Maryland born // London based musician, Jalen Ngonda recently passed through the Bay Area to play The Chapel in SF and DJ Frontal Lobe was there to catch up with the newest member of the Daptone Records family stable of stars. Tune in on Friday, October 13th @ 10AM to hear their conversation and a sampling of Ngonda’s music.
Truly life-enriching soul music is an indomitable force of nature. No matter what sub-genre our current crop of musicologists may cite in the very near future to describe Jalen Ngonda’s riveting nu-soul approach, he’s unequivocally the real deal, blending classic and contemporary soul influences to create a sound that’s all his own.
Clearly a keen student of the genre’s revered pioneers, Jalen possesses a rich, nuanced voice that sets him miles apart from the crowd. Yet Ngonda is as fresh and contemporary as anyone gracing today’s scene. Inspiration for his compositions derives from a variety of places. “Everyday life. Anything, really,” he says. “To a stranger, I would say my music is soul/R&B, while trying to fit in the Beach Boys and the Beatles somewhere in between.”
Anyone who has had the pleasure of seeing Jalen perform live knows that he is one of the most captivating performers on today’s soul scene. His voice, equal parts raw feeling and elegance, exudes confidence and charm—disarming packed rooms of rowdy concert goers, leaving them silent as they hold fast to every syllable sung.
New album, Come Around And Love Me, is out now on Daptone Records.