As evidenced by his extensive writing/producing/rapping work with The Roots throughout the years, Dice Raw has an ear for talent. The big homie proved this once again when he put me on to the latest act he’s working with, Seattle songstress Tess Henley. Today, we proudly premiere the stream for her debut album, High Heels & Sneakers, produced entirely by Dice Raw and Khari Mateen (no stranger to talent, himself). Recorded at legendary Larry Gold‘s studio from the fall of 2011 to the spring of 2012, High Heels & Sneakers will be available for purchase via iTunes tomorrow (pre-order), but you can hear it in it’s entirety here. Tess made plenty of noise with her singles “Daydreaming” and “From The Get Go,” now get the full scope of her talents, below (get some words from Tess, as well).
I’ve released a couple albums in the past, but this record is by far my biggest project to date. For listeners who are familiar with my music, I wanted to kick things up a notch and take the steps to create something that really encompassed my creative vision. For new listeners, well, I wanted to make them stay a while of course! In general, this album is very personal and real to me. It’s hard for me to pick a favorite song because each song holds a different memory or meaning. I just hope my stories connect with and relate to listeners. Too often in our world, perfection is the expectation. I’m definitely not perfect and don’t want to be portrayed as so. It was important to me that this album be raw, organic, and real (including all live instruments). Some of my favorite moments recording this album were when the horn players arranged parts on the spot, or when Khari grabbed a Tibetan prayer bowl and a nail file to record percussion, or when a spontaneous musical idea occurred. That’s when the real magic happens.
Working with Dice Raw in Philly was an amazing experience. He brought together a great team of incredibly talented musicians, engineers, and fellow producer/arranger, Khari Mateen. Dice and his crew spurred my love for Philly. It has a special place in my heart now and it was the perfect home for this album.
Who Are You
From The Get Go
Gonna Fall In Love
Something To Say
Part Of My Dance
You Are The One
I’d Do Anything (A Song For Carly)