Tony Monson writes: Sunday, November 12th 2006
The first Solar boat trip this year on board the Golden Jubilee in April sold out over a month before the actual trip - and the same situation has occurred for our July 7th Soul Cruise on the Golden Flame - without it having been advertised on the air! if you missed out on buying a ticket, we will put you on the reserve list - and contact you if there are any cancellations; however if you don't live too far from the Thames, it may be worth coming down on the evening as there might be spare tickets available on the pier.
The next boat trip will be on Sunday September 16th - 2PM-7PM - with tickets on sale probably from the beginning of August, so please book early. Now there is a very strong possibility that Natasha Watts will be doing a live P.A. (we will let you know either way shortly) - she had such a rave response at our Abbey Bar event recently that she really wants to sing on the boat - and who are we to argue? She is a star in the making - appearing on several projects at the moment.. It is only a matter of time before she will have a hit single in my humble opinion.
As you probably know, weekday afternoons - 3-6 PM - are starting to get very popular, with Mick (who's he?) Smith on Mondays, Ash Selector (the 'never too much' show) on Tuesdays, Gary (the man with the sweetest rhythms) Spence on Thursdays, and Roni (insatiable soul) O'Brien 0n Fridays; Wednesday is a rotation spot - so watch out for the following luminaries to appear: June 13th - Leee John; June 20th - John Osborne (veteran DJ - first show on Solar); June 27th - Mike Parlett live from L.A. - with special celebrity jazz and soul guests; July 4th - the Soul Brother selection; July 11th - Richard Felstead; July 18th - Jeff Young; and July 25th - Mike Parlett. Peter Young hopefully back during August or September - and other surprises in store.
Now a look at some of the new music around: Mary Mary's new LP 'Go get it' features music in and inspired by the WE series - with some previously issued tracks such as 'Walking', 'Shackles' and 'Dirt' (a different and better mix than the original) - and some newer songs...K'Jon had one of the greatest songs in 2009 with 'On the ocean'; the new LP 'Moving on' doesn't have anything of that magnitude on it - but there's a coupla uppish-tempo goodies near the end - 'I'm good boo' and 'Take this dollar'; oddly enough the fabulous 'Moving on' 60-second intro doesn't bear much relation to the full-length track of the same name - I don't understand that...Bob Baldwin's latest effort is a tribute to the great Thom Bell - mainly instrumental, but with vocal tracks by Vivian Green, Will Downing and Toni Redd - nice versions of Delfonics and Stylistics stuff; instrumentally offerings from Russ Freeman, Paul Brown, Paul Taylor amd Marion Meadows...Many people raving about SWV LP 'I missed you' - 'All about you' is an obvious anthem with familiar samples and unnecessary ragga intro - but what a great hookline! Also great version of Patti Labelle's 'If only you knew'...Michael Franks had an LP out late last year called 'Time together' from whence came a jazzy summer jogger called 'Summer in New York' quite rightly being re-promoted...Jonathan Winstead's LP 'Lovestry' has been a steady seller - with the 3/4 time soulful slowie 'Wake up' being an absolute killer...Santana's new LP 'Shapeshifter' is a bit on the rock-y side - but 'Angelica Faith' has a bit of the 'Samba pa ti''s about it - definitely worth checking out; 'Canela' is another downtempo instrumental of note...Georgie B was one of the leading honchos in Second Image, and he's back on a project called The Groove Association featuring Georgie B - entitled 'Let's break the ice'; the heavily EWF sampled title track is an obvious anthem, but the mid-tempo tracks 'Free & heavenly', 'Running' and 'Show a little love' (live) are definitely worth checking out too...Pete Belasco's 'Lights on' is perhaps the best album of its kind around until the next (?) Gary Taylor LP - soft falsetto vocals, lush soft arrangements, and an overall ethereal feel; some vocal harmonies from time to time would have been a nice extra...Very pleased that Expansion finally released the Victor Haynes LP 'From the bottom of my heart' - great baritone vocals on tracks like 'Less than a minute', 'I'm out of your life' (the Arnie's Love' song), 'Can't stop' etc. make for a solid release...Lee Fields is back with an LP called 'Faithful man'; pretty deep stuff really with specialist appeal - but 'Who do you love' has a little touch of the Arthur Adams or Willie Hale's about it; 'Intermission is an all-too-short instrumental...Club Des Belugas are a so-called lounge and nu-jazz outfit from Germany and their LP 'Forward' has offerings featuring Ester Rada, Brenda Boykin, Anita O'Day, Jen Kearney etc - and a wicked part-instrumental entitled 'The beat is rhythm' - now a favourite of James Anthony, no less...That wonderful track 'Smile' by Kendra Cash' can now be found on the compilation LP 'Soul independent liberated' , along with the much-vaunted Opaz/Cartier Fraser track 'Mr. Lost', and other goodies..Watch out for another compilation series - Bone Appetit - Volume 1 contains tracks by Raheem DeVaughn, Kindred the Family Soul, Coko etc ...Talking of Coko, her new Gospel LP is entitled 'Always', and contains delights such as 'The reason', 'Clap your hands' - and the previously released 'Maybe the last time'...Monica's LP 'New life' is not too laden with up-tempo tracks, but there's a couple of reasonable soulful slowies - 'Until it's gone', and 'It all belongs to me', (featuring Brandy)...More Italian jazz from Papiq, whose new LP 'Music inside' contains delights such as 'On the move', 'Rebirth' and 'Sign of you love' - if you like Gregory Porter, Mario Biondi etc. - check it out...Kenny Thomas' new offering 'Turn it up' ison 7-inch single only - and it's an r&b rather than a house track - but what a tune! Seriously infectious...Eric Benet's LP 'The one' is finally out on US CD - and it's a solid goodie, with tracks like 'Muzik' (ft. India Benet), 'News for you', 'Waitin' - and - especially good - 'Harriet Jones'...Latest compilation LP on Expansion is courtesy of Ralph Tee, and sometimes Solar Radio guest DJ Paul Cliffird - entitled 'Wonderland...The spirit of Earth Wind & Fire' with rarities from Dee Dee Bridgewater, Pockets, Deniece Williams, Mighty Clouds Of Joy etc.