This October, Academy grad and unique American soul crooner Jesse Boykins III releases his new album with MeLo-X, called Zulu Guru, via Ninja Tune. Catch an exclusive peep at the video for the single “The Perfect Blues” right here. The tune was produced by Jesse’s Academy classmate and electronic ethnographer (plus Sizarr drummer) Gora Sou, and recorded at our Madrid edition, featuring Dorian Concept on keys and backing vocals from Andrea Balency. The video, by Dr Woo, was shot in Tokyo around Jesse’s appearance on our stage at SonarSound Tokyo. Both Jesse and Gora Sou share a few words about the song below.
MARC (Gora Sou): I didn’t know anything about Jesse until the first day of the Academy, but I remember that I was really excited about doing something with him after Googling his name on the first night. I was really fascinated about his music and his career, but besides that I wanted to challenge myself because I came from a whole different background. The working progress itself was really fluid and fast, and definitely a lot different from the way I was making music with the band I’m in, which was totally inspiring and interesting for me. I made the demo arrangement in a bit more than an hour, Jesse listened to it about three times and quickly wrote the entire lyrics on his Blackberry. We recorded it the same day, Dorian Concept played a bit of piano and it was basically done. I couldn’t sleep that night because I was so excited about the song, and I’m sure that it is one of the best things I’ve ever created with someone.
JESSE [On Marc]: Gora Sou is one of the youngest and most culturally-influenced producers I’ve worked with. It was a great experience to connect with someone from such a different part of the world.
[On “The Perfect Blues”]: The colour blue is supernatural. It has the power to create a peaceful state and form bonds in any space. It allows for full spiritual bloom in unlikely places, it creates life from nothing. From my perspective, the colour blue represents space, time and the beauty found in a given moment. Quite fortunately, I was provided this type of space by Red Bull Music Academy during my stay in Madrid; connecting with producer Gora Sou on the same wave to produce a powerful song: “The Perfect Blues”. My experience in Tokyo is the visual representation which reflects the continuation of my musical and spiritual journey. Documented by Dr.Woo, “The Perfect Blues” is simply a sign of how art and colour reflect real life and true living.
Video by Dr Woo. Written by Jesse Boykins III (USA). Produced by Gora Sou (GER). Programming by Gora Sou, keyboards by Dorian Concept, backing vocals by Andrea Balency.