Whilst we finish editing the videos I can’t wait for you to see, here’s a selection of photos from our last event. It was really exciting to catch two completely different artists right before they both undoubtedly make significant waves on the festival circuit later this year.
L.A. Salami is a poet at heart who can’t switch it off (just try asking how he is if you’re up for an existential journey), and his performance was both thought provoking and inspiring. Valentina is one of those artists who commits every part of themselves to the moment, her soundcheck left me in tears and you could hear a pin drop during her stunning performance of “Gabriel”. As always, Marshmello played an extremely juicy and eclectic and DJ set, and special guest Budgie kept us on the floor when the lights came up with rare groove, rare soul, and a whole bunch of other rare stuff.
View the full selection on our Facebook page.
After our test run in December at our new home The Old Queens Head, we’re excited to announce a regular live monthly night, bringing PUT ME ON IT to life and presenting the most exciting emerging artists we can find. The first session is on Wednesday February 13th, with Valentina, a singer songwriter I’ve been writing about since early 2011. Her debut EP “Weights” is stunning, and you’ve probably heard “Gabriel” the Joe Goddard song she featured on. L.A. Salami I came across when he supported Lianne LaHavas a year ago, and have been a fan of ever since. On DJ duties we have Budgie (Livin Proof / Honest Johns) and Marshmello (NTS / 7s Unda The Stairs / Two Timers).
L.A. Salami has written an upbeat anthem that perfectly describes the incredibly depressing financial situation though culturally very rich times much of my generation live in. If you’re not a lyrics person this song could sound rather throwaway, but I maintain that L.A. Salami is a talented poet with Bob Dylan tendencies (yep, he plays harmonica and writes about depressing shit, in a good way). I would love to know how he got such fabulous dance performances out of his fellow dancers in this video. They look like 9 year olds high on Haribo – truly the finest kind of dancing there is.
Remember when I got all excited about Tinashé a few years ago? Well around about the same time Island Records scooped up another talent of equal measure with a slew of great songs named Josephine Oniyama. Despite being the label who brought us artists like Bob Marley, Grace Jones and Baaba Maal, it seems that when Chris Blackwell left the company much of his vision, taste and flair for breaking artists who didn’t fit a pre-existing mould disappeared with him.
I first stumbled across Josephine’s brilliant and ridiculously catchy song A Freek A two years ago through Dom Servini, so I was very excited to discover that she has been working on an album with Ed Harcourt and Seb Rochford entitled “Portrait” due out on October 8th on Rubyworks/Ark Recordings. The new single “What A Day” is every bit as infectious as “A Freek A” and will be released on 20th August. I suggest watching the video below by way of brief introduction -
By rights the likes of Josephine and Tinashé (and many others you can find on this blog such as Tawiah, Tanya Auclair, Joshua Idehen, L.A. Salaami, Rahel, Ghostpoet and ESKA), are a new generation of homegrown singer-songwriters who probably grew up with The Smiths and Joni Mitchell as much as King Sunny Ade or Michael Jackson, as well as the artists Chris Blackwell worked with. The originality and richness of their music is the result, but so far it seems to be proving somewhat of a challenge for much of the industry to wrap their heads around (what some of us see as a no-brainer). Happily things change much faster now than ever before, and what with the quality of her voice and songwriting Josephine is undoubtedly about to make some serious headway. We will be supporting her with the very fibre of our beings.
Support: “What A Day” will be released on 20th August 2012.
I saw this guy live last year supporting Lianne LaHavas at Servants Jazz Quarters. It was a warm up gig for her performance on Jools Hollands’ show and subsequent world domination. Usually reading an artist bio makes you groan – they’re so often swimming with unhelpful comparisons and watery chunks of irrelevant information. L.A. Salami’s is very accurate however, in that it confirmed word for word the conversation I had with my companion at the gig “this guy sounds like he could have been a rapper but fell in love with Bob Dylan instead”. Dylan may be an influence but Salami has enough interesting stories of his own to set himself apart, and I look forward to writing about whoever ends up supporting L.A. Salami before his probable future appearances on Jools Holland and the likes’ shows.