Seasoned A&R Tunji Balogun was once an artist himself in music. It’s this experience he says, that helps aid him in discovering new talent. When it comes to newcomer Lucky Daye, the Keep Cool Records founder has said that two minutes into the singers song “Roll Some Mo,” he knew that he had to sign him. After a formal introduction late last year with his EP I, Daye is back with his latest offering II.
As soon as the EP’s opener “Karma” begins, it’s instantly apparent that Lucky Daye still takes inspiration from R&B greats before his time. Armed with an interpolated “Pony” (Ginuwine), Daye is confident in his approach to the classic record. Layering strong lyrical composition, the Keep Cool Records signee is all the way laid back throughout as he narrates the tale of a mistress that keeps “coming around.”
“Karma” somehow feels refreshing, yet layers a home comfort at its core. Lucky Daye at a steady pace demonstrates to us that he has something special in his ability to marry the old and the new.
The singer isn’t finished just yet with his bag of tricks, as “Paint It” continues to give us new elements of Daye from very early on. Still coated in an effortless funk, the singer heightens his pitch here and almost sounds like he’s collaborating with himself as the mid-tempo progresses. In terms of vocal delivery, the artist is reminiscent of Michael Jackson both in his flair and his ability to sound smooth. The only difference comes in the tracks last minute in and a half when Lucky Daye switches to rapping.
Evidently, Lucky Daye isn’t the best lyricist, but the closing remarks still manage to fit in with the soundscape and harmonies that close “Paint It.”
“Real Games” encapsulates a strong piano backing and saxophone in places. Proving to be a perfect blend of instrumentals, Daye again finds his place in between and not getting lost in the noise. His vocal runs at this point are his strongest asset. Both elegant and charming, the talent manages to echo, quite quickly at that, that he has a standard that is not to be messed with.
Clearly, Balogun noted the fact that with Lucky Daye, his inspiration evidently finds itself in the older artists such as James Brown and Stevie Wonder, who both gave the world consistent premium music, at all times.
Lastly, the EP’s conclusion is an audio version of latent thoughts that enter the mind just before bed. Again led by a piano, the act slows things all the way down to self-reflect and comes to the conclusion that he and his accomplice are better “misunderstood.”
Lucky Daye is a special act indeed. It’s evident why Keep Cool is his current recording home. With the incredible talents that are Normani and VanJess on the roaster, it’s only right that the singer joins the ranks of artists being managed and A&R’d in the right way, especially in an industry that sometimes doesn’t know how to handle true R&B vocalists.
If this is what Daye is offering at an EP level, then his debut album due later this year will most certainly be the main course that consumers wont be able to get enough of.
Stream Lucky Daye’s II EP here: