Rajdulari – You, Me, Us, We – Rising
If you were at Billie’s Black last Friday night, you might have enjoyed the most tempting HoneyWine cocktail designed specially for Rajdulari‘s CD release party for her new project of the same name, which was released on October 14th. The night was pure electricity and inspiration. The room was packed to capacity – Rajdulari’s mother came from Michigan to celebrate with her, and the love and support in the venue was sweet and warm just like HoneyWine’s new signature cocktail. Rajdulari is starlight rising with a quickness.
This brilliant singer is a graduate of New England Conservatory’s Jazz Continuing Education program and Berklee College of Music. She recently moved from Boston to New York and brings with her an impressive resume, having worked with a number of award winning projects including Zili Misik, and the David Zoffer Differential. This year the Rajdulari Jazz Project won Best Jazz Band 2011 at the New England Urban Music Awards. This gifted singer exhibits a beautiful balance of acute seasoning, deep soul and vocal freedom. I immediately recognized a Dianne Reeves influence in her voice, and she confirmed this during her performance. Few singers reveal this level of skill – one doesn’t begin to approach Dianne Reeves. She has, with her own flavor.
HoneyWine is sophisticated and soulful. Swingin. Latin. Funky. Poetic.Vocalese. Sensual. The album opens with Into the Light, a magnetic awakening and introduction to Rajdulari and her masterful band. Not the only anthem on the record, it opens the heart to allow enough space to take in the experience forthcoming – stand up, raise your arms to the heavens and believe what she’s saying. She’s right. The Poetry Man snipet was a pleasant surprise (both on the album and live), as it introduces the title track, which increases heart size with it’s harmony and ecstatic love. She gives her own tasty interpretations of Summertime and Black Bird. Purpose is Rajdulari’s Grammy Anthem which, if she continues the path she’s on now, will certainly come to fruition. With so much in between, the record ends with the ironic, truthful yet loving entreat to America. This song features the powerful spoken word of Letta Neely and leaves one with much to think about and wanting more.
Live, the Rajdulari Jazz Project is high level jazz, funk, church, soul and so engaging. They’ve got Alex da Silva on bass; Grant Fisher, Guitar; Jordan Piper, keys; John Doing, drums; Freddy DeBoe, Sax; Patriq Moody, Trumpet; Monique Brooks-Roberts on violin; Mario Evon and Steffany Bready-Edwards on background vocals and Letta with spoken word. As a singer myself, I nearly fell out of my chair numerous times – If her original works weren’t enough, she did a few songs that pretty much define my life, in addition to Poetry Man – In Your Eyes; Open Your Eyes You Can Fly; For Ever, For Always, For Love (which was her shout out to Lalah Hathaway who by the way has her CD release party for her impressive CD tomororw, 10/20 at Billie’s Black).
I personally love discovering a new artist to be obsessed with, and Rajdulari’s HoneyWine will be one of the only musical works in my ears for quite a while. I am still reeling from my experience that night at Billie’s Black. Great music, drinks, a beautifully supportive community, and my catfish was fire. If you haven’t, you must purchase her album which can be purchased by clicking on the links below.
FaceBook: “Rajdulari Music” https://www.facebook.com/rajdularimusic#!/pages/Rajdulari-Music/215082247224
CD Baby: http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/rajdulari1
LISTEN AND WATCH: Rajdulari’s “HoneyWine” video featuring Terrell Carter