Saturday 31 October 2020

Paris Jackson debut solo release "Let Down" on Republic Records - Watch the video here

NEW YORK, NY (October 30, 2020) – Today, 22-year-old singer, songwriter, actress, model and activist Paris Jackson makes her solo debut with a song and music video entitled “Let Down.” This notably marks her inaugural solo release for Republic Records. It also paves the way for her first full-length album, Wilted, arriving on November 13, 202

Written by Paris herself and produced by Manchester Orchestra's Andy Hull, “Let Down” tells a story of heartbreak through alternative-folk and singer-songwriter sounds and influences.

Asserting herself as a creative chameleon, the track shows yet another side of the singer. Glassy acoustic strumming gives way to her lilting delivery as the soundscape envelopes airy synths and lithe guitar leads. Pensive lyrical poetry takes hold as Paris paints a picture of “eyes painted black, tragic paperback,” before she admits, “You were my all, and now, I fall to the ground.”

The music video translates this spirit in a nostalgic vignette punctuated by gentle psychedelic wonder, and a shocking end. The stunning visuals also offer a nod to legendary designer Alexander McQueen, a personal inspiration to Paris, who wore a stunning archive piece from his Spring/Summer 2007 collection (Look 20) in the video. Executive produced by Eli Roth and directed by Meredith Alloway, the video premiered today following a live Q&A on YouTube with fans.  

Watch the music video for “Let Down” 


It serves as the perfect precursor to the record. This just continues a prolific 2020 for Paris. Earlier this year, she unveiled The Soundflowers with a self-titled five-track EP, which generated over 1 million cumulative streams and counting. Shining light on collaboration, influences, and activism, the project outlined an array of eclectic sonic endeavors while welcoming listeners with a unique sense of experimentation. Billboard hailed “Your Look (Glorious)” as “simply romantic,” while Idolator proclaimed, “The Soundflowers make a winning first impression.” Additionally, she appeared on Good Morning America with her brother Prince Jackson to chat about The Soundflowers and premiere the music video for “You Look (Glorious)” executive produced and shot by Prince.

Paris Jackson debut solo release "Let Down", Photo copyright Danielle Gonzalez (All Rights Reserved)

Stay tuned for more from Paris Jackson soon.

While Paris hails from one of the most successful families in music history, she is best known for her activism, acting & modeling work, the latter of which has seen her front campaigns for international brands like Calvin Klein, grace the cover of top fashion magazines, including numerous Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar titles, and make her runway debut earlier this year at Jean-Paul Gaultier’s final show. 

On the acting front, Paris has taken on several TV and film roles, collaborating with acclaimed industry professionals, including Lee Daniels, Charlize Theron, Joel Edgerton, and Rachel Winters. Aside from music, Paris’ biggest passion has always been in using her platform to shine light on causes important to her, notably going off script while presenting at the Grammy Awards and MTV VMAs, to highlight the Dakota Access Pipeline and events of racial injustice in Charlottesville, respectively. Paris also serves as an Ambassador for the Elizabeth Taylor AIDS Foundation (ETAF) and is passionate about continuing her godmother’s legacy of ridding the stigma and finding a cure for the HIV/AIDS pandemic.
 Paris Jackson debut solo release "Let Down", Photo copyright Janell Shirtcliff (All Rights Reserved)




Monday 19 October 2020


Ray Blk who has established herself as one of the UK's most challenging and important female voices, drops her new Island single "Lovesick", the first release from the South London artist's eagerly awaited debut album. "Lovesick" comes hot on the heels of Ray's track "Warriors", the lead song from the universally acclaimed girlhood drama ROCKS. Ray wrote the powerful anthem specifically for the film and both these new tracks show an artist at the height of her creative powers and bode well for the album which will be released in 2021. Speaking about the inspiration behind "Lovesick" Ray says:

"Lovesick is a revenge song. It's about taking control and reclaiming your power after being disrespected in a relationship and getting even. I'm always trying to empower women not to take disrespect sitting down but to keep a distance from people who don't make them feel good about themselves and boss up because success is the best revenge. It's a big theme of not just this song but my overall debut album. Even me rapping on this song was me taking back control, as a black female artist in the UK there's a lot less support all round, including in getting features from other artists. After finding it so difficult I just said fine forget that then, I can actually do a better verse than a lot of these guys. My rap verse might be a bit explicit but I'm not ashamed of that. Tables have turned. There's a new wave of outspoken female artists who aren't afraid to take full ownership of their sexuality and remind women that they are in control, and to only give their time to relationships that are valuable to them and make sure they are being cared for because a woman of value isn't free and I co-sign that.

With lovesick being about control and reclaiming your power, I felt it was important that I also take control of the visual and my creative. I've always been very hands on with my visuals but even more so now. I wanted the video to vividly reflect my mood and have symbolism in me walking a Doberman dog, having a money room with other strong women and flexing on a g wagon, even the colour schemes and the cover art being red, I wanted it all to be dark and filled with rage but be sexy and show how much power women have. I want women to watch this video and listen to this song and be inspired to step away from anybody whoever played with them and focus on stepping themselves up and trying to build an empire, that is how powerful I want people to feel from this song"
Ray BLK, September 2020.
After a 10-week run of hosting the Apple Agenda show with guests including Mabel, Mahalia, Ghetts and many more, Ray will front a special Black History Blackout Radio show for Apple music which showcases her passion and knowledge about black women in music including interviews with legends Ms Dynamite and Estelle. Ray will also be discussing what Black History Month means to her when she addresses the Cambridge Union at Cambridge University on 16th October.
About Ray
 Known for her no-holds barred lyrics and straight talking, whether it's on or off the mic, Ray BLK (real name Rita Ekwere) is going to speak her mind. "I always have to get everything off my chest," says singer-songwriter. "As an artist and somebody who's been blessed with a platform, I feel like it is part of my responsibility."

The 26 year-old artist is celebrated for music that makes a statement and her new single "Lovesick", recent track "Warriors" the lead song from the hugely acclaimed ROCKS film and forthcoming album prove that the ultimate girl's girl is back with messages of tough love, a catalogue of quotables and a renewed focus on self-love. The outcome is the musical equivalent of the unfiltered girl talk from your most raucous WhatsApp group chat.

Sonically and thematically, it's both a throwback to the rawness of her 'Durt' days as well as a sleeker, slicker sound that is ushering in what she refers to as her "gangster era". "I'm really owning myself, where I'm from, what I feel and I'm just not giving a shit," she says. In this album, she is embracing the realness we have become accustomed to; the prettiest of voices sat atop a grittiness that thoroughly sets her apart from her peers.

Born in Nigeria, raised in Catford, Ray BLK's music is heavily influenced by her upbringing. "I grew up with Grime music and clash culture in the playground," she says. "As much as I don't make Grime music, I like hard hitting beats that you can sing over." Aside from the apt characterisation of her hometown on songs like the 2016 breakout hit 'My Hood' featuring Stormzy, South London has shaped her sound, which sees her marrying the candour and lyricism of a rapper with honeyed R&B vocals.

Her musical journey began at the tender age of 8, scrawling lyrics in school notebooks.

Even then her work was standout, catching the eye of a teacher who placed her on a music program for gifted and talented pupils. By 13, she was crafting her first body of work with school friend and future record producer and songwriter MNEK, forming the group New Found Content. It was during this time she would hone the introspective and sociopolitical writing she is so well known for. It took several years and a English Literature degree at university for her to release a mixtape of ripped beats entitled 'Havisham', a hip-hop, R&B, and neo-soul hybrid inspired by the jilted Charles Dickens character. It was then she adopted her stage name, taking 'Ray' from her surname and 'BLK', an acronym of her three most important values: Building, Living, Knowing.

The following year saw the release of 'Durt', Ray's crtically acclaimed first EP which featured collaborations with Stormzy, Wretch 32 and SG Lewis and won Ray a legion of new, non-local fans. Ray was also announced as the winner of the prestigious BBC Sound of Poll for 2017, becoming the first, and indeed only, unsigned artist to do so. She also received a best newcomer nomination at the 2016 MOBO Awards. In January 2018 she signed to Island Records and later released her eight-track project Empress, with a strong female empowerment message in the title track, "Got My Own" and "Girl Like Me". In the hard-hitting "Run Run", Ray references the youth violence that plagued her area, an issue she continues to be vocal on.

Her willingness to address difficult topics with deftness is second to none, from touching on domestic violence to partnering up with charities to do talks at schools about consent, after speaking publicly about her own experience with sexual assault this year. She has also been making herself heard as a host of Beats 1 agenda show on Apple Music, a gig that was extended by popular demand. "When I was younger, three things I wanted to do were sing, act and present," she says. "I kind of feel like I'm just getting to live out one of my dreams like a side hustle."

Her discography has already seen her hailed as the queen of UK R&B, but the best is yet to come, with Ray leaning into a newfound sense of autonomy. After her BBC Sound Of 2017 win, she cites a pressure to fit into a poppier, more polished mould that she's now free from. "I am still proud of the music I made," she says. "But I'll be real and say it felt inauthentic to me, because it felt very polite and brushed up and I'm just ratchet!"

Lovesick, the first album's first single, is an anthem for newly anointed savages who have decided to no longer settle. "It really is just about reclaiming your power in a relationship where the person has made you feel like you need them and has made you feel not good enough," Ray explains.

Ray has also faced obstacles in the industry as a black, dark skinned woman - another topic she has frequently and openly discussed. "It's about being told no and always remembering to tell yourself yes."

Over the years, Ray has been dubbed "the Lauryn Hill of the UK" (who she cites as inspiration alongside female rappers such as Eve and Missy Elliott) but also grew up on a diet of her mum's musical tastes: Whitney Houston, gospel music and Mary J Blige. Her writing is heavily influenced by the "realness and his relatability" of Drake's lyrics and her stateside contemporaries SZA and Summer Walker. Straddling different styles and genres effortlessly whilst borrowing from various global, generational influences, she creates something that is distinctively Ray BLK. As a teaser on what to expect on the album Ray says

"For those who joined during Empress, they're gonna be like, whoa. For those who've been there since DURT they're gonna be like, "Yes, she's back!"
"voice of her generation" - HUNGER

Saturday 3 October 2020

Amy Whitehouse -'12x7: The Singles Collection' and 'The Collection', 5CD Albumn collection out November

A 7” singles box set comprising all of Amy Winehouse’s memorable singles from the Frank, Back To Black and Lioness: Hidden Treasures albums, will be released on November 20th. 

Featured tracks include ‘Stronger Than Me’, ‘Rehab’ and ‘Love Is A Losing Game’, all of which won the Ivor Novello Award for Amy in 2004, 2007 and 2008. The set also includes the Grammy Award winning ‘Body and Soul’, a duet with the legendary Tony Bennett. The singles will be housed in individual picture sleeves and pressed on black vinyl. The deluxe box also features a 20-page lyrics booklet and a set of art cards. 

The following week November 27th, The Collection, a  5CD collection featuring the albums Frank, Back To Black and Lioness: Hidden Treasures, will be released via UMC/Island.  

Frank was Amy’s debut album, originally released on 20th October 2003 and features the hit single ‘Stronger Than Me’ for which Amy won an Ivor Novello Award in 2004. Back To Black, widely regarded as a masterpiece by fans can citics alike,  was originally released on October 27th 2006 and has sold over 16 million copies worldwide to date. It features the singles ‘Rehab’, ‘You Know I’m No Good’, ‘Back To Black’, ‘Tears Dry On Their Own’ and ‘Love Is A Losing Game’. Lioness: Hidden Treasures is a posthumous compilation album, first released on 2nd December 2011 and notably features the Grammy Award winning duet ‘Body and Soul’ with Tony Bennett.

In addition to these three albums, the set contains Live In London, a concert recorded at the Shepherd’s Bush Empire, London in 2007 and a collection of remixes from Frank and Back To Black, such as a Hot Chip remix of Rehab, and a Kardinal Beats remix of Love Is A Losing Game. These two discs appear on CD for the first time as part of this set.

Scroll down for full track listings :

12x7: The Singles Collection

Single 1
A: Stronger Than Me
B: What It Is

Single 2
A: Take The Box
B: Round Midnight 

Single 3
A: In My Bed
A: You Sent Me Flying

Single 4
A: Pumps
A: Help Yourself

Single 5
A: Rehab
B: Do Me Good

Single 6
A: You Know I'm No Good
B: Monkey Man

Single 7
A: Back To Black
B: Valerie (Jo Whiley Live Lounge)

Single 8
A: Tears Dry on Their Own
B: You're Wondering Now

Single 9
A: Love Is A Losing Game
B: Love is a Losing Game (Kardinal Beats Remix)

Single 10
A: Body and Soul (Tony Bennett and Amy Winehouse)
B: A Song For You

Single 11
A: Our Day Will Come
B: Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow

Single 12
A: I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus
Amy Winehouse - The Collection

Amy Winehouse - The Collection

Disc 1 – Frank

1. Intro / Stronger Than Me        

2. You Sent Me Flying / Cherry      

3. Know You Now 

4. Fuck Me Pumps

5. I Heard Love Is Blind      

6.Moody's Mood For Love (Teo Licks)

7. (There Is) No Greater Love         

8. In My Bed          

9. Take The Box    

10. October Song   

11. What Is It About Men    

12. Help Yourself    

13. Amy Amy Amy (Outro)

Disc 2 – Back To Black

1. Rehab  

2. You Know I'm No Good 

3. Me & Mr Jones

4. Just Friends      

5. Back To Black    

6. Love Is A Losing Game  

7. Tears Dry On Their Own

8. Wake Up Alone

9. Some Unholy War          

10. He Can Only Hold Her  

11. Addicted           

Disc 3 – Lioness: Hidden Treasures

1. Our Day Will Come        

2. Between The Cheats     

3. Tears Dry (Original Version)

4. Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow?          

5. Like Smoke        

6. Valerie ('68 Version)

7. The Girl From Ipanema 

8. Half Time           

9. Wake Up Alone (Original Recording)

10. Best Friends, Right?      

11. Body And Soul 

12. A Song For You

Disc 4 – Live In London (Live from Shepherd’s Bush Empire, 2007)

1. Intro / Addicted

2. Just Friends

3. Cherry

4. Back To Black

5. Wake Up Alone

6. Tears Dry On Their Own

7. He Can Only Hold Her / Doo Wop (That Thing)

8. Fuck Me Pumps

9. Some Unholy War

10. Love Is A Losing Game

11. Valerie

12. Hey Little Rich Girl (Feat. Zalon & Ade)

13. Rehab  

14. You Know I'm No Good

15. Me & Mr Jones

16. Monkey Man

Disc 5 - Remixes

1. Stronger Than Me (Harmonic 33 Remix)

2. Take The Box (Seijis Buggin' Mix)

3. Fuck Me Pumps (MJ Cole Remix)

4. In My Bed (CJ Mix)

5. Rehab (Hot Chip Remix)

6. Back To Black (Mushtaq Vocal Remix)

7. You Know I'm No Good (Ghostface UK Version)

8. Tears Dry on Their Own (Al Usher Remix)

9.  Love Is A Losing Game (Kardinal Beats Remix)

10. Rehab (Remix Featuring Jay-Z)

11. You Know I'm No Good (Skeewiff Mix)

12. Tears Dry on Their Own (Alix Alvarez Sole Channel Mix)

13. Fuck Me Pumps (Mylo Remix)

14. Back To Black (The Rumple Strips Remix)

15. Love Is A Losing Game (Truth & Soul Rem

Amy Winehouse