Music is a changing landscape. In some ways, the changes can be democratizing. In other ways, the music industry is more controlled than ever. Rising marketing and distribution costs can make album releases feel like political campaigns, namely the costs involved. Where Spotify and Soundcloud were envisioned to make discovering new music infinitely easier, there is still an unquenchable void for curated, fresh music. Hearing a beautiful song for the first time is a huge thrill. For me personally, I can’t run on nostalgic sounds forever. Music is an important part of the forward-facing narrative of life and humanity — I, and I hope we, want to feel we are moving forward while soundtracked by energetic new songs. Thankfully, living in New York almost guarantees finding problem-solvers and brave creatives if you look hard enough (or read 10011). Abu Recordings is on this front.
Abu Recordings is a New York City-founded and -based independent music label that quenches our collective need for new, soul-touching music. Abu Recordings is currently a small team, thriving in collectivity and collaboration. They have made, released, and distributed a few albums with their roster artists: Ibn Itaka and Arp Laud.
The label understands the importance of pure musical experience. Not a party. Not a concert. Though they have organized or participated in many music events in Brooklyn and Manhattan, individually or as a group, Abu Recordings formalized the delivery of live music experiences with Abu Nights. Abu Nights Vol. 01 went down on Friday, October 4th. It was one of those magical New York nights, atop a Williamsburg building. Follow @aburecordings for upcoming music nights.
A brief breakdown of the night and its artists:
Sophie Crystal @sophie.crystal
The night started with a DJ set by Sophie Crystal. The NYC-based Trinidadian British DJ brought some underground British sounds to the table.
Ntu followed Crystal with a genre-bending set. Ntu’s beautiful vocals laid atop electronic, soulful sounds. These sounds beckoned to the overall mission of Abu Recordings as a music label, to push against the boundaries of what music can do — in terms of sound and emotion. Ntu was a total performer with great stage presence.
Morgan Amirah @morgan.amirah
Morgan Amirah accompanied Ntu on stage. She is a gifted dancer who expresses cogently with physical movement.
The headliners served jazz for the new age with gorgeous, smooth vocals. Short for Chocolate, Motherfuckers, the five person group claims to make jazz/electronic music. Though, the music derives influence from many more genres. CocoMofo was a hit all around.
Here is CocoMofo’s latest music video:
Toni Reutter @tonireutter
There was also a guest performance by Toni Reutter. She is a singer/songwriter and guitarist. The performance was accompanied by electric guitar and saxophone (Augie Bello).
Here is a sneak into how she sounds live:
A DJ set to end the lovely night. AXJ2000 is part of the Abu Recordings DJ roster and crew. He finished off the night with higher tempo tunes that complemented all previous acts.
Thank you to Abu Recordings for the invite. NYC residents, do not miss the next Abu Night.