Posts Tagged ‘Phyllis Hyman’

Clubbin’ in the 80’s

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As I’ve said before, I’m a 70’s baby and I love 80’s music.  This mix features my favorite era in R&B.  While I was a 10 year old eating my Mr. T cereal and watching Miami Vice on Friday nights; my 20 year old Sister was hitting DC clubs and dancing to some of the songs featured on this mix.  While I was never old enough to club in the 80’s myself, I lived vicariously through my big Sister.  She’d show me the latest dances and I’d watch and think, “I just can’t wait to be grown.”  I knew what music was hot by the albums and cassettes my sister would buy.    Those albums are now a major part of my record collection today and those memories are the inspiration behind Clubbin’ in the 80’s.

This mix is my thank you to all of you in the DJ BeTray family.  Thank you for your support as we approach my 1 year anniversary of DJ BeTray.com.  Please enjoy this mix and bump it at your next party! Love!

Download the 192kbps/HQ version (109 MB) here!

Fell in Love in the 80’s

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My first mixtapes consisted of bad radio recordings via my Casio cassette recorder with the external mic; more often, the background noise was louder than the music.  Once I got ahold of a radio with a tape deck built in, I felt unstoppable.  I still have some of those childhood tapes, one of my favorites had Shelia E.’s Hold Me, Culture Club’s Mistake #3 and Tech and the Effx’s Perfect Match (from School Daze).  My goal was to always catch the songs that didn’t get a lot of airplay, now I’m excited to share that music with you.

Fell in Love in the 80’s is the first installment in my new series of mixtapes showcasing some of my favorite love songs according to decade.

When I first started work on this mixtape I thought it would be part 2 to the first slow jam mix I posted on DJBeTray.com entitled, While You Were SwingingWhile You Were Swinging focused on slow jams released during the New Jack Swing era in R&B.  But Fell in Love in the 80’s goes beyond that with music predating the late 80’s and incorporating songs from the mid and early years of that decade.  As I’ve mentioned before, I’m a 70’s baby who loves 80’s music and the rarer the song the better; please enjoy this mixtape of classics. Love!

Sounds Like Washington Vol. 1

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I hope this smooth soothing compilation will inspire and calm your spirit just as it has mine time and time again.  This sexy slow tempo compilation is my favorite.  In 2001, I compiled “Sounds Like Washington Vol. 1”.  After living on the other side of the country and away from Washington, DC radio, I missed the music that was unique to this great City.  The title “Sounds Like Washington,” is taken from the WHUR radio catch phrase, which I love because it’s so true; its music does sound like Washington and so much of it is literally played nowhere else.  So yes, most of the songs on this compilation are WHUR classics; some just feel like DC to me.  Many of my friends have enjoyed this CD for years… I hope you will too.

Download the 192 kbps version (102 MB) here!

Top 5 R&B Female Singers

These women offered signature sounds during a time when there was a place in popular music for vocalists who sounded like themselves.

 

Phyllis Hyman

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Phyllis Hyman is my favorite singer of all time.  Her haunting and pain soaked vocals stand alone and have yet to be duplicated.  I once heard a critic compare her voice to a stained glass window.  Hyman could wring the emotion out of any note in any octave. She could bring you really low or lift you higher than you thought possible.  She believed in the listener accompanying her on her journey. Often, that journey was a walk through the ups and downs of love.

Anita Baker

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Anita Baker is The Songstress.  Her sweet alto broke through barriers in modern music and inspired up and coming singers to embrace their lower range.  The quality of Baker’s vocal soaks through every lyric.  She leaves behind a deafening silence when she’s not recording.

Chaka Khan

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When I think Chaka Khan, I think powerhouse. She makes it look so easy.  Chaka has never been one to bend over painfully belting out her dynamic range; she just smiles as her notes effortlessly flow as long or as high as she feels necessary.  Chaka Kahn is one of the most imitated vocalists in modern R&B but there is nothing like the original.  When she first stepped on the national music scene as a member of Rufus she was compared to Sly Stone, a male singer.  Now it’s clear, there is no comparison of any kind to Chaka Kahn.

Angela Bofill

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Angela Bofill is one of my favorites.  Her dramatic delivery jelled perfectly with what were often theatrical musical backdrops.  Bofill is a visual singer, songwriter and percussionist.  The innocence in Angie’s voice can turn on you so quickly; making it easy to understand why she had to repeat her promises to be sweeter.  She’s more than the first Latina to have chart-topping success in Rhythm and Blues music; she’s an original soul sister.

Patti LaBelle

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Patti LaBelle and her former group, Labelle, will appear on another one of my “top 5” lists as well.  She’s one of those artists who I feel is impossible to categorize.  She stands alone.  Patti’s voice is not only unmistakable; it’s necessary.  While everyone knows she can take it to church, Ms. Patti can also sing you a lullaby.  From her legendary stage performances to her signature classics, the love is in the details and Patti gives a lot of love.