New Releases: Teena Marie 'Beautiful' and Dawn Richard 'Goldenheart'Mon, Jan 14, 2013
Beautiful, Teena Marie
Itâ€™s been a bit over two years since the world lost the ivory queen of soul Teena Marie. At the time of her death, she was working on and finished her 14th studio project at her Pasadena, California home studio; everything was finished except the mixing of the tracks. The project has now become a posthumous project completed by her daughter Alia Rose, and will be a gift for fans whoâ€™ll appreciate taking a piece of Teena's legacy in the package of music.
The nostalgic first single â€śLuv Letterâ€ť gives us that funky swing Teena famously delivered. Her daughter Alia assisted her mother on three of the albumâ€™s tracks: â€śRare Breed,â€ť â€śBeautiful,â€ť and â€śGive Me Your Love,â€ť a Curtis Mayfield cover. She lent her pen to co-write â€śSweet Toothâ€ť and â€śBeautiful.â€ť When it comes to lyrics, the project eerily foretells of death. On the song â€śRare Breed,â€ť Teena sings â€śI could say I had the world here in my hands and not believe/That angels sat beside me to protect my very dreams.â€ť On the tune â€śThe Long Play,â€ť the voice of a radio DJ says, â€śbroadcasting to you from a heavenly station.â€ť â€śIf you listen to the lyrics, itâ€™s almost as if she was making that transition to the spiritual world as the record was being made, which is incredible,â€ť says Alia. â€śItâ€™s like weâ€™re going on this journey with her.â€ť
Co-produced Doug Grigsby, Beautiful will preserve Teena Marieâ€™s legacy as an R&B great.
Goldenheart, Dawn Richard (BUY NOW)
Finally, Dawn Richard is a solidified solo artist; she now has the full-length solo-album to back it up, so itâ€™s safe to distance your association of her with being in a group. Goldenheart is the first of an epic trilogy of albums, all poised to represent the beauty in the battles of life, and the passion it takes to overcome and win them. BlackHeart and RedemptionHeart will follow up in the series.
"Itâ€™s a journey of a message," Dawn told Singersroom about her first solo album Goldenheart. "You look at the story of Joan of Arc and what she was, thatâ€™s more religious and it was a battle for her, but itâ€™s more the story of her having a message that she felt she needed to carry through, that she went about it by any means necessary, and it was almost borderline madness; she didnâ€™t know if she was crazy, or if she really did have a message.
She continued: "To me, thatâ€™s the story of passion; youâ€™re fighting for something beyond what you can even explain to people. And the only way to explain it is by saying, â€śI have something that I have to teach you, and Iâ€™m not retreating until you understand that this is important. And thatâ€™s exactly what this message is with this album, from the lyrical content, to the visual, to the dance artistry of it all. We have a message, itâ€™s plain and simple: you have to fight for your passion, and you have to fight for your love, but weâ€™re just doing it in a way thatâ€™s not preachy. Weâ€™re just doing it in a dope way thatâ€™s like an average, regular album, but we wanted to do it in a slick way that has you wanting more. It wasnâ€™t like, preaching to you â€śyou have to do this,â€ť itâ€™s more like yo, when you fighting in a battle, itâ€™s ok to fight as long as you know that youâ€™re the survivor you can win the battle. And thatâ€™s the battle with love, thatâ€™s the battle with this music industry, itâ€™s whatever you choose it to be. But for me, it was my journey in the industry."
And indeed, thereâ€™s something for everyone on Goldenheart. You have your uptempo dance tunes (â€śNorthern Lights,â€ť â€śRiotâ€ť), your slow jams (â€śTug of War,â€ť â€śFrequencyâ€ť), your epic ballads (â€śWarfaire, â€śâ€ť), and everything in between. Richard even samples â€śClaire de Lune,â€ť the classical piece by French composer Claude Debussy, turning it into the albumâ€™s title track cool-down finale.
Both Beautiful and Goldenheart are available now in hard and digital copies. Which album are you picking up?