Daily Archives: October 18, 2017

Calvin Richardson On His New Album All Or Nothing (Interview)

Calvin Richardson’s expression of classic soul has resisted fads and an ever-changing music industry since his debut back in the ’90s. In 2009, he made the rare move to salute his musical idol Bobby Womack with a tribute album. Like many artists, Richardson was apprehensive about approaching the work of an idol. The album, Facts Of Life The Soul Of Bobby Womack not only enchanted Womack but was a timely piece because of his 2009 passing. Anyone familiar with Womack can hear his influence on Richardson’s style that still has its own timbre. Richardson’s respect for Womack, gospel training and his stubbornness about following his own muse has kept him working as one of the go-to independent R&B artists of the past 20 years. His breakout song with Angie Stone, “More Than A Woman” is still an exciting introduction point for new fans.

Richardson has just released his seventh studio album, All Or Nothing, which is a collaboration with southern producer and songwriter Willie Clayton. The video for “Treat Her Right” championed Richardson’s vision of old-fashioned romance by putting the woman at the center. The North Carolina native spoke to this website about the making of All Or Nothing and his artistic origins.

“I know what my roots are and I know what moves me” 


What’s the backstory to All Or Nothing?

It was just time to you know to get in the studio and create an album again. Willie Clayton’s a blues southern soul artist that’s done pretty well for himself in that particular area but we got together and did “Treat Her Right” and we put it out to radio independently on our own and just got a lot of traction.  The song got a lot of attention we just got in the studio and made an album. There was no inspiration I was just inspired by life in general just as an artist being creative.

How did Willie Clayton come into the project?

 Our paths crossed many times. I work in a lot of markets where he works as well. We have been on shows together and sometimes over the years we’ve become really good friends and had talked about doing some stuff together and so we actually just had a show together in February in Little Rock, Arkansas and we just bumped into each other in the hotel after the fact later on that night and you know we were just talking about doing something let’s just do it and we did it. 


DJ Premier Talks About Making Nas’ Illmatic

DJ Premier talks to Mass Appeal about working on Nas’ celebrated debut album Illmatic. He gives specific details on how “N.Y. State Of Mind” and “Memory Lane (Sittin’ In Da Park)” were sonically constructed. After 23 years Illmatic still holds up as one of the key albums of the Golden Era and helped to make 1994 such an important year for hip-hop.


The Smithsonian Anthology Of Hip-Hop And Rap Has A Kickstarter Campaign

The National Museum of African-American History and Culture is working with Smithsonian Folkways Recordings to create the Smithsonian Anthology Of Hip-Hop and Rap. The project includes nine CDs, a 300-page book and an exclusive 9th Wonder remix of the Smithsonian Folkways catalog. Chuck D and MC Lyte explain the scope of the project in the above video and how fans can offer their support via Kickstarter. The campaign seeks to raise $250,000 within the remaining 28 days. Supporters can get everything from postcards to a tour of the museum with Questlove. Visit the Kickstarter page for more details.


Prophets Of Rage Survey Social Change In Video For Strength In Numbers

Prophets Of Rage give instructions to cause social change with a bunch of clips from the past to the present in the video for “Strength In Numbers.” The idea that any sizeable group banded together can bring about change including animals and slave uprisings is expressed with a montage. The band just released their first album and they are on a tour of the United States.


Thundercat Does NPR Music Tiny Desk Concert

Thundercat gave a three-song concert for NPR Music’s Tiny Desk Concerts. He was joined by band members Dennis Hamm, Miguel Atwood-Ferguson and Justin Brown. Thundercat’s Drunk is one of 2017’s best R&B releases and he has been on tour nonstop.