Jordan Rakei Returns With His Dreamy New Single ‘Imagination’

The artist-curated mix series, Late Night Tales, is pleased to announce its next compilation, this time curated by multi-instrumentalist, vocalist and producer Jordan Rakei.

For Rakei’s Late Night Tales, the first mix of the acclaimed series’ 20th year, the 28-year-old modern soul icon effortlessly stamps his own jazz and hip-hop driven sound all over this gorgeous array of handpicked tracks.

A beautifully layered blend that is mirrored in the music he’s made, it comes as no surprise that such a supremely gifted songwriter should deliver a mix that is all about the song.  

I wanted to try and showcase as many people as I knew on this mix,” says Rakei. “My idea of Late Night Tales was to distil a series of relaxing moments; the whole conceptual sonic of relaxation. So, I was trying to think of all the collaborators and friends that I knew, who’d recorded stuff with this horizontal vibe.

Plus, I was also trying to help my friends’ stuff get into the world. I know the story of Khruangbin blowing up after appearing on the series (in fact, I think that’s how I discovered them). So, the main idea was to create a certain atmosphere, but also to help some of my favourite collaborators and buddies to give their songs a little push out into the world. Hope you like it.”

Check it out below

Inspired Sound Radio w/ Nubiyan Twist | 13.03.21

Following the release of their album, Freedom Fables, a 9-piece afro-jazz group, Nubiyan Twist joined us on the radio show to discuss the album, and their journey. Now, it wasn’t all nine members of the group (the show would be way over an hour and a half) but we spoke with Pilo and Joe.

Be sure to follow Nubiyan Twist on their socials – @nubiyantwist
And head over to website to learn more – www.inspiredsound.ukJazzHip HopSoulfunk

Have a listen back below.

Electronic Producer Anz Launches New Label – ‘OTMI’

Anz is launching a label. Short for “otras mitades,” which means “other halves” in Spanish, OTMI will house some of the UK artist’s unpublished works and contributions from friends across the electronic music spectrum.

The first release, OTMI001, lands April 9th and will be available digitally and on vinyl. “I’ve always loved—’mi otra mitad de naranja,’ or ‘the other half of my orange,’ a way of describing a soulmate,” Anz wrote in an email. OTMI001 will be Anz’s first EP since last year’s RA-Recommended Loos And Twos on Hessle Audio.

Read more about that record and more in our recent Breaking Through feature with Anz.

Listen to “Unravel In The Designated Zone” below.

Ministry Of Sound To Focus On Homegrown Talent

Ministry of Sound has announced six weeks of reopening parties.The series will kick off on June 25, running from 10pm to 6am every Friday and Saturday through to July 31.

On Instagram, Ministry of Sound wrote: “our opening six weeks of parties will celebrate the sounds of the UK with an extra emphasis on homegrown superstars.”

Its website adds: “We’ve come a long, long way together, and we can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel. Dust off your raving shoes, call your friends, cancel your Zoom subscription and let’s never speak of quizzes, banana bread or Joe Wicks ever again. It’s Summer 2021 and it’s time for a FUCKING PARTY.

“Line ups are being finalised as we speak and we’ll update you as soon as we can. For the moment all you need to know is: Friday 25th and Saturday 26th June, 10PM – 6AM, bring your crew, we’ll do the rest. Let’s have it!”

Tickets are on sale now and can be purchased from Ministry of Sound’s website. Early bird tickets are priced at £14.

Any ticket purchases will be eligible for a full refund or transferable to a later date if there is any delay on the government’s roadmap to easing lockdown restrictions which means the event cannot go ahead as unplanned.

Earlier this month Printworks announced plans to go “back to basics” for three reopening parties on September 17, 18 and 19, which will be “a pure celebration of club culture” with no line-ups announced in advance and a rule of no social media, no cameras and no distractions.

Read our guide to what nightclubs are opening here.

RnB Singer KeepVibesNear Channels Within For His New Single ‘Gently’

Romford based alternative RnB artist KeepVibesNear. Having turned heads with his haunting single ‘What U Need’ (which was included on the incredible The Silhouettes Project record), KVN now readies his touching new single ‘Gently’.

‘Gently’ sees melancholic wurlitzer notes reverberate across a cold sonic landscape, beautifully accompanied by KVN’s tender tones, channeling a wintery tale about reconciliation.

KVN explains : ‘Gently as a song represents the build up in an argument with your other half. That moment at the end of an argument when you give in to your care for the other person. You take a breath, put aside your ego. The turmoil in the verses compared to the make up in the chorus represent the balance in compromise.’

Listen to Gently below.

Manchester’s Parklife Festival Releases 2021 Lineup

Parklife has announced its 2021 festival. The Manchester weekender will return to Heaton Park on the 11th and 12th of September.

Confirmed live acts include UK rapper Dave, Skepta, AJ Tracey, Burna Boy, slowthai, Bicep, Princess Nokia and Pa Salieu. There are DJ slots for Jon Hopkins, Jayda G, Carl Cox, Honey Dijon, Artwork and more.

Visit the Parklife website for more information.

Romy Dya Drops Debut LP ‘I FKN LOVE MYSELF’

Combining R&B, Soul, Jazz and Pop, Romy has already been working hard behind the scenes, with cuts on records from Ghostface Killah to Martin Garrix. ‘I FKN LOVE MYSELF’ is the result of Romy’s self-love journey and continues to see her develop her skills as a producer.

Speaking on the album as a whole, Romy recalls “‘I FKN LOVE MYSELF’  is about my personal journey to self love and all things that are involved on this road to loving yourself. It’s about processing trauma’s, love, loneliness, single life and finding peace and acceptance in being who you are. Self love is an ongoing process, some days you’re really feeling yourself and some days you can’t even look yourself in the eyes. I define self love as having compassion for yourself and doing what’s best for your happiness and well-being. But it also means that you have full acceptance of your flaws, shortcomings and weaknesses. We as human beings always learn and evolve. Self love is an inside job, no one else can do it for you. That’s why you gotta be your own biggest fan. Go FKN love yourself.”

Listen to ‘I FKN LOVE MYSELF’ below.

NFTS FOR COPYRIGHTS: WHY NON-FUNGIBLE TOKENS COULD TRANSFORM WHO GETS PAID FROM MUSIC RIGHTS

Non-fungible tokens (NFTs) are all the rage in the music industry right now.

DJs like 3LAU and Steve Aoki have sold theirs for seven-figure sums. Kings Of Leon just racked up around $2 million selling them bundled with their new album. And, ever the auteur, Grimes recently sold a bunch of NFT-affiliated artwork for around $6 million in just 20 minutes.

The dirty little secret of these types of transactions? People are buying unique digital collectibles – but they typically aren’t buying underlying copyrights. And considering most digital art (including music) can be easily replicated with a swipe of an iPhone, questions are getting louder over the uniqueness of the assets those splashing large sums on NFTs are actually securing.

As Pitchfork described it earlier this month: “Born out of the visual art world, NFTs create a sense of scarcity that’s inherently artificial – the token is rare, not the artwork itself.”

That all may be about to change.

Bluebox is a suite of blockchain-based tools launched by distribution and services company Ditto Music.

Bluebox uses the blockchain to record full or fractional ownership of recorded music and/or publishing copyrights, and splits royalty payments accordingly. Ditto believes the platform will lead to “higher collection rates [while] massively reducing the loss of earnings currently experienced by artists”.

NFTs are the final piece of this puzzle. This Thursday (March 18), UK artist Big Zuu is selling 75% of the rights to a song on his forthcoming album, divided up into several different chunks and wrapped up into NFTs.

Another Ditto-affiliated act, Taylor Bennett – brother of Chancelor ‘Chance The Rapper’ Bennett – is selling 75% of the rights to one of his upcoming recordings, also through separate NFTs.

Both artists are holding on to 25% of their respective copyrights.



According to Ditto Music co-founder and CEO, Lee Parsons, where this gets interesting is after these NFT sales have been completed. Because it means multiple people will be able to automatically collect digital royalties from their share of this music, via Bluebox.

“This year Bluebox is launching both a copyright exchange and an IRO ‘initial release offering’ platform,” he explains. “Similar to sites like Polkastarter or Coinlist – where blockchain projects harness power of community to fund initial offerings – Bluebox IRO will let artists pre-sell music to a community who will then be able to own a piece of their art, as an NFT.”

For shrewd collectors, this creates the opportunity to buy “shares” in an artist’s work before it’s even been released – also creating an alternative source of funding for the artists themselves.

“TO THE BEST OF OUR KNOWLEDGE, THIS IS THE FIRST TRUE MUSIC COPYRIGHT NFT.”

LEE PARSONS, BLUEBOX / DITTO

NFTs, says Parsons, are the missing component to make this process run smoothly.

“To the best of our knowledge, this is the first true music copyright NFT,” says Parsons of the upcoming sales from Big Zuu and Taylor Bennett. “As a true copyright NFT, both the creators of these copyrights and their NFT investors will be paid monthly royalties from streaming stores via a Bluebox wallet.

“Right now this is only possible on Bluebox’s architecture. The NFTs will also be eligible to trade on the upcoming Bluebox NFT exchange.”

Fabric Announces 42-Hour Reopening Weekend

fabric will reopen on June 25.

The famous London nightclub has announced a 42-hour reopening weekend, with its Friday session running from 10pm-10am and its Saturday session running from 10pm right through until 4am the following Monday.

No names have been announced for the line-up yet but format looks set to be similar to fabric’s legendary annual weekend-long birthday celebrations.

The club has also fabric and fabriclive dates on Fridays and Saturdays in July and is one of the first clubs in the capital to announce that it will be opening soon after the June 21 date given by the government’s roadmap out of lockdown.

fabric made the announcement via Twitter and tickets are available for the reopening weekend as well as the July dates now.

There was more optimism for the reopening of clubs this week as a new report predicted that all adults in the UK could be vaccinated by June.

Leading Festival Organisers Call For Attendees To Require Vaccination

Two UK festival directors have called on the government to tell fans and artists that getting vaccinated is a requirement to attend music festivals this summer.

Josh Robinson, events director of drum ‘n’ bass festival Hospitality Weekend in the Woods, said: “A lot of us want to urge government to follow the example set up already in other areas, like travel, where people will have to show proof of vaccination or of a recent test.”

In a recent Downing Street press conference, Prime Minister Boris Johnson indicated rapid testing could be used to allow events to safely take place.

Read this next: Will rapid testing really save UK nightlife?

Gareth Williams, director of folk festival Cropredy, said: “What we really need is for government to say everybody needs a vaccination to get in. We need that clarity, rather than each having to go to people and explain.”

A recent report indicated that all willing adults in the UK could be vaccinated by June.

Festivals across the country have been rapidly selling out since the government unveiled its plan for clubs to reopen and festivals to be able to take place from June 21. However there has been some concern about a lack of cancellation insurance offered by the government, with organisers wary of moving forward with plans without financial cover.

Hospitality Weekend in the Woods sold 16,000 tickets in five hours for its debut edition. Robinson said: “The demand is pretty unbelievable. It would normally have taken eight or nine months to sell that many. The roadmap has given fans the impetus to start buying, which is great, but we are operating like a bank or something, in a strange scenario where we are just holding people’s money in case we have to return it.”

Read this next: Will music festivals actually happen this year?

As well as the potential of lockdown restrictions being extended and cancellation being enforced, the health and safety procedures are causing a headache for organisers who want clear directions outlined by the government in order to confirm plans.

Last week, former Stone Roses frontman and COVID sceptic Ian Brown pulled out of a festival headline performance after claiming that the event requires vaccination as a condition of entry.

Robinson says: “What we should say to artists now is another morally tricky conundrum. But if we don’t go ahead soon, the whole support structure for this industry could crumble for good.”

Williams says: “Festival organisers are masters of contingency planning, but there are just so many factors to keep track of this year.”

[Via: Guardian]