Sunday, September 25, 2016

Who is S.H.E.?: H.E.R., Vol. 1


I was recently out on the west coast for business, and my four-hour meeting quickly turned into six hours…Lordt! Needless to say I was drained, jet lagged and time zone difference wasted. I had about a thirty-minute drive back into the city, and thought to myself why sit in atrocious L.A. traffic without great tunes to ease my mind. For the past week it felt as if everyone I followed on Instagram posted a thing or two about a new release entitled H.E.R., Vol. 1. I am talking heavy hitters like Alicia Keys (Pre-Girl on Fire #shade), Tyrese, Swizz Beatz, etc. So, I figured what better way to drive down the Santa Monica Freeway than to test out some new tunes.

Baaaaayyybbbyyy I had the easiest commute in all of my LA experiences. It seriously felt like my commute blew by in minutes, and I arrived at my destination too soon. I did not want to get out of my rental car, I really did not. It was the perfect soundtrack to a cool L.A. night. Windows down, breeze flowing, and hair blowing in the wind. For a brief thirty-minute period in time I was home on the east coast, because I had seriously zoned out.

The artist behind H.E.R., Vol. 1 is completely unknown at this time. You heard me….the artist is unknown. This is all part of the genius strategic marketing plan from the folks over at RCA, which screams Millennials (yeah for my team). Raises for everyone in marketing! You get a chance to experience the artist in their rawest form, exempt from all the pretention that too often drapes new and old artists. It is literally just about the music, which is something that I can totally appreciate.

H.E.R., Vol. 1 is a seven track EP that leaves you wanting more, and more. Again, kudos to the label’s marketing geniuses. Whoever S.H.E. is leads off the project with sultry, brassy vocals, which evolve into higher octaves and melodic ranges as the EP progresses. The project takes us on a cruise through love from the perspective of a younger heart. Many of the lyrics shed light on the age of H.E.R. with references to Uber, cell phone charging, and equating love to your mate putting their phone down (that’s real love in 2016).

While H.E.R., Vol. 1 gives off much youth, there are major infusions of wisdom and experience throughout the project. S.H.E. is wise enough to have no regard for the opinions of others when it comes to H.E.R. relationship, express vulnerability in telling and showing H.E.R. man how she really feels (that’s some grown ass woman shit right there), calling H.E.R. man out on his shit when he is acting up, and putting in time because H.E.R. man is worth it while falling back when he does not deserve it. S.H.E. also throws some old flavor into the mix by making a few odes to Aaliyah on Losing, and sampling Floetry’s Say Yes on Wait for It (say word).

H.E.R, Vol. 1 is clearly an exploration of love, minus the gloom and depression. Yes, love is full of ups and downs, but it does not always have to be traumatic and grim. While I am totally here for heartbroken Mary J. Blige (that new album is about to be straight fire, shoutout to Kendu), we should also appreciate H.E.R. and the natural high of being knee deep in love. If H.E.R., Vol. 1 is a prelude to Vol. 2 or whatever S.H.E. is going to title her full album, I am totally here for it! #tapsnailsimpatiently

Be sure to check out H.E.R., Vol. 1 on all of your favorite streaming platforms, and let me know what you think. Correct me when I am wrong, but please celebrate me when I am right!


1 comment:


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