KAROLINA ROSE – EP Review: “INVICTA”

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Falling in love with a song or artist the moment you first hear their music is among life’s greatest pleasures – certainly for me anyway. And that is precisely what I felt when I listened to the new EP INVICTA by Karolina Rose. Inspired by the music of artists such as Kate Bush, Debbie Harry, Florence Welch, The Cranberries, David Bowie and Madonna, the Brooklyn, New York-based singer/songwriter writes songs about her own experiences and presents them with beautiful commanding vocals.

Born and raised in Philadelphia to Polish parents, Karolina graduated from the prestigious Wharton Business School and had a successful career on Wall Street, which she ultimately left to pursue her dream of making it as a full-time musician. (I can identify with her life-changing decision to leave behind a successful career for which she spent years of study, as I left my job as a city planner to own and operate a bed & breakfast inn.) She began writing songs on her acoustic guitar, and performing them in clubs in and around New York City, gradually building a loyal following. Realizing she needed to take her music to the next level, she teamed up with Grammy Award wining producer/engineer/mixer Andros Rodriguez (Madonna, Shakira, Florence + the Machine) for her debut EP INVICTA, which dropped on February 1st.

Speaking on the meanings behind the title and theme of INVICTA, Karolina explains: “The word ‘INVICTA’ means unconquered, and is found on the coat of arms of Warsaw (the city where my parents come from), so the title represents my strength and who I am. From quitting my job on Wall Street to having to navigate a brand new industry, there was a lot to learn on the journey towards INVICTA’s creation. Following your truth is not always the easy choice. And for that I call the record INVICTA; it is to say ‘I did it’ and I am ready to fight for what I love.”

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The EP kicks off with the anthemic “Crystal Gem“, a hopeful declaration of Karolina’s determination to pursue her dream, no matter the odds. Backed by shimmering synths and a driving dance beat, she confidently sings: “No one can stop me now, from doing what I want to do. How nice it would be, to be taken care of endlessly. ” The track sounds like a song Katy Perry could have sung, only better. “Love Crazy” is a sultry affair that speaks to how we throw caution and common sense out the window when the pangs of love hit us like a ton of bricks. The track features lush swirling synths and fluttering percussion, creating a beautiful backdrop for Karolina’s fervent vocals that convey the blind passion of falling madly in love, helpless to resist its siren call: “Love, it makes you do crazy things. / Nothing else matters.”

One of my favorite tracks is “Going to Berlin“, a fantastic dance pop anthem that tells the tale of a woman who overcomes heartbreak by going off and jet-setting the world’s greatest cities. Karolina explains: “The concept first came to me when I was hanging at the Russian baths in downtown Manhattan with a good friend discussing her growth and how much she’s changed. She had left an old love behind in Europe to move to NYC and fearlessly follow her dreams. She then, of course, went to Berlin…” I love the throbbing EDM beat and Karolina’s wonderful layered vocals, and this lyric is so good: “She was lip-smacking good. Hold her tight if he could. But he lost her. Regret seeps in. She’s not coming back.”

Downhill” is a slow, moody track filled with powerful sweeping synths and mesmerizing percussion. In an interview with webzine CelebMix, Karolina states that the lyrics speak to the “simultaneous feelings of excitement and fear when pursuing something entirely new and unknown.” She passionately sings “I’m on the edge, lost and found. Can you hear the screaming sounds? We reach the skies before we go downhill.”

A standout track is the sad but beautiful “Goodnight, Mr. Moon“, inspired by Karolina’s experiences of exploring grief through dreams and nightmares. On her Facebook page she explained: “I have suffered from nightmares for many years. I often have hallucinations when I sleep. I wake up and see things in my bedroom or projected onto the walls or something within my room takes a different shape and moves. The first verse of the song takes inspiration from one of my nightmares where I woke up and it literally looked as if the moon was projecting a spotlight onto my wall and it looked like a scene was playing out. It may sound magical, but it was quite frightening. I started coming up with the visualization of someone hallucinating in the middle of the night, bringing back their loved one by talking to Mr. Moon. She communicates with her lost love in the nighttime. She processes her grief through dreams. She thinks it’s real until the end of the song when she wakes up from the dream and knows it’s really time to say goodbye.

The dreamy synths, gentle percussion and her mix of soft and soaring vocals are a perfect match for the poignant lyrics: “How do I get it all back? All the pieces of my heart? How do I get it all back? All the pieces came apart. How do I get you back?

The final track “Move With Me” was actually Karolina’s very first single, which she released two years ago, in February 2017. The song has a wonderful throwback 80s New Wave vibe that’s become so popular again recently. I love the bouncy EDM beat that aims straight for the hips, along with the glittery techno synths that remind me of songs by A-ha and New Order. Karolina’s vocals exude seduction as she implores the object of her desire to quit wasting time and get busy loving her: “Check my pulse. Am I still alive? / Do you know you took me by surprise? Fragile, young love. What will be, will be. Move a little bit faster now. Go a little bit faster now. There’s no time to waste, so baby pick up the pace and move with me.

INVICTA is an outstanding EP that beautifully showcases the impressive songwriting and vocal talents of this very lovely artist. Every track is superb, making for a thoroughly enjoyable listening experience. I want to give special thanks to fellow blogger Hasan Bayez of SheBOPS for recommending Karolina. Check out his great blog too!

To learn more about Karolina, check out her Website
Connect with her on Facebook / Twitter / Instagram
Stream her music on Spotify / Soundcloud / Apple Music
Purchase on iTunes / AmazonBig Cartel

V A L E – Single Review: “Better Place”

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UK indie pop band V A L E  set the winter airwaves ablaze this past January with their gorgeous debut single “Fire.” Now the East Midlands duo – consisting of Will Bond (vocals, piano, synths & guitar) and Olly Walton (drums & synths) – return with a breathtaking new single “Better Place.” Employing lush synths and a seductive dance beat in a similar style to that which made “Fire” such a marvelous track, with “Better Place” V A L E has created an emotionally stirring and achingly beautiful dream pop song.

Starting off with dramatic piano keys, the guys add layers of sparkling synths and a gorgeous, mesmerizing guitar riff, all set to a pulsating dance beat that grabs us by the ears, hips and heart. Will’s smooth vocals are captivating as he fervently sings of the betrayal that’s caused him pain and led to the breakup of their relationship:

You were the reason I was riding on the wave
You pulled the plug now I’m sinking
I stood and watched you turn my trust into the grave
I don’t know what I was thinking

I gave you everything so why’d you misbehave?
You knew my love was unblinking
And all the times I turned an eye and still forgave
You let me down now I’m drinking

Ooh, I still think about ya
Ooh, I still see your face
Ooh, life goes on without ya
Ooh, need to find a better place

With just two stellar singles thus far, V A L E is already establishing themselves as an act on the rise and one to watch. I love their songs and look forward to hearing more from them soon.

Connect with VALE: Facebook / Twitter / Instagram

“Better Place” will be available for streaming or purchase on all major music platforms on May 25th.

CIRCLE CASINO – Single Review: “Bierkeller”

Circle Casino band pic

You know those instances where you hear a song for the first time and you instantly love it? Well, that’s what I felt when I laid my ears on the wonderful debut single “Bierkeller” by UK band Circle Casino. Released in January, the song is so ridiculously catchy and upbeat it made me feel like a giddy teenager. Comprised of lead singer and guitarist Jordan Ashurst, lead guitarist Tom Brindle, bassist Arran Murphy and drummer Tim Glynn, the band amusingly describe themselves thusly:  “Fresh out of your nan’s microwave, Circle Casino are a band from Greater Manchester, caressing your ear-buds with sweet sweet love.” I can most certainly attest that they caressed mine exactly as promised!

The track kicks off with a bouncy riff of jangly guitars and an infectious drumbeat, grabbing hold of your ears and hips with a firm grip from which you won’t be wanting an escape. Layers of intricate guitars and synths are added, along with a thumping bass line, making for a gorgeous musical backdrop for Jordan’s beguiling vocals. I’m one of those silly Americans who finds British accents endlessly charming, so I love that his Mancunian accent comes through in his vocals.

With a rather unusual title for a song from a British band, “Bierkeller” is named for a German drinking establishment where the song’s storyline takes place. The lyrics tell the tale of a character who has a sexual encounter with a woman in the bathroom of the Bierkeller. “She’s got her hands inside. Her hand’s in mine. Her hand’s down mine as she guides me away. I can keep your bathroom secret. ‘Cause I’m your bathroom secret.

“Bierkeller” is fantastic, and an outstanding debut for Circle Casino. If they follow up with songs even half as good, I’m confident they’ll still sound terrific, and I cannot wait to hear them!

Show support for Circle Casino by following them on:  Facebook / Twitter / Instagram

LYIA META – Single Review: “Without Walls”

Without Walls cover art

I receive lots of submissions from artists and bands asking me to listen to their music or, hopefully, write a review of it. Most of the time the music is decent or better, and I rarely turn anyone down (which is why I’m always running behind schedule). But every so often, I’m immediately blown away the moment I hear their music. Such is the case with Malaysian singer/songwriter Lyia Meta, a lovely woman with a voice to match. Her rich, soulful vocal style is impressive, with a powerful arresting quality reminiscent of the legendary Shirley Bassey.

Lyia released her debut EP This is Lyia in 2016 to wide acclaim, garnering airplay on radio stations in Europe, as well as indie internet music radio stations in the UK, U.S., Germany and Australia, including Radio Wigwam (UK), Home of Rock Germany, LA Rocks Radio, Banks Radio Australia and many more. In August of 2017, she won the award for Best Female Artist from Radio Wigwam. In January of this year, she dropped a new single “Without Walls,” and it’s fantastic.

The track opens with soft, mysterious synths and Lyia pensively singing “I’m thinking of yesterday. She’ll find a way. And everything I remember, would stay. ‘Cause life without walls, feels like it’s love.” The music builds into a powerful soundscape of shimmering synths and a sensual, bass-driven dance beat, while Lyia’s smoldering vocals raise goosebumps as they soar to the heavens. Those moments of exuberance alternate with interludes of relative calm, where lovely synths with piano and strings dominate. She sings: “Forever in my mind, forever in my heart. Promises that came undone. We played it from the start. This life without walls. It feels like it’s love. We’re bending rules and skipping stones. Know your worth.” It’s a gorgeous song that I guarantee will have you on your feet dancing and hitting the replay button.

Lyia is also an accomplished visual artist. Check out her work on her art website.

Connect with Lyia: Website / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram
Stream her music on Spotify / Soundcloud / Apple Music / Reverbnation
Purchase on iTunes / Amazon

THE TRIMS – Album Review: “Julian Street”

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San Jose, California-based indie post-punk band The Trims have been making great music for nearly a decade. Formed in 2009 by singer/songwriter/guitarist Gabe Maciel, The Trims also includes Billy Brady on drums and Mark Sharp on bass. Their on-stage charisma and skill at creating catchy, high-energy grooves have built them a huge following in the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond.

They were one of the first bands I featured on this blog back in October 2015, and in August 2017, I reviewed their fantastic single “The One I Want.”  They’ve now released their second full-length album Julian Street (named after a major thoroughfare running through San Jose), which dropped in January, delivering ten superb tracks that showcase their exuberant guitar-driven sound.

The Trims photo

Julian Street starts off big with the exhilarating “Turn Out the Lights.” Our ears are instantly hit with an onslaught of Mark’s gritty bass and Billy’s hammering drumbeats, setting the stage for Gabe’s frantic riffs of chiming guitars. It’s clear their aim is to have us on our feet and dancing within seconds. With his fervent vocals, Gabe sings “Turn out the lights. Bring back the summer before our youth is gone.” On “Nobody Else” Gabe sings of his never ending devotion and not wanting to love anyone else.

Now is a good time to mention how much I love Gabe’s marvelous vocals and his signature guitar style, which seems to meld surf, punk, rock’n’roll and doo wop elements into a highly satisfying, upbeat sound uniquely recognizable as their own. Another thing is how well the guys play together, totally in sync with each other to create a tight sound.

Dying (Just to See Your Face)” and the lead single “The One I Want” are perfect examples of what I’m talking about, with intricate, fast-paced riffs of jangly guitars and a frenetic, heavy drumbeat. “Bedroom Mirror” has layers of multi-textured guitars over a funky bass line and drums that Billy seems to hit at 100 beats per second. The man is one hell of a power drummer!

The guys slow it down on the lovely acoustic ballad “Gone Away.” Gabe strums a melancholy riff on his guitar as he sings: “All we have is this moment to release what’s inside. All we have is tomorrow. I’ll be home in time. Tomorrow has gone away.” I really like this mellower sound which they do quite well, and wish they’d make more songs like this.

I Wish I Could Say” has Gabe wanting to apologize but unable to: “I would like to tell that I’m sorry for the stupid things I wish I’d never done./ I wish that I could say that the worst was over. I wish I could tell you nothing’s wrong.  But now I see I was mistaken. A fool who never seemed to care.”

Mark’s bass is prominently on display on the melodic hard-driving tracks “Hands of Time” and “You Tell Me.”  Of course, Gabe’s awesome guitar work and Billy’s skillful drumming are on-point as always. Album closer “Balam in Love” features generous synths that nicely complement the gorgeous guitars and throbbing bass, creating a bit of a new wave/punk-infused vibe. Gabe tells a lover that their relationship is over and he wants out: “There’s nothing more to say. This is the game you play. Just let me go.” It’s a brilliant track, and one of my favorites from this excellent and thoroughly enjoyable album.

Connect with The Trims:  Website / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram
Stream their music on Spotify or Apple Music
Purchase on Bandcamp or iTunes

WONS PHREELY – Single and Video Review: “The Night Has An Alibi”

Wons Phreely Single Art

I’m a huge fan of Australian-born, and now Los Angeles-based, singer/songwriter Wons Phreely. The talented, hard-working musician has an interesting and unique voice to match his artistic moniker (his birth name is Justin Wonsley). He grew up in Perth, one of the world’s most isolated large cities, where he also felt isolated with regard to his desire to become a successful musician. So, in 2015 he relocated to Los Angeles and quickly immersed himself into the creative artistic environment where he could more fully grow as an artist.

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In 2016, with assistance from his backup band The Horses, he released an excellent single “Stars” (which I reviewed) that addressed his experiences overcoming self-doubt and fear of change, and enabling himself to make the life-altering move from Australia to Los Angeles. In November 2017, he followed up with a sparkling new single “The Night Has An Alibi,” inspired this time by his feelings of being out of place in Perth, and subsequently landing in the accepting artistic community of L.A. The hopeful lyrics speak to embracing all the surprises life has to offer, not letting fear keep you from living life to its fullest:

Daylight creeps in like a kick in the guts and the rush of blood
Check your look in the mirror, are you young enough
Cause it took you so long to get up dancing alone, while all the lights were down
In or you’re out, boy don’t wait around
Sister I know we should settle but I cant live a lie
Too long running, true blood pumping
Man I just get this feeling like I might explode inside
Because the night, the night, the night, the night
The night, the night, has an Alibi

The exuberant track opens with throbbing synths overlying a thumping beat, seemingly channeling “Dancing in the Dark” by Bruce Springsteen, whose music has strongly influenced Phreely. His fervent vocals quickly enter the scene, backed by joyous riffs of jangly chiming guitars that are freaking awesome! A warm saxophone is introduced in the bridge, melding beautifully with the bouncy synths and ramping up the track’s already high energy. The lush wall of sound on the track reminds me of two of my favorite bands – The War on Drugs and Future Islands. Not wanting the song to end, I kept hitting replay.

Phreely has now released a rather creepy but brilliant video for the song. His inspiration came from the webzine NYLON.com when they premiered the single, where they stated it “belongs on the ‘Stranger Things’ soundtrack.”  The idea of ‘strange things’ struck a chord and led him to conceive of the very unusual visual for the song’s video. He explained “Since moving to L.A. I’ve been really engrossing myself in the film making world. I’ve been acting in a bunch of things too, so for this music video I decided to gather a lot of the talented people I’ve met on set, including an amazing cinematographer friend, and with their help I got to direct and produce the strangest video I could think of.

And has he ever! The video opens with a scene of Phreely asleep in bed with his girlfriend. As he awakens, the camera pans down to reveal him as only a head! He’s then shown resting atop the kitchen counter while his girlfriend reads the newspaper. Next she’s carrying him under her arm as she walks down the street, later placing him on the roof of the car as she drives to a club. When the doorman points to a sign notifying patrons of a $10 cover per person, she opens her bag to show him Phreely’s head. Soon he’s situated on the bar trying to down his drink, then his head is knocked off the bar and onto the floor. He ends up being placed on a stool on stage and sings with the band while everyone dances. At dawn, he leaves with another woman he met at the bar as she carries him away, at one point dropping him on the sidewalk! I love his facial expressions throughout the video that manage to make something that could have been creepy be lighthearted and hilarious. Have a look:

Phreely has begun working on a new album with his backing band The Horses, and I can’t wait to hear it! To learn more about him and his music, check out his Website

Follow him on Facebook / Twitter / Instagram
Stream his music on Spotify / YouTube / Apple Music
Purchase on Bandcamp / Google PlayiTunes

Featured Song: JODY WHITESIDES – “Rise Up”

Jody Whitesides is a seasoned singer/songwriter who’s been making music for 20 years. We’ve followed one another on Twitter for quite some time, but I somehow missed that he’d released a powerful new protest song “Rise Up” on January 20, 2017 – the day Donald Trump was inaugurated President of the United States. Being a music blogger, I rarely make my political opinions known on this platform, however, I continue to be horrified on a daily basis that a cruel, narcissistic sociopath is our President, so Jody’s song resonated strongly with me. Plus, it’s a pretty good pop-rock tune from a musical standpoint.

Jody Whitesides

On his website, Jody eloquently explains his inspiration for “Rise Up”:

You might ask yourself why did I release it on Inauguration Day? Its a great question that has a real live answer.  I felt it my duty to call out the fact that the country has elected the wrong person. A person who claims to be for the “little” guy, but in reality is solely out for himself and his family. If there is one thing that I hope to achieve, it is to have people Rise Up against going backwards in this country. My desire is to see people gather and protest. To demonstrate. To call out the elected leaders to start doing their jobs rather than creating chaos.

Regardless of whether you are a Republican, Democrat, Independent, Green Party, Tea party, whomever – you can put this song to use. In fact, I’d love to see you putting it into action. Share your photos and videos, of your using it for protest, with me on Instagram or Twitter. I’ll be happy to RT or share the love. Go forth and make use of your freedom, before you lose more of it. Enjoy it, sing it, share it!”

Song Lyrics:

Things took a turn ’bout an hour ago
We lost another freedom don’t you know
Is this what you meant – ignore evidence
Now we watch truth lay down to arrogance

No one will admit our elected leadership
Went an’ made everything such a mess
Has the land of the free
Forgot the home of the brave
And become scared to

Rise Up (Rise Up)
Rise Up defend your rights (defend your rights)
Rise Up (Rise Up)
Rise Up and win this fight (win this fight)
Rise Up

Take a look around what do you see
A snipe hunt being led by Wall Street Freaks
We know what you heard – all of the applause
That circus came to sell off all our laws

Rise Up (Rise Up)
Rise Up defend your rights (defend your rights)
Rise Up (Rise Up)
Rise Up and win this fight (win this fight)
Rise Up

Deregulation bad legislation
Corporations shouldn’t be diplomatic engines
Lightning rods for maneuvering fraud
Paint their path to heaven then act like gods
Moral turpitude conflicting attitudes
Clandestine video shows us who is lewd
Our education ain’t evil invention
Its a key to learning a needed lesson

Rise Up (Rise Up)
Rise Up defend your rights (defend your rights)
Rise Up (Rise Up)
Rise Up and win this fight (win this fight)
Rise Up (Rise Up)
Rise Up defend your rights (defend your rights)
Rise Up (Rise Up)
Rise Up and win this fight (win this fight)
Rise Up

Jody W performing

Here’s a bit of background on Jody’s extensive music career:

Born and raised in New York, Jody initially studied at Boston’s Berklee College, then went on to the Musician’s Institute in Hollywood. He now calls Park City, Utah home. He humorously refers to his sound as “A Funky Audio Lap Dance For Your Ears.” His considerable music output has been extremely eclectic, which is especially appealing for me, the EclecticMusicLover! At various points in his long career he’s recorded rock, folk, pop, psychedelic, funk and dance songs, handling all those genres quite well, actually.

His first album release was with his band AMALGAM in 1998, then he released a terrific rock/psychedelic/funk-infused solo album E.nergy A.udio R.evolution in 2000, followed by the folk rock-oriented Is This Considered Naked (love that title!) I recommend my readers take the time to check them out, as well as his later albums Initial Spank, A Natural Leap Forward and Practical Insanity. In 2010, he recorded a sports anthem “Do You Want to Play,” along with remixes of the song for every NFL, MLB, NHL and WNBA team! More recently, prior to recording “Rise Up,” Jody recorded the fun psychedelia/hip hop-tinged dance single “Touch” in 2015, and the soulful dance-pop single “Thump Thump Thump” in 2016.

To learn more about Jody, check out his website.
Connect with him:  Facebook / Twitter /  Instagram
Stream his music:  Spotify /  Soundcloud /  YouTube
Purchase:  iTunes

Song Review – “Stars” by Wons Phreely+the Horses

I recently discovered the amazingly talented, quirky-named artist Wons Phreely (his real name is Justin Wonsly).  He has one of the most interesting, unique voices I’ve heard in a long while. The kind of voice that sounds like no one else – a valuable commodity in today’s overcrowded music industry. Phreely draws his musical influences from such disparate artists as Morrissey, Joe Strummer and Buddy Holly, which is why his style is difficult to categorize. He seems to move effortlessly from dance-pop to folk-rock to alt-rock.

The young singer/songwriter started his music career in Sydney, Australia, where he recorded several great upbeat singles, including “The World Has a Bank Account” and “Tonight,” followed by a fairly decent eight-track EP To Begin With… in 2011.  Phreely, along with his new back-up band The Horses, has now dropped a fantastic new single “Stars.”

The song has an interesting backstory. Phreely originally wrote it one night while living in a tiny studio above a bar in the red-light district of Sydney’s Kings Cross.  He penned the lyrics to describe his subconscious longing to make a big life change, but fearful of doing anything about it.  As luck would have it, just a few days after writing the song, he saw an ad for an open call for singers to submit themselves to play the role of young Roy Orbison in a planned biopic feature film. According to his bio information sent to me, Phreely submitted his best song rendition and was soon meeting with the estate of the Orbison family, who were producing the film and would have final say over the casting of the role of their father. Unfortunately, after months of meetings, discussions and auditions, the fate of the proposed film is stuck in limbo. But there’s a silver lining: inspired and invigorated by his new Los Angeles surroundings, Phreely seized the opportunity and decided to further his music career there. In 2015, he assembled a band of accomplished musicians (the lineup of which has changed over time), thereby creating  Wons Phreely + The Horses, who together brought his song “Stars” to fruition.

It’s an incredibly catchy number, with a great hook that immediately grabs hold, forcing you to move with the infectious, 80s retro dance beat. Plucky guitars and sharp percussion add to the fresh synth arrangement, keeping the energy flowing, and Phreely’s smoldering, halting vocals are absolutely captivating.  I had this song on repeat while writing this piece and am now addicted!  It just gets better with each listen. As I noted above, the lyrics speak to his ambivalence about making a life change:

“I went to my neighbor he said why wait another moment later. You wanna find some explanation then you really oughta make your own decision. And if something clouds your vision it’s time to move move move.  Cause there’s too many lights in the city tonight. So I can’t see the stars till the moment has passed.”

I really like the song’s video, in which Phreely sings the song while standing in front of a black background. When he sings the chorus, he wildly gyrates back and forth, this time with varying types of facial hair, and his short hair now long and flowing, perhaps to show the changes he speaks of in the song lyrics.

I like to include extra songs and videos to give a greater perspective of an artist or band’s talent and music style. Here are a couple of performances with session musicians from 2012 at the Skeet Music Studio in Sydney, Australia. In the first, Phreely shows his folk/rock side in the hauntingly beautiful ballad “Manny You’re My Sweetheart.” The song was inspired by Phreely’s former roommate who was transgender.

Here’s a great live performance of the delightful song “Tonight.”

You can follow Wons Phreely on FacebookTwitter or Instagram and learn more about him on his official website.  Stream his music on Spotify or Soundcloud, and watch his videos on YouTube.  “Stars” may be purchased on iTunes, the Google Play StoreAmazon, and Bandcamp, along with other previously released songs.

 

Ricky Jarman – “Lucky” featuring Sam Harmonix

I loved the new dance track “Lucky” from Ricky Jarman featuring Sam Harmonix the moment it hit my ears like an sonic boom of musical pleasure. This is one hot tune! The song grabs hold with its sexy, pulse-pounding dance/pop beat and doesn’t let go. I literally hit ‘repeat’ five or six times, as I couldn’t get enough of it.

Ricky Jarman is a talented, charismatic singer/songwriter and rising dance pop/R&B artist now based in New York. His beautiful vocals, good looks and charm – not to mention warm, friendly personality – have given him broad appeal to a growing base of fans. As if that weren’t enough, he’s also an accomplished model!

Born and raised in North Carolina, Ricky grew up in an artistic and musically-inclined family, learning to love music through listening to his parents’ Earth Wind & Fire, Kool and the Gang, Toto, Phil Collins and Boyz II Men records. Besides those artists, he says his greatest musical influences are Justin Timberlake and Michael Jackson, which is evident in his music style.

“Lucky” was co-written by Ricky and hip hop producer Sam Harmonix, who raps in the song’s bridge.  The simple but optimistic lyrics speak to the joy of feeling passion for a new love. Production-wise, the song’s arrangement is tight, and the melodic dance beat keeps the energy flowing. The excellent video for “Lucky,” released on May 10, 2016, was written and directed by Ricky and produced by Harmonix. The video opens with a poignant scene of an elderly couple celebrating over dinner (their anniversary perhaps?) then transitions to themselves at a much younger age, falling in love, then closes with them back in the present together in bed. Take a look:

Ricky’s previous single “Get To Know Ya” is a fun, incredibly catchy and upbeat dance/pop track with a sensual hip hop vibe. He worked with a number of music producers to create a series of great remixes of the song in varying genres, including Latin, EDM, Funk and House. Check them out on Ricky’s Soundcloud page. The “Hot Vibe (Mumba Trap) Remix” is my personal favorite:

I’m certain that Ricky’s talent, charm and and drive will propel him to increasing success in both the music and modelling business. To learn more about him, check out his website, follow him on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his YouTube channel.  Listen to his music on Soundcloud, Spotify, and Reverbnation.