Posts Tagged 'dwele'

BEST OF 2012 – The Top 20 Soul Music Releases That Weren’t Free

Welcome to my annual breakdown of the best in Soul Music for 2012. Man, this year did not disappoint. After tireless listening on just about every thing that hit this year (I’ll admit, I didn’t get to hear everything), these are the albums and artists that demanded multiple listenings and brought something new to the field.

I really, really tried to rank these releases. But although there was a clear winner, the rest of my list will be posted in a very loose order of preference. Hopefully this list will give you not only something to new to listen to, but also some last-minute gift giving ideas for the holiday. Please support all of these amazing artists. I truly believe there is a new renaissance in Soul and Jazz, and these folks are on the cutting edge of it. Feel free to check out my Spotify playlist of everything I considered the cream of the crop of 2012. Now, here’s the Top Twenty!


Robert Glasper – Black Radio

Purchase on iTunes
@robertglasper on Twitter

The clear winner this year. And when I say “groundbreaking,” I truly mean it with this release. It’s a memorable, solid fusion of Jazz, Soul and R&B. With a guest list of R&B’s elite, “Black Radio” is an album that will thrill you and demand hitting the repeat button continuously. Also check out the subsequent Remix EP that also hit this year for even more groovin’ goodness.



Moonchild – Be Free

Purchase on Bandcamp (FREE for a limited time until Christmas)
@thisismoonchild on Twitter

This record was the only thing that could have come close to inching out the Glasper record. These kids (kids, I say!) came out with an impressive debut. Impressive enough to gain the attention of one Mr. Stevie Wonder, who featured the band recently in his annual “House Of Toys” concert. “Be Free” is a beautiful slice of Neo-Soul with outstanding vocals and tight, immaculate instrumental performances. It’s a must-own in my book. Doubly so, as the band is offering it as a FREE download until Christmas. This band will be one to watch in the coming years. Mark my words.


DivaGeek – He Said, She Said

Purchase on Bandcamp
@DivaGeekMusic on Twitter

Probably one of the most fun records of the year and winner of my award for “Retro Funky Goodness.” If you’re not in the mood to party before you listen to it, “He Said, She Said” will get you there. With heaters like “Mr. Happy” and “Money,” this british duo brings some serious electronic funk to the table and just doesn’t quit.


Sy Smith – Fast and Curious

Purchase on Bandcamp
@Syberspace on Twitter

Easily one of the best female voices in Soul Music today. “Fast and Curious” was also produced by session whiz Mark de Clive-Lowe. This record has the perfect balance of electronic dance-ability and sexy ballad goodness.


Ernesto – Suffice Suffice

Purchase on iTunes
@jonatanbackelie on Twitter

Ernesto is a masterful songwriter and vocalist. His songs are honest and soulful. This entire record is a fantastic journey of Electronic Soul.


Allen Stone – Allen Stone

Purchase on iTunes
@allen_stone on Twitter

Who would have thought that a geeky hippy dude from Washington could churn out the best commercial Soul release of the year. But Allen Stone has definitely done it with his eponymous debut.


Anthony Valadez – Just Visiting

Purchase on iTunes
@anthonyvaladez on Twitter

KCRW DJ is not simply content spinning other people’s music. With “Just Visiting,” Valadez teams up with some of the best new names in independent Soul Music. The result is a masterful Tour de Force.


BamaLoveSoul presents On Deck

Purchase on iTunes
@BamaLoveSoul on Twitter

Another great compilation this year was BamaLoveSoul’s “On Deck.” You want to get a great sense of where Indie Soul is heading? Spin this one and get acquainted with the future.


Funkommunity – Chequered Thoughts

Purchase on iTunes
Funkommunity on Facebook

There is something definitely in the water in Australia and New Zealand. Funkommunity is just one act to hail from that locale. “Chequered Thoughts” is a fresh take of Soul Music from another hemisphere.


Darryl Reeves – Mercury

Purchase on iTunes
@darrylreeves on Twitter

There’s a great new crop of musicians that are fusing Soul and Jazz together. Darryl Reeves is one such musician. A fantastic sax player, Reeves also puts together something groovy and futuristic in his release “Mercury.”


Jesse Fischer & Soul Cycle – Retro Future

Purchase on iTunes
@JesseFischer on Twitter

Another great Soul/Jazz fusion, Jesse Fischer’s “Retro Future” is just that. The perfect homage of retro synth goodness combined with down home grooving funk. This album also features probably some of the best sax playing I’ve heard all year.


Miguel – Kaleidoscope Dream

Purchase on iTunes
miguelmusic on Facebook

What good would this list be if I didn’t include some of the more mainstream releases. Well, this was certainly a great year for Miguel. Following the releases of his “Art Dealer Chic” series of mixtapes, he came out of the gate swinging with “Kaleidoscope Dream.” This is a really solid showing of contemporary R&B.


Frank Ocean – Channel Orange

Purchase on iTunes
Frank Ocean on Soundcloud

Well, unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve certainly heard about Ocean and Channel Orange. And, while I don’t follow a lot of the mainstream blogs calling this Record of the Year, it is a very consistent and fresh take on what’s happening in R&B today.


Mint Condition – Music @ The Speed of Life

Purchase on iTunes
@mcondition on Twitter

It was so great to see veterans Mint Condition come back with such a powerful album. These guys have not lost one bit of their chops or musicality. And every song on this record is wonderfully hooky and masterfully executed.


Nicholas Ryan Gant – Promises

Purchase on Bandcamp
@Ghetto_Falsetto on Twitter

A new voice for male contemporary R&B and Soul, Nicholas Ryan Gant hits with this impressive release. Gant has a fantastic voice and a fresh point of view.


Hiatus Kayote – Tawk Tomohawk

Purchase on Bandcamp
@HiatusKaiyote on Twitter

That’s right, another selection from Down Under. Whatever is happening in the land of Oz, I sure hope they keep it coming. Because with groups like Hiatus Kaiyote, the future of Soul Musc is in good hands.


Dwele – Greater Than One

Purchase on iTunes

Dwele still remains one of my top three contemporary Soul male vocalists. And there’s just something about a Dwele record that ensures you get a consistent and soulful experience every time. This record is no exception.


S3 – Supa Soul Sh*t

Purchase on Bandcamp
@MilesBonny on Twitter

Just when you thought Miles Bonny might slow down following last year’s “Lumberjack Soul,” he cranks out even more soulful goodness. This team-up with Brenk Sinatra is a grooving and mellow hip-hop/soul trip.


Oaklyn – Chasing the Sun

Purchase on Bandcamp
OaklynSounds on Facebook

Always a pleasant surprise when an artist I’ve never heard of puts out a release that really impresses. Oaklyn’s “Chasing the Sun” has it all; delicate female vocals, great hip hop beats, and fundamental bass that’ll warm your heart and rattle your subwoofer.


Uness & Crime In the City™ – Groove Jones

Purchase on Bandcamp
@IamUness on Twitter

Uness continues to be one of the unsung heroes of independent Soul. Groove Jones will have you tapping your toes from beginning to end.


HONORABLE MENTIONS (stuff I just couldn’t not mention and you should defninitely check out)

Gregory Porter – Be Good
Alabama Shakes – Boy & Girls
Sidewalk Chalk – Corner Store
Pete Belasco – Lights On
The Endangered – The Endangered EP
DJ Kemit – Everlasting
Greg Banks – Greg Banks
K-Def – Easy Way Out EP
Elliot Yamin – Let’s Get To What’s Real
Cody Chenutt – Landing on a Hundred
Ms. Sounday – My Little Joys
Daley – Alone Together EP
Eric Benet – The One 

BEST OF 2012 – Top 10 Free Independent Soul Music Releases

This is it! The first of our Best of 2012 lists. This week we highlight the absolute best free Soul Music that hit the net all year.

Man, I feel ike I say this every year, but 2012 especially was an amazing year for free independent Soul and R&B. The sheer volume of material that was released this year really made my job difficult. But I’ve thought long and hard about these choices. And these releases are the ones that held my attention and/or made me re-visit them for multiple listenings. In this age of disposable music, these are the albums and EPs that rose to the top. Without further ado…

1) Mar – Seeing Her Naked

2) Kameron Corvet – Fuck, Love

3) POO BEAR – Beats 2 Break Up 2

4) Balance and the Traveling Sounds – Orisue presents Lost Luggage EP

5) Joanna Borromeo – Through The Dark

6) Taps – Almost Home

7) Dassit – Dassit

8) Dwele – Darkside Of The Mic


9) Emanny – Songs About HER


10) Bluey Robinson – The Late Shift


HONORABLE MENTION (in no particular order, consider these in the Top 20.)

Curt Chambers – One Way Ticket Phony Ppl – Phonyland.

Brittany Barber – I Heart Music

Kia Bennett – Duet of Daffodils

Roane Namuh & Reva DeVito – Cloudshine

Tere$▲jenee – Electric Yellow

Staycen x Koen – Never Too Late

Yuri Koller – Open Doors

Harbour City Electric – Without A Sound

Free Soul Music Saturday for September 8, 2012

Welcome to Free Soul Music Saturday, your home for the latest and greatest in independent free Soul Music and Beat Tapes!

Slow news week for LPs and EPs, but a gangbuster week for Beat Tapes. Plenty of great singles hit this week as well, so there’ll be plenty to keep you ears groovin’ and your toes tappin’ until next installment.

Here is my complete listening list for the week, and here is the Spotify playlist for the week (good for one month).

Thanks to all the artists, producers, DJs, podcasters and music bloggers that bring this music to light!





DWELE - Hold On (SHARPSOUND remix)
Dwele – Hold On (dj sharpsound remix)


dealanim2 Potholes Music Releases Javis FauXs Deal With It Vol. 2
Javis FauX – Deal With It Vol. 2


Electric Kingdom cover art
Unbuttoned – Electric Kingdom

EPs & LPs 

O.T.L.R. cover art
Conceptual – O.T.L.R.


The Lost Files Vol. 3 (2006-2007) cover art
BoomBaptist – The Lost Files Vol. 3 (2006-2007) 

Yugo cover art

Beat Tape Koi Kaze cover art
Katrah-Quey – Beat Tape Koi Kaze

Take Off//Flight 2.0 cover art
Maydien – Take Off//Flight 2.0 

Amplified EP cover art
Robot Orchestra – Amplified EP

Flamingo Skin cover art
SourSoul – Flamingo Skin 

Untitled cover art
XCIV – Untitled


D'Angelo - Devil's Pie (STBB287 Mix)
D’Angelo – Devil’s Pie (arX 247 Remix) 

FREE DOWNLOAD:::The Layabouts feat. Imaani - Too Late (Acoustic Version)
The Layabouts feat. Imaani – Too Late (Acoustic Mix) 

Mary Mary – Walking [BGP RMX]

Tied Together
Neonfaith – Tied together

Odyssey "Inside Out"  (Soulpersona Re-Edit)
Odyssey – Inside Out” (Soulpersona Re-Edit)

60 Seconds
Question – 60 Seconds

California Dreaming Live @ Red Rocks 8-10-12
afrolicious – California Dreaming Live @ Red Rocks 8-10-12

ampfiddler’s avatar
ampfiddler – mhmmm w Conant Gardens

Dilla Vs Richard Pryor
J SAND – Dilla Vs Richard Pryor

Melodiesinfonie - Klapperndemuscheln
Melodiesinfonie – Klapperndemuscheln

FLowtec - mentalTherapy BeatTape - Seite A
Resistant Mindz – FLowtec – mentalTherapy BeatTape – Seite A

Resistant Mindz – FLowtec – mentalTherapy BeatTape – Seite B

Free Soul Music Saturday for August 25, 2012

You know, it kind of seemed like a slow news week at the time. But as I look back on this list, I realize that there was a lot of quality tracks to hit this week. 

Some great beat tapes, for sure. If you like instrumentals, this is definitely your week.

Here is my complete listening list for the week, and here is the Spotify playlist for the week (good for one month).

Thanks to all the artists, producers, DJs, podcasters and music bloggers that bring this music to light!



Dwele – Darkside Of The Mic



I O Photo 608x439 I/O   You Slay Me
I/O – You Slay Me



Soul Vibration cover art
OffBeatKid – Soul Vibration



Abiah – Doves


EPs & LPs 

Sketchbook Pieces cover art
Mecca:83 – Sketchbook Pieces

French(mixtape) cover art
Nom De Guerre – French(mixtape)

ThisisRnB Radio Podcast 8



Dirt Cuts Beat EP cover art
Cale Hawkins – Dirt Cuts Beat EP

lovedust cover art
chrisAre – lovedust

OUdies - dusty.Works (vol. 1) jazzcuts cover art
colectivoasidesimple – OUdies – dusty.Works (vol. 1) jazzcuts

Sometimes I Have to Wonder... [Funky DL samples Stevie Wonder] cover art
Funky DL – Sometimes I Have to Wonder… [Funky DL samples Stevie Wonder]

Beats From The East cover art
K-Murdock – Beats From The East

Indifferent cover art
Mr.KiD – Indifferent

TKTV Beat Tape cover art
Teekay (Dragon Fli Empire) – TKTV Beat Tape

Insider cover art
Wax Roof – Insider



Funkommunity Soundsystem Live @ NuSoulCiy Hamburg (Aug 11, 2012)
Funkommunity Soundsystem Live @ NuSoulCiy Hamburg (Aug 11, 2012)

Look cover art
Alexis Davis – Look

Bizarre Tribe - Runnin' cover art
Amerigo Gazaway of Gummy Soul – Bizarre Tribe – Runnin’

Oh Yeah feat. Kenny Wesley
Applejac – Oh Yeah feat. Kenny Wesley

The Cheebacabra "Return From Exile"
The Cheebacabra – Return From Exile

You Don't Know - Collette
Collette – You Don’t Know

Giraffes feat. The Black Opera (BONUS TRACK) cover art
J Bizness – Giraffes feat. The Black Opera (BONUS TRACK)

David consulting a map
Jonah Smith – I Feel More Like I Did Back Then

Kendra Morris "No Love (But Your Love)"
Kendra Morris – No Love (But Your Love)

Selan – Space Flight

steven a clark
Steven A. Clark – Seashore

Willie Taylor Not Mine ft. Dondria Prod. By B. Alexander
WILLIE TAYLOR – Not Mine ft. Dondria Prod. By B. Alexander

Dreamin Eyes (Gracie Chavez Lucid Remix) - D'Angelo
Dreamin Eyes (Gracie Chavez Lucid Remix) – D’Angelo

Bilal - Fastlane (Ishfaq remix - extended version)
Bilal – Fastlane (Ishfaq Extended Remix) 



Free Soul Music Saturday is brought to you by, where you can get 3 FREE ORIGINAL SONGS just by signing up for the mailing list.

Free Soul Music Saturday for March 3, 2012

Welcome to Free Soul Music Saturday. And this week we’ve got more Beat Tapes than you can shake an MPC1000 at.

Seriously. Grips and Grips of Beat Tapes. And all of the ones listed here have gotten the approval of yours truly. We’ve also got some great Russian Soul from Ms. Sounday, new Dwele, a mixtape from Miguel and more! This year is shaping up to be another great one for independent Soul Music.

Here is my complete listening list for the week, and here is the Spotify playlist for the week.

Thanks to all the artists, producers, DJs, podcasters and music bloggers that bring this music to light!



Ms. Sounday – Night Talk



AVAN LAVA – It’s Never Over (Single)



Radius  – Sleeping Wide Awake



Dwele – Eve (I Need You)


EPs & LPs 

Miguel – ART DEALER CHIC Vol. 1


TARA/KING – Shot By Love


10ille – Candy Jams


Kay Cola – Love & Music




Bama Love Soul – Loose Joints 9




Trip To The Moon Cover Art
Juels – Trip To The Moon



Pragmatic Theory Present : Curtis The Beat Tape Cover Art

Pragmatic Theory Present : Curtis The Beat Tape


Reverb Cover Art
Reverb – LONEgevity


Pure Flow Cover Art
Beat Machine Aron – Pure Flow


Beats vol. 4 Cover Art
The Boomjacks – Beats vol. 4


The Cleanup Pt. 3 Cover Art
Cohen – The Cleanup Pt. 3


Female Cover Art
Exit! – Female


The Lost Planets EP Cover Art
Protoisdoper  – The Lost Planets EP


Means of Production EP Cover Art
Johnny Swindles – Means of Production EP


Revolution Cover Art
RUSCONI – Revolution


Tremo LP Cover Art
atturussn’….. – Tremo LP


Waiting Cover Art
MFX – Waiting


Afterhours Sessions 01: Feyorz Cover Art
Afterhours Sessions 01: Feyorz


Afterhours Sessions 02: Depto-3 Cover Art
Afterhours Sessions 02: Depto-3


More Jewels Cover Art
Broke/ – More Jewels


BMB aka Space Kid – PARAMIND


Starting From Scratch Cover Art
Chill Bump – Starting From Scratch



Absent Single Free Download!! Cover Art
Myele Manzanza – Absent ft. Bella Kalolo


Pride (Modern Dynamics Vocal Version) Cover Art
Paper Tiger – Pride (Modern Dynamics Vocal Version)


Ahmed Sirour - "Move Love" Bossa Soula Remix - feat Robert Glasper & KING Cover Art
Ahmed Sirour – Robert Glasper feat KING – “Move Love” Bossa Soula Remix


Bottom To Top Cover Art
Miles Bonny x B.Lewis – Bottom To Top


Freddie Joachim – Each Breath


Conya Doss – Don’t Change


Free Funky Music Friday for October 15, 2010

Here are this week’s soulful mixes, singles and podcasts. You can visit the hosting site of each by clicking on their corresponding image.
Big-ups to all the great music blogs that host this content!

itunes pic
*MIX OF THE WEEK* Chocolate Soul presents: 2 Step Delights mixed by dj Smoove  DOWNLOAD

B-SIRIUS Cover Art

*HONORABLE MENTION* fathomdj’s Podcast – Electric Soul  DOWNLOAD


The Foreign Exchange Authenticity album cover The Foreign Exchange   Make Me A Fool F. Jesse Boykins III & Median
*HOT* Make Me A Fool (Feat. Jesse Boykins III & Median)  DOWNLOAD

*HOT* Gordon Gartrell Radio – Episode 19  DOWNLOAD

itunes pic
*HOT* Eavesdrop Podcast #52 w/ Foreign Exchange   DOWNLOAD

…And now, the rest…

The Hurst Selection – 11th October 2010
Soul Unsigned – 14th October 2010

*HOT* Friday Favecast – Real  DOWNLOAD

DJ SUN plays all 45s at Onion Creek: DISCO::FUNK::OLD SCHOOL  DOWNLOAD

*HOT* INnatesounds Radio 017 | Reggie B “The Traveler” preview mix by DJ Joc Max  DOWNLOAD

Soul Lessons Entertainment
SLE Presents: Soundscape Radio – K.I.M  DOWNLOAD

The Afternoon Delight w/Jaycee, on V-103 Atlanta 
Thursday October 7, 2010
Tuesday October 12, 2010
Wednesday October 13, 2010: Jaycee’s Salt-N-Pepa BET Lifetime Achievement Award Mix

itunes pic
*HOT* Sound Nexx2’s Podcast – SoundNexx Adwelogy II Mixx  DOWNLOAD

TruthSeekers Radio – Universal Communique 10|9|10  DOWNLOAD

Pinboard EP
*HOT* PinBoard Blog Presents: Feed Your Ears Vol. 1  DOWNLOAD

Yawn of the Gemini Cover Art

Mar Variation - Single Cover Art
*HOT* Mar Variation – Single  DOWNLOAD

The Beast and Nnenna Freelon – Freedom Part 2  DOWNLOAD

*HOT* Soul Music of the World – Mandjou Mix by DJ Crash  DOWNLOAD
One Track Mind with Kristi Lomax – One Track Mind #49 (10/08/10)  WEBSITE

Kev Beadle
Solar Radio Show  12/10/10


Been There Done That Vol. 1 (Official Mixtape) Cover Art
Kel Le Roc: There Done That Vol. 1 (Official Mixtape)  DOWNLOAD

Bohemian Beatnik LP Cover Art
*HOT* Bugseed: Bohemian Beatnik LP  DOWNLOAD

Mr. Saint Louis EP Cover Art
*HOT* Oliver Daysoul: Mr. Saint Louis EP  DOWNLOAD

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Free Funky Music Friday for June 25, 2010

Here are this week’s soulful mixes, singles and podcasts. You can visit the hosting site of each by clicking on their corresponding image. Big-ups to all the great music blogs that host this content!

*MIX OF THE WEEK* Big Groove – Elegant Notes  DOWNLOAD

*SINGLE OF THE WEEK* Late Pass #34: The Roots – Table Of Contents, Part 3 (1999)   DOWNLOAD
*HONORABLE MENTION* The Hurst Selection – London to Atlanta  DOWNLOAD


The Mixologists: Summer Of Michael Jackson Vol. 1  DOWNLOAD

itunes pic
Deejay Eric’s MJ Tribute mixx tape DOWNLOAD

*HOT* Soul Circle Radio Show Presents One Man Jazz (Soul.Scienz)  DOWNLOAD

*HOT* DJ Markus Gramm – A Pug Named Fender   DOWNLOAD

Truthseekers Radio – Universal Communique 6|19|10  DOWNLOAD

The Afternoon Delight w/Jaycee, on V-103 Atlanta 
Tuesday June 22, 2010
Thursday June 24, 2010

Soulrific: Episode 82  DOWNLOAD
*HOT* Extra Inches: The Music of Donny and Lalah Hathaway  DOWNLOAD

*HOT* Label Love 001 DOWNLOAD

Ray Harris & The Fusion Experience  DOWNLOAD
Continuum – A Journey Through Jazz
Episode 11: Summer Soul  DOWNLOAD

*HOT* Cream of Beats – Bedroom Collection (2001 – 2006)   DOWNLOAD

*HOT* The SoulFlower Starship VOL 3. Soul Illumination By Son of S.O.U.L   DOWNLOAD

itunes pic
DJ K.E.L.W.I.N! presents: The Groove-Ade Mix  DOWNLOAD

Dwele – Dodgin Your Phone (Feat.David Banner)
Dwele – How I Deal (Feat.Slum Village)

GPWW 6/14/10: Worldwide Family Mixtape – Eliphino Mix  HOUR 1  HOUR 2


*HOT* Eavesdrop Podcast #40  DOWNLOAD

BSOTS 102 – Foundation Media Showcase (vol. 3)  DOWNLOAD

*HOT* Nothin But Butter Vol. 5: Talking Tub  DOWNLOAD


The Dreamchilde Suites continue! One new song a month. For free. Nod your head to that.


November Rain

…and no, not the Guns & Roses song by the same name. In fact, I wrote this song long before I ever heard of that group. This song reflects the joy and loss of a romance that spans the better part of a year. If you like the mellow pop of Paul Davis, Robbie Dupri, Michael McDonald and Hall & Oates, you will dig this retro 80s homage. Preview it by pressing play on the music player on the bottom of the site or on the button below.

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