Monday, March 9, 2009

"Who's That..." Artists of the Day

It is time again to put into the spotlight some not well-known artists (but who should be well-known!).

1) Laura Izibor
The Irish-born (yes, black people live in Ireland!) singer has already been compared to Alicia Keys because of her piano-focused songs. However, her soulful voice is way better than Alicia's voice, reminding me of other soul sistas like Lauryn Hill, Chrisette Michelle, Jill Scott, Joss Stone, and Amy Winehouse. After listening to such legends as Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder and Otis Redding. Izibor discovered her love for soul music. She has already opened for Aretha Franklin, James Brown, Angie Stone, The Roots, Estelle and John Legend. Also, a few of her songs have already appeared in shows, like Grey's Anatomy and The Hills, and movies, like Step Up 2 and Nanny Diaries.



Don't Stay

From My Heart to Yours

2) Esperanza Spalding

From Portland Oregon, the jazz singer is not your typical singer. Not only does she play bass guitar, but she also plays the double bass violin, the oboe and the clarinet. She was inspired by her mother and violinist Yo Yo Ma performing on Mr. Rodgers' Neighborhood at the ge of four. By five, she learned to play the violin and was performing with the Chamber Music Society of Oregon (by 15, she was a concertmaster). At sixteen, she went to Portland State University and then to Berklee College of Music in which she became one of the youngest professors in 2005. Her soft, light and dreamy voice takes me back to Ella Fitzgerald or Dinah Washington, but with the contemporary sounds of other artists, like Norah Jones. Spalding is making Jazz more appealing to a younger generation!

I Know You Know

She Got to You


Ponte De Aeria

Fall In

3) K'naan

He is like Will.I.Am mixed with Eminem, but better! The Somalian-born/Canadian poet, rapper and musician. K'naan's family moved to New York City during the Somalian Civil War in 1991 and then moved to Toronto. Learning some English from record from rappers, such as Nas and Rakim, he taught himself the hip hop and rap diction and began rapping. Since then he has worked with Nelly Furtado, Mos Def, The Roots, Dead Prez, Pharoahe Monch and Damien Marley. His second album, Troubadour, was released in Feburary 2009. What I like about K'naan is his music has a clear social message, especially about the situation in Somalia. He is against the whole gangsta rap cliche and styles because in Somalia, it was considered uncool. That's cool with me!


Wavin' Flag

Bang Bang w/ Adam Levine

I Come Prepared w/ Damien Marley

People Like Me

4) Emily King

The new Tina Marie has arrived! A Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter, Emily King is continuing the neo-soul sound. King mixes her African-American and Italian heritage to produce a unique sound using Jazz, Classical, Rock and Hip-hop. Her Jazz duo parents had a huge influence in her career path and got her GED at sixteen in order to pursue her music career. Since then, she has been signed to J Records and released her debut album, East Side Story.

Walk In My Shoes w/ Lupe Fiasco

U and I

E Melody

Never Be Lonely

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