http://www.npr.org/sections/therecord/2015/09/15/440363012/a-rational-conversation-do-we-need-new-old-soul-music (Special thank you to singer Rahsaan Patterson for posting this link on his page and opening up the discussion that led to these words).
Every few years, within the community of soul music loving folks; ranging from the old school listeners from back in the day, to mid 90’s Neo Soul crowd, to the new school kinda neo, but not, Hip/Hop influenced soul diggers of 2015, the question comes up. . . Does old soul need to get re-worked and re-packaged into something new? (I linked the above NPR discussion as the most recent example of this. . .) Here are my thoughts:
I think the question hides the point. . . It is not so much that old soul needs to be new. . . (Marvin, Donny, Sly etc. . . spoke to a time). My feeling is that what they taught us. . . the vocabulary, the how to: is missing in so much of today’s music.
That true thoughtful singer/songwriter piece that works from the inside out to tell the story of our time is what we seek. Not just an ad-nauseum repetition of old school beats and jacked horn lines. And not another scholarly deconstruction of what was, as a critique of what today’s music is not. .
Speaking for myself, as an artist living in the moment, I just want to write about what is real, with a respectful understanding of the history that makes me an artist of a particular type, while being true to the now. SOULFULLY.
I have to believe that the kindred nature of the singer/songwriters of the 60’s and 70’s to me, will reach out and grab the listener and take them right into a familiar space. I believe in this, with out sacrificing creativity, or the truth of today. . . which surely deserves its own telling.