Ursula Ricks

“Sweet tenderness” / “Make me blue” 

Label: JAI ALAI
Catalog: JAR02 
Release: October 2021
Format: Vinyl  7’ 

Having spent half a lifetime reviewing and playing new soul music I still get excited about the prospect of finding new artists. In this day and age, the internet has replaced the good hard graft of getting out there and doing the digging, but the end result is no less gratifying. Our beloved specialist record shops may have become virtual (or disappeared altogether) but social media has increased one’s exposure to our music.

So, how is it then that a music junkie like me could have completely missed My Street (Severn Records), the 2013 CD-only debut release by Baltimore-based soul/blues singer Ursula Ricks? Luckily, the guys at Jai Alai most certainly did not, and their new imprint will concentrate to on releasing 21st century gems like this on to 7” vinyl.

Even if you have the original album, you will still want this wonderful remix of Sweet Tenderness. Severn’s boss, David Earl, has done an amazing remix that aims directly at the European soul scene’s dance floors. What you get is a string-laden stepper with the most sublime, almost unique, vocals and an instant recommendation from yours truly. On the flip is Make Me Blue, the other real winner from the album, making this a contender for the classiest 7” release that you will buy this year.

Steve Hobbs
Alex Subinas
soul4realrecordlabel@gmail.com