Revel in the fun and joyous debut album by @EMAN8 called “Emanate”

EMAN8, Emanate

He did it his way and the results are in:  Brandyn Burnette’s transformation into EMAN8 as a performer is now complete with the release of his debut album titled Emanate (Brandyn’s actual middle name).  And while it is now years away from some of my favourite songs by him such as “I Wanna Be (Free)”, “Nothing At All” and of course “Thanks For Nothing”, a new and adventurous chapter is unfolding.  And I’m pretty certain it’s going to be an enjoyable ride.

As I’ve already mentioned in past posts about the songs that preceded the release of Emanate – “Amen”, “Inspired”, and “Grateful” – Brandyn-as-EMAN8 is now focusing on the joyous and fun aspects of his music, while continuing to be the humble and intriguing artist we have grown to enjoy.  And while “Amen” and “Grateful” to me are two of the album’s better songs, there is still a third within and it’s called “Time” (featured above).  The song veers away from the blues-influenced progressive soul of most of the tracks on Emanate and into progressive electronica, not surprising considering Brandyn’s involvement in dance music over the past few years working with artists like Elephante, Two Friends, Vicetone, Win & Woo, and more.  Also very successful are “Sympathy”, hip hop inflected dance music featuring Kelechi, and “Stir”, featuring more words of positivity.  The only song that doesn’t work for me is “Reese’s Pieces”, which has a great rhythm track but doesn’t seem to fit in with the rest of the songs.

Be sure to check out EMAN8 if you haven’t already for some mighty fine songs within the album Emanate brought to you by a very deserving artist who is creating his own path his way.

Published in: on June 16, 2019 at 10:03 pm  Leave a Comment  
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“Time” by Florida’s @AdamFostermusic is not-so-secretly a Marvin Gaye classic reworked with finesse

ADAM FOSTER, “Time” (free DL)

Florida producer/DJ Adam Foster may have a personal best in hand with “Time”.  A few weeks ago, I wrote about Australian producer/DJ Alex Preston’s masterful rework of Marvin Gaye’s “I Heard It Through The Grapevine”, which features a hauntingly echoing vocal track.  Front and centre, however, there is no way to hide any elements of that song and make it into something else.  But Adam found another great Marvin Gaye single, “Too Busy Thinkin’ Bout My Baby” – which happens to be my favourite Marvin Gaye song ever and his follow up hit to “Grapevine” in 1969 – and transforms it into “Time”.  Gone is the urgent love story that anchors the original, focusing instead on the verse “I ain’t got time for nothin’ else”.  And I think Adam must be using what sounds like a live rendition of “Too Busy Thinkin'” with a pristine Marvin vocal to boot.  As with other songs by Adam, a stellar house rhythm carries the track, making it immensely appealing for dance clubs.  Overall “Time” is a fine, finessed rework that I will be playing a lot 🙂  Download it for free at the link above while you can.

Just Reminiscing: The video for “Time” by @SteveGrandmusic

STEVE GRAND, “Time” (video)

Because I’m so supportive of the Steve Grand crowd-funded project which just brought us his fine, fine album All-American Boy, I have to include words about the video for his recent single “Time” (which peaked at #9 on my personal chart), which I believe was also funded by that project.  

It’s a poignant and thought-provoking story that only Steve and his team could envision, continuing from the viral success of “All-American Boy” and “Stay” in 2013.  It clearly depicts how a relationship begins and develops, taking the same route of many of us when we become part of a couple whether straight or gay.  You do what feels right and goes with the flow.  Only when commitment wanes does it come into question, and fortunately for us, the videomakers allow us to come to a conclusion without it being decided for us.  While it lasts, Steve’s on-screen interracial relationship makes us all reminisce fondly of our own enjoyable times, which come hand-in-hand with the challenges and temptations.

Watch the video above and don’t forget to purchase Steve Grand’s All-American Boy on iTunes.

Published in: on March 30, 2015 at 8:16 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Diverse Pop Scores on “Time” by @MikkyEkko

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MIKKY EKKO, Time

It’s been a long time coming for the 30 year-old singer/songwriter who came to our attention after co-writing and playing on Rihanna’s “Stay”, but Time is here to stay!  It’s a formidable debut for the Louisiana-born singer and sets the bar pretty high early on in the year for other solo male singers.  I got thoroughly wrapped up in the lead-off single “Smile”, which placed at #7 on my year end list for 2014.  There are several possible follow-ups here, and there are a couple of ‘audio timelapse’ videos for both “U” and the ferocious “Riot” (both below), one of my favourites.  Why do I visualize a huge choreographed video for this one? 🙂 No one song sounds like another, and you’ll even hear an R&B-styled vocal on “U” that is quite different from the one he provided on last year’s “Stranger” by Chris Malinchak.  It’s all beautiful lyrical pop, with “Riot” about the most atypical of the songs.  Others to check out include the commanding, prophetic opener “Watch Me Rise”, “Loner” (the vocal here reminds me of Ryan Tedder), “Pull Me Down”, and “Burning Doves”, another melodic song with a great story attached.  I’m hoping Mikky will do his own club tour this year after opening for Alt-J for several dates last year.  His “Time” has come and it will serve him (and us) very well indeed.

Published in: on January 28, 2015 at 7:58 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Rock and Romance: @SteveGrandMusic Is Back with “Time” and “Bennie and the Jets”

STEVE GRAND, “Time” and “Bennie and the Jets”

As a preview to his upcoming album due shortly after the start of 2015, Steve Grand has released two new songs – a new original, “Time”, and a cover of a song from my early years, Elton John’s “Bennie and the Jets” – to whet your taste for more new songs.  From one of today’s most endearing, rising performers,  “Time” is a rock-tinged country song that’s all about the romance and good times, a good companion song in a lot of ways to Eli Lieb’s “Zeppelin”.  Steve’s a great storyteller, and his breezy, rooted performance hardly makes you notice a 4 minute + length.  It’s songs like these that standout because Steve really doesn’t sound quite like anyone else.  And there are more fine originals coming too!  I’m really glad Steve released “Bennie and the Jets”.  I heard it at his Toronto show in the summer and it was sabotaged by bad sound.  I really wanted to like it but couldn’t form an opinion. The enjoyable recorded version is slick enough and captures the raw essence of the Elton classic (and Elton’s a Steve Grand fan), though I think we’d have to dress up Steve in platform shoes and a bright sequined outfit for full 70’s effect 😛  Anyway, these songs are part of a great step forward for a deserving and talented singer/songwriter 🙂 You can buy “Time and “Bennie and the Jets” on iTunes.

Published in: on November 7, 2014 at 9:52 pm  Leave a Comment  
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It’s Time for @MikkyEkko with “Smile”

MIKKY EKKO, “Smile”

Only recently with his Michael Jackson throwback vocal on Chris Malinchak’s funky and fabulous “Stranger” (currently #14 on my chart) has Mikky Ekko been positioned better for more success, after breaking through on Rihanna’s “Stay” (which he co-wrote) almost two years ago.  His album Time is on deck this Fall, and “Smile” is the new, vibrant single that should be his solo breakthrough.  Not too far off the mark musically or vocally than previous single “Kids”, “Smile” is all about making first impressions no matter what the scenario – it always goes a long way.  It can not only lift you up but also the people around you.  And while the message of the song is also to live each moment until the end, living in the moment also goes a long way for self-esteem, pride, and ultimately love and affection.  Time should be on your must-listen list, and it looks like Mikky will be on a short tour (including Toronto, my city 🙂 ) in November and December.  Mikky Ekko has a diverse voice which makes him the chameleon go-to guy when you want something a little different but full of meaning and promise.  You can buy “Smile” on iTunes.

Published in: on September 2, 2014 at 10:28 pm  Leave a Comment  
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