Toronto-based singer and songwriter Conrad The Third was born to a family of classical musicians, and that background has influenced his music.
Creating piano and acoustic-driven songs that fuse elements of R&B, funk, and jazz, he's won the 2015 Toronto Independent Music Award for Best Singer-Songwriter and has been compared to artists like Robin Thicke and Jamie Woon.
Conrad just released his latest track "Get You Alone," the lead single from his upcoming debut project Calm Waters. Recorded in one take, it's deliciously piano-heavy and features smooth falsettos, touching on themes like growing and moving forward.
To provide a little insight on the creation of "Get You Alone," he curated a playlist of songs that inspired it just for Musical Notes Global. Check out what he had to say about each track below and listen to the full playlist on Spotify at the bottom of the post!
1. "Lucky" - Lewis Taylor:
Before recording my ep, I had nine or ten songs written and recorded as simple acoustic demos with only piano and voice. As my producer and I began to piece together a studio band and decide on which of these songs would fit together stylistically, we also had to decide on a musical direction… Lewis Taylor was that guy that my producer and I kept coming back to as we conceptualized the album.
Lewis Taylor is an artist that never thought too hard about attaching his sound to a specific genre. Like Lewis, we wanted to do something a little different, with a nice blend of all the things that we love: Jazz, Rnb, Blues, and all things Groove… both ‘Get You Alone’ and Lewis’ song ‘Lucky' are exactly that; songs that don’t necessarily fit into a specific genre.
2. "Fire We Make" - Alicia Keys x Maxwell:
I really dug the simple story in ‘Fire We Make’. I’m big into creating a world and an atmosphere in my songs - both lyrically and musically - and I’ve found that sometimes a simple narrative can be the most effective way to tell a story.
When recording the vocals on my ep I borrowed a lot from Maxwell’s falsetto riffs, and Alicia's breathy vocal over soul-blues guitar was the exact vibe that I was aiming for in ‘Get You Alone’.
3. "When I Get You Alone" - Robin Thicke:
After hearing The Evolution of Robin Thicke back in 2006 in a car with my uncle, I was completely hooked. I must’ve listened to that album a thousand times. I would even attempt to mimic his tone when I first began singing and songwriting on the piano. When I say the name Robin Thicke now people immediately think of the ‘Blurred Lines’ x Miley Cyrus crotch grab. I guess they forget that he was writing for artists like Brian McKnight, Brandy and Michael Jackson long before then. Robin’s got the classy, sexy, acoustic piano thing going… although the comparison doesn’t always work in my favour he’ll forever be one my favourite artists.
There are too many Robin tracks that I would love to include on an ‘inspiration’ playlist, but for ‘Get You Alone’ specifically I have to include its namesake, ‘When I get you alone’, which inspired the lyrical hook. I promise that apart from the hook, the songs couldn’t be more different.
4. Untitled (How Does It Feel) - D'Angelo:
D’Angelo’s ‘How Does It Feel’ should probably be on every RnB/soul playlist that exists, but its also the song that inspired me to try my hand at RnB and for that reason alone it has to be on this list. This song drips sex and seduction… I tried to leave a little more to the imagination in my own lyrics while bringing that same intensity and beauty that D’Angelo did. I figured if I was aiming high then he was the guy to aim for.
5. "Sharpness" - Jamie Woon:
My producer and I spent a lot of time listening to Jamie Woon in between sessions. We borrowed a lot from the production in ‘Sharpness' when crafting another song off my ep, titled ‘Don’t’.
6. "Most of All" - JMSN:
It is. is cinematic and beautiful and different. Similar to Robin, there are so many JMSN songs that I could point to and say - that’s what I was going for, thats what I was trying to create. Although there are a lot of wicked RnB songs I could’ve chosen, ‘Most of All’ is just feels so authentic and has so much soul that I had to add it to the playlist. The live instrumentation is dope as well - whats not to love.