Yewande is really an unique artist. She has this rich and powerful stunning voice and her music defies categorisation. Yewande’s music incorporates influences from blues, soul, funk and rock but yet she really has her own style. Like Nadir or Martha Redbone this may make it hard for her to get recognized by a wider audience via radio or TV play because we all know that the main stations just like to play the safe, tested and meaningless stuff. Actually that was just another reason for me to get rid of my radio and TV set a long time ago. But with the power of word of mouth and internet sites like jazz-not-jazz, I’m sure Yewande will soon find the wider audience she deserves.
A few tracks by Yewande have been available before like Rufus (on the Organic Soul III compilation) or Run (on This Is Soul 2005). Finally she has released Evolution, an EP that’s available via cdbaby.
Unfortunately this EP only features four songs plus Freedom which acts as short intro. But these four full length songs act as a good journey into Yewande’s musical world. Satisfied tells the story of a girl who gets her life back on track after her lover has left her and describes the process of feeling finally content with herself (well, some sort of personal evolution). Musically Satisfied is a raw blend of soul and urban with a sitar as extra attraction.
Have you ever felt lonely, unwanted and lost? Then Blind is your song. In this soul-rock influenced song Yewande puts your whole burden into her voice when she sings “Dear father,/ It’s me/ I’ve been wondering/ Where you’ve been/ Flown around the world/ And back for your love/ Trust and understanding/ Do you know who I am?” at the song’s end. This is one of the most soulful vocal performances I’ve heard this year.
Paranoid finds an angry Yewande criticising the clergy (”Give unto me all of thy wealth/ To satisfy my sweet provisions/ Trust in nothing but iniquity/ The congregation cries, that’s why I’m paranoid“) over an energy-driven rock-funk track.
The soulful Run, some of you may know from the Soul Brother Records release This Is Soul 2005, closes this inspiring debut EP.
If you’re looking for a singer who’s different from the rest and brings back the musical and lyrical depth that’s missing from so many records these days, then Yewande is your new favourite singer.
Tracklisting of Evolution: 1. Freedom/ 2. Satisfied/ 3. Blind/ 4. Paranoid/ 5. Run | released 2005 Lotus Records
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