Tag Archives: R&B

Rainer + Grimm – Be Your girl

Rainer + Grimm, self-proclaimed happy sad boys, have been described as Toronto’s contemporary dance music response to the alternative R&B sound the city is infamous for.

Their official remixes for Sam Smith, Jessie Ware, Years & Years, Johnny Orlando, R3Hab, and many others have found homes on commercial airwaves and basement dance floors alike while signing a string of original releases on Universal Canada, Casablanca and physical presents as well as independent releases on their own imprint Bleeding Hearts Club. With production and engineering credits for the likes of Drake, The Weeknd, French Montana, Swae Lee, and Allan Rayman, just to name a few, they are poised to push their sound to the masses like never before.

Rainer + Grimm have had countless number 1’s on the popular blog aggregate site Hype Machine and a top 5 chart position on the UK’s Music Week Club and Pop Charts helped R&G tour across North America multiple times preaching their duty gospel and touch festival main stages ranging from Digital Dreams and Escapade to Splash House.

Since being a Spotify spotlight artist back in 2016, Rainer + Grimm records have been streamed over 30 million times across all streaming platforms, while boasting millions of those streams independently, 2019 promises more success under their musical umbrella Bleeding Hearts Club (BHC).

Olive B – playmate

Olive B uses her melodic voice and emotive lyrics to take listeners on a reflective and often nostalgic journey through their past relationships, and the pain and pleasures that accompany love. Olive’s first release was a seven-song mixtape titled No(W)here, released May 2017, produced and mastered by Toronto-producer Kayobe. In 2018, she collaborated with Vancouver-based producer Chewy on “Always You” and “Joey Moon.” Olive B is currently in the studio with producer Bobby Love (“Illusion” and “Fine Wine”) working on finishing an eight-song album titled With Or Without You. It’s a mix of indie pop meets alternative R&B. Look for this release on all streaming platforms on May 31st.

I was inspired by a relationship I was in, where I felt fully committed to this person, and eventually it became one-sided. He didn’t seem to care about me, but put more effort in when I acted the way I thought he wanted me to. At first, writing this track was emotional, but the more I started writing the more empowered I felt. The lyrics for the chorus just came to me during a freestyle session in the studio while Bobby was playing some spooky synths. I discovered there are two themes in the song – a vulnerable submissive side, and one where I felt powerful and comfortable with being myself.

“Playmate” is produced by Bobby Love. I came up with the melody for the chorus right away. Once everything started coming together, I knew it was going to be a great track.

Novele – Furthest

Novele is the brainchild of 26-year-old singer/songwriter/producer Austin Fitzpatrick. From an early age, Austin was surrounded by music. His uncle, John Cale, is a founding member of Velvet Underground and his Aunt was a major label executive for
most her life. Austin’s father was also a musician and DJ and raised him on soul, R&B and Hip-Hop music.

Born in Mission Viejo and raised in Corona, Austin has a deep affinity for Southern California and its culture. Some of his earliest inspirations were California artists No Doubt, Dr. Dre and The Red Hot Chili Peppers. From there he ventured further into the Alternative and Hip-Hop realms like Run DMC, Bloc Party and Gorillaz (specifically their album Demon Days).

At age 12, Austin taught himself the drums and electric guitar and began to make his own music. He then started to play in a handful of bands and joined music programs at his junior high school. His passion for music only expanded as he entered high school. At age 14, he formed a band with his friends Kyle Harward and Jeff Riggs –
Novele.

Novele began as a garage-rock band in the Inland Empire of Southern California. In early years, the trio played countless house parties and shows in and around their hometown. This was mainly experimental music in the vein of As Tall As Lions. They then faced turbulent times due to a variety of mental health and funding issues and had to take a break from each other. Kyle and Jeff have since returned to the group, but Austin remains the principal songwriter.

During the time apart, Austin continued to grow as a musician, songwriter and producer. He began to focus more on creating hip-hop beats for rappers. However, his love for punk and pop music never left and he began to fuse the genres into one.

This is where Novele’s current sound stems from. A fusion of punk, hip-hop and pop that form a true alternative style. The songs and lyrics pull from Austin’s personal experiences and struggles with mental health and overcoming depression which encompasses the deep emotion and raw passion that fuel the music.

Now 10 years later, Novele is set to release a debut demo album on September 14th. The album contains ideas from the early band days (“After The War”, “Rubies”) as well as newer tracks that Austin composed on his own (“T.S.”, “Tears”). The album is a journey through the tempestuous yet beautiful lifespan of the band. Enjoy.

Novele
Novele is the brainchild of 26-year-old singer/songwriter/producer Austin Fitzpatrick. From an early age, Austin was surrounded by music.

UHURU – Thirsty

UHURU are a duo whose music knows no boundaries – even their name means “freedom” in Swahili. Bringing together dance, electronica and R&B, their sound is a vibrant fusion that takes up today’s post-genre challenge to create soul-infused, modern pop equally at home on radio or the dancefloor. “The mix of weird sounds which you can do now in pop really excites me,” says UHURU’s vocalist, songwriter and producer Connor Daniel. “Pop production now is the most exciting I’ve ever heard it.”

Still only 22, Daniel been making music since his early teens, when he began uploading unofficial dubstep mixes of Drake and Usher to YouTube. He now describes the tracks as “awful”, but they showed impressive studio skills, clocking up plays in the hundreds of thousands, earning him a feature on BBC Introducing and, more importantly, impressing his future bandmate Robert Jones when they met on a music technology course in their home town of Southampton.

“When I met Connor at college he was talking about having one of his mixes played on Introducing,” says Jones, “and I was thinking, This guy is big time!”

It turned out Daniel had his sights set well beyond the dubstep scene. His background, too, marked him out from his fellow students. Born in Kenya, Daniel spent his early years in the coastal city of Mombasa before his parents moved to the UK when he was six. “My mum’s family have been in Kenya for generations,” he says. “I’m proud of my Kenyan roots, for sure. I have tattoos to prove it!”

His parents also encouraged an early musical flair. “There’s videos of me when I was four years old tapping along to the beat of a Michael Jackson song,” he laughs. Later he developed into a gifted pianist, with a soulful vocal delivery that elevated early efforts at writing pop songs to echo those he was hearing on the radio.

Jones’s ancestry is somewhat less cosmopolitan – both parents are originally from Wales – but his wide-ranging musicianship has been key to UHURU’s development. Like Daniel, the 22-year-old plays five instruments, having first taught himself guitar as a teenager. “My family’s not musical at all,” he says, adding that he took inspiration instead from Nile Rodgers and Noel Gallagher. “Other than my grandad, that is. He plays euphonium with the Salvation Army.”

Having clicked as friends, Jones and Daniel initially formed UHURU as a four-piece band while still in Southampton. Daniel recalls their live set was mostly made up of “electro house and Chase & Status covers”, and it was only after downsizing to a duo that the current, more complex UHURU sound started to take shape. By the time they’d finished their studies in Southampton, both agreed they should continue working together – especially after being accepted onto courses at the Academy of Contemporary Music (ACM) in Guildford.

“It was all quite natural,” says Jones of the move. “We ended up in this little two-up, two-down and it had a conservatory. We used to practice in there, much to the annoyance of old Richard next door!”

Jones and Daniel, however, quickly impressed their tutors – not least former Prodigy drummer Kieron Pepper who came round to listen in on the conservatory sessions. With Daniel studying Electronic Music Production and Jones signed up for Contemporary Music Production, at this point neither quite knew what UHURU was going to sound like from one week to the next. But well aware that ACM had previously nurtured some major talents (Ed Sheeran is a former student), they relished feeding new experiences and influences into the mix.

“Connor would come back to the house with people that were on his course,” says Jones, “and we’d try and work out this cool new direction he wanted to go in.”

“I was trying to do really experimental, underground, future bass hip hop stuff,” laughs Daniel. “But from there I discovered that you can mix all of that into pop music, which is more what we’re pushing towards now.”

Currently holed up in a studio off the M25 where they’re mixing tracks for a forthcoming EP, UHURU is rapidly evolving beyond an experimental studio project. Attention-grabbing new songs such as Riddle and Thirsty show their ambition, updating contemporary R&B with neon-tinged synthpop and global beats in a way reminiscent of breakout acts such as Bondax and Mura Masa (“a huge inspiration, production-wise” says Daniel).

Daniel insists there’s much more to come – he has hundreds of melody lines and vocal fragments recorded on his phone. He’s also still restlessly seeking out inspiration from unlikely sources, whether it be his mum (she recently clued him into jazz maestro George Benson) or Justin Timberlake. “Songwriting and vocal-wise, I love Justin Timberlake,” he says. “People say to me, Is he a guilty pleasure? But there’s nothing guilty about me loving Justin Timberlake!”

With ideas flowing so fast, it’s not surprising Daniel and Jones are eager to take UHURU out on the road and test their songs on live audiences, not least during a busy summer festival season. But for all the stylish sophistication of their new material, Daniel says his aim remains the same as when they played student clubs in Guildford: to make people dance. “Put us on a stage in front of a crowd,” he grins, “and I think we can do the rest.”

The word is out: UHURU are on a mission to liberate your mind, body and soul.

UHURU
UHURU are a duo whose music knows no boundaries – even their name means “freedom” in Swahili. Bringing together dance, electronica and R&B, their sound is a vibrant fusion that takes up today’s post-genre challenge to create soul-infused, modern pop equally at home on radio or the dancefloor.

Skai – Hooked

Skai

New Haven born Skai has officially returned after a brief hiatus and big move from London to New York. She’s back and ready with her new single Hooked. Accumulating over 20,000 views on Soundcloud, with a collection of oft-praised R&B/soul numbers – Rick Ross-inspired ‘Thugs Cry’ featuring Lil Wayne, the indecisive introspection of ‘Trust Issues’ alongside Bueffard Mallary, sexy slow jam ‘Pieces’, and the uber-submissively yet playful ‘Action.

She has received a plethora of high-profile kudos – and certified stamped approval – from 6-time Grammy Award winning producer, Jimi Kendrix (Jay-Z, 50 Cent, Lil Wayne), DJ Blazita (Jay-Z 40/40 former resident DJ in NY), and DJ Bedtyme (Remy Ma Official DJ).

Skai
New Haven-born Skai – has officially returned after a brief hiatus and big move from London to New York. She’s back and ready with her new single Hooked. Accumulating over 20,000 views on Soundcloud.

Saigo – Neither

Saigo

Los Angeles based vocalist/producer Saigo embraces the fluidity of the nascent future-soul genre, interlacing syrupy groove, electronic textures, and a diverse palette of beats. Saigo shares lyrical insights from romance to philosophy, distilling complexity and conflict into eccentric sonic tapestry. At the center of it all is a voice that is at once sensitive, inquisitive, and daring.
His breakout single, “The Other”, successfully captured the attention of the R&B/beats community, garnering recognition from Pigeons and Planes as one of their “Best New Artists”, airplay on BBC Radio, and placement on Spotify’s own “Alternative R&B” playlist.
His ongoing collaborations with producer Kan Wakan reached #1 on Hype Machine and entered BBC and KCRW rotation with the single “Still Feather”.

Saigo
Los Angeles based vocalist/producer SAIGO embraces the fluidity of the nascent future-soul genre, interlacing syrupy groove, electronic textures, and a diverse palette of beats. SAÍGO shares lyrical insights from romance to philosophy, distilling complexity and conflict into eccentric sonic tapestry.

Naah – Touch

Naah

After her debut-single with over 1M streams and the current single Pathetic released with Ninajirachi (premiered on Tripple J and supported by JAY-Z’s mgmt), Naah today is back with her new smashing single Touch !

Naah is one of the latest shooting stars over the
Stockholm-sky and is definitely one to keep your eye on.
With roots in indie-pop, the 21 year old independent songwriter and
artist now release her second single Sippin, which is
something you haven’t heard in pop-music before. She takes
her experience from band-jamming and translates it to
electronic-music and the result gets stunning!
With an ironic tone to riches, new-thinking groovy beats and
playful melodies, she puts her own stamp on music and
delivers a single that can be measured with the world stars.
It’s not electro. It’s not R&B. It’s not pop.
– It’s Naah!

“Sippin’ is the second single from Stockholm based songwriter NAAH.  It’s an effervescent electronic alt-pop number with rhythmic synth-work, crisp percussion and outstanding melody writing. It is clear that she is talented beyond her years, at only 21 she is creating well crafted synth-pop with clear appeal – her debut single ‘Worth It’ picked up some serious love across the blogosphere and shot its way to ~500,000 streams on Spotify. This new one is sure to find its way into your Spotify playlists and should see the young talent emerge as a serious contender this year”. ‘Purple Melon

Naah
After her debut-single with over 1M streams and the current single Pathetic released with Ninajirachi (premiered on Tripple J and supported by JAY-Z’s mgmt), Naah today is back with her new smashing single Touch !

Music Producer Earl Cohen

Earl Cohen

Earl Cohen has worked with a veritable “who’s who” of today’s top super stars. His credits include: Pink, Lady GaGa, Whitney Houston, International Super Star Valeriya , Tina Turner, Kelly Rowland, Usher, Destiny’s Child, Anita Baker, Joe, Will Smith, Jessica Simpson, Cyndi Lauper, Nelly, Michael Bolton, George Benson etc. His credits appeared on more than 100 million records worldwide. He has earned several multi platinum/gold awards and Grammy Awards for: Lady Gaga, Anita Baker ,and the legendary Temptations.

Earl Cohen’s story begins in 1973, where upon graduating he began mixing live rock bands in his native Connecticut and touring all over New England. Even at an early age, his musical tastes were expansive. From British Rock to Motown, he was influenced by The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Genesis, The Rolling Stones, Deep Purple, Smokey Robinson, The Temptations, and Marvin Gaye, etc. These musical influences helped to shape and define his listening spectrum.

Cohen went on to study audio engineering at The Recording Workshop in 1980. Upon graduating, he worked at Jhana Sound Studios in Connecticut which led him to work with Michael Bolton, Cyndi Lauper, and Felix Cavaliere (The Rascals a/k/a The Young Rascals). While working on the top ten hit “Tragedy” with Jeff Cannata’s Arc Angel, Cohen also worked on the #1 dance smash hit “Avenue B” for The Major Thinkers with producer Ron Bacchiocchi . He continued to mix live shows throughout the early 80’s with various rock groups.

In the late 80’s, Cohen received a call from producer Kashif to work with R&B singer Johnny Kemp. The project lasted six months resulting in Kemp’s gold single and #1 hit “Just Got Paid“, which remained at the top of the dance charts for eight consecutive weeks. This was Cohen’s first gold single and #1 smash hit. Subsequently, many other R&B producers began calling on him.

Shortly thereafter, he scored another R&B #1 hit “My First Love” with David and Wayne Lewis. While working with them on their LP for the following two years, Cohen scored yet another top ten hit with George Benson’s “Let’s Do It Again“. At that time, he was introduced to producer Barry Eastmond. He worked with Barry for the next six years recording and mixing various artists resulting in many top ten hit records for the likes of Jeffrey Osbourne, Freddy Jackson, Keith Washington, Siedah Garrett, and a Grammy Award for Anita Baker’s “I Apologize“.

Earl Cohen then met producer Joshua Thompson leading him to mix what would become Joe’s smash hit “All The Things Your Man Won’t Do” which became a platinum single and #1 airplay for 1996. He went on to win a Best Engineered LP Grammy Award for his work on “Ear-Resistable” for the legendary Temptations. Earl Cohen recorded and mixed records for Usher, Tina Turner, and Olivia’s top ten hit “Bizzounce”. Around this time, he was asked to work with producer Kenny Smooth which lead him to work with Pink when she was in the group LaChoice, and then had a top ten single “That Other Woman” with Changing Faces produced by Joe.

He then went on to work with the Australian group Kaylan landing yet another gold single and top ten hit “Rock Me All Night”. During that time period, producer Brian Ressler asked Earl Cohen to mix Nelly’s smash hit “Hot In Herre”. Cohen later teamed up with producer Rob Fusari to record Destiny Child’s smash #1 hit “Bootylicious”, and additional engineering for Whitney Houston’s #1 dance hit “Love That Man”. The duo went on to work with Will Smith, O Town, Kelly Rowland, Jessica Simpson and international Russian superstar Valeriya.

Then came an artist named Stefani in 2006, who would later be known to the world as Lady Gaga. Cohen spent next two years, recording and mixing over 30+ tracks for Lady Gaga which earned him a 8 time multi platinum award and a Grammy Award for “The Fame” record.

Earl Cohen mixed a track for actress/singer Cierra Ramirez from Lionsgate Film “Girl In Progress” with producers Calvin Gaines and Timothy Temper. Cohen is currently working with Producer Chris Paultre on a tv show for PBS. Produced over 16 songs for Celeste Buckinghams Ep- Had a #1 single at Radio Disney with “Unpredictable” and landed “Gods Of War” on the Gods Of Egypt soundtrack. Also to add to Celeste’s single  list “ Hello and Loving You”

Recorded and mixed Raquel Castro’s single “Young and Dumb” she was the little girl in the film ‘Jersey Girl’

Produced,recorded and mixed: Brian McKnight single “Forever”

Watch for new singles/ artists to come for 2018:

Currently Producing,engineering and mixing:Rachael Lorin – Michael Jacksons version of – ”The Way You Make Me Feel”

Candice Glover’s new single- {Season 12 American Idol winner} -”Break Me”

Brooke Simpson-new single-{Currently #3 runner up on The Voice}-”Perfect”

Martija Stanojkovic {13 old little superstar from Macedonia} will be working on getting her first record deal with my good friend Tse Williams of Nine Lives Ent.

And many more up and coming stars for the year to come. Too many to mention…

Earl Cohen
Cohen spent next two years, recording and mixing over 30+ tracks for Lady Gaga which earned him a 8 time multi platinum award and a Grammy Award for “The Fame” record.

I Am Hill – Give It A Rest

I Am Hill

I Am Hill Wrote, produced, recorded, and performed Give It A Rest entirety by herself. Give it a Rest is an expression of sarcastic frustration with capitalist patriarchy. It was performed on an Oberheim analog synthesizer, with the beat created using Native Instrument’s Maschine. Most of the verse vocals were recorded on Apple earbuds. Most of this was done between the hours of 2 and 5am.”

“Writing GIAR (Give it a Rest) was really a weird experience. I was feeling some crazy burnout after the last tour, I didn’t know if I’d ever write a song again. I was working nights, so I was getting home at like 4am after long hours in a loud, high intensity night club. So I’d usually be buzzing when I got home from work and need to come down”.

“One night I was driving home and blasting tunes and I got this beat in my head… when I got home I frantically plugged in my setup so I could “catch” the song. I made GIAR from top to bottom that same night, and tracked scratch vocals on my earbuds, which I ended up keeping for the verses. It had this ‘fuck it’ vibe that I couldn’t throw away. I didn’t even know what the song was about until like 48 hours later. It just came out”.

Give It a Rest, is scheduled for release in 2018. You’ll also be able to hear title track in exclusive rotation on KCRW as well as now at IX Daily”.

I Am Hill
Written, produced, recorded, and performed in it’s entirety by iamhill herself, GIAR (Give it a Rest) is an expression of sarcastic frustration with capitalist patriarchy. It was performed on an Oberheim analog synthesizer, with the beat created using Native Instrument’s Maschine. Most of the verse vocals were recorded on Apple earbuds. Most of this was done between the hours of 2 and 5am

GRACIE – Confessions

GRACIE

Forming in Leeds in September 2015, R&B band GRACIE explores a spectrum of hip-hop and funk rhythm, neo-soul tones, a jazz background and a love of potent lyrical expression. Fronted by singer songwriter Grace Convert, reigning from Monaco, the band also features guitarist and songwriter Frankie Joe Harrison, from Brighton, bassist Luke Hamlin, drummer Chloe Burke and keyboardist Julian James from London.

Taking a collaborative process of arrangement and drawing from a wide variety of popular genres the group present a unique sound including playful live instrumentation and emotive vocals.

Since their Debut at the LS6 The Clock Cafe in Leeds, they’ve been doing live shows all over Leeds in venues such as The Wardrobe, The Belgrave, Headrow house and more. They have equally been darting around London, playing at The famous Brooklyn Bowl in the O2, The Forge in Camden, The Spice of life Soho and the Troubadour Cafe to name a few.

Previous gigs include:
15/04/2017- Supporting Jamie Isaac on his UK tour, Headrow House, Leeds
31/03/2017- GRACIE EP LAUNCH, Headrow House, Leeds
15/03/2017- Supporting Natalie McCool on her UK tour, Brudenell Social Club, Leeds
4/03/2017-Headline Show, The Troubadour London,
26/02/2017- Supporting Polo on their UK Tour, The Lending Room, Leeds
17/12/2016 Funk @ The Forge, The Forge Camden, London ( supporting the Haggis horns)
9/12/2016 Chill Withers, Assembly House, Leeds
29/11/2016 LSR Sound sessions, Hyde Park Book Club, Leeds
21/10/2016- The Spice of Life Soho
1/10/2016-Soul Rebels, The Wardrobe, Leeds
29/09/2016- Brooklyn Bowl, The O2, London (Supporting the Excitements)
23/09/2016- LS6 The Clock Café, Leeds
10/09/2016- The Forge, London, Camden
2/06/2016-The Belgrave Music Hall, Leeds
23/05/2016-RE:SOUL, Hirst’s Yard, Leeds
22/04/2016-PROD exhibition, La Boheme, Leeds
26/03/2016-The Troubadour, London
21/03/2016-The Hifi Club, Leeds
14/03/2016-The Hifi Club, Leeds
10/03/2016-WharfChambers, Leeds
06/03/2016-Sela Bar, London
03/03/2016-Headrow House, Leeds
6/02/2016-The Troubadour, London
25/01/2016-RE:SOUL,Hirst’s Yard, Leeds

GRACIE
Taking a collaborative process of arrangement and drawing from a wide variety of popular genres the group present a unique sound including playful live instrumentation and emotive vocals.