Friday, June 23, 2017

10 essential underrated goodies

10 essential underrated goodies10 essential underrated goodies… Like always, a selection is per definition limited, this time seeing us left with a feeling of frustration in front of countless pieces of undeniable quality music which didn’t meet the reception they truly deserve though.
How could we ever blame someone for not knowing what he or she hasn’t been exposed to? With the fault most likely being the one of the countless corporate radio stations only dealing with reputedly mainstream, but also of the record industry and its cohort of white collars who applied to music the selling techniques of the agribusiness, without a single oz. of culture! As a result, many are these unsung gems we couldn’t talk about here, even though they would have definitely been worth a mention.

No need to say how this selection is way from being exhaustive, most likely due to find an extension later when the right time comes. Nevertheless, you should find thereafter a pretty much illustrative sample of worth the listen jewels wherever they may be comin’ from, in addition to our ‘Lost But Not Least’ feature.

Wishing you’ll enjoy the ride as much as we did, while putting this together for you, with your feedback, and a mention of your favorite song more than welcome.

10 essential underrated goodies / The S.O.S. Band – Just Get Ready (P Music Group, Inc.)
Made famous for their classic Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis produced ‘Just Be Good To Me’ among many other things back in the 80’s. The group made a brief come back in 2014, true to the spirit of what made them famous with this infectious synthesized-led funky jam alongside producer Wirlie Morris and an 8 date tour in the US, during the following Summer. All of this leavin’ us with an impression of need some more…
10 essential underrated goodies / Gladys Knight – Soon (Many Roads Records)
On the heels on her 2014 released ‘Where My Heart Belongs’ album, this piece of heaven which seemed to be taken from an upcoming album. In the caliber of standards such as ‘Neither One Of Us (Wants To Be The First To Say Goodbye)’, ‘Love Overboard’ or her cover version of Ashford & Simpson‘s ‘Bourgie Bourgie’, this 5 star produced inspirational cool jam looks set to get the lady to extra laurels, cleverly integrating at times rhythmic snippets seemingly influenced by Jim Jam & Terry Lewis‘s constructions for the SOS Band and in the meantime sounding like a response (extrapolation) to the Commodores‘s memorable ‘Zoom’…
10 essential underrated goodies / Rob Alexander featuring Roy Ayers – Peaceful Easy Feeling (L’Attitude Records)
Released as a limited promo 12″ back in 1994 and included on the compilation of the name released the year after on UK label Step2, this lascivious groove stands among the most underrated masterpieces ever.
Rob Alexander comin’ up with this atmospheric vocoderized R&B/Funk compact groove with the legendary Roy Ayers doin’ his thing on his vibraphone…
You certainly don’t wanna miss this anymore!
10 essential underrated goodies / Isaac Hayes – Fragile (Virgin)
1995 marked the return of Ike in full effect with both a role in the comedy series ‘The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air’ and the release of his ‘Branded’ album on Virgin, eventually givin’ me the opportunity to meet him for an interview and set up the basis of a friendship which would last until his passing back in 2008. I instantly stumbled upon his vibrant plea for our environment, the animal kind and more widely the life as the gift it is, conceived under the form of a three part continuous blend, from the aptly titled ‘Ike’s Plea’ as an introduction followed by ‘Life’s Mood’ to by what we would call the body of the text editorially speaking. In other words: ‘Fragile’, which he recorded with a kid choir…
10 essential underrated goodies / Incognito – We Got Music (Matt Cooper’s Outside Mix) (Rice Records)
10 years have gone since the first appearence of this rework as the opening cut to the 2005 released ‘Incognito & Rice Artists Remixed’ compilation, then given a re-release 6 years later as a part of the ‘Bluey’s Essential Remixes’ collection on UK-based label Dôme Records, and its still sounds so fresh. At the command, Matt Cooper, remembered for his brilliant keyboard and rhythm parts as one half of Oustide on the Dorado label back in the 90’s. A highly gifted musician who totally rearranged this jam meanwhile sort of reconstructing it under the form of different acts, with Imaani reaching her peak vocally speaking, and Nichol Thompson‘s trombone solo appearing as the icing on the cake…
10 essential underrated goodies / Swing Out Sister – Making The Right Move (Mercury)
A cherished act since their debut back in the mid-80’s, sophisticated Pop group Swing Out Sister didn’t manage to get an audience / an exposure comparable to the one their previous efforts had on their 1994 released ‘The Living Return’ album. Was it because they turned into a 10 piece-band? Because of the absence of their usual producer (Paul O’Duffy)? God only knows! One thing for sure though being the absolute beauty of the 10 minute + long ‘Making The Right Move’ conceived like a multiple act atmospheric travelling over lush and delicate arrangements, along with producer Ray Hayden (Opaz, Martine Girault, Ronny Jordan)…
10 essential underrated goodies / Misty Oldland – Got Me A Feeling (Boogie Back Records)
Initially released on this British indie label synonymous with the Holly Grail for the lovers of the organic groove, the vibrant Misty Oldland teaming up with Brit-Soul icon Omar Lye-Fook MBE on this absolute delight which she co-produced along with Glen Nightingale, Jeremy Meehan, Joe Dworniak and Maxton Beesley, Jnr prior to be offered a deal with Sony UK and releasing her debut album the year after, featuring the aforementioned and ‘A Fair Affair (Je T’Aime)’ which are considered as her signature cuts. She released two albums after and plans to come up with new music next year in addition to her activities as a campaigner for the respect of our environment…
10 essential underrated goodies / Phalon – Rising To The Top (Elektra)
Probably one of the biggest mysteries in the history of music business. A man who, as Jazze Pha (the son of Bar-Kays bassist James Alexander) has been working with a plethora of contemporaries, from LSG to Ludracris, 2pac, Outkast, Lil’ Jon, Too Short and many more, speakin’ of which not a single mention has been made of his previous work as Phalon on Wikipedia!!! That said, his label – Elektra – where he managed to release his first and only album back in 1990, didn’t do that much for him despite the presence of its title cut – the aptly titled ‘Rising To The Top’ – and also ‘Dance Floor Of Life’ which displayed his undeniable talent as both a singer and a rapper and obvious sense of the groove…
10 essential underrated goodies / Ever C – Blowing (Boogie Back Records)
On Ernie McKone and Oisin Little‘s Boogie Back Records label. An underground gold mine imprint associated with top quality Jazz/Funk and street Soul gems by the likes of people such as Omar, Max Beesley, Lalomie Wishburn and others.
One of the baddest grooves I’ve ever heard with Mark Mbachu upliftingly rappin’ on this killer Jazz/Funk jam featuring label manager Ernie McKone on bass, Jacko Peak on flute and sax with drum programming by the likes of Alex Osman
10 essential underrated goodies / Honey Dijon & Tim K feat. Jason Walker – Burn (Classic Music Group)
It’s deep, it’s hypnotic, it’s vibrant, it’s simply… beautiful, with Honey Dijon and Tim K delivering the right ingredients at the right space, creating the right contrasts to expand the emphasis of the interpretation of singer Jason Walker, speaking of whom it’s fair to say that he’s gifted with a one of a kind voice alllowing him to reach territories like probably no one else does around… Although more so to say in yer face remixes have been made available with this package, this version, delivered on a 106 bpm rhythm pattern, stands as the absolute icing on the cake, and one of our absolute 2015 fav cuts…

Missed these?
10 must have lazy jams…
10 must have Jazz/Funk classics…
10 must have Brit-Soul gems…
10 must have instrumentals…

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