Unlocking these gems and give ’em something to treasure
The most exciting part of blogging for me at least is discovering (accidentally or otherwise) music that I might not have access to on my own. We shuffle through tons of emails, twitter mentions, facebook posts just to get that goodness for our beloved readership. I remember the first time I “consciously” heard Substantial’s music in early 2013, I know he has been grinding way before that but after 1 listen I immediately latched on to him. He’s pretty much that quintessential emcee with a smooth vocal tone and armed with topics everyone can easily relate to.
This joint was passed to me and before I listened I already knew it was phat when I saw Substantial’s name on it but the real props have to go to the producer JSOUL who concocted such head nodding, booming backdrop for Substantial to rock to. The song in question is titled Get On Down and it’s off JSOUL’s upcoming project titled “The Purple Symphony”. All I can say is dopeness from start to finish.
Soul samples and hard drums. Crispy snares and vinyl pops. All the DNA involved in making a cold boom bap album. But if music is a language, then what JSOUL is saying speaks volumes. As JSOUL explains, “Each Track I make represents what I love and want to hear inside the culture I was raised in. It expresses the sentiments I believe in without having to say a word.” While the core of The Purple Symphony lies in the head nod, the underlying message is “let’s make something and say something real.” From beginning to end, the message is clear; all you gotta do is listen.
Coming from Baltimore the harsh realities mixed with the club culture and strong hip hop scene makes it easy to translate. Working with wordsmiths like Substantial, Greenspan, Mathematics, Eze Jackson & Sean Armstrong adds to the depth of the album’s message.
“As a visual artist I’ve always seen colors and shapes when listening to music. That’s the reason I called it The Purple Symphony. Different Colors have an effect on our psychological imprints. When I made the album I saw the color purple; which is a strong color, but can be used in many different ways to convey many different things.” – JSOUL
The Purple Symphony is available now for pre-order on iTunes, Bandcamp, UGHH, and Fat Beats. Pre-order the album on Bandcamp and receive the first single “Get On Down” featuring Substantial immediately for free download!
A native of Baltimore, JSOUL truly defines the meaning of being a singer, writer and producer. As a triple threat his sound captures the very essence of soul and hip hop that has been absent in today’s music. Taking his cues from soul masters past and present has inspired him to create quality music of inspiration, pain, pleasure, life, and love with a style that emanates eclectic, funk-da-fied soul. His albums are a culmination of his last 13 years in this industry as an indie soul artist. Its with that momentum he steps into the full roll of producer and draws from his experiences in love,
gained and lost; triumphs and failures, old and new. Creating a sound that is familiar to true school soul music lovers and real hip hop listeners.
JSOUL began writing and creating music at the age of 20 with musicians who served as pillars in the Baltimore music scene; crafting what would be his signature sound. Performing live would serve as the foundation for his musical journey. In 2008 he signed with Blackout Studios and released his label debut “Love Soldier” followed by the 2010 release of “Black Sinatra” which he fully produced and featured indie soul juggernauts and Grammy nominated artists Eric Roberson,Natalie Stewart (Floetry), W. Ellington Felton, Carol Riddick, Julie Dexter, and DMV star Substantial. His latest release“Blue
Midnight” was yet another sonically pleasing self produced soul/hip hop album that received great acclaim reaching the #3 spot on the Top 40 Soul Charts for its single “Beautiful Nights” and featuring artists Deborah Bond, Philly MCHezekiah, Cali native Joy Jones, and Dmo Soul.
In 2013 he released his first instrumental project, “Blue Symphony,” as a part of a hip hop based production series. “Being a visual artist as well, I believe that sound is just color in the sonic form. So every production represents a different vibe and paints a different picture and I named the projects according to the color I saw while making it” – JSOUL
Currently JSOUL is working on his newest self produced album the, “Purple Symphony,” which will include features from label mate Substantial, up & coming Baltimore MC’s GreenSpan, Eze Jackson, Mathematics and Zulu Nation/9th Wonder true school DJ Sean Armstrong. Boom bap sprinkled with soul & jazz is what it contains; head nod is what to expect. The future’s looking bright for this Soul Star from Baltimore.