sd main logo
   

Menu

TheSpotlight!

20 Questions You Didn’t Know You Wanted To Ask Neil Sheasby from Stone Foundation


1 How would you best describe what you do to the uninitiated?

Soulful, honest creativity that arrives from good intentions 


2 Where would you say you are with regard to your career right now?

I don’t think of it in a careerist manner. Where we are? On a new album campaign and thinking about assembling the next one. Always moving forwards 


3 Which song (not neccesarilly yours) best sums you/the band up and why?

The long and winding road....


4 Who would you say has been your biggest inspiration (musically or otherwise)

My parents, my late, great friend Hammy and Paul Weller for igniting the flame around 1979 then becoming a friend a few years ago, he’s a constant source of support and encouragement 


5 Is there anyone amongst your influences that you think would surprise people and why?

Yes lots I think, my musical pallet is very broad. Lots of early 80’s pop is a big influence which is more down to a time frame of 80 to 83’ rather than any particular artist or band 


6 What are you most proud of?

Still being in the game, still relevant and interesting to people after all these years, it’s been an incredible journey of which I’m proud of 


7 In the quest to get the music ‘out there’ have you ever done or agreed to anything you’ve later regretted?

Not really, I’m not a yes man or eager to crowd please so I think one of our strengths is what we say no to 


8 What’s the most ridiculous request that’s been asked of you/the band?

Getting asked to play in someone’s living room and in a shoe shop but we actually did both!


9 What do you think is the secret to a good working relationship amongst musicians?

Listening to each other and respecting ideas, try anything before dismissing it 


10 If you could have played on one song (that you don’t), what would it be and why?

Probably Slade’s Christmas hit and I’d have a huge cheque every year 


11 How do you make the balance between music and personal responsibilities?

A delicate balance but first and foremost I’m a father and a husband. Financially it can certainly be tough but we somehow find a way through. My family have been wonderfully supportive of my musical escapades. 


12 In light of the internet and downloading do you feel that fans are missing out on the record buying discovery/experience?

I think the physical format is on the rise once again, our new album “Is Love Enough” sold overwhelmingly better on vinyl 

It was heartening to see the figures 


13 Do you think that success is your motivation and do you have a preset gameplan for your music/the band?

No plan/no compass and whose yardstick is success measured on? I’m a bloke from Atherstone who started a band at school with my mates and that adventure took me on a journey that ended up playing at the royal Albert Hall and making records with Paul Weller. 

That’ll do for me 


14 DJ’s are now as famous as a lot of the bands they play, what are your views on this and do you think it’s deserved?

I like DJ culture. It’s an important part of music both creatively and for championing new music, it goes hand in hand, I don’t view it as a threat to bands or artists 


15 To date, what has been your most memorable gig (either as a performer or as a fan)?

Fuji Rock festival in Japan and the aforementioned Royal Albert Hall gig for teenage cancer trust 


16 How do you overcome pre-gig nerves (if you get them)?

I don’t really get them it’s more a pent up anticipation and they always pass once I walk out on stage and hit that first note 


17 When did you last write something?

I write something almost every day 


18 Have you ever reached a point where you’ve thought about throwing the towel in and walking away (and if so, what persuaded you otherwise)?

I wasn’t sure after the demise of my last band (in 1997) that I’d continue or indeed wanted to but my wife Claire and my friend Al Calnan convinced me it was part of who I was. I met Neil (Jones) & formed Stone Foundation and never really looked back since 


19 What are your views on electronics muscling in and replacing live instuments during recording?

I’m not sure they are? But again that’s fine by me if artists want to embrace those methods. I think there’s some incredible new music being made


20 Lastly, thank you for your time. What made you agree to answer these questions?

The rope that ties my arms to this chair.......




Lexsoul Dancemachine, the Estonian groove monster that never ceases to amaze, has teamed up with Wakaliwood director Nabwana I.G.G to bring you the official music video for track "Carambola Jelly" from the band's new album "Lexplosion II".
It all started when Lexsoul discovered the Ugandan director at local film festival HÕFF. Nabwana has garnered a cult following for his low budget action movies set in the slums of Kampala. In 15 years of activity he has created more than 50 action packed films, earning him the title of 'Uganda's Tarantino'. Fortunately for the band, the busy film creator agreed to get behnd the camera at his Ramon Productionsstudio to accompany LSDM’s music with a visual story. What follows is a rescue mission like no other. The track itself is a dancefloor certified banger supported by DJs and radio alike, BBC among others. Taken from the 6-piece’s new album "Lexplosion II" that was releaed in July 2020 via Funk Embassy Records, the song about the starfruit jam has been one of the best received from Lexsoul Dancemachine’s 3rd studio album.

Blow Up Records is pleased to announce The Bongolian brand new album‘Harlem Hipshake’ will be released 13/11/2020. It will be the sixth album under The Bongolian moniker, AKA multi-instrumentalist and Big Boss Man front man Nasser Bouzida. It is the much anticipated follow up to the highly acclaimed Moog Maximus and is available to pre-order now in the following formats: Clear 180g vinyl (limited 500 ), black 180g vinyl, CD and digital from the Blow Up (greedbag) shop: https://blowup.greedbag.com/buy/harlem-hipshake/

Harlem Hipshake finds The Bongolian deeply immersed in his lifelong love for the music of the sixties New York’s Latin Soul scene, particularly the music of Ray Barretto, Mongo Santamaria and Joe Bataan. Principally a drummer, percussionist by trade, Nasser has once again delivered another set of heavy breaks and percussive grooves underpinning this brand-new collection of songs which he has written and produced. Whilst Nasser performs many of the instruments (as is usual with Bongolian albums) on the album, it also features a prominent use of additional UK musicians on brass duties. These include Terry Edwards (Trumpet, Trombone, Sax, Flute), Gareth James Bailey (Trombone) and Craig Crofton (Alto Sax), James Morton (Alto Sax), Andrew Ross (Tenor and Baritone sax) and Ralph Lamb (Trumpet).

"Palmaillerennen" is the first single release of the Hamburg-based hammond jazz-quartet Hamburg Spinners, taken from the band's debut album "Skorpion im Stiefel" that will follow both on vinyl and digitally on November 13th. Like the whole album "Palmaillerennen" was cut live on a weekend in May 2020 in Hamburg's Yeah!Yeah!Yeah!-Studios.

"Palmaillerennen" features a catchy and uplifting tune with Carsten Meyeron Hammond B-3, Dennis Rux on guitar, David Nesselhauf on bass, and Lucas Kochbeck on drums. A perfect soundtrack for a ride down the 'Palmaille', a famous avenue in Hamburg-Altona. Who needs winners when there’s the Hamburg Spinners!?

Over two decades, Sharon Jones & The Dap-Kings built a reputation as studio aces.

Throughout their career, they remained in high demand both publicly and privately to recreate and often re-imagine songs by other artists. More often than not, these covers were recorded by request – commissioned for placement in movies, television programs, tribute albums, or for samples. This album compiles some of their most popular as well as never-before-heard renditions.

Though the band has mostly built their career on a prolific catalog of originals, these forays into other artists’ compositions lay bare their gift for arrangement and the unmatched studio prowess that earned them their reputation as The Baddest Band in the Land.

Dutch vintage soul combo The Tibbs announces the release of “Damaged Heart”, the first single taken from the forthcoming new album “Another Shot Fired”. The single will be available on October 09 on all digital platforms and on a limited edition 45 vinyl. “Another Shot Fired” is the second studio album by The Tibbs and it will hit the streets November 20.

According to the band: “Damaged Heart is about the uncertainty that one might bring from past experiences into a new relationship and the fear of not being able to give oneself completely. The bright spot being the openness with which this uncertainty is raised. Altogether, Damaged Heart could - despite the irreparable harm that is suggested is in the title - very well be interpreted as a love song ...”

The new album “Another Shot Fired” was recorded during lockdown at Electric Monkey in Amsterdam under the production of Paul Willemsen(Lefties Soul Connection, Michelle David & The Gospel Sessions) and it introduces a new singer to the project: the young super-talented Roxanne Hartog, who penned the lyrics of most of the songs.

Based around Amsterdam, The Tibbs took off in 2012 working right from the start with producer Paul Willemsen. In 2016 their first LP, "Takin' Over" marked their debut with Milan based imprint Record Kicks. The singles "Next Time" and "The Story Goes" received critical acclaim on radio stations throughout Europe and North America and the 45s flew out the door in record time. The release of "Takin' Over" delivered the band far richer rewards. Playing sold-out venues in both Milan and Frankfurt. The Tibbs' profile rose further still with wonderful festival performances in Germany and Hungary, followed by a successful sold-out tour of Spain. In late 2018, Elsa Bekmandecided to follow her heart and focus on a solo career. The Tibbs duly began their search for a truly worthy successor, bringing astonishing vocalist Roxanne Hartog and the band together for the first time. With new recordings in the bag and a great new album about to be released, The Tibbs are once more ready for lift off.

A Flint Michigan native, he grew up listening to Soul luminaries OV Wright, Willie Hutch and Sam Cooke, whose influence led Demps down a path to becoming an accomplished Soul singer himself - scoring his first hit at the age of 24 in the still thriving Southern Chitlin Circuit of the early aughts. Demps, having been a long time Daptone fan, connected with the Dap-Kings at a soundcheck at a Detroit nightclub for an impromptu rendition of “A Change is Gonna Come.” Bosco Mann was floored by his voice and swore they would meet again. Last year, with that sweet soulful voice still ringing in his ears, Mann would reconnect with Demps and bring him out to Penrose Recorders in Riverside, California to finally cut his first Daptone side. "Norma Jean" is a funky soul groover that lands somewhere between the nuanced big city sounds Chicago and Detroit were pumping out in the late '60s: think the grit of Twinight's houseband Pieces of Peace, kissed by the sophisticated Motor City production of Dave Hamilton or The Brothers of Soul and you're getting warm. 

Led by French B3 Hammond maestro Guillaume Metenier and featuring an all-star lineup of musicians from the extended Mocambo fam, Pigalle Connection connect the dots between instrumental funk, b-boy breaks and cinematic soundscapes.
New 45"Casino & Church" / "Vendetta James" is a nod to Peter Thomasand Ennio Morricone, two massively influential score composers who both sadly passed away in 2020. A-side "Casino & Church" is a blistering blend of afro-boogie, breakbeat funk, blaxploitation and eurocinema, led by hypnotic percussion and an infectious guitar. Flip to the B-side for "Vendetta James", where Mediterranean funk meets Italo-Western and b-boy breaks in a sequence of hazy atmospheres and alluring moods. Both sides of Pigalle Connection's new 45 showcase the band's unique sound and deep appreciation for great film scores. Let's just hope they don't keep us waiting another 5 years for more!

From the USA comes the self-titled debut album from a band with an incredible pedigree: The 7 Day Weekend are acclaimed multi-instrumentalist and producer Alan Evans (co-founder and drummer of soul-funk legends Soulive), and in-demand keyboard player Kris Yunker (Alan Evans Trio/Jen Dunkin & The Business).
The 7 Day Weekend is born from and influenced by the sounds and compositions of 60s and 70s film scores. Evans & Yunker combine their songwriting and production aesthetic to create what they describe as “electrorganic music”. Blending evocative ambient soundscapes with impeccable funk & hip hop-influenced grooves, the duo have put together a luscious collection of instrumentals for their self-titled debut. 
From boogie, to jazz-funk, to sultry cinematic sounds, "The 7 Day Weekend"is an album that draws equally from the sonic landscapes of Galt McDermot as it does from those of J-Dilla, conjuring laid back summer grooves and transporting the listener to the weekend no matter what day of the week it is.

BT ALC Big Band is excited to release new single "The Iguana", recorded remotely during the Covid19 pandemic and featuring a who's who of funk royalty, including legendary flutist/tenor saxophonist Karl Denson (Greyboy Allstars /Rolling Stones), award-winning guitarist Eric Krasno (Soulive / Lettuce) and renowned bassist Nate Edgar (Nth Power / John Brown’s Body). This single is the second collaboration between BT ALC Big Band and Vintage League Music, following up on the success and glowing reviews from their May 2020 release "Bring Forth Change".
Once again, the song-writing process began by getting VLM co-founder and Soulive drummer Alan Evans together with organist Darby Wolf at Iron Wax Studios to lay down the initial track for the rest of the band to work off of and invite friends to join in. Inspired by the uptempo grooves on Grant Green’s classic album "Live At The Lighthouse" recorded in 1972, "The Iguana" is similarly fast-paced, extremely groovy, and absolutely infectious!

On The Spot (OTS) Trio are back with their second single of 2020 "Soquel", a mesmerizing slice of afro-tinged psychedelic jazz-funk that follows up on the success of first single "Hefe" released in April. Recorded at Soulive drummerAlan Evans’ Iron Wax Studio, "Soquel" sees OTS founding members Danny Mayer (Star Kitchen / Eric Krasno Band) and Kris Yunker (Alan Evans Trio / Jen Durkin & The Business) once again team up with Turkuaz drummer Michelangelo Carubba to deliver another sizzling sonic treat!
In "Soquel" drummer Carubba provides the rhythmic backbone for Yunker's bass and organ to build a scorching afrobeat groove on which Mayer's distorted guitar designs psychedelic soundscapes. Clocking in at over 5 minutes, "Soquel"is a hypnotic number that feels loose and spontaneous while also displaying the tight musicianship of the band members.

It's been a long time coming but The Allergies have finally released their fourth studio album, 'Say The Word'.

Comprising of thirteen party-starting bangers ready to become YOURsummer soundtrack, the album features hit-single and 6 Music A-Lister 'Felony', the airwave favourites that are 'Every Trick In The Book' and 'Let Them Know (feat. The Cuban Brothers) and a series of collaborations with the likes of Andy Cooper (Ugly Duckling), Marietta Smith and Mr Woodnote. Further ammunition is supplied from none other than Dynamite MC, Dr Syntax and Skunkadelic and together they ensure that this LP is jam-packed with future classics and foot stompers as funk, soul and hip-hop flow throughout every ounce of this release. What's not to love?

Crushed Velvet & the Velveteers is the alter ego of US multi-instrumentalist and producer Alan Evans (Soulive / Ae3) who is back with another taste from his upcoming full-length on Vintage League Music with new single "As Far As We Know feat. Brother GoodLove". The track is a soul song dripping with emotion and power on which Evans plays bass, drums and guitar.
Born in Montreal to Cameroonian parents, Brother GoodLove was raised in a multicultural household and community where music featured prominently. Now residing in Washington D.C, he draws from a wide palette of musical traditions, from African-American to African, Caribbean, Latin American and European. His music is an exploration of his identity and sense of self, an expression of his personal views, a reflection on the world around him and a contribution to the future he believes in.  "As Far As We Know feat. Brother GoodLove" follows up from first single "Good Thang feat. Kim Dawson" released in June and anticipates the upcoming Crushed Velvet & The Velveteers album.

After an endless time of silence around German nu-jazz outfit Bahama Soul Club, they're finally back with "Bohemia After Dawn", the soundtrack of a lifestyle compiled in 12 sunsoaked songs. ! Laid back and lovely, matured and mellow to spoil us with their uber-cool vibe coming directly from the breezy Algarve. Bahama Soul Club’s 5th album draws deep inspiration from the multicultural verve of young worldly folk drawn to the Bohemian coasts, where hippiesque hedonism, infinite musical diversity, and offbeat enchanted lifestyles fuel the scene. 
From securing the rights to use vocal extracts by John Lee Hooker, Billie Holiday and Sister Wynona Carr, to discovering a host of local talent such as singers Josephine Nightingale and Taly Minkov-Louzeiro and last but not least, collaborating once again with one of the most exciting voices in the Bahama Soul Club family so far... Cuban artist Arema Arega, this album has all the ingredients to be the soundtrack of the summer. Add two cool remixes from the masters of the scene: Mighty Club des Belugas and SMOOVE himself to the pot and something is definitely cookin' in the kitchen!