Part 4 of my series of my favorite songs of 2016 is similar to the previous three parts. If I’ve written about a song previously on the blog, I will link to the post that features it. I am featuring five songs every day from Monday to Friday; the complete series will list the songs in alphabetical order. The previous three parts can be found in the following spots:
Kindred The Family Soul, “Never Know”: Fatin and Aja Dantzler, the husband and wife duo known as Kindred The Family Soul, have been recording now for almost fifteen years. Every album has been solid, and their latest, Legacy Of Love, continues the tradition that they have set on their previous releases. Their music focuses on positive uplifting messages and a view of romance that is more adult oriented than most of what passes for current R&B. “Never Know,” the track I’ve selected for my list, is a song about being ready for what might come, because you never know when something good is around the corner. That’s a message I can get behind.
Euge Groove, “Push It Forward”: From his album Still Euge, the former Tower of Power horn man known as Euge Groove has another winner on his hands. “Push It Forward” was featured in a Smooth Jazz Sunday post back in August. At that time, I made note of Euge Groove’s facility with songs that were based on his love of R&B and gospel music, and this song fits the bill in that regard. It’s perfect for chilling, and it’s one of my favorites from his album, which I have kept in heavy rotation since its release.
Bop Alloy, “The Sub Way”: Maryland rapper Substantial teams up with producer Marcus D to form the group Bop Alloy. The duo released an EP entitled Present over the summer and this lead track caught my ear instantly. I also featured this song on the blog back in June. I’ve been a fan of Substantial for years, and it was nice to hear his rhymes grace my ears again. I like this song because of the way he flows over the track, and his listing of Metro stops and Maryland locations brings a smile to this local guy’s face. Substantial is scheduled to release a new album early next year; you can bet I’ll be looking out for it.
Kandace Springs, “Thought It Would Be Easier”: 2016 was a breakout year of sorts for Kandace Springs. After releasing an EP of R&B styled music two years ago, Springs decided that she wasn’t singing or playing the music she wanted to play. After signing with Blue Note Records, she scrapped the songs she was working on for her debut to write, perform and produce the music that was in her heart. From her album Soul Eyes comes this gem of a song about how she thought life would be easier after an ex-lover’s departure. Her style of music is more in a jazzy vein than the R&B she had previously performed; the decision to switch has given her lots of acclaim in the music press. She recently performed in the local area, and I’m so sad that I missed her. Maybe I can catch her the next time she comes around.
Drake featuring Rihanna, “Too Good”: Perhaps the most unlikely song to land on this list. I’m not a huge fan of Drake, and my feelings about Rihanna I’ve mentioned before, most recently in this post. Yet, this collaboration works for me. The second of two songs the pair released in 2016, I find this one to be markedly better than “Work,” which appeared on Rihanna’s album Anti. Unfortunately, I can’t find the exact version of the song on YouTube; the version I have posted below appears to be at a faster speed than the album version of the song.
That’s the end of Part 4; for those of you that have followed along, thanks for your comments and your patience. Part 5 will conclude my list tomorrow. As always, thanks for reading and listening.