Heather Victoria – What I Need (ft. HaLo)

Heather Victoria - What I Need (ft. HaLo)

Almost a month without an update? YIKES.

Let’s break the silence with some new goodness from the awesome Heather Victoria. Heather’s been hard at work on Graffiti Diary, the follow-up to Victoria’s Secret, and while that will be dropping on Tuesday, she’s got this HaLo-featured gem ready for us. Similar to The Letter, HV’s got a real MJB-esque “hip hop soul” vibe going on, with the assistance of AMP behind the boards. This track definitely has me looking forward to Graffiti Diary (and not taking another month to update again).


halc – Peacemaker

Theme of TIKAL from the Sonic Adventure soundtrack (not to be confused with THIS Sonic Adventure) was always one of my favorite tunes, so much that I’d consider strangling someone who made a crappy remix of it. halc‘s remix is the opposite of crappy; in fact, it’s got a bit of a hip hop vibe that’d make any Urbanizm artist proud. If you check out halc’s other stuff on OCR, this one is totally different from the rest; I love artists stepping out of their “comfort zone” and can’t wait to hear what other experimenting he does with his style.


Carlitta Durand – iCarli

Carlitta dropped this video of Nostalgic Nights‘s iCarli a little while ago, but I’ve only recently gotten a chance to check it out. Videos like this one (shot in Brooklyn) are why I need to move back to New York; don’t they look like they’re having so much fun? iCarli was definitely a standout track on NN and I’m glad to see it’s gotten the visual treatment. If you still haven’t downloaded Nostalgic Nights, I highly encourage you to do so.


Torae – Love is War (ft. Lydia Caesar)

Torae - Love is War (ft. Lydia Caesar)

This is likely going to be the most hip hop track that’ll hit SO.com. For the unenlightened, Torae‘s a throwback to the “boom bap” hip hop sound of the early to mid-90s, which instantly makes hip one of my favorite emcees. He made a 180 for his Heart Failure album, stepping into LL Cool Tor mode and enlisting Lydia Caesar (who was the first feature on this site) for this jam. I’d love to hear Tor hit more tracks like this in the future, but in case that doesn’t happen for a while, be sure to cop Heart Failure.


Nina B – Picture This (ft. Skyzoo)

Nina B - Picture This (ft. Skyzoo)

My other hip hop crush Nina B had been keeping a relatively low profile until recently, when she started leaking tracks from her upcoming mixtape, the awesomely-titled Remember Me B*tch! The Bosstress is Back!. I love the 90s-feel this Skyzoo-featured track has, and, as anyone who knows me can tell you, Rhodes makes EVERYTHING better. I’m definitely looking forward to Remember Me after hearing this one.

DOWNLOAD: NINA B – PICTURE THIS (FT. SKYZOO) (right click, ‘save as…’)

The Foreign Exchange – Authenticity

The Foreign Exchange- “Authenticity” (official music video) from The Foreign Exchange on Vimeo.

I’ll admit that while I’m not as familiar with The Foreign Exchange as I should be, I’ve always enjoyed what I’ve heard from them. I still prefer Phonte‘s hip hop stuff with Little Brother but at the same time I really dig his singing voice. Nicolay‘s music is pure gold too; between guys like him, Sem, and Diggi Dis, I’ve convinced there’s something in the water in The Netherlands that creates great musicians.


Promise – Drifting

Promise - Drifting

In the last few months, Promise has gone from “girl on the internet I tried to collab with in 2005” to one of my favorite indie singers. Hot off the heels of The Pinky Project, Miss Ramsey – who’s also filming Joyful Noise with Keke, Dolly, and the Queen herself – drops Drifting, a Theory-produced track that has a real ambient feel to it. I highly recommend this track from the girl who apparently doesn’t know the meaning of “day off.”

DOWNLOAD: PROMISE – DRIFTING (right click, ‘save as…’)

Mara Hruby – From Her Eyes

Mara Hruby - From Her Eyes

I’ll go ahead and get this out the way: yes it’s another cover post, sue me. I love what Mara‘s got going on here – she’s definitely got a Carlitta-like vibe going on (which makes her a winner in my book) and she definitely makes these songs her own, which takes a lot of talent when you’re singing songs from artists ranging from Bob Marley to Mos Def to AndrĂ© 3000. Mara’s got a new fan in me, and I can’t wait to hear her drop some original stuff.


Sem – 6,8,12 (cover)

I’m starting to notice a trend of us posting covers here…my good friend and labelmate Diggi Dis linked me to a video of his friend Sem covering Brian McKnight‘s 6,8,12 with Diggi himself playing the keys. DD had let me hear a few things he’d done with Sem and I’ve always been a fan. Lately Sem’s been making a name for himself with these covers; he even dropped an EP of covers a couple months ago (link down below). Unfortunately this song isn’t on the EP, but maybe Diggi and Sem with give us the exclusive (hint, hint)


Bruno Mars – California Gurls (cover)

I’ve been on the meanest Bruno Mars kick lately, so I was pretty intrigued when I saw this hit SingersRoom.com. With respect to Katy Perry‘s original version, this cover is definitely more my cup of tea. I only wish the folks at BBC Radio had the cameras rolling so we could get the full feel of this song, but what can ya do?


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