Yolanda Johnson - Violet Flower (2006)

Yolanda Johnson
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It's always fun to hear talented, relatively unknown new artists whom our readers don't yet know, so my treat this month was discovering singer/songwriter Yolanda Johnson via her new disc, Violet FlowerBoasting a confidence that belies the fact that this is only her sophomore disc, Johnson won me over on the eight song disc as she spread the Gospel of Yolanda - a series of observations about people, relationships, and how what goes around comes around - over moody beats and instrumentation.  The disc's obvious first single is "Individual," a radio-ready cut that should make waves in the Neo-Soul world, but a handful of other cuts are just as good, including "Keep It Moving," "Change" and the title cut.

It's always fun to hear talented, relatively unknown new artists whom our readers don't yet know, so my treat this month was discovering singer/songwriter Yolanda Johnson via her new disc, Violet FlowerBoasting a confidence that belies the fact that this is only her sophomore disc, Johnson won me over on the eight song disc as she spread the Gospel of Yolanda - a series of observations about people, relationships, and how what goes around comes around - over moody beats and instrumentation.  The disc's obvious first single is "Individual," a radio-ready cut that should make waves in the Neo-Soul world, but a handful of other cuts are just as good, including "Keep It Moving," "Change" and the title cut.

While Johnson explores different lyrical and musical territory on Violet Flower, there's cool groove throughout the disc that makes the album cohesive and consistently engaging.  And Johnson's wry, attractive voice is the perfect match for her material. 

Violet Flower should bring Yolanda Johnson into the category of hot indie Neo-Soul performers like Sy Smith and Conya Doss and will hopefully let the rest of the world know what her Cali fans have known for a few years:  Yolanda Johnson is the real thing.  Recommended.

By Chris Rizik

 
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