Soul Flower

Robin McKelle
Number of discs: 1

Robin McKelle might have called this album The Real McKelle. “It’s the record I’ve always dreamed of making. Not that there was anything stopping me in the past, it’s simply that things panned out differently.” The singer herself wrote most of the songs on this new production, a contemporary blend of soul and rhythm ’n’ blues that avoids today’s retro tendencies. “I love that music so much that I couldn’t see myself doing something ‘in the style of…”. I grew up listening to Nina Simone and Gladys Knight. I sang their classics and what I enjoy most today is building my own repertoire in that same soulful vein.” Soul Flower mainly consists of original tracks along with a few covers, including an upbeat Walk On By.

We were already familiar with Robin’s talents as a singer ‐ her powerful, expressive contralto voice and warm timbre that enchants audiences ‐ but here we discover her songwriting skills and gift for devising familiar melodies that take hold immediately. The album is the fruit of her long exposure to gospel, soul and blues, and a collective achievement too. Robin McKelle insisted on recognising her associates on this album, even down to the cover credit: Robin McKelle & The Flytones. “The Flytones acknowledgment sets this project apart from my solo and previous jazz work, and also stresses the joint effort on this album with Sam Barsh (Avishai Cohen’s former pianist) and Derek Nievergelt (her current bassist). They’re from the jazz world, but they love this music. We worked on the tracks together, some even on stage when we were touring.”

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