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Playlist: Elderbrook Explores His Favorite Jazz-Influenced Tracks

From Sam Cooke to Gorillaz to Talking Heads, this playlist will get you through this work-week.
Photo Credit: Fiona Garden 

Photo Credit: Fiona Garden 

Elderbrook has been one of our favorites for a while now. His work has been an eclectic blend of stunning songwriting and ethereal electronic production with the complexity of jazz and twinges of indie-instrumental styles. All of this culminates into an artist who makes music like no one else. We've been wanting to hear his influences for a while now, so when we had the chance to get a playlist together with the multifacted artist, we knew we would be in for a pleasant surprise. 

Check out his latest track below. He's also playing shows at Brooklyn's Baby's All Right (information here) and XOYO London (information here). 

Talking Heads - This Must Be The Place 

I love the playfulness in this song. The guitars and violins all seem to be bouncing around one another - carefully taking the opportunity to fill any space they can find in the song. The sounds of the guitars and bass are so dry and honest which is something else that I really respect and often try to replicate to some degree in my own work. 

Gorillaz - 5/4

If I was a professional boxer, or even semi-professional, this would be my entrance song. It’s the driving nature of the music that I love. It still seems quite slow, though, which is probably what gives it its attitude. Still don’t know what he is saying but it’s damn cool. 

Nina Simone - Nobody Knows When You’re Down and Out

It’s the lyrics that caught my attention in this song. They’re simple but they resonate with a lot of people, which is probably why so many people have covered the song. I chose Nina’s version because her voice is amazing in the way she ornaments the melody.

Fine Young Cannibals - She Drives Me Crazy

This is just an unbelievably catchy, feel good song. Unashamedly so. It has the perfect blend of the driving, go-getter attitude and subtle bounciness. It gets the people going. 

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Gladys Knight & The Pips - Midnight Train To Georgia  

This has been one of my favourites for a long time. The song encapsulates my love for backing vocals and what you can do with them. The backing singers in this track have something to say after pretty much every line - filling in the spaces so there is not a dull moment. Something else interesting about this song is the fact that there is a group of male backing singers propping up the female lead; something that doesn’t happen all that much but which makes for a great sound.

Prince - I Wanna Be Your Lover

This song gets me out of bed in the morning - quite literally as well, it’s my alarm clock. It’s the only song that’s woken me up for over a year that I have not grown to hate. I feel like that is a testament to just how happy the song is. 

Sam Cooke - Bring it On Home To Me

Sam Cooke is my favourite vocalist of all time. The softness in his voice makes what he did seem just effortless. In this song, however, he pushes his voice a little bit more; something that he doesn’t do too often but something that makes the song a special Sam Cooke song for me.

Al Green - How Can You Mend A Broken Heart 

This song is dangerously sexual. Dangerously. His voice has to be the best thing about the song; how soft yet pent up the delivery is. The organ on the track is special as well - it almost mirrors Al’s voice in that it is soft yet explosive. 

A Tribe Called Quest - Luck of Lucien

This was the first Tribe Called Quest song I had heard. What I love the most about it is the humour in the back and forth between the two rappers. It just sounds like they had a good time making the record. Fun fact - I made a lyrical reference to this song in “Rewinding” - the first song I released as Elderbrook.  

Listen to the playlist in full below, and follow our Spotify here

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