Jade Novah lays out all her green flags on new single “Like That,” Khamari is on “A Brief Nirvana” via his debut project, Nonso Amadi’s album “When It Blooms” has sprouted, and more this week hot R&B music releases.
All eyes are on the Roots Picnic this weekend in Philadelphia as R&B legend Usher is slated to make his debut headlining performance on Sunday. But, let’s take a momentary step back to reflect on what happened just before the Memorial Day weekend.
Kevin Ross and his production group (Art Society Music Group) made history becoming one of the first independent R&B collectives to hit the top 10 on Billboard’s Adult R&B Airplay Chart – thanks to his song, “Look My Way.” Jermaine Dupri revealed that he is currently in the studio cooking up some new music for Ari Lennox. While Burna Boy teased a new single on social media which will heavily sample Brandy’s 1998 song “Top Of The World” featuring Mase.
As for releases last week, we missed quite a few albums, EPs, and singles due to the holiday festivities. So, check out this week’s ThisIsRnB’s Fresh Finds Fridays selections which feature those artists including Jade Novah, Khamari, Xian Bell, Nonso Amadi, NNAVY, V. Cartier, and Joy Postell. Then, in the comment section, let us know what new releases you’re listening to.
Jade Novah – “Like That”
Instead of making her birthday all about herself, Jade Novah penned a sentimental love song for her dear partner. Following up her empowering song, “Butterfly,” her new track “Like That” is all about pouring the gratitude she’s filled up with onto her lover.
Produced by her husband Devin Johnson, “Like That” isn’t about bragging about the loving bliss Jade is wrapped up in but rather showing that everyone deserves to find their forever thing. “You give me all wants like my wants are my needs / You ain’t afraid to love me like you got on one knee / Got me so far gone I don’t care what no one say / Treat me like a star every day like a birthday,” sings Jade Novah.
On Instagram, the singer shared a note about the track, writing, it is all about “manifest[ing] or celebrat[ing] the bae of your dreams.”
Khamari – “A Brief Nirvana”
A debut album is supposed to set the tone for a musician’s foreseeable future in the industry. For Khamari, his new album “A Brief Nirvana “validates that he’ll be around for a long time.
Although Khamari makes it clear that he is here to offer up his unique perspective, he doesn’t turn his back on the pioneers who paved the way before him as the past works of the late Gil Scott-Heron and Nina Simone make appearances on the project. Previously shared lead singles “Right My Wrongs” and “On My Way” (which features an Al Green sample) were contrasting viewpoints – a tug-and-pull theme that continues across all 11 songs on the album.
Although there are no listed vocal features, A Brief Nirvana creative credits reads like a who’s who of producers and songwriters. The most prominent of those professionals are undoubtedly the duo Trackside (Parrish Warrington and Diederik van Elsas).
Throughout A Brief Nirvana, Khamari’s full bags of vocal tricks, songwriting abilities, and understanding of musical fluidly (highlighted in the way the album is sequenced) does not go unnoticed.
Khamari took to Instagram to tell fans about what went into making the album, writing, “Going from recording and producing music in my grandfather’s attic to dropping out of college and packing my car to drive to Los Angeles and getting lost in the world. This album is a collection of stories and feelings I’ve had over the last two years and the art that inspired me to keep going along the way. For when it feels like happiness could only be momentary, and I’m chasing A Brief Nirvana.”
After multiple false starts and setbacks partially due to the pandemic, proves to have been a blessing in disguise. A Brief Nirvana is a fully realized body of work. A Brief Nirvana is girthy, satisfyingly tapping all the right spots.
Xian Bell – “Have It All” feat. Dende
Former professional baller-turned-R&B bad boy Xian Bell is leaving a trail of panties everywhere he goes. On his new single, “Have It All” featuring Dende his over-the-top sexual escapades serve as the song’s inspiration.
Produced by CasperDoItAgain, Bell isn’t shy when explicitly recounting all of his most intimate desires as he sings, “Nothing I can get can get you off my mind / I need it every hour / It’s been a while since you gave me your mind, your heart / Starving for your attention wanna taste every part.”
As indie R&B’s newly crowned hopeless romantic, Dende isn’t as uncensored in his list of needs but nonetheless, the listener knows what’s up. Overall, “Have It All” is a balanced late-night encounter of lovemaking and f*cking.
Nonso Amadi – “When It Blooms”
This week’s cover artist Nonso Amadi is a musical nomad. The Toronto-based musician weaves together the sounds from everywhere he’s traveled both physically and sonically. On his debut album, “When It Blooms, ” Nonso Amadi’s years of exploration prove to have been a rewarding investment.
Across the project’s 15 songs, the singer has genre layovers in Afropop, Alté, R&B, and many more diasporic sounds ensuring that the album can be enjoyed in every corner of the world. Previously released singles “Different” featuring Majid Jordan and “Lock Up” with Zinoleesky couldn’t have fully prepared fans for the journey the project would embark on. Other artists that make an appearance on the album include BEAM, Tay Iwar, and Tamera.
A project like When It Blooms can only be made when an artist removes the restrictive nature of genres while simultaneously honoring their distinct differences. When It Blooms sounds like everything but nothing sounds like When It Blooms.
When discussing the inspiration behind the album, Nonso Amadi said, “I want people to listen to this project and know who I am and what I’ve gone through. I want to make great songs that tell my story for you. When It Blooms embodies my creative and personal growth, reflecting on my journey up until this point. I feel this message is best represented in the growth from seeds to a flower, uncoiling naturally for you.”
NNAVY – “No Promises” EP
Music at the basic level is about emotional documentation. NNAVY’s latest EP “No Promises ” is rooted in this fundamental ideal. Inspired by the vulnerability the Swiss singer felt after journaling, across the project’s 6 tracks, NNAVY allows her innermost thoughts to take center stage.
Singles “Trash” featuring Ben l’Oncle Soul (the sole vocal credit on the body of work) and “Come And Get It” create the footing for which the remaining songs follow. As a true team effort with NNAVY pulling in a host of guest writing credits, No Promises is a reaffirming space for the entertainer to bare it all. As the listening audience takes in NNAVY’s openness they can’t help but do the same in return. Shame, guilt, and fear are emotions that are not allowed in the community NNAVY is cultivating. No Promises is just as therapeutic to NNAVY as it is to the listener.
Taking to Instagram to share a tidbit about the project, NNAVY confessed that during the creative process, “I’ve really wanted people around that I really vibed with. So, I contacted a few of my friends and asked them if they were keening on [collaborating] with me and they were. And then, No Promises was born.”
V. Cartier – “Private Party” feat. Siaira Shawn
In 2021 Silk Sonic urged R&B lovers to leave the door open for all to witness. Now, V. Cartier is letting fans of the genre know that what he has to offer is for a selected viewing audience. On Cartier’s new single “Private Party” featuring Siaira Shawn is the textbook definition of modern-day ‘grown folk’ music.
Entirely self-produced, the track is a bold follow-up to his 2022 EP Frequency. “Private Party” sounds the way silk sheets feel or better yet how Elizabeth Taylor’s signature White Diamonds perfume smells – an adult right of passage.
As Cartier sings, “You already know you got an open invitation / so much I wanna show you / let go of your reservations / keep it on the low so / make sure you don’t tell nobody / gonna put on a show ‘cause baby it’s a private party,” listeners are locked into a three-minute long sensual tango.
Siaira Shawn is the juicy cherry on top as they pay homage to Ginuwine’s 1999 song “None Of Ur Friends Business,” we know what happens during this listening experience should stay in that solo session.
Joy Postell – “At Ease”
Baltimore, Maryland’s club music scene is currently in the spotlight but Joy Postell is here to remind music fans that isn’t the only thing the city has to offer. The singer’s new single, “At Ease” shows that R&B is alive and well in B-more.
Written by Postell and produced by Benjamin Julia, Dane Orr, Kaley Puckett, and Zeke Mishanec the track is the first tasting of the musician’s forthcoming album The Magician. Postell has matured exponentially since the release of her 2019 EP Back And Forth with “At Ease” being that sonic evidence.
As the entertainer sings, “Baby won’t you fall in me / For you I give my all at ease / I get the feeling that you want to love me right / If you’re with it I can show you day or night,” Postell is declaring that she’s her to serve her lover and the fans of the sultry sounds of R&B.
In a statement, Joy Postell spoke about the meaning behind the song, saying, “I am excited to share with the world a song that shows the strength in being vulnerable and open to love. It is my hope that fans are able to feel every emotion poured into the music and connect with me on a deeper level.”
Take a listen for yourself above.
*Post photo credit: TSE