Photo © Shawn Peters
NEWS / This generation’s most successful jazz and soul singer-songwriter, the man in the hat, Mr Gregory Porter, is back, with new album 'Take Me To The Alley'.
Released on Decca Records on 6th May, this is the eagerly awaited follow-up to Porter's sensational modern classic, the Platinum-selling 'Liquid Spirit', which took the UK by storm last year as it broke into the Top 10 and became the most streamed jazz album of all time.
For the first time, hit track 'Holding On' can be heard in its original form. On this album, a beautifully spacious arrangement is revealed, brimming with lyrics about the “irrepressible force of love”. The decidedly dressed-down version unveils the command of Porter’s songwriting gifts as it allows space for the romantic lyrics and simple melodic line to shine.
Porter stated: “It’s a way of saying that a song is a song is a song. The lyrics and the intention of the song come through no matter what kind of bells and whistle are going on.”
The first single from 'Take Me To The Alley' is the arresting and bluesy 'Don't Lose Your Steam',which Porter wrote with his three-year-old son Demyan in mind. Propelled by a stomping, organ-enhanced groove, Porter lyrics speak of staying committed to one’s goals, regardless of hardship. ?
Porter said of the album: "With this record I continue to condense life experience into melody and most of all put love in the air. Very excited to share the music with my fans or anyone within the sound of my heart”
To see Gregory in action is a life experience and next month Gregory returns to the UK for an extensive headline tour, including two London dates. This demand, and level of public affection, has seen Porter become an adopted national treasure in the UK, having performed for the Queen multiple times, and graced the stages of the UK's best summer festivals, with a show-stopping performance at Glastonbury last year.
Take Me To The Alley track listing:
1. Holding On (Gregory Porter/James John Napier/Guy William Lawrence/Howard John Lawrence)
2. Don't Lose Your Steam (Porter)
3. Take Me To The Alley (Porter)
4. Day Dream (Gregory Porter/Craig Dawson)
5. Consequence of Love (Porter)
6. In Fashion (Porter)
7. More Than A Woman (Porter)
8. In Heaven (Darlene Andrews, Gregory Porter’s cousin)
9. Insanity (Porter)
10. Don't Be A Fool (Porter)
11. Fan The Flames (Porter)
12. French African Queen (Porter)