Comprising Philip Yeboah, JJ Hammerslay, Jermaine Sanderson, Roy Crisp, and Joseph Anti, UK-based a cappella group Vadé will immediately win you over with their soulful swoon-worthy vocals.
The award-winning quintet is fresh off the release of their new single “Be Mine,” a super smooth jam that destroys the player stereotype and instead celebrates commitment.
As part of Musical Notes Global’s Black History Month celebration, today Vadé curates a playlist of songs from black artists that have inspired them over the course of their career. Check out their thoughts + listen below.
1. Sounds of Blackness-“Optimistic”
I love “Optimistic” because it has a very uplifting message especially when living as a black person in a society that seemingly wants you to fail in your ability to earn, have a great family life and social status.
2. Golden Gospel Singers-“Oh Freedom!”
This is a classic negro spiritual that has a powerful message: I’d rather die than be a slave again.
3. Glenn Lewis-“Don’t You Forget It”
Glenn Lewis reminds me of Stevie Wonder which is expected as he was one of his backing vocalists. I love his tone, style and lyrics. Easy listening and smooth.
4. Lauryn Hill-“Nothing Even Matters”
Lauryn Hill is an inspiration who everyone loves. She reminds me of my mom and auntie who both passed away (they loved her too). Lauryn is an absolute legend. Miseducation is one of the few albums I can listen to all the way through and love every track!
5. Michael Jackson-“Thriller”
“Thriller” was a trend setter in videography and pop music history. Despite the fact that there was so much prejudice around at the time, Michael was paving the way for other African American artists to break through.
6. “Motownphilly”-Boyz II Men
“Motownphilly” was just such a hip song from such a cool group of guys. It inspired me to take a closer look and harmonies and made me want to sing in a group. Of course, when given the opportunity, we had to include it on our album!
7. Earth, Wind and Fire-“September”
Growing up, my parents played a lot of old school music around the house. I loved it all and this song was one of them. I see it as a hand-me-down. Musical legacy is such a big, huge part of who we are as people and who we are as Vadé.
8. Neyo-“So Sick”
Neyo’s song writing skills really were/are off the chain and as a teen, I loved EVERYTHING he ever put out. It kept me through some difficult times. He was one of the biggest reasons I really explored building a career in music.
9. Take 6-“Spread Love”
This is the song that sparked my desire to become a professional a cappella artist. At the time this song was released, there was a lot of racial tension and segregation between blacks and whites was commonplace. Take 6 wanted people to spread love instead of spreading hate and lies that fueled racism. Yes, we included our own version of this on our album too.
10. Stevie Wonder-“Higher Ground”
Stevie Wonder is someone I have always looked up to. His songs are so inspirational. This song in particular, really inspired me to persevere, to keep going despite the challenges and setbacks. The song was written to relate to people from all walks of life whether you were a soldier, preacher, mother or sister.