We got some good soul music for you this Saturday!
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Nominated for Best International Act at the 2012 BET Awards and named by Essence as Five Unique Artists Set to Change Music in 2012, Lira is releasing her album Rise Again on June 26th.
In July 2012, Lira will release her second live in-concert DVD Lira: The Captured Tour – filmed during her sold out 2011 tour in South Africa. The release is expected to be an even larger success than her 2009 telecast Lira; Live a Celebration which was tuned in by nine million South Africans, subsequently the DVD and Africa’s first Blu-Ray went on to secure 4x multi-platinum certification becoming the country’s fastest and highest selling music videodisc, supplanting international diva Celine Dion’s reign at the top: Live in Las Vegas; A New Day.
Also in July, Lira makes her cinematic debut as the support lead in the Antonio Falduto directed drama, The Italian Consul, a film centered around the trafficking of girls in Europe. The film will premiere at the Isola del Cinema Festival in Rome, where Lira became only the second African vocalist to grace the Teatro Del Greco stage since Miriam Makeba. In August, Lira’s poignant track “Change it All” will appear as the theme music in Oprah’s Winfrey forthcoming documentary – OWLAG -surrounding her Leadership Academy for Girls based in South Africa which will air on her OWN Network.
As part of a new cadre of African artists making waves stateside such as K’Naan, Nneka, and D’Banj, LIRA sees herself as an ambassador of the new Africa: a land where, despite a recent history filled with obstacles, a future brimming with infinite possibilities lies. LIRA feels that this pressure to thrive outside of convention has bred a unique brand of ingenuity that will propel her and her fellow artists to the world stage.
“We’re proud of being African, but there’s also a desire to be a part of the world. Part of the way we can raise the consciousness back home is when people see us rise on the world stage. We don’t do it for the individual, we do it for the entire group.”
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Lira’s newest album drops Tuesday, June 26 and in the meantime you can pick up her latest EP HERE
This summer, prolific R&B/Jazz musician Brian Culbertson invites you to close your eyes, open your ears, and fall deep into a lush world of musical fantasy with his breathtaking thirteenth album Dreams (Verve/Universal). With the help of lauded guest vocalists Vivian Green, Noel Gourdin and Stokley Williams of Mint Condition, Dreams masterfully melds jazz sensibility with an R&B flair in a wondrous mélange of enchanting grooves.
The result is a stunning collection of 10 mesmerizing tunes, including the poignant lead single “Still Here” – featuring the soulful rapture of Vivian Green, telling the passionate tale of how taking a risk on love can have a happy ending. “Your Smile,” the album’s lead jazz single, is an exquisite rhythmic excursion underscored with an undeniable buoyant groove. Brian recruited the R&B vocal prowess of singer Stokley Williams to enhance the melodic elegance of “No Limits,” whose romantic lyrics accentuate the thrill of actualizing an altruistic union. On “You’re My Music,” Boston-based singer Noel Gourdin pours his thick, soulful vocals over both Brian’s shimmering piano chords and bass guitar licks.
On Dreams, Brian brought together a group of “who’s who” in music including: R&B producer and longtime collaborator and arranger Rex Rideout (Angie Stone, Ledisi, Luther Vandross, Lalah Hathaway, Will Downing, Kem); four of R&B’s top session players to help round out the sound – bassist Alex Al (Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder, Quincy Jones); and guitarists Michael Thompson (Babyface, Toni Braxton), Rob Bacon (Beyonce, Raphael Saadiq), and John “Jubu” Smith (Frankie Beverly & Maze, Whitney Houston).
Having worked with an array of stellar R&B artists such as Faith Evans, Ledisi, Brian McKnight, Kenny Lattimore, Musiq Soulchild and Avant on his past albums – in total, Brian has produced or performed on over 25 No. 1 records, received multiple accolades, topped Billboard Charts, covered magazines and has been lauded by Prince.
Dreams was released June 12th.
You can purchase Dreams HERE
Also we were grooving to some Conya Doss this morning…
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We’re excited because her new album A Pocketful of Purpose has arrived… You can order it HERE.
Here’s another cut off the release: