Lady Wray gives us with Piece Of Me an album full of RnB and HipHop that is related to Gospel and Soul. It shows a singer, who created special songs build by talent and the strong emotions of an independent woman and a young mother in uncertain times. Thankful that Lady Wray took time for an interview late last year, this is a recommendation of a great album.
Maybe this will be one of the highly recommended albums of the year. Piece Of Me is full of RnB and the kind of soulful HipHop that we missed so long ago. Lady Wray had once again produced with Leon Michels and album full of songs presenting her inner soul.
By the release of Piece of Me April 2019 it seemed to be the first sign for good news. Now two and half years later, we will finally be able to celebrate the full record. The question what has stopped the album process might be obvious for fans.
An album full of big feelings
„One reason for the long silence between the last release and today is of cause the pandemic“, Lady Nicole Wray answers my question of the long break till her last album Queen Alone (2016) and today. With this start of the interview she takes me back on a journey right to the beginning of the album process. She tells me about the first meeting with Leon Michels in the middle of 2018, thinking about the sound and style of the songs and starting the first recordings. Suddenly all stopped by the pandemic. „At this time nobody knew how Covid will go on. We had to slow down and wait,“ she tells me.
Asked how the fact of becoming a mother does influence the album, she tells me openly: „I was definitely very emotional though all the album process. I got confronted with so many things at the same time, like travel restrictions and all the uncertainties etc. I remember listening first time to the recordings of the songs Leon had done with the guys in the studio, I totally felt in love with them.“
I am sure everyone who loves soulful RnB and HipHop can feel the strong emotions the singer put in each song. Starting with the opener I Do the magic will right away catch you. „The sound is very laid back. I want write songs about myself and I wanted to do songs that people can relate to,“ Lady Wray tells me. And she did. The songs transport their stories and emotions directly from the heart of a strong woman to us. The strong voice of Lady Wray is convincing in each track.
Since the release of the title track, many more single-releases had followed. The album contains of 13 songs. With the release at the end of Januar just a handful are missing. I really love Thank You the one that was released right at the moment I was talking to Lady Wray. Just the moment she tells me how important it is for her to give something back to the people who listen to her music. Seemed like an echo of her words, listing to the newest single after our call. It is a song that shows her strong and long connection to the church and the deep belief in god.
Another one of my favorites is Beauty In The Fire. „It is dedicated to all the things that happen to us between now and the beginning“, Lady Wray tells me. „I want to find the beauty in everything around us. A bit like the light at the end of the tunnel.“ This track goes together with Joy & Pain, the last single that has been released before the album will come out. For me Beauty In Fire is the stronger one because it shows the roots to Gospel and the early years of Lady Wray better.
In Melody we truly can feel the emotions of the young mother to her daughter. The song is obviously dedicated to her daughter. „I always thank her for being the strong force behind the album. She had always been there during the album process. She had been with me in the studio, inspiring the beginning of the album and making me a complete person. Its a song about and for her.“ The song so gentle in its acoustic style shows at same time the strong and the soft side of Lady Wray.
Lady Wray – a strong woman
Listening to the full record again and again, I find many more references to a strong and mindful women who always knew what she wanted. „I think I had always been a woman in business, without knowing it,“ Lady Nicole Wray answered asked by her career and the changes in the last years. She tells me how she was first managed by her mother and that she learned much from her. „She had always been the voice in my ear, when she was not with me“. After they decided to switch back to just mother and daughter, Lady Wray had long time searching for a good management and he finally found a good team that surrounds her. „Can` stop thanking all the people, helping me and making this real,“ she tells me. Finally asked if she wants to add something from her side, she shows her gratefulness to all the fans staying with her through all the years.
Piece of Me is a very special album. It brings together the soul of the solo debut Queen Alone (2016) and connects it in a special way to the all-time-favorite Lady album from 2014. It is full of songs, that tell stories we know and we can feels with. All of them seem to have a special glow by the co-working of Lady Wray and Leon Michaels. They sound naturally build up between them and not hard driven produced. That´s why even the strongest baselines seems to be softer surrounded by the voice of Lady Wray. More than once you might feel a shiver of joy and pain and fall in love with one more song listening to Piece Of Me.
Piece Of Me is released on 28.01.2022 on Big Crown Records. The album can be ordered on vinyl, CD and will be listed on all streaming platforms as well.