Four Songs You Should Hear Right Now: Jose James, Crash, Curtis Harding, People Get Ready

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Crash – “Motion Animal”

Community Music is the label behind Edward Sharpe and the  Magnetic Zeroes so anytime they send me music I pay attention.

Ten seconds into this song I was a fan – I liked the drums, the horns, the funky groove, the keys. All of it.

It’s from an artist named Crash, who was the frontman for LA’sThe Deadly Syndrome but puts his falsetto to better use here. You can hear hints of the New Orleans music he grew up on and fans of Ed Sharpe – who he also sings with – will certainly dig it.

His album “Hardly Criminal” came out this week.

Jose James – “EveryLittleThing”

When I first heard this on MBE, I instantly recognized KCRW favorite José  James’ voice, but was totally struck by the jazz singer’s foray into hip hop/hard rock.

I mean, he’s on Blue Note records after all and this song feels kinda naughty…in a GREAT way. It’s fierce and it really grabs you.

He’s got a new record called “While You Were Sleeping” due on June 10 and I hear it was influenced by artists like James Blake who merge electronica and soul, as well as the rock bands he grew up on. Can’t wait to hear it.

Curtis Harding – “Keep on Shining”

Atlanta-based soul singer Curtis Harding seemingly came out of nowhere with an excellent debut album on LA-based label Burger Records. Sources I trust tell me he’s the “real deal” and I can’t wait to catch him live.

There is a lot of soul music out there right now, but I feel like he does it especially well. He doesn’t pander to his influences. As his bio says, “he figures out how to tap into the old soul man of the past without mimicking or bastardizing it”.

Most certainly worth a listen.

It’ll give you a little hop in your step and a mid-week musical jolt of encouragement!

People Get Ready – “Physiques”

I love this band. I’ve been following them for the last few years thanks to a tip from Miranda July.

They don’t sound like anyone else right now and it really draws me into their world – trancelike slow jams that are easy to get lost in. This is the title track to their new album (due June 24) which they say is a devotion to pleasure. Who can argue with that??

It was recorded in one of NYC’s first alternative art spaces, a place called the Clocktower Gallery in downtown Manhattan. They were one of the last artists to work at the space as it is now being renovated into condos.

Embrace the art while you can!