Mayer Hawthorne (real name Andrew Mayer Cohen) grew up in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and vividly remembers, as a child, driving with his father and tuning the car radio in to the rich soul and jazz history the region provided. “Most of the best music ever made came out of Detroit,” claims the singer, producer, and multi-instrumentalist, who counts Isaac Hayes, Leroy Hutson, Mike Terry, and Barry White among his influences, but draws the most inspiration from the music of Smokey Robinson, Curtis Mayfield and the legendary songwriting and production trio of Lamont Dozier...
Musiq Soulchild (born Taalib Johnson on September 16, 1977 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania), is an American, neo soul and R&B artist, and was one of the most popular artists on the Def Jam/Def Soul label. Since 2001, he has gone by simply “Musiq”, he dropped the “Soulchild” from his moniker, because he said he had not mastered his craft yet, and thus was not yet “music’s soulchild”. Besides being a successful recording artist, Musiq is notable for his disregard for normal rules of capitalisation, punctuation...
Erykah Badu (born Erica Abi Wright on February 26, 1971 in Dallas, Texas) is an American R&B/hip hop artist whose work crosses over into jazz. She is best known for her singles "You Got Me" her collaboration with The Roots, as well as her own songs "Tyrone", "Love Of My Life", "On & On", "Bag Lady", "The Healer", "Honey" and "Soldier". Her lyrics are highly personal urban philosophy which throw emotional challenges in the face of the listener. She weaves unusual musical influences together creating a rich texture of sound.
Developing their own sound and twist on modern hip-hop, psychedelic and soul, the music of EWH reaches forward while referencing key points of music's past. Thick drums and percussion layered with synth lines, hints of the Fender Rhodes and nylon stringed guitars have your neck snapping while your ears crane to its soulful vocals. While the EWH moniker is a relatively fresh name (formed in 2006) on the scene, this production trio is no stranger to the music game. Members Myele Manzanza, Taay Ninh, Mara TK are all familiar faces in the music scene in Wellington, New Zealand.
John Stephens (born December 28, 1978 in Springfield, Ohio), better known as John Legend, is a Grammy award winning R&B singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, poet and actor signed to Kanye West's G.O.O.D. Music label. Prior to the release of his debut album Get Lifted in 2004, Legend's career gained momentum through a series of successful collaborations with multiple established artists such as Jay-Z, Alicia Keys and Lauryn Hill. He released his second album, Once Again in 2006, and his latest release, 2008's Evolver showcased a more experimental and upbeat side of Legend.
Born - West London, UK Influences - music of the 1960s and 70s including Sam Cooke, Motown (Stevie Wonder, Marvin Gaye, Michael Jackson, et al), Sly & The Family Stone, Aretha, Otis Redding & the music of Stax, The Beatles, The Beach Boys, Joni Mitchell, Nick Drake, Desmond Dekker, Toots & The Maytals, Jimmy Cliff, etc. Accomplishments:
- written songs for/with Michael Jackson, Dusty Springfield, Eternal, Billy Mann, Color Me Badd, Shaun Escoffery
Egbert Nathaniel Dawkins III (born 1979 in Orange County, California), better known by the stage name Aloe Blacc, is an American soul singer, rapper and musician. He began his recording career as an MC back in 1995 when he joined up with hip-hop producer Exile to form the mainstay indie rap group Emanon. Aloe released his debut solo album Shine Through on Stonethrow Records in 2006 and followed this up in 2010 with Good Things.
Mayer Hawthorne grew up in Ann Arbor, Michigan, just outside of Detroit, and vividly remembers, as a child, driving with his father and tuning the car radio in to the rich soul and jazz history the region provided. “Most of the best music ever made came out of Detroit,” claims the singer, producer, and multi-instrumentalist, who counts Isaac Hayes, Leroy Hutson, Mike Terry, and Barry White among his influences, but draws the most inspiration from the music of Smokey Robinson, Curtis Mayfield, and the legendary songwriting and production trio of Lamont Dozier...
Andwele Gardner (born February 14, 1978 in Detroit, Michigan), better known simply as Dwele, is an American R&B and soul singer-songwriter and producer known for his work with Slum Village, J Dilla and Kanye West. After self-releasing the demo tape Rize in 2000, he released his debut studio album Subject in 2003 through Virgin Records, his second album Some Kinda followed in 2005 and his third studio album Sketches of a Man was released in 2008. His fourth studio album W.W.W. (W.ants. W.orld. W.omen) was released in 2010.
Taylor McFerrin is redefining the one-man show. Combining his skills as a producer and performer, Taylor is making music heads around the world take notice as he seamlessly builds songs from scratch with his ambitious solo project. Fender Rhodes, synthesizers, samples, vocals and beatboxing are meshed together in his Brooklyn bedroom studio as Taylor builds from his roots in ‘60s soul to his vision of future hip-hop.