Sunday February 19th, 2006
New CD's this past week:
- Jaheim - Ghetto classics
- Sergio Mendes - Timeless
- Steve The Scotsman Harvey - The everyday people project (UK release)
Music news headlines this week:
Lynden David Hall Dies After Cancer
Soul singer Lynden David Hall has died after battling cancer for two years.
The south London-born singer - who won the 1998 Mobo best newcomer award -
had been suffering from the rare cancer Hodgkin's Lymphoma and died on
Discovered by the manager of UK group Loose Ends, the 31-year-old
singer-songwriter released his debut album Medicine 4 My Pain in 1998.
Hall's third studio album In Between Jobs was released on the independent
label Random Records last year.
BBC Radio 1 DJ Trevor Nelson, who signed Hall to Cooltempo Records in
1996, said his death was a "tragic loss".
"It's the loss of a great talent unfulfilled. At the time, in my capacity
as an A&R man, he was one of the biggest talents of his time, and ahead of
his time in many ways," he said.
"He was a very unassuming guy, very quiet and introverted, not your
typical wannabe pop star.
"It's a sad day for British black music, but knowing Lynden as I do, I
hope the attention that this brings him will make people go and re-visit
DJ Trevor Nelson described Hall as an "unassuming guy"
Saxophonist Courtney Pine, who toured and recorded with Hall, told the BBC
News website: "I was very sorry to hear that we have lost yet another
talented UK musician.
"I'm sure fans and musicians will miss his great voice and musical ability."
BBC 1Xtra DJ Ronnie Herel also paid tribute to Hall.
He said: "My heart sunk when I heard that Lynden passed away, my heart
goes out to his family and friends at this time.
"Medicine 4 My Pain was a landmark album for UK black music. It wasn't for
the glory but simply for the music, to meet him you wouldn't know that he
was pure genius.
"I knew Lynden quite well at the time he put out his debut album out, he
was a cool, sweet guy who lived for his music and that's how I'm going to
Hall's biggest hit single Sexy Cinderella reached number 17 in the UK
charts in 1998, and he was nominated for best British male at the Brit
Awards the following year.
More recently Hall appeared in the film Love Actually as a wedding singer,
performing All You Need Is Love.
In November, stars including Pine, Beverley Knight, Roachford, Shola Ama
and Ms Dynamite headlined The Lynden's Wish concert at London's Jazz Cafe
to raise money for cancer charities.
Hendryx: LaBelle Reunion In The Works
Nona Hendryx, one-third of the pop-soul act LaBelle (of "Lady Marmalade"
fame), is hard at work on her first new music in 10 years, including a
planned reunion album with LaBelle members Patti LaBelle and Sarah Dash.
Hendryx says the trio has laid out plans to record this year and is
looking to release a project in 2007.
Meanwhile, new LaBelle material will appear in the form of two songs
featured in the Cataland Films/Code Black Entertainment film "Preaching to
the Choir." Due April 14 in U.S. theaters, the film premiered in October
at the Chicago International Film Festival. A label for the soundtrack has
yet to be determined.
The movie revolves around fraternal twins who part ways when one chooses a
career in ministry while the other seeks hip-hop fame. Patti LaBelle stars
as a choir director and also performs three new songs composed by Hendryx.
"The title song is the reunion song by Patti, Sarah and I, and that will
be in the film's credits and also in the trailer," Hendryx tells
Billboard.com. "We also did a song called 'Dear Rosa' as a tribute to Rosa
Parks. Those two songs are sort of like our start."
LaBelle came to be soon after Cindy Birdsong left Patti LaBelle & the
Bluebelles in 1967 to replace Florence Ballard in the Supremes. The
remaining trio hit it big in 1974 with "Lady Marmalade." After the group
disbanded in 1976, Hendryx released a self-titled solo debut via Epic. Her
last such effort was 1989's "Skin Diver" (Private Music).
Hendryx says her label, Rhythmbank Entertainment, will also play a role in
the reunion album. Most of her projects are funneled through the company,
which she formed two years ago with partner Bobby Banks. The roster
currently includes singer/songwriter David Ryan Harris and 10-year-old
gospel singer Najiyah.
As for Hendryx's solo project, the singer is looking to add more hip-hop
components to the album and has reached out to several writers and
producers, including M-1 of dead prez and Rahzel of the Roots. But Hendryx
insists she plans to stick to her pop-rock style.
"I like that sort of young, street, edgy element that they bring to my
more rock, melodic, song-structured creativity," she says. "It's about
making that blend between R&B-rock music and making songs rather than just
beats with flow on top. I'm looking to come up with classic songs."
Hendryx recently composed new music for the soundtrack to the Showtime
series "Sleeper Cell," released Feb. 7 via Rhythmbank. Hendryx served as
executive-producer of the album, as well as co-producer along with
Grammy-nominated composer Paul Haslinger. "Half of the soundtrack is music
I performed with Paul," says Hendryx. "The other half is music from the
The disc also features music from Sufjan Stevens, Tricky, Faithless and
Citizen Cope. A podcast interview with Hendryx and Haslinger about the
soundtrack will be available later this month via the Rhythmbank Web site,
iTunes and the Showtime Web site.