Blues and Soul Music Magazine

Issue 1084

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Feature

The Doggett Brothers: Running In The Family

Greg & Carl Doggett @bluesandsoul.com
Greg & Carl Doggett @bluesandsoul.com The Doggett Brothers @bluesandsoul.com

Originally started by Norwich-based brothers Greg and Carl Doggett back in 2010 as a studio project, UK soul/funk/R&B collective The Doggett Brothers this month come correct with the release of their eagerly-anticipated second album “Colours”. Which finds them evolving from their jazz/funk-steeped beginnings and embracing the passion for all things that groove on an 11-track set that features established singers Kenny Thomas and regular collaborator Laura Jackson (of Cool Million notoriety) alongside the introduction of fresh-faced vocal debutants Stacy Stuart, Arnob Basit and Dominic Uppiah.

Indeed, pioneered by the skipping, infectious bounce of its Arnob Basit-featuring offshoot single “Outta Control”, “Colours” boasts an array of hook-laden and song-driven soulful musical moods ranging from the mid-tempo, Eighties-style punch of “You Make Me Feel” (featuring aforementioned early-Nineties hitmaker Kenny Thomas) and crisply-driven “You And I” to the hypnotically-sultry, richly-harmonised “Why” and gently-tender, swaying balladry of “Two In My Life”.

All of which marks an impressive sophomore release for the brothers whose father was a respected jazz drummer in the late-Sixties Britain and whose critically-acclaimed 2013 debut album “Daylight” not only prestigiously ended up as Jazz FM’s featured Album Of The Week but also netted them a gong for Best Band at The 2015 East Anglian Music Awards while additionally - and equally significantly - earning them a BBC Introducing slot along the way.

…Which in turn brings us back to today and the release of “Colours”. As an instantly-friendly and chatty Greg and Carl - along with aforementioned 22-year-old featured vocalist and songwriter Arnob Basit - meet up for the first time with “Blues & Soul” Assistant Editor Pete Lewis to discuss their new LP (which is released through local Norwich indie Ashwood Records Ltd) and the blood, sweat and toil (!) that went into making it.

PETE: What was the reason behind titling your new, second album “Colours”?

GREG & CARL: “”Colours” basically comes from the many different kinds of styles that we’ve put on there. Because whilst we did want to essentially create a kind of modern soul album at the same time we also wanted to bring lots of different feels and vibes to the record. Which is why we’ve referenced anything from Quincy Jones to The Reel People… Plus in terms of the artwork too we also wanted something really colourful. You know, we talked about having something a bit like marble (Nintendo NES game / sound) that had almost like an Eighties computer-game kind of effect - really bright and spacey. Which is pretty much what you now have on the CD’s front cover… So yeah, it really was all about the different kinds of musical and visual styles that came into play. And because we already had a track on the album called “Colours” which we really liked, we decided to name the album as a whole after it.”

PETE: So what did you want to create in terms of the music and lyrics this time round?

GREG & CARL: “While our first album “Daylight” was more of a jazz-funk-type release, with “Colours” we wanted to create a new kind of feel and a new voice for what were trying to get out there. You know, we wanted it to spark a new sort of benchmark for what we were trying to do. So because we didn’t want to pigeonhole ourselves in terms of going back to the feel of the first album, this time we wanted to encapsulate all aspects of our youth and our culture and our background. Which is why you’ve got some boogie tracks; you’ve got some modern tracks that are influenced by what we hear now; plus you’ve also got the massive influence of American R&B, particularly with the tracks featuring Laura Jackson who’s been with us a featured vocalist for a couple of years now. And I guess musically and lyrically the most important thing was the hooks, as well as capturing the actual musicianship of the great live playing we have on this record. Because when we’re writing, to us, it’s all about creating something people can sing along to and that people can dance to. Which isn’t always a happy marriage, but I hope with “Colours” we have succeeded in bringing those two things together.”

The Doggett Brothers will perform outside The Forum, Norwich on July 2 as part of BBC Introducing

The album “Colours” and single “Outta Control (feat. Arnob Basit)” are both out through Ashwood Records Ltd

WEBSITE: thedoggettbrothers.com

TWITTER: @DogettBrothers @BluesandSoul

FACEBOOK: facebook.com/The Doggett Brothers

You can read how soul star Kenny Thomas because involved with the album and the process behind the making of "Colours, plus a lot more in the current issue of Blues & Soul Magazine - click the link below to order straight from our shop or read on for high street retailer details.

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Words PETE LEWIS

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