Blues and Soul Music Magazine

Issue 1101

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Daley: Soul special

Daley Daley Daley Daley

The multi-talented artist -- Britain’s latest soul-stirring export to the United States – would rather refrain from his musical offerings being genre specific. His sound – praised by many a scribe in the British music press -- has elements of smooth R&B, lush soul, hints of gospel, electro-pop and funk spread across cascading ambient and experimental melodies; under the circumstances, his melodic concoctions are ironically self-proclaimed “future throwback soul.”

As he discusses music sitting comfortably with his right foot tucked under his left thigh, Daley references his influences from American R&B and soul to Radiohead and Imogen Heap. Not bad considering immediately following his five-song, Wed., Aug. 22, 2012 acoustic performance at Atlanta’s Museum Bar, the hot tea-sippin’ vocalist – along with his guitarist, Patrick Reilly -- are bombarded by a sea of audience members who applaud his set and beg for camera phone pictures and copies of his 2011 10-track EP, 'Those Who Wait.' “It comes out as something new, which people seem to find interesting over here,” Daley says. “My songs come from the most honest starting point. When you listen to them, you want to feel like you can relate to them.”

Humbled and grateful for the positive feedback, Daley’s night in Atlanta, he says, allows him to look forward to a prosperous future. “To be in another country and for people to hear me sing and feel my music just makes the world feel bigger and smaller at the same time,” he says. The Manchester-born singer and songwriter – Gareth Daley on Sept. 29, 1989 – is in full motion, especially since the release of "Those Who Wait" has already calculated well at over 30,000 downloads (close to 18,000 Facebook fans) to date. He’s quite the progressive artist in every sense of the words in such a short period of time. It seems as if one minute, Daley was making music in his bedroom; the next minute, the vocalist is invited to record a live session for BBC Introducing as part of Electric Proms 2009 at Maida Vale Studios per uploading his track, “Rainy Day.” He earns features on the Gorillaz’s 2010 single, “Doncamatic” (co-writing the single with Damon Albarn) and Wretch 32’s “Long Way Home:” along the way earning a nomination on the BBC’s “Sound of 2011” poll. BBC Radio DJ Ras Kwame, MistaJam, Ronnie Herel, Jo Wiley and Sam Walker have each broadcasted Daley’s music. Singer Maxwell (Daley covers the Grammy Award-winning ballad, “Pretty Wings”) validates Daley’s talent via Twitter: “If you love music, there’s no chance you’ll resist.”

Whether he belts out “Blame The World,” “Let It Go,” “Smoking Gun,” “Spent” or a cover of Madonna’s 1984 single, “Like a Virgin,” the passion and emotion in Daley’s vocals are easily felt. However, the singer – with his curly blond coif similar to Simply Red lead vocalist Mick Hucknall poking out through his backwards truckers cap and sitting slightly above his thick black-framed glasses -- doesn’t want to have any comparisons to other British, as well as American, acts. “I don’t think any British artists – they’re kinda soulful – but they didn’t have a sound,” he says. “They all sound their own way. After a while, they kinda do that and never typically make it their own. I want to make my music, and be creative. I want to expand and keep soul at the core of everything and keep making music.”

Daley's debut single "Remember Me" featuring Jessie J is out December 2nd through Polydor.

You can read more from Christopher Daniel's fascinating interview with UK soul artist Daley, including more of the artist's views on music and his distinctive style - all in on printed issue on November 16 - click to order below.
Words Christopher Daniel

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