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Saturday, February 12, 2011

kMc Profiles: Ruby Velle, Vintage Soul Singer-Songwriter

When asked to describe their vibrant sound lead singer Ruby Velle, of the Soulphonics & Ruby Velle, pointedly replies, "We try to say Vintage Soul. We really believe in keepin' the genre going and alive, so we mix in some James Brown, some Aretha Franklin and some of our own stuff."

Ruby Velle
I'm in love with the way she so nonchalantly says, "and some our own stuff," her music mentioned so casually in the same sentence as that of the God Father and God Mother of soul. Rightly so, I say and once you have a listen to their sizzlin' sound, you will feel the same. They are nothing less than authentic.

I've had the pleasure of following the Soulphonics since their inception six or so years ago. The band was formed in Gainesville, FL with Wester Joseph and Ruby Velle as the original lead singers, Scott Clayton on guitar and Spencer Garn as the organist and band mastermind.

Four, or so, years later the Soulphonics shook things up a bit and headed to Atlanta, a city known for catapulting emerging talent into stardom. It was a good decision. Since then the Soulphonics & Ruby Velle have been playing the East Atlanta and the Little 5 Points soul circuit showing these cats how to keep their Heartlite and their Feet on the Ground. Have a listen >>>

kMc Profiles

Describe your current project:
Currently, I am recording an album with my band, the Soulphonics, and we have yet to name the project. We are half way through recording, and have a few more songs to write. We've recently released a single called "Heartlite" which you can listen to and download from iTunes.

SN: What individual projects are you working on? What would you like to do?
I am currently working on some independent projects with Producer Graham Marsh and Weapons of Audio. In the future I would like to make a dub style album with Mistermind, an amazingly talented producer, DJ and percussionist. Eventually I would love to play guitar and perhaps have my own three piece band focused on rock and blues.

Describe your artistry in 3 words or less:
Authentic, Inspired, Truthful.

Top 3 influences on your style:
I am heavily influnced by the clothing, music and sense of timless class that came before me. Soul singers, fashion designers and musicians of the early 50's - 60's are where I pull cues to my style. I also admire big band, 30's - 40's era music and fashion... basically I've been living in the future and looking like the past. It may sound as if I am living in the past, I am still very present emotionally and mentally. I understand the importance of keeping vintage relevant.

What's more important, aesthetics or message? 
To me, both are important. One should not exist without the other. As a designer I am able to bring the two together, the co-mingling is what makes art/design/music memorable. As a singer the style I portray brings the music to life so the listener can picture the sound of the era I'm pulling inspiration from.

You have to be able to provide context and aesthetics.. the modern day listener/viewer is savvy.. a message existing without an aesthetic value is likely not to be attractive to most.

How does your art influence culture? How does culture influence your art?
Culture is shaped by critique of one's surroundings and art is a great fuel to the fire culture. Culture of previous era's as well as our own greatly influence what I create. I am seeing more and more people like me, designers by day, singer/songwriters by night. To me this is signaling the fact that we create what we live.. and in that essence it becomes culture. To be cliche, it's all relative.

What can we expect from you in 2011?
Powerful soul and explosive presence. We are ready to put our 6 years of being a band into everything we want to achieve. I hope to be touring this year shortly after the album release, and then getting into some clothing/accessory design... still in the research phases but really I've been researching this my whole life.

2011 will be a year of going for dreams, reaching high and most of all BELIEVING.

Truer words were never spoken:
We are vibrational beings who transmit thoughts through frequencies that change our reality and the reality of the world around us. Raise your vibration and you will create a better reality.

More LIVE Ruby Velle performance footage after the jump. Go ahead, you know you wanna >>

Soulphonics & Ruby Velle are a funk, soul, and R&B group based out of Atlanta, GA. Lead female vocalist Ruby Velle, is backed by a solid lineup, including a three piece horn section (trumpet, baritone sax, tenor sax) and rhythm section (B3 organ, electric guitar, bass and drums). // @RubyVelle 
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