On the back of an expanding alternative take on R&B, songstress Etta Bond goes on a nostalgia trip.
Now gaining some serious attention for her alternative take on R&B, Etta Bond is on the rise. Producing soulful music with a feminist edge, the Cambridge-born singer has remained a fixture in the underbelly of the UK music scene but, with recent single 'Kiss My Girlfriend' and new track 'Addiction,' she is bringing her unique sound to the surface. Harkening back to some seriously happy times in her life, she has put together a list of some of her favourite R&B songs ever, a task which excited her to the maximum. Over to Etta on her choices:
"Nothing punches me more in the nostalgia than hearing songs I listened to when I was a teenager. Whole life ahead of me, no bills bills bills to pay. Me, oh my! Probably wouldn't have been such a happy go lucky fuck head if I knew all of the shit life was about to throw at me. But, ah! ignorance was truly bliss and the memory of that time just becomes more and more precious the further we get from it. It just shows the importance of music and some of the powers it has. Music can take you back and stays with you for life. I will still be bumping these songs with my friends on my 70th birthday. Remembering my first love, school, parties and my kids won't even be embarrassed because I'm sick and they'll rate me. Gulp. But it's true.
"These songs taught me how to sing! These songs gave me advice. They were a shoulder to cry on and a reason to dance. So when I was asked for 10 R&B tracks, I thought I'd limit it to the nostalgic type. Because even with limits of nostalgia, this list of ten was whittled down from 53. I am a victim of my own obsessive nature and I admit that. So, phones weren't smart, jeans weren't tight and Kim Kardashian was taking orders from Paris Hilton! That was my unnecessarily lengthy introduction and this is my choice of 10 R&B Tracks, holler at me if you want the other 43! [laughs]
Musiq - 'Love'
Etta: "Musiq knows all the right things to say. He is definitely spreading the word of love."
Donell Jones - 'Shorty Got Her Eyes On Me'
"Donnell Jones has some of my favourite R&B jams, here's one of them."
Faith Evans - 'You Used To Love Me'
"Guitars, hip hop beats, soulful melodies. Yes please. This is a song I like to sing and cry to. WHAT A TUNE. Bet it makes you think of someone."
Eric Benet Ft. Faith Evans - 'Georgie Porgie'
"Eric Benet is one of my all time favourites. He could be saying some fucked up shit, but the way he sings you'd think he must be saying something sweet. That's R&B for you."
Destiny's Child - 'Bug A Boo' (Live 1999) [Beyoncé, Kelly & LeToya]
"I struggled choosing exactly which Destiny's Child song to go with. 'Writing's On The Wall' was played every day. Trying to sing every harmony all at once and attempting all of Beyonce's ad libs (I know I'm not alone). But I saw this live performance from 1999 and had to share it. Look at the styling and the cute routines. Can we just appreciate the growth please? Beyonce and Kelly have been doing this since they were nine years old. Crazy. Respect."
Mario - 'C'mon'
"This album is my go to when I'm after that nostalgic feeling. School days. I was a big Mario fan."
Alicia Keys - 'Fallin''
"It felt like Alicia Keys came out of nowhere and I was an immediate super fan. I would go on her website and leave comments in the message boards - you couldn't just @ them back in the olden times, kids! I bought a book of her lyrics and poetry. In fact, I remember entering a competition at school and I sang 'Fallin'' in a cowboy hat and cornrows. No, there are no photos. I have burnt them all. But as an insecure little chubby girl who liked to sing, I looked up to her. I loved her music. People loved her music and if she didn't have to rely on her body or be anything else other than herself in order to sing, then neither did I. Little insecure girls need people like Alicia keys. All little girls need people like Alicia Keys. So thank you Alicia, it's my dream to write you a song one day."
Teedra Moses - 'Be Your Girl'
"I love this song so much. If you've been to my shows you might have heard me giving it a go. A classic! Teedra is someone who exercises the upper half of her voice so beautifully and as a soprano myself, I've always been drawn to her. These songs taught me how to use my own voice."
Kelly Price - 'Friend Of Mine' (ft. Ronald Isley & R. Kelly)
"This song will have you cutting eyes at your bestie for no reason."
Aaliyah - 'We Need A Resolution'
"Name a flyer duo!! Aaliyah and Timberland compliment each other so well and their artist to producer chemistry is something that has definitely inspired me, let alone their sound. Gone too soon, but we were blessed to have experienced you at all. RIP Aaliyah."
Check out Etta's new single, 'Addiction,' below.