Salaam Remi is on a voyage of spreading musical eargasms to the world and he started with giving us 50 songs at the same time. He attributes this to giving back to the culture “because at the end of the day the smell of Jerk chicken is always going to make your belly bottom hungry”. So what better way than to serve us with a plate full of Jerk chicken, brown stew, mac and cheese and some greens for garnish.
If like me you like the sounds of that then get ready to have your belly full courtesy of the Queens native aka Style The Brown Sauce— the architect of sound who flourishes no matter the genre.
Salaam Remi decided that the best way to celebrate his 30 years being in the game was to gift us with some much needed music for the soul. Salaam never disappoints; from the likes of Nas ‘Made You Look’ to Amy Winehouse ‘Frank’. So from now and every three months thereafter for the next three years Salaam will be giving us sauce for the Jerk.
The 50 songs released via his porthole doitfortheculture.club include music from Miguel, Elle Varner, Miraa May which were already soaking into; BJ The Chicago Kid and Mack Wilds. Within that branch of 50 comes ‘Monaco ’79 – The Champagne Flutes’ and the Marvin Gaye inspired ‘Sex All Summer …Make Love All Winter’ with R’N’B crooner CJ Hilton.
The latter are both exceptionally put together. Being that Salaam’s New York upbringing is the foundation and inspiration of all the music he makes – he is actually an honorary Londoner, who has a very strong connection with the sound and culture of the music we make. So it’s not surprising that he and long time collaborator Terri Walker; with whom he has a mentor/mentee relationship with, came together to give us original music to accompany those delicate moments we experience daily.
Speaking on the process Salaam says he was Inspired by Gnarls Barkley and the states in which a producer gets together with a creative and cooks up something magical.
The Mercury Prize nominee, Terri Walker who co-wrote the album with Salaam, best describes it as an extraordinarily orchestrated and sonically infectious record – creating a canvas so beautiful that you will want to embody the soundtrack personified. Terri’s vocals effortlessly stride through standout tracks making you feel as though your soul were laid bare sitting in front of the mirror experiencing each, emotion and urge.
‘Love Extraordinaire’ which is a declaration of her ultimate future and where she wants to be and with whom she wants to be with, is the classic two-step-Sunday evening vibe when the kids are asleep and Mama and Papa want to groove to soft piano chimes with a shot of Hennessy and live in the moment. On ‘Hey Baby’ her vocals ranges from igniting instinctive feelings you may have not felt in a long time— subsequently may want to act out. ‘Hey Baby’ collectively with Salaam’s precisely placed soft drums and percussions allows her harmonies to float freely as if the skies had opened up wide after a storm and the sun kissed you a thousand times over.
Switching up with her Dutch roots on ‘Was Ist Los’ giving you versatility rooted in jazz and the blues sound waves, convict an energy from you so strong you’d feel as though you were under a spell. Terri exemplifies that old skool R’N’B vibe that Motown so immaculately gave us with Aretha Franklin and Dianna Ross on ‘Waiting For You Call’.
This is a very strong follow up piece of art from Terri after releasing ‘Entitled’ album earlier last year. ‘Monaco ’79 The Champagne Flutes’ according to Terri Walker has been in the making for ten years. She explains that both she and Salaam both “wanted to “transport you into the era of elegance and finesse” and it is the epitome of black music transcending time and space Classic blues marinated in stripped back Jazz display a raw honesty engulfed in Brazilian style bosa nova melodies on ‘Tango With Me’ and ‘Explosive Love’. I recommend you take put aside a Sunday evening for this and marinate in its excellence.
Now on CJ Hilton’s ‘Sex All Summer ….Make Love All Winter’ the vibe is intense and direct. It’s rooted in deep inspiration of Marvin Gaye and that Motown era coupled with a little R.Kelly freak. Leading track ‘Had A Ball’ sets the tone for an experience only you can fully convey after enduring it. ‘Sex All Summer …Make Love All Winter’ is the specified soundtrack for cuffing season right down to closing cut “Aaaamen”.
It’s sensual, gripping and gives you, Teddy Pendagrsss, The Four Tops and obviously the late great Marvin Gaye vibes. His essence weaves through every key, every word and instrument like an irritated bee to honey. Providing validation for every proclamation of the things lust, love, sex, affection and spontaneity can manifest into with ‘Don’t Make Me Beg’—each song strokes a brush so fluent it paints your wants and needs vividly in living colour making your equilibrium spiral over to a flood of emotions.
The reggae flavour tossed all over ‘Make Me Say It Again’ is rich in classic Lovers Rock sentiments—to the psychedelic ‘Old Friends’ through to the mesmerising ‘Shape Your Heart’. ‘Eternal Bliss’ perpetuates a type of euphoria that creates a scintillating and deliciously flavour for organic truths . ‘Sex All Summer ….Make Love All Winter’ gives you the chance to “explore the places you’ve never been..” and figure out if you have to “promise everlasting” type of love in your life. Although ‘Love On The Veranda’ is racy and sensual, it all makes for a soundtrack to your preparation for the romantic get down you’re about to get into, with that one who embodies the same energy as the titled record. Cuffing season is in full effect right after you press play.
Salaam got the idea from his friend CL of Digiwax who wanted to make a playlist of fifty songs you didn’t know Salaam produced. Being the creative he is and constantly creating, Salaam thought it was time to contribute it telling Semtex that he felt monetarily something was missing. And of-helping artists find their voice and tapping into a part of them they never new existed is the exact reason why Salaam Remi is legendary.
And off all his 350 hard drives there’s no telling what the next instalment will be and from all the four releases championing black/Spanish music bringing it back to its roots— I expect the next fifty will transcend what we’ve already heard.
Check out both tapes to the culture.