Joel Culpepper’s Guide To NewGen UK Soul

There's a fresh energy to absorb...

Joel Culpepper's multi-faceted artistry is hard to pin down.

Someone with deep roots in R&B, he's also able to draw on several other wells of influence, crafting something uniquely personal in the process.

Debut album 'Sgt Culpepper' is long-awaited, and it finds the London based maestro distilling his sound down to its fine essence.

If it's hard to define, then it's also difficult to deny – Joel Culpepper is imbued with that mysterious artefact known as 'soul', and it permeates the entirely of this highly impressive new project.

With his debut album out shortly, Clash invited Joel Culpepper to offer his tips on the NewGen voices re-crafting soul in a British image.

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Alfa Mist

I first came across him in a show we were both on in Switzerland. I had 'People' feat. Kaya Thomas Dyke on repeat for two weeks. Alfa is humble, tasteful, the right amount of jazz balanced with hip-hop. Enjoying hearing him rap, hope he does it more.

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Ego Ella May

Her album 'Honey For Wounds' I came across via John Boyega. She’s so important for soul music. Her music is healing, meditative, vocal medicine. Feel Jill Scott would be a fan, I definitely am.

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Children Of Zeus

I first came across them being invited to a show of there’s at Jazz Cafe. Favourite track – 'Be Someone'. Bringing classic R&B back to the forefront. I love the delivery, the nods which feels like it’s towards crooners such as Donell Jones and Jon B. It’s a triumph to see the music continue to trickle into mainstream spaces.

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Jnr Williams

Jnr Williams is distinctively in his own lane. His voice actually reminds me of Aaron Neville. I was in a session with Jnr and he wrote a song that made everyone there cry. I'd never seen that before. One to watch is an understatement.

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Kay Young

It's not everyday an artist tells you Jay Electronica hit you up in the DM'S about your beats but that's exactly what happened with Kay and it's extremely well deserved. She raps, sings, produces and is also from South East London.

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Originally from France but very much a part of the British soul scene being London based. I first came across Anaiis's COLORS performance. A vocal precision hard to imitate. All the music feels complimentary to her sound.

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Shae Universe

I first heard Shae cover 'Say Yes' by Floetry. I was blown away by her vocal but also how she maintains her English accent throughout.

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