One day last month, I was listening to music on one of my favorite streaming platforms, and I decided to check out some of the artist recommendations. To my surprise, I stumbled across a gem…an artist named Kimbra.
Origin: New Zealand & Australia
Label: Warner Bros.
Instruments: Vocals, tambourine, guitar
I listened to her debut album, “Vows”. It was released in 2011, so please forgive me for tardiness…but now that I’m hip to who she is, I’m anxiously awaiting the release of new material. In the past I had heard mentions here and there of Kimbra, but that was mainly from Gotye’s top-charting single “Somebody That I Use to Know,” but other than that, she was an artist that I didn’t know. Recently in 2013, she was featured on John Legend’s track “Made To Love” which I absolutely think is amazing! Once again, I didn’t know it was her until after the fact.
The following singles were released from “Vows”:
Two Way Street
Come Into My Head
This album garnered Kimbra numerous awards during 2011 and 2012 from the APRA Awards and ARIA Awards. She also won a Grammy during 2013 for her collaboration with Gotye.
Here’s her official vid for the album’s 1st single “Settle Down”
Check out one of my faves from the album, “Something In The Way You Are”…
Here’s my prediction for 2014…take a look at 5 different artists/bands that I believe will be successful in the next year. Feel free to take a peep to see if you agree and to discover some new music to add to your ever-growing collection..Enjoy!
1. Snarky Puppy
The band features a collective of nearly 40 musicians, referred to as “The Fam” on their recordings and tours.
Snarky Puppy was nominated for a Grammy Award in the “Best R&B Performance” category, with their cover of Lalah Hathaway’s song “Somethin”
Watch the video for “Somethin” below..
2. Hiatus Kaiyote
From Melbourne, Australia
Nice blend of soul music with Jazz vocals
Currently nominated for a grammy for their song “Nakamarra”–listen to it below
3. Lianne La Havas
I absolutely love this artist! Her first album was amazing and I can’t wait to see what she has in store for 2014.
Her debut album Is Your Love Big Enough? was awarded the title of iTunes Album of The Year 2012.
She was nominated for the BBC’s Sound of 2012 poll
Listen to “Elusive” below (one of my favorite records from her debut album)–the video was released this year
4. Gary Clark Jr.
Influences: Blues, jazz, soul, country, hip hop
Clark’s musical trademarks are his extremely fuzzy guitar sound and smooth vocal style.
Currently nominated for a Grammy for “Please Come Home”
Listen to his live performance of “Please Come Home”
Lorde is only 17 years old and her debut album, Pure Heroine has received worldwide critical acclaim…
Lorde is nominated for a total of four Grammys, which include ‘Record of the Year’ and ‘Song of the Year’ for “Royals” and ‘Best Pop Vocal Album’ for Pure Heroine.
Her musical debut was an EP entitled, whicThe Love Clubh was released in November 2012
Her first single, “Royals”, debuted at number one on the New Zealand Top 40, and also reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100 in 2013, making her the first New Zealand solo artist to have a number one song in the United States.
Won’t it be the most predictable, embarrassing thing if the media actually talks about Frank Ocean’s sexuality at the Grammys next year? Everyone will be over it, right? I’m writing this on 12.12.12, and it’s my wish to the universe: Be cool, world.
Let’s face it: his album, channel ORANGE, would have done just as well this year if he hadn’t “come out” or written that “open love letter” to a dude, or replaced all the pronouns with “she”. It is an impressive, seamless work written by a truly gifted young man who has no need to prove himself. His successful songs for others (John Legend, the Biebs) had set the stage for this moment. However, the publicity around the release of this album made many wonder if his little tumblr coming out party was a stunt. It was a week before the album dropped. Was he pressured into it? Did he feel as though he needed to give his music context? A compulsion to be honest? There was a lot of hype coming from a lot of angles, and it catapulted the release and subsequent reviews into a higher profile situation. It certainly made waves and got a lot of attention from a variety of communities. But what happened this summer was that the music community supported him and his honesty, even the ones you wouldn’t expect (his colleague Tyler the Creator is allegedly uncomfortable with these things, but he rose to the occasion). Others (Chris Brown, 50 Cent) may or may not have been so accepting. But have you listened to this album? It’s like he’s seeing things from above, telling stories for you to interpret any way you like, neither happy or sad; hopeful or maybe hopeless, full of musical nods and somehow defying genre.
So the glitter has settled, and he has been nominated for six Grammys. Everyone always bitches about how the nominations always miss something important, it is too mainstream, blah blah, Of course this is true, get over it. My hope is that this year, the unpredictable will prevail. When Frank Ocean takes the stage, as he undoubtedly will, to accept his first Grammy of the night, will it be up to him to bring up his sexuality? Will it be a non-issue not because of fear, but because of acceptance and love? The legacy of this album could be one of a breakthrough of tolerance in a resistant musical community that will permeate the industry and perhaps others. We’ll just have to wait and see what he has to say about it.