Friday, June 20, 2008

Soul Fixin'

The 'Queen of German Soul'
On more than one occasion I came across the music video for Joy Denalane's song "Heaven Or Hell" while watching Soul Sessions on BETJ. At the time, Joy Denalane was foreign to me but I instantly fell in love with her voice. Think back to the summer of '05. let your mind go back to the remix of Common's "Go," the voice heard on the track belongs to Joy. A voice that reminds me of Faith Evans mixed with the rawness of a young Mavis Staples. Joy is a testament to the global influence of black music,born in Germany to a German mother and South African father Joy was influenced by the sounds of soul, R&B and hip hop. Her career began at the age of 16, performing with local soul and reggae bands.Fast forward a couple of years. In 2002 Joy releases her debut album Mamani, a genre bending mix of soul, jazz and Afro-beat. The German language album debuted at #8 on the German charts and spawned four hit singles. A few years later, Joy came to Philly to record her sophomore album, Born & Raised, a blend of soul, hip hop, and gospel. Rappers Raekwon and Lupe Fiasco and R&B singer Governor make guest appearances. Musical contributions were made by James Poyser and a slew of other renowned musicians. Soul music is alive in well in the music of Joy Denalane.Take a listen and experience the soul of Joy Denalane. Check out the video as well.