How was your 2019? Freshly Squeezed had another good year with many notable highlights and several firsts. Big thanks to those of you who shared, watched, booked or listened to all the musicians and composers it’s been our pleasure to work with this year. We’re more excited than ever about the prospect of a return to the Roaring 20’s, and we’re also amazed as we head into our label’s 15th anniversary. That’s quite a milestone for an independent these days. More on that soon.
The second half of 2019 disappeared with barely a newsletter from us (we were just so focussed on putting out the music) that we feel you’re owed a review of the year. Please do take a moment to follow up any links below to releases you may have missed. Needless to say, the high quality threshold of what we do is, we hope, a guarantee that everything we release is worth taking the time out to enjoy.
In particular, 2019 saw our main YouTube channel (pictured) gain views in the multi-millions, while over on Spotify our spin-off Electro Swing playlist channel has been a global leader with hundreds of thousands of active subscribers.
Among the new signings this year, we were really excited to host the return of LITTLE VIOLET. Along with her band, she performed at WHITE MINK events for many years and was one of the original pioneers of Electro Swing with her debut release on the ill-fated Cuckoo Records from Leeds. After a three year hiatus, the award-winning song writer is now back. Her ‘SILENT MOVIE’ EP showcases her witty lyrics and no-nonsense piano playing as she effortlessly recaptures our attention in a single sparkling release. Look out for new music and remixes from JAMIE BERRY and ODD CHAP in the new year.
Added to the roster in 2019 were the brassy Bristol-based big-band CUT CAPERS. One of the UK’s finest live acts and a group that have also performed on our WHITE MINK stages at several festivals. Their second album ‘METROPOLIS’ has recently cropped up on several album-of-the-year lists while the band themselves had a great year consolidating their reputation with appearances on the Avalon main stage at GLASTONBURY, and the Town Centre stage at BOOMTOWN among many others. If you saw them, you’ll know about it!
In addition, we asked SWINGROWERS’ producer Roberto Costa, A.K.A PISK to remix CUT CAPERS iconic debut ‘Say What‘. The remix has become a runaway anthem in the Electro Swing community and has surpassed expectations by clocking up 350,000 Spotify streams since October. It looks set to be their first million-seller in 2020!
Yet another new addition in 2019 were the wonderful young band ALBERT TALES. Most unexpectedly we discovered this original outfit in downtown Tel-Aviv and were completely blown away! Their sound combines vintage influenced horn-driven funk in the Daptone/Amy Winehouse style while also bringing something of a ‘conscious groove’ to proceedings. We especially love their video to ‘TIPSY‘ and were delighted to release this and it’s follow-up “I WANNA KNOW’ as a double A-Side limited edition 7 inch single. Much more to come from these guys in 2020!
SWINGROWERS just keep on impressing with their ability to drive their recorded sound ever forward and inspire new audiences with their live shows. With streams in the 10’s of millions and video views not far behind we are looking forward to their 4th studio album later in 2020. In the meantime, the 2019 single DREAMLAND was their first in some time to fully acknowledge their role in creating the Electro Swing sound with, true to concept, an Italianate video shot in black & white and offering the full swing-dance masterclass here.
Not only that, but the biggest tour of their career to date came to a grand finale in Chartres, France with this 15,000 capacity show during the summer. Turn up the volume and Watch here.
If you’ve been following the ‘BLUE COVER’ Series over the last seven years then you’ll understand the concept. Producer led, (usually) dance-floor focussed releases of Electro Swing and Blues singles and EPs. The series has, if we say so ourselves, defined the respective genres since the first release in 2012. Together 2018 and 2019 saw a further 12 releases that are now collected into the COMPLETE Vol 2!
For ease of listening, we’ve wrapped everything up into this quick one-hour continuous DJ MIX of the highlights. Look no further for the next generation of swing, all in one place, and a convenient party-starter should you know of a party in the next few days!
And last but by no means least, ATOM SMITH (introduced in the ‘BLUE COVER’ series above) inadvertently created the new sub-genre Dark Electro Swing with his ominous release ‘STRANGE WEATHER’ a moody, Bourbon-soaked ballad with an equally striking video.
With a debut album in the pipeline and access to a full Hollywood orchestra (we’re not kidding), Atom is one to watch for the return of the Roaring 20s.
More to come from us soon including news of our 15th anniversary. Until then, we wish you the very best for 2020 and a very Happy New Year. x
All at the Freshly H.Q.