Raise the lovin’ vibes this Valentine’s Day with a love-inspired playlist. Here’s Life & Soul Magazine’s compilation of loving lyrics, sensual instrumentals and blissed-out beats to take you and your true love to euphoric heights.
Vikter Duplaix – Morena
Philly-bred producer/DJ/singer-songwriter Vikter Duplaix effortlessly blends Afro-Latin rhythms, hip hop beats and future jazz on Morena. In true Duplaix style, the singer weaves the sex factor into his lyrics and sensual vocals: “You’re the daughter of the sunlight, with that skin golden brown”.
Jill Scott – I’m Not Afraid
No mixtape of love songs can be complete without the soul royalty that is Jill Scott. Taken from the Beautifully Human album I’m Not Afraid sees the queen declare her place beside her man.
Jose James feat Jordana de Lovely – Love Conversation
If only one love song could be played, it would have to be Jose James’s Love Conversation on a loop. This beauty – produced by long-time James collaborator, Taylor McFerrin – is a delectable track boasting smooth, dream-laden harmonies over sexy percussive beats, and tuned-in lyrics for lovers the world over. Pure bliss!
Oscar + Martin – Recognise
Australian alternative-pop duo, Oscar + Martin, prophesise about reincarnation and a love bond on Recognise. Thorne’s enigmatic vocal lines – “I recognise you every lifetime” – is laid down with some hip hop/J Dilla inspired beats for some truly forward thinking pop music.
Q-Tip featuring Norah Jones – Life is Better
One of the most beautiful and inimitable voices of hip hop, Q-Tip joins forces with indie-jazz chanteuse, Norah Jones, for an infectious, upbeat track that sees Q-Tip rattling off a list of his hip hop faves on Life Is Better. A passionate ode to hip hop legends.
Roy Ayers – Love Will Bring Us Back Together
Lovers of jazz funk will no doubt have several 45s of Roy Ayers nestled in their record box. Roy Ayers’ Love Will Bring Us Back Together being one of the many classics from this soul/jazz/funk legend, is up there with Everybody Loves the Sunshine. Heaven on Earth!
The Flamingos – I Only Have Eyes for You
Doo wop classic from The Flamingos, I Only Have Eyes For You, is a dreamy and ambient tune that explores “blind love”. The track has been covered many times since its original 1959 release, and a deeply harmonising cover by The Complexions featured on the film A Bronx Tale, a teenage love story produced by Robert De Niro.
Billie Holiday – My Man (Toro y Moi remix)
Electronic producer Chaz Bundick of Toro Y Moi-fame offers up a spaced out treatment of My Man by the unrivalled Billie Holiday for Verve‘s The First Ladies: Remixed compilation. A match made in heaven!
N.E.R.D. – Run to the Sun
N.E.R.D. frontman Pharrell Williams never gets it wrong. Even at the start of his ventures with N.E.R.D. he was laying down uplifting and charming vibes like Run to the Sun. Taken from N.E.R.D.’s debut album In Search of…, ‘Run to the Sun’ is sweet in lyrics and captivating in melody and beats.
4 Hero – Universal Love
Breakbeat/drum and bass pioneers 4 Hero have been shining their gifts on to the world since the 1990s. Universal Love, taken from their 1994 Parallel Universe album, is an audacious tune featuring flourishing saxophone and magical vocals from Carol Crosby. This is up there with the tunes that you can leave on loop and gain something new from it each listen. Simply stunning!
Gotan Project – Triptico
One of the sexiest dance/electronic albums of all time has to be Gotan Project’s La Revancha del Tango. Blending Argentine tango music with dance music, Gotan Project’s Triptico is a beautiful example of how modern and traditional music marry so well electronically.
Donald Byrd – You & Music
Jazz trumpeter Donald Byrd effortlessly graces his wind instrument for this sexy jazz-funk number. Dating from 1975, You & Music still sounds so fresh, raw and darn hot right now as it did back in the day. Feel the love oozing out of this largely instrumental tune.
Jamie Cullum – Frontin’
Jamie Cullum’s cover of Pharrell’s Frontin’ comes close to smashing the original. This is a beautiful track from the jazz artist, who has done much to move jazz out of it’s “stiff” image and appeal to a wider and younger audience. A stunning voice and pianist, fewer could have done Pharrell’s original much justice as Jamie Cullum has.
Al Dobson Jr – Many Schools
Al Dobson Jr’s blend of beats, house and electronic is a sumptuous and sensual amalgamation of sounds. If you love percussion, you will love Al Dobson Jr’s unique style that he has created and champions – a tribal yet futuristic vibe made from divine love for divine love. Many Schools, from the Rye Lane Volumes II & III album, is a slow percussive groove that makes for great “after hours” listening.
Yussef Kamaal – Lowrider
Yussef Kamaal’s Lowrider, from their debut album Black Focus, is a funky jazz groove that easily holds pride of place as THE tune of 2016. Crank this one up with your loved one and move, groove and do whatever the moment brings you whilst listening to these heavenly instrumentals. If you get to catch these guys play live at some point, it’s a must. If not, check out the album.
Rosalind Medea is Life & Soul Magazine’s Chief. She is a journalist who writes about sustainable life & style, music, entertainments and wellbeing. Rosalind also works as a spiritual life coach and intuitive advisor helping people to become who they truly are and manifest their heart & soul’s desires into their lives: www.rosalindmedea.com