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Benny Sings releases new EP “Santa Barbara”

Dutch singer, songwriter and producer Tim van Berkestijn, better known by his stage name Benny Sings, has become one of the Netherlands’ most talented musical exports with his distinctive blend of smooth Californian-tinged pop, jazzy R&B and a touch of DIY charm. On his new EP “Santa Barbara”, which has just been released, the Amsterdam-based artist brings together the numerous cover versions he has recorded in recent years.

Rides Yet Again – Interview with Shawn Lee

When Shawn Lee released his very personal country-soul solo album “Rides Again” in 2019, it was to remain a one-off. In the middle of the tour for the album, the pandemic set in and life came to a standstill. The consequences of the lockdown, personal strokes of fate and experiences inspired the US-born and London-based singer, songwriter, musician, producer and arranger to record a sequel under the title “Rides Yet Again”, now released by Légère Recordings. WEST COAST SOUL talked with the “Silver Fox” about the making of the new album, music as a way of processing personal crises, his eternal search for the perfect sound and much more.

New Playlist: Tokyo Dreams Volume 2 – Japanese City Pop, Funk and Rare Grooves

It all started with an internet phenomenon: “Plastic Love” by Mariya Takeuchi became a viral hit in the 2010s. The 1984 single, written by Takeuchi and her husband Tatsuro Yamashita, sounded nostalgically familiar and at the same time exotic to Western ears, and opened up a musical cultural space previously known only to insiders: the world of City Pop. A genre that provided the soundtrack for Japanese economic prosperity in the 80s.

New Playlist: Stunde Null – German Krautrock, Electronica & Kosmische Musik from the 70s

“Stunde Null – German Krautrock, Electronica & Kosmische Musik from the 70s” is the third chapter of our WEST COAST SOUL.de Spotify series “ZEITGEIST”. It brings together some of the most innovative German bands and sound wizards who worked on their vision of a new music language in the 70s. What they had in common, despite all their musical diversity, was the courage to experiment and the rejection of classical song structures in favour of free-flowing forms of interpretation.

DJ Supermarkt announces the 10th edition of the renowned Too Slow To Disco series

After smooth detours into Soul covers, French Neo-Disco, modern Sunset Disco and Brazilian AOR, DJ Supermarkt’s “Too Slow To Disco” series makes a joyous return to its original West Coast AOR and Yacht roots this year with its tenth edition. The anniversary compilation, which features 16 rare gems from the 70s and 80s, will be released on August 26th. If you can’t wait that long, you can already listen to a first minimix.

Michael McDonald collaborates with Spanish singer Buika on a new version of the classic “You Belong To Me”

“You Belong To Me” is one of the great masterpieces of West Coast music. Written by Michael McDonald and Carly Simon in the 70s, the song was recorded again and again in the following decades, including by world stars like Anita Baker and Chaka Khan. Now McDonald has invited the Spanish singer Buika into the studio to reinterpret this tale of love, jealousy and infidelity. The result is a seductive, Latin flavoured version that brings new facets to a timeless classic.

Dutch West Coast band Dawn Patrol “Bring On The Good Times” with their first album

“Bring On The Good Times” is the debut album by Dawn Patrol, a brand new Dutch collective led by producer, songwriter and musician Phil Martin (Jazzinvaders, AIFF, Martin & Garp), that sets out to explore the essence of West Coast music, Softrock spirit and European pop sensibility. The result is an album that celebrates the slick LA sound of the early 80s and pays homage to West Coast heroes like Pages and Player.

The Youngtones celebrate classic soul music on their debut

The American soul outfit Youngtones revive the lightness of 60s and 70s soul music on their recently released self-titled debut album. The album is characterised by catchy melodies, crisp bass lines, great brass sections and a warm production. Sam Cooke would have snapped his fingers at so much groovy lightness.

New Playlist: Tokyo Dreams – Japanese City Pop, Funk and Rare Grooves

It all started with an internet phenomenon: “Plastic Love” by Mariya Takeuchi became a viral hit in the 2010s. The 1984 single, written by Takeuchi and her husband Tatsuro Yamashita, sounded nostalgically familiar and at the same time exotic to Western ears, and opened up a musical cultural space previously known only to insiders: the world of City Pop. A genre that provided the soundtrack for Japanese economic prosperity in the 80s.

Le Piano – Interview with Donny Benét

“Mr Experience”. “Konichiwa”. “Santorini” – these songs represent just a small taste of the enigma that is Donny Benét. On 1 April, the Sydney-based composer and multi-instrumentalist – hailed and panned by critics as “Prince on a serious budget cut” – returned with a new EP, “Le Piano”, an intoxicatingly groovy instrumental album paying homage to 80’s funk, city pop and disco. West Coast Soul talked with “The Don” about his new EP, his eternal love of 80s culture, the power of instrumental music, his return to touring and further plans.

PREP returns with new single “Speaking Silence”

“Speaking Silence” is the next stroke of genius from British smooth pop quartet PREP, a slow jam between West Coast blue eyed soul à la Bobby Caldwell and the velvety quality of 70s quiet storm. The song will appear on the upcoming 4-track EP, which the band has announced for early summer. Alongside the EP release, PREP are playing a headline US tour in May.

Cure The Jones – Interview with Andy Platts (Mamas Gun)

After the turbulence of the last two years, the long-awaited fifth album “Cure The Jones” by British soul band Mamas Gun is finally released – a lush, nuanced and expansive contemporary meditation on a world turned upside down, embedded in the classic soul tradition of Bill Withers and Marvin Gaye. West Coast Soul talked with singer, songwriter and band founder Andy Platts about the new album, the impact of the pandemic on their music, what it feels like to be back on stage, the healing power of soul music, his new studio and much more.

Khruangbin & Leon Bridges join forces again for new EP “Texas Moon”

After their successful collaboration in 2020, singer-songwriter Leon Bridges and the psychedelic funk trio Khruangbin return with their second joint EP “Texas Moon”. This time, their musical journey takes them across the dusty roads of the Lone Star State to the dark side of the moon. The five new songs touch on themes of love, faith and death while exploring new dimensions of inventive, hypnotic grooves.

Review: “An Evening with Silk Sonic” by Silk Sonic

As Silk Sonic, Bruno Mars and Anderson .Paak resurrect the symphonic soul of the 70s with finesse and passion and take us into a world of analogue emotions. Their just released debut album “An Evening with Silk Sonic” offers with its plush feel-good sound and perfectionist timelessness a safe haven in troubled COVID times and opens up a great era of music history for a new generation of music lovers. Definitely one of the albums of the year!

Smooth & Soulful Sounds Vol. 12 out now!

With our Spotify series “Smooth & Soulful Sounds”, WEST COAST SOUL.de presents current favorites, potential hits as well as new songs and artists that deserve more airplay once a month. Discover the latest in Soul, West Coast, Funk, Indie Pop and Sunset Disco!