Liam Bailey – Ekundayo (Red Vinyl)
- Big Crown
- US - Original
Limited Edition Translucent Red Colored Vinyl.
Big Crown Records is proud to present Ekundayo, Liam Bailey's debut record on the label. This album is a long time in the making, and after listening, clearly worth the wait. It didn't take a long time to record, but it did take years for all the stars to line up. Bailey, born and raised in Nottingham, England, the son of an English mother and Jamaican father got his early influences from his mom's record collection. Bob Marley and Dillinger, Stevie Wonder and The Supremes, The Beatles and Jimi Hendrix would eventually shape the singer/songwriter we know today. While Liam's career started 2005 and went through a bunch of record industry twists and turns he and Leon Michels, musician/producer luminary, and the co-founder of Brooklyn's own Big Crown Records, would regularly connect and collaborate. Finally, in 2019, the time was right to do a full-length album together, free of any restricting major label presumptions and opinions. "This is the record we always wanted to make," says Michels. Set to release in November 2020, the album is called Ekundayo. And the word's meaning may be all you need to know to get to the essence of this project. It means "sorrow becomes joy" in Yoruba, a language spoken mostly in Western Africa. On the surface, Ekundayo is a weighty Reggae record, full of new and old textured riddims. But listen more in-depth, and you'll find subject matter that's more recognizable from a modern-day R&B record. An example of the former is the first single off the album. Sung to the most beautiful woman at the nightspot, "Champion" is a joyous anthem powered by a silly-thick Juno-bass throb and 808-proof drums. Then there's a song like "Don't Blame NY." Moody and sparse with a somber drive, you might have to resist the urge to compare it to a Frank Ocean-ish type vibe. Liam's voice is in a different but fitting element here, showing stripped-back emotion and soulful restraint. Credit to Leon's hand, elements of Jamaican production are everywhere, peppered throughout the record. Like the pitch-perfect organ stabs that push through the authentically positive "White Light," or the muted, percussive guitar strums that chug along in the back of "Fight." In the same vein of any fantastic singer/songwriter album, Ekundayo is a reflection of who Liam Bailey is. The journey from conforming to major labels to this latest record has been a long one for Liam, and a bit of a struggle. But struggle may be the only way we truly grow and evolve. With a new clarity of purpose, sound, and life, Liam has found joy out of those struggles. And it's called Ekundayo.
|A4.||Don't Blame Ny|
|A5.||Cold & Clear|
|B4.||Young In Love|
|B5.||She Hates This Life|
|B6.||Where Do I Start?|
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