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Column aiming to present 6 glowing with quality tracks, under the “future soul” genus; An amalgam of soul, contemporary R&B and even hip-hop and electronic elements.

-not to be confused with Daley’s “Future Throwback Soul” term-

TriOrca – ‘Up In The Clouds’

Quick pitch:

The 2nd single off TriOrca‘s sophomore album, will take you up in the clouds. Stylish and ultra soulful treat!

dynamic: ★★★★/5

style★★★★/5

performance:   ★★★★/5

Trivia:

The Transatlantic band “TriOrca”, comprised of multi-instrumentalist and producer Phil Simmonds, drummer and producer David Diaz and writer/vocalist Whitney Myer. TriOrca are a unique ensemble of creatives who meet at the nexus of artistic intent and musicianship. Brought together by a shared passion for soul and musicality, TriOrca are both the fresh and familiar. Combining their unique sense of rhythm and melody, and borrowing a dash of soul from a generation past, TriOrca channel nostalgia into a sleek modern package.

Gary Beals – ‘Me For Me’

Quick pitch:

A stunning, emotionally explosive vocal performnace by Gary Beals, that urges listeners to dive deeper into their past relationships.

dynamic: ★★★★/5

style★★★/5

performance:   ★★★★★/5

Trivia:

Some artists find it difficult stepping back into the spotlight after a long hiatus, but not for R&B recording artist Gary Beals. Having released his last full project back in 2009, Beals has undertaken a spiritual journey during his time away, that has required intense reflection and personal growth. From this growth we’re rewarded with Bleed My Truth, Beals’ third studio album that offers listeners the opportunity to experience the journey of self-discovery that the singer-songwriter undertook while creating it. Infused with elements of Soul, Gospel and Pop, Bleed My Truth explores themes of identity, individuality, sexuality and love.

Growing up in the small, predominantly black rural community of Cherry Brook, Nova Scotia, Gary’s involvement in the local church choir, and as part of the gospel group Light of Day, helped develop his soulful voice and contributed to his music’s unmistakeable gospel elements. Influenced by velvet-voiced crooners such as Al Green and Marvin Gaye, to universally loved vocalists like Whitney Houston and Michael Jackson, Beals continues to create a sound all his own. His previous projects, including his 2005 self-titled debut album, and the follow-up release The Rebirth of… , have earned him widespread critical praise, along with a Juno nomination for “Best R&B/Soul Recording,” an East Coast Music Award, and nominations for an Urban Music Award and a Canadian Radio Music Award. Despite his previous successful releases, Gary began to realize that he had been wrapped up in the traditional constructs of music written, recorded and performed for the masses, and wasn’t able to identify with the stereotypical love songs of boy likes girl; boy pursues girl, or vise versa. Feeling like he had hidden parts of himself for so long, Gary felt like he had lost sight of who he was. Through his healing and self-discovery came periods of reflection, support and the removal of layers that turned into self-love, growth, power and happiness.

Stannis Smith – ‘Four Seasons’

Quick pitch:

A smooth r&b/neo soul jam with a velvet vocal performance from Stannis Smith.

dynamic: ★★★/5

style★★★/5

performance:   ★★★★/5

Trivia:

The year: 1998. R&B ruled the Billboard charts, and rightfully so, according to Billboard’s Top Hot 100 songs of 1998. In that same year at the iconic Apollo theater in Harlem, Stannis Smith – a sophomore at Morehouse College – stepped into the national spotlight singing Jodeci’s rendition of Stevie Wonder’s soul-stirring “Lately.” His Showtime at the Apollo performance highlighted his creamy vocals homegrown at a Baptist church in Albany, Georgia.

Stannis rubbed the legendary “Tree of Hope,” a longstanding tradition for contestants, and his performance was introduced by host Steve Harvey. He shared the same stage that night with featured performers SWV — aka Sisters With Voices — and a 10-year-old Sammie who appeared during the Apollo Kids segment, one year before his 1999 hit single, “I Like It.”

Stannis didn’t win Amateur Night, however, a positive comment about his performance from an audience member lifted his spirits when he watched the televised version. That same affirmative energy resonated back on campus at Morehouse and around the city of Atlanta.

He continued to pursue music but “education was priority.” Stannis befriended singer-songwriter Kandi Burruss, founding member of platinum-selling female R&B vocal quartet Xscape. In one summer, Smith co-wrote more than 10 songs with Burruss.

The industry support did not stop with the “Just Kickin’ It” singer. While in college, Stannis received early co-signs from industry legends Dallas Austin and Daryl Simmons. He hit the ground running as a songwriter and professional background vocalist. He also signed his first publishing deal thanks to music executive Hiriam Hicks.

While in the A-T-L, his love for music continued to grow, but he was completely turned off by the business dealings behind the scenes in the music industry. He accepted a corporate 9-5 gig and relocated to New York City, ready for a change of scenery. In the Big Apple, he continued to sharpen his songwriting skills. Stannis connected with multiple producers in the concrete jungle, but he had his eyes on another feat: law school. After a short term in NYC, Stannis packed up and moved to the nation’s capital and eventually became an attorney. Per contra, music never left his side. Through the years he’s graced the stage alongside India Arie, Sharissa, Lathan, Remy Shand, and Prophet Jones as a supporting vocalist.

The year is now 2020. R&B songs no longer rule the top of the Billboard charts, but Stannis is eyeing the number one spot. The “Warning Label” singer has full support from his industry friends and collaborators, including multi-platinum singer Kameelah Williams from the trio 702. Kameelah, his friend for over 20 years, advised Stannis to do it his way and make people see him.

Now, all-too-familiar with crummy industry deals and reading between the lines of contracts, Stannis started his own label, 1223 Music. After months of recording in Miami and Atlanta, his new EP titled Chapters One – Six is ready for the world. The first musical offering, “Four Seasons,” is a deeply satisfying atmospheric groove cooked up with Grammy-nominated producer Tiyon “TC” Christian, also a co-executive producer on the project.

Leopold – ‘Gotta Love’

Quick pitch:

IWe goota find the love, according to Belgian singer songwriter travelling the world, Leopold. Sure we gotta do! Noir, neo soul addiction…

dynamic: ★★★/5

style★★★/5

performance:   ★★★★/5

Trivia:

Leopold is a soulful singer-songwriter born in Brussels, Belgium. His music, a river of warm feelings, thoughts and memories to drift on to reach the open sea. 
 Guided by an encounter with his soul, he wrote an album with songs pulsing with medicine for the heart.

Calyea Black – ‘Thing About Love’

Quick pitch:

“Thing About Love” explores the moment in a relationship when you realize the person you have invested your time in is not capable of reciprocating the love.

dynamic: ★★★★/5

style★★★★/5

performance:   ★★★★/5

Trivia:

Caleya Black is a singer/songwriter from northern NJ. Her soulful style is attributed to her gospel roots and love of R&B music of the 50s and 60s.

Jacelyn – ‘Kaleidoscope’ (ft. Asha)

Quick pitch:

A brilliant, jazzy, soft & dynamic at the same time, neo soul treat (out of this world!) from Jacelyn, with a powerhouse vocal performance by rapper Asha.

dynamic: ★★★★★/5

style★★★★★/5

performance:   ★★★★★/5

Trivia:

Jacelyn was inspired by what happens to the mind of a young woman when her circumstances take a toll on her mental health. Written and produced with Amina Figarova, in New York City, they borrowed from the growing popularity of the underground Jazz Hop scene, and went further with the riddle structured lyrics (like in a Caryl Churchill’s theatrical production of Skriker) and then inviting a rapper, Asha, to explore the vibe with them. Kaleidoscope was born.

“Soul Professor”: Christos Doukakis