Over the last few weeks, I have watched the steady rise of Refuse to Lose the new album from Jarekus Singleton up the Roots Music Report’s Blues chart, last week and again this week the album is Number 1! Since the Jarekus Singleton Band has only been around since 2009, when Jarekus formed the band, I really don’t feel too badly that I haven’t found them until now! The downside to that is that i could have listened to a great band for the last five years!! The blues community has known Jarekus for a while now. According to his website Jarekus and the band have….
performed twice at the world-renowned Chicago Blues Festival. He has been featured at South Carolina’s Lowcountry Blues Festival and Festival of Discovery as well as many other festivals in the South and clubs throughout Mississippi. With the addition of high-visibility performances including Springing The Blues Festival, Biscuits & Blues in San Francisco, The North Atlantic Blues Festival, The PA Blues Festival, The Mississippi Valley Blues Festival, Heritage Music Blues Festival, The Cincinnati Blues Festival, The Festival International du Blues, Mont-Tremblant, Quebec and many more
Singleton was named a “star on the rise” by Blues & Rhythm magazine in the UK. Guitar Center named him the 2011 King of the Blues in Mississippi. He received the Jackson Music Award for 2012 Blues Artist of the Year and for 2013 Local Artist of the Year. The Jackson Free Press named him the 2013 Best Local Blues Artist.
Refuse to Lose is Singleton’s début on Alligator Records and was produced by Jarekus and Alligator Records president Bruce Iglauer and recorded at PM Music in Memphis. Jarekus is a native of the homeland of the Kings (Albert, B.B and Freddie) and Muddy Waters Mississippi and at 29 he appears to be on the cusp of something big!! Let me just say the guy can flat-out play the hell out of the guitar and his former stint as a rapper has served him well in the music composition department, the twelve original compositions are a testament to that!!! Singleton appears to be an artist who can successfully blend various genres together, ie. rap, hip-hop, R&B and blues and produce music that is new, fresh and exciting!! Again from his website……
“Blues is honest music,” says Singleton, who, with Refuse To Lose, is determined to put his own stamp on the genre. “I love the blues tradition, and have always been inspired by the masters. But I want to create something for today’s audience that is as original and new as those blues masters were when they first started making records. I want to create blues for the 21st century.”
And folks are starting to notice! From Living Blues…..
Jarekus Singleton is making some serious blues noise…blending modern-day blues and emotionally intense soul with melodic, hot-toned lead guitar, funk-seasoned rhythms and hip-hop flavored lyrics”
“A great, new blues talent…young, original, soulful and intense…superb, blistering guitar” –BLUES & RHYTHM
Need I say – “Check Him Out!!”
Here’s the title track from Refuse to Lose by Jarekus Singleton……