June 19th is recognized as the date of the official emancipation of the last remaining enslaved African Americans in the United States. The milestone took place in 1865, two and a half years after Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation. Juneteenth is undoubtedly worth a song, or several.
If you’re looking for new sounds which which to celebrate, you have some great options. And to facilitate your soundtrack, Bandcamp is holding its second annual Juneteenth fundraiser from midnight Thursday to midnight Friday, PST. The music platform will donate 100% of its share of sales to the NAACP Legal Defense Fund to support its ongoing efforts to promote racial justice through litigation, advocacy, and public education.
So here are some suggestions on what to purchase. Your money can help. Fight The Power!
DAYTIMERS — DT002 (Stamp the Wax)
Swinging into action in response to India’s ongoing battle against COVID-19, the Daytimers collective partnered with British music magazine Stamp the Wax in gathering tracks for this compilation from artists of South Asian heritage. Profits will be sent to “several trusted charities providing much-needed relief on the ground.”
The 14-track assemblage travels electronic landscapes, from deconstructed club to future bass. Strap in for some gems from artists like Kindness, Pooja B, Suchi, Nahi Mitti, and Ayesha, as well as members of the Daytimers crew, of course.
The group shared in a press statement: “In the midst of the grave ongoing situation in India, the ability to bring together artists from the diaspora and the continent to contribute to the relief effort has been one of the many affirming moments for the collective.”
STONEY CREATION — IF IT RESONATES (Minaret Records)
Oakland artist Stoney Creation assembles a jazz album offering self-help mantra and overall guide to self-preservation in these most stressful times with her self-released if it resonates EP.
Within six songs and twenty minutes, you can be realigned to survive another day.
EMISSIVE — WAVE SCIENCE (Pacific Rhythm)
As the great George Clinton once proclaimed, funk can not only be seen, it shall be heard and most importantly felt. Evan Vincent, the electronic music producer who records under the moniker Emissive, hailing from Toronto, seems to subscribe to that ideology. As the story goes, Evan began making music as a teen on his older cousin’s laptop. After living in London and getting a taste of electronic music overseas, he created the Emissive concept. Vincent began throwing parties in Toronto as a promoter, booking Funkineven and Octo Octa to name a few. Quickly, he became fully engaged in the Toronto dance music community, running a bi-monthly party with Ensoul called COLOR THEORY at The Red Light nightclub.
He has also has produced tracks for the Pacific Rhythm imprint, twice alongside Ian Syrett as part of the house music duo Active Surplus.
“Wave Science,” a new four-track solo outing for Vincent, sees this up-and-comer step out and up on his own footing. Creating future boogie frequencies, wonky left-hand house, and dancefloor-oriented melodic bump, Vincent says the new tracks pay tribute to the Black American roots of electronic music; a historical fact the producer says is an ongoing source of motivation and inspiration in his work. “Less thinking, more feeling,” is reportedly the mantra for this project, which channels the spirits of dance, love, and seasonal warmth. Remember, we’re talking Toronto folks. Listen, if more producers subscribed to this credo, we’d all be rocking to some new radicalized science fiction space shit. On “Wave Science,” Vincent has tapped into some other energy source, and we can’t wait for more of it to surface.
THE STEOPLES — WIDE THROUGH THE EYES OF NO ONE
Friends for over 15 years, Yeofi and GB combine their varying musical worlds as The Steoples. Originally from rural England, Yeofi grew up surrounded by his father’s diverse collection of classical and soul music. With David Bowie as his first “real musical love,” Yeofi quickly developed a passion for punk rock, playing with several UK-based bands before moving to Los Angeles. Under the monikor A Race of Angels, Yeofi has collaborated with artists including Theo Parrish and DJ Spinna.
GB has utilized various musical aliases over the years, like Gifted & Blessed and Frankie Reyes. He has been a Stones Throw Records regular, releasing two albums as Frankie Reyes on the label: Boleros Valses y Mas in 2016 and Originalitos in 2020. The Steoples’ debut album Six Rocks came out on Stones Throw in 2017 after Peanut Butter Wolf expressed interest in hearing more of GB’s work.
The lead single from the Steoples’ second album, Wide Through The Eyes Of No One has already dropped—the LP is out on Stones Throw August 6th. It draws on a range of sounds: Latin rhythms, ‘80s soul, sombre folk, and R&B, with Yeofi’s confessional lyrics contemplating themes of isolation and the “knee jerk resilience of the human spirit.”
MARCUS J MOORE — LIBERATION JAZZ
To commemorate the release of his highly-anticipated book, The Butterfly Effect: How Kendrick Lamar Ignited the Soul of Black America, the polymathic Marcus J. Moore has crafted his first musical project, an exquisite 60-minute set of rare and somewhat familiar Black music from his personal collection.
Those who’ve followed the author, editor, pundit, and music journalist know how much he loves looking for records; he’s a voracious cratedigger whose ear doesn’t stay in one place for too long. As of late, he’s been into obscure jazz and soul from the 1970s, an interest that arose as he finished writing The Butterfly Effect.
“I had to tap into some heavy stuff for the book — Black pain, trauma, systemic racism, and resilience,” Moore says. “It took a toll. After I submitted the project, I needed something spiritual and very much for me. That led me to artists like Nina Simone and Alice Coltrane, and groups like The Voices of East Harlem. I needed music that spun our collective pain into something positive.”