Since we started working from home in March, as everyone is aware — the current world we live in with the global pandemic, racial tensions, and political differences has had me paying a lot more attention to these issues, which sometimes can be too much to handle. Music has been a good escape to get lost in songs that I’ve enjoyed in the past and also the chance to discover new songs. I always gravitate towards songs that have a chill, smooth beat; usually R&B or Reggae is what I listen to when I want to relax. For something more upbeat, I listen to some good electronic/dance and hip-hop music to improve my mood. As a fan of 80’s and 90’s R&B, these recently-released songs caught my attention because they reminded me of similar artists from those eras.
Artist: Snoh Aalegra
Track: Dying For Your Love
Aside from her looks and style, something about Snoh Aalegra’s music gives me some strong Sade vibes with her smooth and sultry vocals. In fact, I found out that in 2009 under the name Sheri, she actually covered “Smooth Operator,” but more of a pop version. Another cool fact is that in 2014, Prince reached out to her after discovering her music. Snoh ultimately became his protégé and he mentored her until his untimely passing.
Artist: Disclosure feat. Syd and Kehlani
This song by Disclosure features Syd, best known as the lead singer for The Internet and also R&B singer Kehlani. From the beat to the harmonies and vocals, this song sounds like it could’ve been on an Aaliyah album. I was surprised to hear this song on their new album, but it was a stand out for me!
Artist: Jessie Ware
Track: Soul Control
As a big Janet Jackson fan, right when I first heard this song, I immediately thought “Control”-era Janet. Not just because the word “control” is in the song title, but everything from the 80’s production sound to Jessie’s vocals to the music video definitely pays homage to that era. Jessie Ware even said “I had Janet Jackson in my head in this one. It’s a really energetic number.” I was also surprised to hear how upbeat this album was for her but it was a welcomed surprise.