Jonathan Hatchman (@JonHatchman) picks out the sounds and stories that have been making headlines over the last seven days... and presents them all as a handy playlist
So far, in 2015, we’ve already heard the product of an unlikely collaborative effort. And as if the joint effort from Kanye West and Paul McCartney last year wasn’t enough to get us all talking and disagreeing with one another, a brand new video appeared online this week: this time featuring Rihanna as well as the other two aforementioned best pals. FourFiveSeconds features a stripped back acoustic guitar played by McCartney (of course) while Rihanna and Kanye take on the track’s vocal duties.
As the music festival season draws ever closer, one of the country’s most popular events – Reading And Leeds Festivals - has revealed the second of three main stage headline acts. Following the announcement of Metallica, Mumford & Sons have also been confirmed to play this year’s event, alongside other recent lineup additions that include Bastille, Royal Blood, Deadmau5, Catfish And The Bottlemen and more.
Festival Number 6 meanwhile boast Grace Jones and Belle & Sebastian so far...
In other live music news, the crowd at London’s KOKO for an Autism Rocks Charity event received a pleasant surprise on Monday night. Following two album releases at the tail end of last year and a tour of some of the country’s less capacious venues, Prince and his band 3RDEYEGIRL returned to one of the venues of their ‘Hit and Run’ tour to play a whistle-stop show in the UK for an incredible two-hour set, filled with hits from the artist’s four-decade spanning back-catalogue. Here’s a reminder of last year’s spontaneous ‘Hit and Run’ tour.
Meanwhile, making headlines with a not so “Rock ‘n’ Roll” edge, Queen guitarist Brian May has announced plans to stand as an independent MP in the coming general election. Exclaiming his "frustration at a system that he sees as failing the electorate", May is set to stand as part of his Common Decency project which cites an aim to re-establish common decency in our lives, work and in Parliament.
Currently at the forefront of the disco revival, having produced music for the likes of Daft Punk, Duran Duran, Disclosure and Sam Smith in recent years, plans have finally been announced for Niles Rodgers to head into the studio with Chic to record his band's first studio album since 1992’s Chic-ism. The announcement follows a brand new deal with Warner Bros as well as Rodgers’ and music executive Michael Ostin’s lable Land of the Good Groove, and although no new music has been unveiled just yet, the first new single from the as-yet-untitled album will be released next month. For now, here’s a reminder of one of the finest disco tracks of all time.
Jonathan's pick Of The Week
Born and raised in Colombia, now residing in Alexandria VA, 2015 is already shaping up nicely for Kali Uchis and her refreshing sound. Having garnered the attention of the likes of Snoop Dogg, A$AP Rocky, Odd Future’s Earl Sweatshirt and Tyler, The Creator – the latter of whom helped out with production duties for Uchis’ new mix tape Por Vida. Having written each of the release’s nine tracks by herself, presenting a sound that comprises elements of ‘Golden State’ Soul, Funk, R&B, and Reggae – all served alongside some dreamy 1960s sounding vocals, providing a refreshing signature sound that the artist refers to as “lowrider soul”, of which standout track Know What I Want is a prime example.