Boutique label SOUL 4  REAL launched a special imprint last year – JAI ALAI. It’s dedicated to making available in vinyl quality 21st century soul that is rare, collectable and previously unavailable in this new-fangled vinyl thing!

The label has just issued two singles that fit that description perfectly. First up there’s a lovely 7” from SIR WICK. Anoraks will know that that’s the alter ego of Detroit trombonist / keyboardist / percussionist/ composer Chad Hughes. “Sir Wick”, we’re told, was his schoolboy nickname. A music graduate of the University of Michigan, Chad’s first proper band was Sir Wick and the Odyssey, but it was under his Sir Wick moniker that he released his first album, the acclaimed ‘An Interpretation Of A Universal Language’. His most well-known album is his 2018 ‘A Tale of Two Fools’ which he described as the soundtrack to a “novical” – a cross between a novel and a musical.

The new Jai Alai single pairs songs from both Sir Wick’s albums. The A side is ‘Seal My Heart’ (originally from ‘An Interpretation Of A Universal Language’). This is a lovely, lithe contemporary soul groove with vocals form Sedalia Marie while Anthony Saunders takes the mic on the B side  – the smooth, sophisticated ballad that is ‘I Love You’ (originally from A Tale of Two Fools’. Both are big productions and great to have them on vinyl

The second new Jai Alai single features L.A soul/jazz vocalist ELAINE STEPTER and she offers ‘Come See About Me’ and ‘What Am I To Do’. The former is a tight mid-tempo soul groove with the feel of the best of Chaka Khan while the latter mines a lounge jazz vibe – sort of Anita Baker meets Nancy Wilson… quite lovely.

These two new singles ooze class and soulful quality and you can learn more @