RON LITTLEJOHN AND THE FUNK EMBASSY

By: Caitlin Hoffman
For BiggerThanBeyonce.Com

Got your afro? This band will take you back to the 70’s.

From the crooning double-vocals to the confident guitar, Ron LittleJohn and the Funk Embassy are reviving a movement I thought was forever embedded in nostalgia. Their music makes me want to don bell bottoms and march the streets with signs that read, “Freedom to the people!”.

Seriously. This music is weed. This music is sex. It’s got me grooving, strung out on the bed.

The longer I listen to funk, the more I realize this is where original rock n’ roll had its roots. It all started with soul!

All (good) music is interwoven. Genres are only a way to organize the magic.

These rhymes are simple, the poetry eloquent. It can make you dance, make you swoon, make you sweep stars under your pillow.

Ron’s voice makes me feel things I thought could only be invoked by British accents. It’s endlessly sensual, dangerously hypnotic. Meanwhile Alana offers a sonorous, foot-stomping harmony, vocal chords hitting the highest peak while still packing a punch. Their chemistry is shockingly hot- an ideal front for Thierry’s tight, rich song-writing. Pair that with the silky-smooth beats from the DJs…

But it’s not all a soundtrack for the id! Shining On (the group’s debut) is crammed with gems of honest substance, touching humour, and slick soul. The title track is a message of encouragement from Ron to his unborn daughter, Soul Devotion is a crash course in romance, while Light Me Up stirs the lusty side of life. Seems Like Yesterday faces the reality -and tragedy- of seeing old lovers, and Emma Lee wraps it all up with a perfect credit roll. Combined, you have a layer-cake of lyrical content, iced with flavourful sound. This album has been called a labour of love. I can see why; the sound is virtually spotless.

The amazing thing about this musical project is every musician involved is a master in their own right. Fifteen artists made contributions to this album, whether by snagging guest spots for certain songs or devoting their energies to the entire piece. What a roster!

It would be impossible to choose my favourite song. Luckily, they’re streaming all of Shining On through Bandcamp, Soundcloud, and Youtube.

Respect.

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