (a cover of the Tom Jones hit) ‘Meant To Be’ and many more. The Cool Notes own creative style of fusing Reggae with Soul music, something the reggae audience at that time did not appreciate but ironically would today recognise as The Cool Notes lovers rock reggae Classics. They first worked together as a Lovers Rock Reggae Band during the mid -’70s the band consisted of 3 female vocalist Audrey, Valerie and Lauraine.

Heather Haywood became a part of the outfit in the latter stages as two of the female singer left. It was in 1983 that the band took up a natural change and became a Soul music group. They first made an impression on the UK Soul music scene with a number 1 summer smash hit ‘You’re Never Too Young’ which also went Top 50 to No. 42 in August 1984. Then followed ‘I forgot’ Top 75 at No. 63 (1984) ‘Spend The Night’ just missing the Top10 at No.11 (1985). ‘In Your Car’ also Top 20 at No.13 (1985) – Both ‘Spend The Night’ and ‘In Your Car’ enjoyed huge European success. ‘Have A Good Forever’ which was also the title track of The Cool Notes first Soul music Album entered Top 75 (1985). ‘Into The Motion’ Top 75 (1986) followed by ‘Girls Night Out’ and ‘Momentary Vision’ (1986). Heather and the band Worked and supported bands such as The Gap Band, The SOS Band, Rose Royce and Atlantic Starr. They also worked alongside the late Whitney Houston and many other legendary musicians and singers.

Heather Left the band in 1988 and signed a deal with Polydor Records in 1989. This was on their Urban sister label. The first song to be released was ‘Bad Attitude’, which was a big club hit. ‘Just What You Deserve’ was a DJ’s favourite and ‘I Want To Satisfy You’ another club hit. Heather left the label after 3 years.

Recorded with independent label 1990 Heather worked with MBeat on a version of Anita Bakers “Sweet Love” as a drum and bass (junglist) track. Heather toured eastern euro with General Levy and more. She is also featured on various compilations. Heather, has had Success in the USA with her 2 singles ‘He’z My Baby’ and ‘Everyday’ on KHP Records North Carolina. The tracks were big Beach music hits. Heather still works with the recording company in the US.

Heather has worked on various musical projects that have had varied success, nonetheless she is a true entertainer/singer/writer, she has stayed true to her profession from the age of 14yrs to now in her legendary status. She re-joined The Cool Notes and toured from 1996 to 2006. And still touring and working with the band; who are due to put out a new album in 2018.

Heather has been working with a French Recording company Candence Records and has just had a solo release on 14th October 2017. The songs are titled ‘Party Tonight’ and ‘Give It Up’. A double A sided record. Heather has been working with Producer NickeeB from Lyon, France on this release. A further single is due to be released in January 2018. Heather has various projects in the bag at this present time and is looking forward to a great 2018.

Cocoa Tea

Cocoa Tea on Colourful Radio DAB 12-November-2017

COCOA TEA is one of Reggae’s most talented and versatile artistes. His smooth, easy-going vocal presentation (pre-recorded or live) have become his trademark, earning him wide international acclaim; with songs like “Lost MY Sonia,” “Tune In” and “Rocking Dolly,” becoming world anthems in Reggae land. Admired and respected for his fine conscious recordings, COCOA TEA is also known for his unwavering generosity and kindness for the less fortunate.

Born Calvin George Scott on September, 3, 1959, in Rocky Point, Clarendon, he was later schooled at the Savannah Primary school in Rocky Point and the Bustamante Junior Secondary School in Lionel Town Clarendon.

From the exposure gained by singing on church and school choirs, COCOA TEA recorded his first song, “Searching In The Hills,” in 1974. Only Fourteen years old and having other interests, Calvin had no plans of making music his career. “Searching In The Hills,” was far from a financial success. The disappointment was keenly felt by Calvin, and so he took the music business off his mind for a while.

The next five years found COCOA TEA first as a Jockey, and then as a Fisherman. It was during this time of fishing that he began structuring his music career. His training grounds were the dancehalls, where he would test his lyrics on the various Sound systems that came to play in his area.

His success in the dancehalls strengthened his purpose and encouraged him to go further, so he began writing songs and training his voice. The final push came when Rashane, his first child, was born. His need for a steady livelihood plunged him into music full time.

Two months after an impressive performance at a dancehall in December ‘ 83,’ COCOA TEA journeyed to Kingston where he met Henry “Junjo” Lawes. “Who’s The Champion” and his first big hit, “Rocking Dolly,” were the first products from what was to be a successful union. These songs along with “Christmas Is Coming,” and “On Top Of The World,” were all compiled with COCOA TEA’S next big hit, “I Lost My Sonia” to produce his first album, by that name (“I Lost My Sonia”).

In 1985 COCOA accepted the Rastafarian faith. The conversion was reflected in his music, with songs like “Settle Down,” “Don’t Be Shy,” Too Much Fussing And Fighting” and “I’ve Gotta Love You,” “86 Flood,” “Highest Mountain,” “Tune In,” “Crying Time,” “Must Unite” and “Come Again,” which he recorded for King Jammy’s, on his fourth album titled “Settle Down” (the others being “Mr. COCO TEA and “Come Again”). The single “Rikers Island,” made it to No.1 in the United States and the U.K. and an album of the same name, his fifth, was to follow. This album also included the hit single “One Woman Show.”

“Oil Ting”- his most controversial recording, done off the War in the Middle East, was banned in England, (because of contents they claimed had Prong sentiments) while it went to No.1 in America. “Oil Ting” was followed by “No Blood For Oil,” ”What’s Gonna Happen After The War,” and ”Ruling Cowboy.”

COCOA TEA’S sixth album, one called “Authorized,” includes the hits ”May Day,” ”One Away Woman,” ‘Hunted- Wanted.” and Evaluation.” Several other singles have also been released, including ”Bust Outta Hell” and ”Kingston Hot” on the legendary Junjo Lawes Volcano Label.

COCOA TEA has been performing all over the world since 1984, with extensive tours to the U.S., Canada, the Caribbean and Japan. Locally he remains a regular on all major concerts and has appeared on reggae’s premiere event, Reggae Sunsplash every year since 1987, except in 1989. He singled out his three most memorable performances to date; his first performance on Sunsplash in 1987, the other, a show in Canada, where he performed for two hors non-stop, and his land mark achievement, a performance in St. Croix, where he performed for 10,000 people in the pouring rain.

COCOA TEA earned his stage name, because of his love for …?… you guessed right, hot cocoa (cocoa tea, as it is called in rural Jamaica). Sweet Sweet COCOA TEA attributes his inspiration to Jah. His aim was to become a role model, a source of learning and inspiration- like the great Bob Marley, whom he so admires. As he puts it, “There is a lack of consciousness from what it used to be, it’s (the music) is becoming what it is not be.”

“If one of my songs can be remembered and or quoted, and be of inspiration or guidance to anyone, then I shall be forever happy with my contribution musically.”

 

Nateesha Stream

Nateesha Stream on Colourful Radio DAB 05-November-2017

STREAM – 1) Steady flow of water or other liquid. 2) Moving continuously in a line or particular direction. A stream is a natural resource that flows from the Earth. It derives from a spring and journeys to the rivers whose ultimate destination is the wide oceans of the world. STREAM incorporates this philosophy into the creation of her music. She nurtures a thought, morphs it into a melodious blend of words, and delivers it to the hearts and minds of people. Since birth STREAM knew she was destined for greatness.

“It’s a new beginning. New music, new style, new vibes, says Stream. I had to take myself outside the music industry to finally understand what was happening with my career. I can see clearly now and fully understand that good management and vision is the key to success. I was born for this and my goal is to be a trendsetter in music!!!”

With her new connections, Nyah Bless Music, at the helm, 2017 is moving in a positive direction for the talented songstress. Now recording in earnest, she has completed a reggae remake of the Angela Bofill R&B classic “Tonight I Give In”, a gospel bombshell “My God” on Nyah Bless Frivolous Nation rhythm and a patriotic single “Come to Jamaica”.

Born Nateesha Irving, she started singing at the tender age of thirteen. She began performing on community stage shows as part of the girl group trio DA-NA-TE. As a young teen the multi-talented STREAM, also delved into the world of acting and modelling. However it wasn’t until she recorded her first song at the age of 18, titled “My Friend” did she realize her true calling as a songstress. This later led her to form alliances with the female group ‘RASTARINES’ which ultimately lasted a few years.

After leaving ‘RASTARINES’ she made several major solo performance debuts on the local and international stage. Some of her most memorable showcases include East Fest, Reggae Sumfest, Rebel Salute, Western Consciousness, Sting and Sister to Sister media-thon, a charity event which was broadcasted live throughout Jamaica and the World Wide Web. Her most recent overseas performance however was at the Royal Watler Port in Grand Cayman and Dangriga, Belize where she received rave reviews.

Over the years STREAM has done background vocal work for many artistes and worked with a variety of producers. She is featured on Gyptian’s album “My Name is Gyptian” on the track “Holiday”. STREAM’s musical future continues to shine bright. With a plethora of new singles and a busy schedule for summer, STREAM has her sights set on making her presence felt within the music industry. Blessed with a powerful voice, captivating beauty and a charismatic personality, STREAM has managed to flood the reggae industry with tunes that resonates beauty combined with reality.

STREAM’s style is similar to that of Toni Braxton who she considers to be an influence on her musical career. Others include Anita Baker, Teddy Pendergrass and Alton Ellis. Her unique and diverse sound is as quiet as the stream that will one day meet the ocean. She adds, “I can relate to her music, her melody. It connects to me. I can feel her through her music. It’s like when she sings the melody speaks to me. It’s captivating”.

In 2008 she released several singles for the House of Hits record label such as ‘Fuss Nor Fight’, ‘In The Ghetto’, ‘Holding On’ and ‘Sisters’ which is fated to become a symbol of strength for young women across not only Jamaica and the Caribbean but the globe. Because of her ability to inject soulful realness into her music, the Jamaican Music Industry embraced STREAM to the fullest, by rewarding her songs with constant rotation on every major radio and music video cable stations including HYPE TV, MD TV.

Even though she is a female in a male dominated business STREAM has successfully maintained her level of royalness by embracing Rastafari as part of her cultural being. “I’m a Nu-Root Rasta, one that still sticks to and will never forget the fundamentals of my culture.” The future has arrived ladies and gentlemen as STREAM has firmly rooted herself as the next great thing to flow from the rocky springs of Jamaica. Her sound will seek to illustrate a new vibe, a new beginning and spark the growth of a Nu-Root.

Currently working on completing his debut album, STREAM and management company Nyah Bless Music have begun an amazing promotional campaign that will continue throughout the summer with the release of several singles. The album is already causing a stir within the industry with moguls and fans collectively excited at the prospect of 12 vastly different tracks produced by an assortment of well-respected Jamaican producers.

 

 

The Simpkin Project

The Simpkin Project on Colourful Radio DAB 24-September-2017

Orange county’s Simpkin Project are proud to announce the release date for their upcoming album Beam of Light. The six-piece band will release their fourth studio album on September 29, 2017 on VP Records’ Dub Rockers imprint. Pre-orders launch on August 11th.

The Simpkin Project plays a multi-faceted blend of reggae, blues, rock, and Americana, steeped in soulful harmonies that varies greatly on its exterior layers, but only atop the organic rhythms of reggae music. Their sound has been described as “uncompromising…blending authentic roots reggae rhythms with a wall-of-sound production style.” The lyrical compositions of frontman Phil Simpkin range “from the simply truthful to the stirringly anthemic.” The SoCal based band has devoted themselves to reggae since they came together in the early ought’s. Phil Simpkin and Shawn Taylor, co-lead vocalists, have been with the band since its inception when they opened for Steel Pulse, which somewhat unbelievably served as the band’s first live performance. As they said when they signed with VP Records/Dub Rockers, “We love reggae music period. What other genre of music exists solely as the vehicle that carries with it messages of peace, positive vibes, respect, love, empowerment and spiritualism?”

The recording of Beam of Light took place at Hughes Drive Productions, Shawn Taylor’s studio. The band used vintage amplifiers, mics, compressors and equalizers so they could achieve the classic sound they were going for, while still utilizing the best of what digital help has to offer. “Throughout this record we wanted each song to feature some unique sound or instrument that would distinguish it from all the other songs. We recorded old school Hammond organs and Leslie speakers, pianos and guitar amps, an assortment of timeless microphones, preamplifiers, custom compressors and one of a kind equalizers mixed by using some of the best analogue equipment available.”

The song writing process was equally as eclectic said Phil, “This album is our most collaborative effort yet. Every member of the band gave input and ideas on every track. It was also our first time working with an outside producer, Rellee Hayden (New Kingston, Gyptian, Etana), who collaborated on a number of tunes and added his ideas and expertise to the album.”

As for the album title, that was a no-brainer states the band, “We chose this title for a few reasons. First off, we have a song on the album called “Beam of Light,” which has proven to be a fan favourite when we perform it. The words are simple, but the message has many levels, so why not honour our fans by calling our album that? Just hearing the words “beam of light” creates an abundance of beautiful mental images that each person uniquely experiences. It reminds us that we are all connected by something bigger than ourselves.”

The first single from Beam of Light is “Hustling,” which Rootfire debuted in February, saying, “with each listen you’ll discover new layers of goodness and eclectic vibes.” The song features Courtney Panton, Jr. and Courtney Panton, Sr. of New Kingston on rums and bass. The band describes the track as “an ode to the daily grind,” which is certainly relatable! Another song gaining momentum is “Some Things Don’t Change,” a lively dance track that calls on people to be appreciative of what they have and embrace the moment. The harmonious “I’ll Be There,” a sweet and powerful love song, shows a little R&B flavour, and the band’s beautiful cover of Jimmy Cliff’s “Many Rivers to Cross,” completes with a choir at the end, achieved by overdubbing the combined voices of the three band members’ different takes.

As excited as The Simpkin Project is for people to hear Beam of Light – “(Listeners) will have countless new tones to explore and discover in which each successive listen reveals something previously unnoticed” – they’re really stoked to take the songs on the road. “Like every Simpkin release, the lyrical content is focused primarily on positivity, social consciousness, self-awareness and respect of others. Our shows are distinctive and different from what people hear on the album because we do a lot of improvisational jamming. Our fans really respond to what we bring to a live show, and it allows us to give the audience a very special musical experience.” Just like listening to Beam of Light.

Natalie ‘FLO’ Stewart

Natalie ‘FLO’ Stewart on Colourful Radio DAB 10-September-2017

The creative writer, actress, performance poet and recording artist, Natalie ‘FLO’ Stewart, formerly known as ‘The Floacist’, the originator of the Floetic ethos of “Poetic Delivery with Musical Intent” and founding member of the legendary 8 time Grammy nominated UK Neo Soul duo, Floetry is back and living the Good Life.

With 3 critically acclaimed Floetry albums, followed by 3 successful solo Floacist projects under her belt, FLO released her summer feel good track ‘Good Life’ in August 2017, soon to be followed by her highly anticipated solo album, ‘True’, which is being prepped for release later this year.

FLO continues to be an ambassador of the spoken word and performance poetry community. In 2014 she launched FLO; a monthly spoken word vortex held every first Tuesday of the month at Rye Wax in Peckham, to give back to her fellow poet community.

Inspired by many lessons learnt and her own personal growth and journeying, FLO has truly come into her own, finding her voice and manifesting into an all-round artistic force. FLO brings the impacting, conceptual, poetic delivery with high, infectious energy to the stage. FLO continues to capture the hearts, minds and souls of audiences internationally.