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Black Porcelain’s Invincible Summer Review

Invincible Summer cover

Black Porcelain has released her truly independent self finance album.  We first wrote about her in 2011 when she released a remix of Butterflies. Then in 2012 when she released the video of “Today Is the Day”. To this day I still love this song.  Which listening to “Invincible Summer”, I was very happy to hear it as the first track.  Kind of a feeling of being at home, and put me in comfortable place with this new material.

As I said the first song is “Today is the Day”.  It’s a very deceptive song. It’s the most upbeat positive “Get the Hell Out” song I have every heard.  The simple yet effective piano keeps the song very light and positive.  Most other singers in the genre would and have made this subject more dark than it should be.  That’s why for me it’s very refreshing to get her take on this type of song.  Also the horns arrangement on the song is excellent.

The next two tracks “Aching Head” and “Hot Pink” continue the strong start of the album.  With “Aching Head”, the bass guitar plays big part in establishing the tempo of the song.  Which could be taken as a drinkers anthem. lol.  In the song “Hot Pink”, her voice really stands out and takes over the song.  In doing so, you realize something.  That the first three songs are not similar at all, and Black Porcelain’s voice handles each distinctly and masterfully.  You don’t notice her voice strain, or reach areas where she is uncomfortable.

The album continues with song after song that describes her on her Journey.  Each song is a glimpse into that journey and her life, which makes this album very personal and meaningful.  This album has many reasons why I love independent artists.  I feel that each fan, album purchase and “like” helps that artist accomplish their dreams, which is repaid by more music for the fans.

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Electrifying Soul: Muhsinah

Michael Jackson's mentor, Quincy Jones

In the early 1950’s Quincy Jones made a bold move and took an offer to tour as a trumpeter with Lionel Hampton, instead of finishing at Berklee College of Music.

Around the same time, Ray charles was singing “Baby, Let Me Hold Your Hand” while wearing his signature Billy Stickles shades. About a decade later, Curtis Mayfield was in the company of James Brown and Sly Stone cultivating people’s pride for being black. They electrified people so well with their music, that anyone living during the civil rights era, had a seriously soulful soundtrack to groove to.

Though I enjoy the life-giving entertainment that these men brought to the forefront, I can’t hold a candle to their creative genius. There is one thing we have in common; however, and that is an undying desire to keep soul music alive.

I just want to quickly introduce myself. I’m Issa and I breathe soul music. If there was no Frankie Beverly and Maze, where would I be today?

The one and only Chaka!

If Chaka Khan never opened her mouth, I wonder what my life would be like, and if Aretha would never have touched a microphone, there would be a void in my life that nothing else could fill. The industry has created categories for artists and boxed them in based on these categories, but bottom line: we know soul. For that reason, I am so pleased to be writing with the rest of the team here at Soulified. I have a unique opportunity to spread more of this thing we call “soul” by bringing to you some of the up and coming soul and neo-soul artists who are diligently working to keep it alive.

Before I sign off, I want to introduce you to an artist who I’m sure you’ve heard of by now.  Check the archives here for another article on her written a few months back. She’s shining bright, and I  have had this star on heavy rotation for the past few weeks… yes.. weeks. Her name is Muhsinah. She’s hailed by The Washington Post as being a young soul rebel “with an uncanny ability to seamlessly meld electronic beats with layers of jazzy arrangements and unorthodox song structure..” As a singer/songwriter and producer, she claims to be highly influenced by Chick Corea, Alice Coltrane, and J Dilla. Its pretty easy to see that on her most recent album “The Oscillations: Triangle” released in 09′.

Here’s a taste, and here’s to soul. Keep it alive…

Download some Muhsinah: Construction