Continuing on from Melvo Baptiste’s best of the best for 2016, he concludes with part two of last year’s stand out tracks. Listen live Saturdays from 11am for more new music and old eclectic classics on Mi-Soul Radio. Read Part 1 here.
Melvo Baptiste: Best Of 2016 Part 2
If you’re a radio jock like me, you could pretty much play anything new from Anderson Paak without even listening prior. The last 3 years have been huge for this multi-instrumentalist, singer, songwriter from the States. He gave us his debut EP in 2014, Venice, he followed this up by featuring and working on a number of tracks on Dr Dre’s comeback album Compton in 2015, then gave us his first full length studio album in Malibu in 2016. The album is full of bangers and included one of our tracks of the year, Am I Wrong. If that wasn’t enough, he teamed up with Knowledge under the name NxWorries (No Worries) and released Yes Lawd before the year closed. Paak is probably the brightest star in the world of Hip Hop & RnB, he is incredible live and if he carries on the way he is, he’ll be telling Kanye to go shop for him by the time we reach 2018!
Midland - Final Credits
Voted number one in Mixmag’s list of Top 100 tracks of 2016. This record still gives me goose bumps and will take you straight back to a euphoric moment on a dance floor somewhere in the world, ideally in the sunshine. This first appeared on Midlands BBC Essential mix and we all went mad trying to find out more, at the time it was unreleased. The track was only released on vinyl so if you missed out, you either turn to the Discogs sharks or wait for the re-issue on Classic.
If Only I Could Fusion Groove Orchestra feat. Steve Lucas (Liem Mix)
The original came from Sydney Youngblood in 1989, we were gifted with this white label early 2016. Smooth & soulful house track that seems perfect for a daytime two step in the Barcelona sun at Sonar. Much like when Miguel Campbell gave us Something special, my guess is this will forever live in most DJ’s record boxes and be brought out at the right time to simply make the dance floor melt.
Maybe we still can’t pronounce his name correctly but that doesn’t mean we can’t scream from it the hilltops & keep telling people about his talent. Originally from New Zealand and now based in London, Jordan crept onto the scene with a debut EP in 2013 called Franklins Room. At the time people called him a Neo Soul artist but from the reggae infused sounding Selfish we should have known it’s impossible to pigeon hole this man. Groove Curse followed in 2014 before his mark in the sand, Cloak was released in 2016 and this seemed to be when the rest of the world sat up and took notice. A beautiful album from start to finish, more jazzy than he had been previously and a spiritual message in many of the songs. Before the year closed he released an EP under the alias Dan Kye, we still get Jordans smooth vocal but generally more suited for the dance floor. Our picks from the album were both The Light & Midnight Mischief.
This is one of my stand out albums of 2016 and one which still gets regular plays in my car. BBNG were originally known for reinterpreting hip-hop records but this album has proven how much their sound has developed. The album includes a feature from Kaytranada, which is not surprising as he is a fellow Canadian & they worked together previously on a remix of Jamie Woons – Sharpness. Charlotte Day Wilson sings on ‘In your eyes’, which would have been our pick from the album if it wasn’t for Sam Herrings moving vocal on Time Moves Slowly. BBNG have kept their cool and but managed to break into the mainstream, we look forward to future projects & hopefully a performance in London.
I’m not sure what more we can say about this man that hasn’t already been said, one of the most relevant and sought after producers on the planet! Just ask Katy B and Craig David, he produced tracks for both and they were comfortably the best on each of their albums. He initially caught our eye about five years back when he remixed Teedra Moses – Be your girl, I mean, I rinsed that track in almost every set I played. He has gone on to remix and produce for countless artists and we have seen his Souncloud following grow to over 500k. This year he finally took a step back from working on other people’s projects and gave us his debut album, 99.9%. Heavily supported by the likes of Zane Lowe, Gilles Peterson & Benji B. In addition, let’s not forget what a bad-boy he is behind a pair of decks; just take a look at his Boiler Room set on YouTube! Genuinely love too many tracks from the album to only pick one or two, so we’ll go with Weight off, Got it good, Track Uno, You’re the one, Lite Sports & Together.