RAD - East Babe

It's very rare for any musician to have a straightforward route to recognition and acclaim particularly in the soul/dance field. As an example we have Rose Ann Dimalanta (RAD) who though born in the Bay area had to travel to Europe to gain success. But it was Japan that finally put her on the map with the support of her early 90's albums. 'Venus Drops' featuring the Tower of Power Horns from her 'Gotta Be' set was one of my favourite jamz for a long time and still sounds as fresh today. That is in fact a hallmark of Rad's albums. With the new album'East Babe' you know that the music will be timeless as it crosses the genres of soul, jazz and unmistakably funk. No samples or loops on this album it's all recorded live and what a refreshing change it makes. Now back residing in the US the album makes a powerful statement for her home area and is full of tight rythmns,intricate chord work, strong melodies and meaningful lyrics. The soul ballad 'Before we say Goodbye' featuring the saxophone of Charles McNeal is a stand out whilst RAD herself provides some nice jazzy keyboards on another of the album's killer numbers 'Next to You'. Given that she has only just finished being a member of that Paisley Park franchise then you would expect the 'funk' to predominate and it does!
Check 'In Time Win Love' and the title track 'East Babe' for the best offerings with the former winning by a shade for its thorough workout of all the main musicians! RAD's album output has been somewhat sporadic in the past let's hope that this is a long overdue renaissance.