JAMES’ FEEL-GOOD DANCE BOP HONORING MICHAEL JACKSON & MARVIN GAYE FEATURES MARCUS MACHADO, CHAD SELPH & JHARIS YOKLEY
José James,the internationally-acclaimed jazz singer for the hip-hop generation, kicks off 2024 with Saturday Night (Need You Now), the second single from his forthcoming album 1978. A combination of late 1970’s disco and R&B with 2020’s pop, the song is a tribute to James’ musical heroes Marvin Gaye, Quincy Jones and Michael Jackson.
“Doing my tribute to Bill Withers inspired me,” James explains. “Singing his hits from the 70’s and 80’s like ‘Lovely Day’ and ‘Just the Two of Us’ made me want to dig deeper and try to write a song that could bring my own joy to people.”
To capture that joy, James tapped Grammy-nominated LA veteran songwriters Talia Billig (Moby, Aloe Blacc) and Kaveh Rastegar (Bruno Mars, Cee-Lo Green). Produced by James and Rastegar the track was recorded at Dreamland Studios, NY, mixed by Pete Min at Lucy’s Meat Market, LA and finally mastered by the indomitable Frank Arkwright at Abbey Road Studios. The studio band includes Grammy nominees Marcus Machado (Daniel Ceasar) and David Ginyard (Blood Orange), as well as up-and-coming stars of the NY scene Chad Selph (Bilal) and Jharis Yokley (Solange).
James is no stranger to R&B and dance collaborations. His song “Live Your Fantasy” (written with Billig and Scott Jacoby) went to #1 on Japanese international charts and was a fixture on the international festival circuit. He has also formerly collaborated with Chicago house legend Moodymann, avant-garde composer/filmmaker Flying Lotus and UK dons Goldie and Basement Jaxx.
The full album “1978”, set for release on April 4, 2024, pulsates with the socially conscious feel-good vibes of Marvin Gaye, Prince and Stevie Wonder. James also skillfully explores the boundaries of Black music beyond his own backyard, featuring Brazilian rising star and recent Latin Grammy nominee Xenia França as well as the Congolese-Belgian rapper/filmmaker Baloji.
The project will premiere live on January 13th, 2024 at the Music Hall of Williamsburg as part of NYC Winter Jazz Fest. For a full list of tour dates visit www.josejamesmusic.com.