Daddy B. Nice’s Top 10 “BREAKING” Southern Soul Singles
TOP 10 April 2022
1. “Too Long” ——- King George
We fans can be forgiven for associating the artist’s personal life with the lyrics, as in King George’s #1-ranked, bad-boy-boasting “Keep On Rollin'” (March ’22). But George’s “Too Long,” which languished (if you can call three million views “languishing”) on YouTube for two years before “Keep On Rollin'” broke at #1, is just the opposite. The lyrics portray a conscientious and responsible man in love with his mate withstanding the temptations of touring. “Can’t stay too long / I gotta keep moving” is King George’s refrain as he navigates the women trying “to get his attention.” “Too Long” gained three million page views in just one month since “Keep On Rollin'” debuted at Daddy B. Nice’s #1.
2. “Leave & Party”—– King George
Recorded two years ago, “Leave & Party” is the precursor to King George’s southern soul mega-hit, “Keep On Rollin'”. Similar in tone, tempo and chording, complete with exhilarating, gospel-style background vocals, “Leave & Party” introduces Keisha and the obliging gals from “Keep On Rollin'” who are happy to pamper George after a hard week of work when all he wants to do is “get drunk, smoke weed” and “get his party on”.
3. “Country Man”—– Arthur Young
Musically, “Country Man” is more evidence (if any were needed) of how much Arthur Young loves southern soul music. The vocal’s outstanding, the instrumental track rich and full. Lyrically, it’s narrated in a third person account, as if Arthur had picked it up in a bar or truck stop booth from a guy experiencing a husband/wife mid-life crisis. Arthur calls him an “old man” because he’s been married 20 years and raised his kids, but to some of us grown folks this guy’s just getting started. Welcome to life, baby, and another funky forty years!
4. “Party With Friends”—– Nelson Curry
Nelson Curry pokes his creative needle into the southern soul main-line with this exuberantly-produced, mid-tempo anthem celebrating the pleasures of conviviality. From the “Shackman’s” new album Evolution Of Soul.
5. “Let Me Ride That Pony”—– Donnie Ray
From Donnie Ray’s new album, I’m Just The Man For You, “Let Me Ride That Pony” features a bracing Donnie Ray vocal and an instrumental track that cooks like a pot of bubbling gumbo.
6. “Crown Royal (Quiet Storm Mix)”—— X-Man Parker
This is a stunning record and very atypical. X-Man has toyed with the title and melody in different versions over the years, but this is by far the best. “Quiet Storm” implies a sound most southern soul fans aren’t interested in, but this isn’t “smooth”. It’s vanguard—edgy—thanks to the superb, higher-register vocal and unique production. No YouTube yet!
7. “No Worries”—– Jeter Jones
Jeter Jones shows no signs of flagging. “No Worries”—with a lilting, mid-tempo melody and a feel-good message—is yet another brick in the wall for the Kang of Trailride Blues.
8. “Jody”—— Sheila B. Sexi feat. Jeter Jones
This song comes at you sideways, low-key, dominated by an elbow-churning rhythm track. Sheila B. Sexi is a Jeter Jones/Slacktraxx artist with a couple of charted singles and album under her belt in just her first year in southern soul. Jeter guests.
9. “Trail Ride Shawty”—– Marcellus The Singer
10. “Flex (Your Body)”—– Cupid
Is it just my imagination, or is this the closest Bryson Bernard has ever come to capturing the dance magic of the “Cupid Shuffle”?
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