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Thread started 06/26/10 5:31pm

Identity

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Bilal: New Album Tracks, North American Tour

Bilal

June 26, 2010

Grammy-nominated musical artist Bilal returns with his third studio album, Airtight’s Revenge, which will be released September 14 through Plug Research Music and distributed through The Orchard.

A provocative genre-bending album that dissects love, politics and relationships, Airtight’s Revenge demonstrates the Philly-bred singer’s growth as an artist. “It’s a mix of jazz, hip-hop, soul, blues, and experimental free music,” says Bilal.

The differences in economical social classes inspired the track “Robots,” which scrutinizes societal and governmental effects on people.

After watching the 2007 documentary, “Zeitgeist: The Movie,” Bilal wrote “Who R U.” “Of all religions, I drive to be human,” says Bilal. At the end of the day, we are all one. We need to connect with the spiritual side of ourselves; we don’t need to inflict that on others. It’s OK to have free thought. “Little Ones,” a smooth track with a soulful sound is dedicated to his sons. “My youngest son has Sickle Cell and my oldest son has Autism. This song is for them,” stated Bilal.

Steve McKie (Jill Scott, Estelle, Kindred, Vivian Green) co-produced the album with Bilal, recorded in Philadelphia, Virginia and Los Angeles. The album also features production by Nottz (Kanye West, Snoop Dogg, Drake), 88 Keys (Mos Def, Macy Gray, Musiq Soulchild), Shafiq Husayn of Sa-Ra and Tone Whitefield.

A classically trained vocal veteran, Bilal released his debut album 1st Born Second in 2001, which boasted the popular single “Soul Sista.”

The follow-up, Love for Sale (2006), was shelved but leaked entirely online yet was well received to fans and music critics and has become an underground classic. In the following years, Bilal has collaborated and performed with some of the industry’s most prominent artists including, Beyonce (Fighting Temptations), Common (Like Water for Chocolate, Electric Circus, Be, Finding Forever), Jay-Z (American Gangster), Erykah Badu (New Amerykah Part One, New Amerykah Part Two), Robert Glasper (All Matter), Boney James (Better With Time), Musiq (Soulstar) and The Roots among others.

He also covered Radiohead’s “High & Dry” for the 2006 Radiohead tribute, Exit Music: Songs With Radio Heads. Bilal also appears in Dave Chappelle’s Block Party.

http://musicremedy.com/b/...-8900.html

[Edited 8/24/10 23:36pm]

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Reply #1 posted 06/27/10 1:23am

Harlepolis

eek

I love that pic....

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Reply #2 posted 06/27/10 1:26am

Harlepolis

And I'm SO happy that the Sa-Ra cats produced some of the album clapping

Love what they did for Love For Sale music

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Reply #3 posted 06/27/10 9:27am

RebirthOfCool

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Finally! Damn.

You can call me "ROC" for short wink
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Reply #4 posted 06/27/10 9:32am

Cinnie

Maybe Love For Sale will get a proper release when Bilal's new one performs well, like when Q-Tip dropped The Renaissance, then we saw the previously-shelved/bootlegged Kamaal The Abstract on CD. smile

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Reply #5 posted 06/27/10 10:53am

Scrapluv

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Harlepolis said:

And I'm SO happy that the Sa-Ra cats produced some of the album clapping

Love what they did for Love For Sale music

yeah 4real! Shafiq and bilal make that magic 2gether

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Reply #6 posted 06/27/10 10:58am

Cinnie

his debut album 1st Born Second in 2001

"Fast Lane" hit me so hard back then!

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Reply #7 posted 06/27/10 12:10pm

Harlepolis

Cinnie said:

Maybe Love For Sale will get a proper release when Bilal's new one performs well, like when Q-Tip dropped The Renaissance, then we saw the previously-shelved/bootlegged Kamaal The Abstract on CD. smile

It wasn't a proper release though, they haven't released the full shelved album mad

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Reply #8 posted 06/27/10 12:14pm

Cinnie

Harlepolis said:

Cinnie said:

Maybe Love For Sale will get a proper release when Bilal's new one performs well, like when Q-Tip dropped The Renaissance, then we saw the previously-shelved/bootlegged Kamaal The Abstract on CD. smile

It wasn't a proper release though, they haven't released the full shelved album mad

Well, in Tip's case there was at least two full shelved and bootlegged albums. Isn't that the full one from 2002-ish?

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Reply #9 posted 06/27/10 12:19pm

Harlepolis

Cinnie said:

Harlepolis said:

It wasn't a proper release though, they haven't released the full shelved album mad

Well, in Tip's case there was at least two full shelved and bootlegged albums. Isn't that the full one from 2002-ish?

Yep, thats the one.

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Reply #10 posted 06/27/10 12:25pm

Cinnie

Harlepolis said:

Cinnie said:

Well, in Tip's case there was at least two full shelved and bootlegged albums. Isn't that the full one from 2002-ish?

Yep, thats the one.

Well, I don't think the second one from Tip will see a release. Anyway, let's just hope the best for Bilal's project.

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Reply #11 posted 06/27/10 4:04pm

missfee

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Harlepolis said:

eek

I love that pic....

nod

Cause I'm fabulous and I live a fabulous life. batting eyes
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Reply #12 posted 06/28/10 11:48am

jeidee

i saw this fella open for erykah badu a few months ago and he was awful! like amateur night.

just sayin'.

eek

it was really bad. i felt bad for myself having to sit through it.

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Reply #13 posted 06/28/10 11:59am

SupaFunkyOrgan
grinderSexy

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jeidee said:

i saw this fella open for erykah badu a few months ago and he was awful! like amateur night.

just sayin'.

eek

it was really bad. i felt bad for myself having to sit through it.

Guess he was having an off night. I'm assuming you have taste since you went to see Badu lol

2010: Healing the Wounds of the Past.... http://prince.org/msg/8/325740
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Reply #14 posted 06/28/10 2:30pm

namepeace

"All For Love" is a signature song.

I am so glad to see this talent come back on the scene, finally.

Props will be withheld until the showing and proving has commenced. -- Aaron McGruder
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Reply #15 posted 07/08/10 9:32pm

Identity

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Track listiing & production credits:

1. "Cake & Eat It Too" – Produced by Bilal Oliver & Steve Mckie
2. "Restart" – Produced by Bilal Oliver & Steve Mckie
3 . "All Matter" – Produced by Bilal Oliver & Steve Mckie
4 . "Flying" – Produced by Bilal Oliver & Nottz
5. "Levels" – Produced by Bilal Oliver & Shafiq Husayn
6. "Little One" – Produced by Conley “Tone” Whitfield
7. "Move On" – Produced by Bilal Oliver & Steve Mckie
8. "Robots" – Produced by Bilal Oliver
9. "The Dollar" – Produced by Bilal Oliver & Steve Mckie
10. "Who Are You" – Produced by Bilal Oliver & Steve Mckie
11. "Think It Over" – Produced by 88 Keys

In stores September 14th.

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Reply #16 posted 07/09/10 6:34am

Graycap23

Bring it on.

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Reply #17 posted 07/09/10 10:02am

mochalox

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Identity said:

[IMG]http://imgur.com/AslVx.jpg[/IMG]

Track listiing & production credits:

1. "Cake & Eat It Too" – Produced by Bilal Oliver & Steve Mckie
2. "Restart" – Produced by Bilal Oliver & Steve Mckie
3 . "All Matter" – Produced by Bilal Oliver & Steve Mckie
4 . "Flying" – Produced by Bilal Oliver & Nottz
5. "Levels" – Produced by Bilal Oliver & Shafiq Husayn
6. "Little One" – Produced by Conley “Tone” Whitfield
7. "Move On" – Produced by Bilal Oliver & Steve Mckie
8. "Robots" – Produced by Bilal Oliver
9. "The Dollar" – Produced by Bilal Oliver & Steve Mckie
10. "Who Are You" – Produced by Bilal Oliver & Steve Mckie
11. "Think It Over" – Produced by 88 Keys

In stores September 14th.

Thank you for this!!!

omfg

"Pedro offers you his protection."
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Reply #18 posted 07/09/10 11:33pm

Serious

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jeidee said:

i saw this fella open for erykah badu a few months ago and he was awful! like amateur night.

just sayin'.

eek

it was really bad. i felt bad for myself having to sit through it.

I saw him live about 2 years ago and he was great.

With a very special thank you to Tina: Is hammer already absolute, how much some people verändern...ICH hope is never so I will be! And if, then I hope that I would then have wen in my environment who joins me in the A....
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Reply #19 posted 07/19/10 6:44am

Identity

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Reply #20 posted 07/24/10 8:58am

Tortilla

Track by Track, Bilal's Aritight Revenge

Posted on 07/08/2010


At Gigantic Studios in Manhattan, Bilal’s three year-old son Ramsey is bouncing from lap to lap in pure bliss. "I like 'All Matter'" he says to daddy during his listening party. Gotta give it to the little tike because the jazzy single (there's a Robert Glasper version floating around as well) is a strong candidate for best song on a pretty potent soul album. On Bilal's third LP Airtight's Revenge, a reference to a Donald Goines character, the 30 year old soul singer channels his inner Frank Zappa. He plays in a sparkling puddle of jazz, rock, punk, and soul, driven by his mission "to break away from the neo soul vibe." With the majority of the concepts coming from his home piano, Bilal and his cast of matchstick producers (Steven McKie, Shafiq Husayn, Nottz) are taking revenge on an industry obsessed with categories and OKP is here to follow the footprints track by track. After a private listening session, here's how the album breaks down, song by song.

"Cake And Eat It Too"

An original GarageBand ditty according to Bilal. His voice is smooth on this cut. The track is very Dark-Side-of-the-Moonish and by that I mean horns and strings that could double up as tools and appliances, a guitar that sounds like an alarm clock, and some other instrument that sounds like a soulful cash register.

"Restart"

This track was originally supposed to be called "Failure." Glad this morbid title was changed. As for the track, it has an indie rock sentimentality. Bilal's voice still sounds soulful; it actually sounds like five doo-wop singers trapped in a space machine headed to 2020. Very trippy.

"All Matter"

This is little Ramsey’s favorite song from the intro. Something about this cut is very urgent, almost as if Bilal is singing to get out of jail. It really is that type of desperation, which absolutely works. The drums here are zoological. They have the effect of meaningful raindrops in a sea of consciousness and they echo the song's theme, "it's all matter." The song is bleak but it melts the heart.

"She's Flying"

This Nottz produced song came to fruition on Bilal's piano. "The song leaves on a bad note," he added during the listening party. "I think I need to make a part two." The beat on this song is too basic. The piano contrasts with the drum. Although humorous (he sings, "how do you hang upside on the pole while smoking?"), he may have to write a part two for a different reason.

"Levels"

This joint was done with Shafiq Husayn. Defibrillatingly (I just made up a word) rapid. Disjointed but cool.

"Little One"


Ode to Bilal's two young sons, one who has sickle cell and the other who has autism. The one traditionally soul song on the album, poised with a sentimental bass and lonely guitar riffs. A very watery-eyed ballad.

"Move On"

Bilal said he wrote this when he was fifteen. There’s definitely the ghost of Led Zeppelin here mixed with jazz tonalities. It’s very twangy and even breaks into 80's drum and bass. Bilal compares it to a cut Bunny Sigler would do.

"Robots"

In this very aristocratic cut, Bilal's lyrics comment on how we're all these mechanical beings on the same mission to climb the same undefined ladder. Here, the electric guitar sparks off and is allowed to play in a bubble bath of synthy sounds.

"The Dollar"

The story behind this song goes like this: Bilal and his mom are walking down the street in Philly when they see a bag of crack on the ground. Before either of them could say, "Oh my god, somebody dropped a bag of crack on the ground," somebody swooped in front of them, picked the bag up, and yelled, "Oh my luck day!" That’s the inspiration behind Bilal's 1970s time-warped vocals and the phrase "Oh my lucky day" actually becomes the chorus. Good track despite the discontinued drums and staccato rhythms.

"Who Are You?"

An acoustic guitar plays over raindrops. This song definitely channels the zeitgeist of Classic Rock. It sounds like a song Bilal would sing on his front steps. The breakdown is emotional. "I'm a saint, I'm a sinner… I'm a Muslim, I'm a Christian," he croons before the track drowns out on a Reggae riddim.

"Think It Over"

This one was crafted with 88 Keys/Hezekiah. It’s a breakup song and soulful square dance at the same time. A nice laid-back way to end a solid album.

There it is - Airtight's Revenge. The majority of the album was recorded in Philly where Bilal had been working on the project since 2008. Bilal admits that the leak of his last album Love for Sale affected him for a spell, but since he has signed with Plug Research he has been determined to break away from the neo soul mold and with his new album he has done just that. is definitely more guitar-driven and rocked out, than keyboard driven crooning. Guess we can say goodbye to the cowry shells for now…

-Sidik Fofana

from Okayplayer website

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Reply #21 posted 07/24/10 12:15pm

Identity

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You owe it to yourself to preview the songs on his homepage. I haven't been this excited for a new CD since Janelle Monae's The ArchAndroid.

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Reply #22 posted 07/24/10 2:23pm

trueiopian

excited excited excited excited excited excited

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Reply #23 posted 07/25/10 1:18am

inia

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Looking forward to the album. Come September, hurry! Can't wait for this summer to be over (I hate summer confused)

"Little One"

Ode to Bilal's two young sons, one who has sickle cell and the other who has autism. The one traditionally soul song on the album, poised with a sentimental bass and lonely guitar riffs. A very watery-eyed ballad.

Sorry to hear that...

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Reply #24 posted 07/26/10 8:47am

Graycap23

I'm digging the snippets.

Thanks 4 the link.

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Reply #25 posted 07/31/10 2:10pm

thekidsgirl

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I'm SO excited for this! I don't even have all the tracks from Love For Sale so it will be nice to have a proper release for him biggrin

It'ssss showtime!
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Reply #26 posted 08/06/10 4:47pm

Identity

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Reply #27 posted 08/09/10 12:07pm

namepeace

"All For Love" is a signature song.

I am so glad to see this talent come back on the scene, finally.

Props will be withheld until the showing and proving has commenced. -- Aaron McGruder
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Reply #28 posted 08/09/10 12:14pm

jaybendy

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Love this guy. I like the shelved CD better than his debut. Can't wait for the release party at BB Kings here in NYC.... a MUST.

Prince esta muerto...
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Reply #29 posted 08/12/10 10:47am

Identity

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bilalbymass9.jpg

Bilal's Got A Brand New Bag

August 2010

Even before the release of his official debut 1st Born Second in 2001, the buzz surrounding Bilal was deafening. His collaborations on Common’s Like Water for Chocolate are still classic. And despite his then-label Interscope shelving his second album, Love For Sale, it somehow leaked to the delight of his many fans.

Known especially for his live performances, Bilal is a favorite among Atlantans and, when Erykah Badu hits Chastain on August 14, Bilal will be right along with her.

Even better, his new album, Airtight’s Revenge, drops September 14. In this exclusive interview, Bilal talks about Atlanta weather and why now is a good time for indie-minded artists like himself to make music.

Where have you been?


I’ve been (pause) chilling.

I know you’ve been out there performing but now you seem to be making an effort to get out there in a more grand way?


Well, when my album that was supposed to be my second album got bootlegged, I had to reevaluate a lot of things on the business end of my career and iron certain things out.

That sounds like you thought it was an inside job.


Well I just felt like I had to take that time to cleanse a lot of things.

Since that cleansing, did it kind of change the direction of your music?

I’ve come into music in a more freer place now. It feels a little more free-flowing now, I would say.

So you’re going to come to Atlanta. You’re performing with Erykah Badu. Have you consistently been on the road with her?


I’ve done a few shows with her but I wouldn’t say that I’ve been on the road with her. I’ve just done a few spot dates with her.

What makes coming to Atlanta special? I think that you were supposed to perform here in February and you didn’t make it? [Note: Writer confusion. Foreign Exchange didn’t make it. Also, a few years back when the NBA All-Star game was here, Bilal was supposed to come but the weather grounded the plane and he couldn’t make it.]


Oh, I don’t know about that. I recently did a show there though. Not too long ago.

I hate that I missed you. I wonder where I was.


It was snowing when I came there. It was crazy but it was still packed out though, but it was crazy. I’ve never seen it snow in Atlanta. I was like ‘Wow it’s snowing here.’

Does that touch you, given that so many other artists, I know this is not you saying this, but in my opinion, are lesser talents than you are, have so much of the pr/marketing machine working in their favor and, though you haven’t had consistent play on radio, to be able to perform and have so many people come out , does that really, like, amaze you?


I’m fortunate every time that happens because I’m in a space where I just don’t want to conform my music and do my music in a certain way just to . . . sell records. I kind of just want to do music in how it’s coming to me and put it out . . . and do what I do further, to be able to experiment, that’s where I’m thinking I’m taking my music.

Do you think earlier in your career you were more willing to conform then?

I’ve always been this way. Just when I was on Interscope, their major thing was a single but I don’t make music for singles. Even now they just kind of say, "Well, we’re going to make this the single." When I had gotten to a place when I felt that that was happening to me like "this isn’t a single yet," it created friction because I don’t know how to make songs like that.

Are you encouraged by coming out at this time because the pendulum seems to be swinging back to where people are a little bit more appreciative of artists who are trying to be artists and not these corporate conglomerate ideas of what music is?


I think it’s a good time right now for people to just be indie and do what they want to do. They don’t have to be subject to only getting their music out through a machine. We’re in a time where a lot of people use music as an avenue to be rich and do what it is to make their money but I view music as an avenue to do art. I’m very happy that I make money from it, you know. Initially I don’t really need a lot to sustain myself. I’m a simple type of cat. I like to music though. A lot of my money winds up going to that. Anyways so it’s cool to just be a musician because that’s what I’ve always wanted to do and be.

http://clatl.com/cribnote...nd-new-bag

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