Thanks to Renée Neufville, Drake isn’t the only one doing a happy dance this week. Here at SoulBounce, we are unabashedly bodyrolling, two-stepping and workin’ our stanky leg since Renée blessed us with her very first solo release, “Watching Me.” Yes, you read that correctly. This is her first solo record. While that may be hard to believe — after all, it’s been over 20 years since we first heard her voice as half of the inimitable duo Zhané, plus, she’s spent the past 13 years recording and touring with Roy Hargrove‘s The RH Factor and doing guest features here and there — the timing is just right for music lovers around the world.
Producing and arranging the song herself, Ms. Neufville says it “was created to satisfy what I consider the listening audience that has widely been ignored by today’s music. Over the years I have heard many complain about the state of radio and how much they missed a certain vibe. The song will hopefully bring you back to that good place.” Mission accomplished, ma’am, because this track has us feeling all types of good.
Built upon variegations of dazzling horns (courtesy of Saunders Sermons), jazzy keys, pulsing drums and disco-laced strings, the satiny groove is the perfect setting to get reacquainted with Renée’s flawless vocals. This could easily have been included on a Zhané album. That’s not to imply that it sounds dated — quite the opposite, in fact — which speaks volumes about the timeless quality of Renée’s artistry.
While we may never give up hope for a Zhané reunion, this incredible freebie coupled with hints of a debut album in the works is definitely a satisfying alternative. Lucky New Yorkers can catch Renee at Milk River Restaurant & Lounge on October 29th before she heads to Nigeria and Holland. While we wait for more goodness from Ms. Neufville, keep up with her on Twitter and Instagram for performance updates, weekly inspiration and all-around good vibes.