Lost but not least! Wesley Alexander – Falling For You (Tet Kale Records)
‘Falling For You’ is pretty much how I felt when I first heard this exquisite smoothie back in 2002. If ever into acoustic vibes, then the Latin/Caribbean-flavored ‘Falling For You’ is for you. Thus showcasing the extreme sensibility of Wesley Alexander. A singer/songwriter speakin’ of whom one might pretty much wonder why/how he didn’t do more than this at the end. But also, if this was ever needed the skills of Haitian musician, singer and producer Jephté Guillaume. Himself equally renown for his collaborations with Joe Claussell.
A vibrant declaration, ‘Falling For You’ is a timeless slice of beauty. With thanks to the delicacy of its arrangements. From the Afro/Cuban percussion courtesy of Emedin Rivera. To Jephté Guillaume‘s Spanish guitar parts bringin’ some undeniable Balearism to the whole.
– Jephté Guillaume has been for much on the burgeoning organic direction of Deep House during the late ’90s. Gathering influences from Disco to Jazz/Funk and Brazilian Jazz. He was not just a DJ / Producer / Vocalist. But also an in-demand multi-instrumentalist around New York’s Hip-hop, Acid Jazz and World Music scene since the early ’90s.
Born in Haiti, Guillaume moved to New York as a child, along with his family. He began playing at an early age, reaching for the bass. Meanwhile his brother Donald (The Fugees drummer) worked on drums.
By the beginning of the ’90s, the two began recording with Haitian music group Rara Machine on Shanachie Records. Eventually opening up for the Rolling Stones Vodou Lounge tour. Guillaume also played with post-Bop Acid Jazz group Abstract Truth and multi-platinum artist Wyclef Jean. Not to mention Groove Theory, Destiny’s Child and Jermaine Jackson to name just a few.
Jephté has forged his unique signature while combining acoustic grooves with fierce electronic drive (the Tet Kale Sound). Eventually forwarding the vibe on his mix sets around the world.
He began recording on his own and released his debut single, ‘Onè Respè’, back in 1994 on Metropolitan. By 1997, ‘The Prayer’ brought Joe Claussell‘s Spiritual Life Music label international accolades. Becoming a massive underground House hit. Driven by deep Afro-Haitian-Latin vibes, acoustic guitar, flute and Guillaume‘s own vocals.
Hot on its heels came a series of recordings in the same vein for Spiritual Life. From ‘Kanpé’ to ‘Al Di Yo’, ‘Lakou-A’ and ‘Ibo Lele’. Each of them balancing Guillaume‘s knowledge of Caribbean grooves with the increasingly organic feel of New York House. Something which Joe Claussell, François K and Danny Krivit brought to vivid success during their memorable Body & Soul parties.
Jephté‘s debut album, ‘Voyage of Dreams’ appeared on Chrysalis Records in 1998 and Avex Records in Japan. Since then, he has delivered countless extra gems. From ‘Rhythm Of The Rain’ along with Jean-Claude Lamarre to ‘Papa Loko’ with Erol Josué. Not to mention the stellar ‘Blue And Deep’ with German Opera singer Wiltrud Weber back in 2008. A cut which was to become the title track of his album of the likes 3 years later.
Also worth the check, Wesley Alexander‘s ‘Falling For You’ which Jephté released on his Tet Kale Records label back in 2002. This is addition to his cover version of War‘s classic ‘The World Is A Ghetto’ along with Sean Schulich.