Sunday, 29 July 2018 19:17 Bill B E-mailPrintPDF

altToronto's MARK PELLI may be a new name to most but Mr Pellizzer (for that's his "real" name) has a five star CV. He co-wrote the 2014 Billboard no 1 hit, the  reggae-flavoured 'Rude' for the band Magic for whom he played keyboards and guitar. He's also written and produced music for people like Chris Brown, Shakira, Anthony Hamilton, Trey Songz and Marsha Ambrosius.

Right now Mark's striking out as a solo performer and he's just released his first single –a gentle, unprepossessing tune, 'You Changed Me'. Without doubt, it has 21st century vibe but there's also a genuine retro feel to the song, its arrangement and production. Don't know why but it reminds me, in places, at least, of 'You Send Me' by the great Sam Cooke. Surprise, surprise.... Mark tells us that Sam is one of his all-time musical heroes!

'You Changed Me' proves that good music doesn't need to be over-complicated and clever.... nothing wrong with a strong song, a great melody delivered with conviction and love. Investigate @

Last Updated on Sunday, 29 July 2018 19:26



Sunday, 29 July 2018 19:01 Bill B E-mailPrintPDF

altIt was spring, I think, when we first heard of JAYAR MACK, a Chicago soul man who now works out of Florida. The multi instrumentalist, we were told, has something like 1200 published songs to his credit and was working on a "best of" long player and he was promoting a single – 'You Make Me Feel So Good', a decent little modern soul beater that went all the way to #1 in Brazil, #2 in Montreal and #7 on the best UK soul charts.

That performance is set to be at least equalled as Mr. Mack releases a new single – a pacey 'Blind Love' that comes in three pleasing mixes including one from an old friend, Tom Glide. Right now we're liking the "1 AM Club Mix" – spot on the current modern soul vibe! All mixes are out now on Jacoda Records.

Last Updated on Sunday, 29 July 2018 19:26



Friday, 27 July 2018 18:38 Bill B E-mailPrintPDF

altKUVER RECORDS is a brand new label – a subsidiary of blues specialists Black and Tan Records. The aim of the new imprint is to release new, refreshing cover versions of well-known blues classics... and the tune they've chosen for the first release is certainly that – 'St James Infirmary'.

The artist chosen to present this new take is veteran blues guitarist JAN MITTENDORP and he gives the familiar a fresh, electro instrumental treatment that complements the sadness and despair inherent in the tune and its message.

Last Updated on Friday, 27 July 2018 18:45



Friday, 27 July 2018 18:35 Bill B E-mailPrintPDF

altJERRY BARNES might not be a name that immediately jumps out – but the producer/bassist has an enviable track record. He's a long-time collaborator with Nile Rodgers – he's played on numerous Chic hits – and worked with Chaka Khan, Prince, Stevie Wonder and Christina Aguilera.

His latest project is developing music with young pop/soul singer MELISSA SANLEY. Ms Sanley has just released her new single – produced by Barnes - a pacey, Euro pop -flavoured confection, 'My Time'. It's the first single from an album that Melissa and Barnes are currently working on and it's currently available via all the usual download platforms.

Last Updated on Friday, 27 July 2018 18:45



Friday, 27 July 2018 15:59 Bill B E-mailPrintPDF

altTHE ROYAL KRUNK JAZZ ORCHESTRA is the creation of jazz trumpeter RUSSELL GUNN. The double Grammy nominee has long harboured an ambition to breathe new life into the tradition of proper, "big" jazz bands and after a deal of effort his dream is realised with the release of the 9 track album 'Get It How You Live' from his 19 piece Royal Krunk Jazz Orchestra.

The long player was recorded after the band had enjoyed a weekly residency at Atlanta's St James Live venue and the LP's set list is a mix of originals and surprising covers. Noteworthy amongst the new material is the hard hitting 'Sybil's Blues' which is a vehicle for trumpeter Theo Croker, 'The Critic's Song' which spotlights sax man Brain Hogass and 'Lynne's' Joint' which features Melvin Jones' trumpet.

Amongst the covers, you maybe surprised by the version of Shai's 'If I Ever Fall In Love'. Gunn calls his treatment "acapella trumpet". The sorely neglected Dianne Farris features on her own song, the gorgeous 'Hopeless' and she's at the mic too for the undoubted album highlight – a magnificent take on 'The Ballad Of The Sad Young Men'

The garlanded Gunn considers this album and the band his greatest achievement to date. He knows that there is huge responsibility in keeping alive the tradition of Basie, Ellington et al but we're confident that those jazz maestros would surely approve.

THE ROYAL KRUNK JAZZ ORCHESTRA; 'Get It How You Live' is out now on Ropeadope Records.

Last Updated on Monday, 30 July 2018 15:52


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