First Listen: Brittany Howard of Alabama Shakes wants to “Stay High”

(July 22, 2019) As the leading voice behind the 21st century rock/soul band Alabama Shakes, Brittany Howard has quickly become one of the finest voices of our generation. And within a short period of time, the 30-year old musician has left a bold imprint on the hearts of pop and rock culture, even us SoulTrackers, thanks to the Grammy-winning LP masterpiece that is Sound & Color and tracks like “Hold On” and “Gimme All Your Love.”

Now she’s temporarily stepping away from her bandmates and out on her own for a forthcoming album, one that includes the assistance of jazz keyboardist Robert Glasper. And the first from the batch is a darling of a gem. On the self-produced “Stay High,” Howard is channeling her best Aretha, swaying on waves of divine swoops and soulful melisma. And with a cozy falsetto, she takes you on cloud nine as she sings “I just want to stay high with you” on the serenading refrain.

(July 22, 2019) As the leading voice behind the 21st century rock/soul band Alabama Shakes, Brittany Howard has quickly become one of the finest voices of our generation. And within a short period of time, the 30-year old musician has left a bold imprint on the hearts of pop and rock culture, even us SoulTrackers, thanks to the Grammy-winning LP masterpiece that is Sound & Color and tracks like “Hold On” and “Gimme All Your Love.”

Now she’s temporarily stepping away from her bandmates and out on her own for a forthcoming album, one that includes the assistance of jazz keyboardist Robert Glasper. And the first from the batch is a darling of a gem. On the self-produced “Stay High,” Howard is channeling her best Aretha, swaying on waves of divine swoops and soulful melisma. And with a cozy falsetto, she takes you on cloud nine as she sings “I just want to stay high with you” on the serenading refrain.

Her backing band, which consists of Shakes’ bassist Zac Cockrell along with touring keyboardist Paul Horton, is also blessed with an afterglow of classic soul as it pours on charming echoes, ‘60’s-era chimes and a Motown charm akin to Marvin Gaye & Tammi Terrell’s “Your Precious Love.”

Those seeking to add more spice to the experience need to check out the buzzy concept video, which stars ‘Brooklyn Nine-Nine’ actor and former football pro Terry Crews pulling off the occasional lip-synch to Howard’s words while portraying the simple life of an earnest hard-working man with a devout love for home. The lyrics of this love song come to life in this heartfelt video dedicated to her father, K.J. Howard.

Howard’s anticipated solo album, Jamie, is slated to drop later this year on September 20. Let us know what you think of the new single (and video) below.

By J Matthew Cobb

Brittany Howard - "Stay High"

 
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