"A heartfelt tribute to and reflection of his upbringing in music, Jackson Whalan unleashes the Souled Out EP, out now on Adapted Records. Drawing on contributions from Jackson's own childhood friends and numerous talented contemporaries from The Berkshires, Souled Out explores a lush array of Hip-Hop sounds, not only through Jackson's multiple-flow lyricism, but with toasty-warm live instrumentation and arrangement. The result is a listening experience that bears full start-to-finish attention on a fine sound system—a fine departure into a side of Hip-Hop unique to Jackson Whalan," read a recent press release sent from Australian-based Adapted Records. Jackson Whalan is a lyricist and producer intent on "bringing a soulful blend of Hip-Hop & Electronic music with intentional rap, freestyle, and live instrumentation." Whalan lists his greatest sources of influence as Golden Era Hip-Hop emcees like De La Soul, The Fugees, Nas, and Eminem, as well as current artists such as Anderson.Paak, Homeboy Sandman, and Boston Jazz-Funk revivalists Lettuce; "in my life, I push myself to listen to as many forms of music as I can find: the Future-Jazz sounds of Hiatus Kaiyote or the legendary songs of Bob Dylan," Jackson Whalan wrote within a Souled Out EP-centric email. I have to admit though, when I first clicked play on Souled Out EP intro "Bad Yet," it instantly reminded me of Asher Roth's (un)surprisingly phenomenal Kids These Days-assisted, Jazz-minded Pabst & Jazz mixtape (2011).
"This release is especially close to my heart because I was able to feature Dominik Omega on the title track, ["Souled Out"]. Dominik Omega is the person who introduced me to Hip-Hop and taught me how to rap when I was like 11 years old. 14 years later, this feels like a full-circle experience; collaborating with the one who was there at the foundations of my path as a lyricist and producer, reuniting on a song finally, at a point in my life where I am really coming into my own as an artist," Jackson Whalan humbly continued. Souled Out EP features many of Jackson's friends and close collaborators including Ian Evans' production, keys, lyrics, and melodic programming on "Bad Yet," "Whale," and "Two Weeks Notice;" his "Home Again" collaborator Jules Jenssen on production duties, vocals, and Moog Sub37 on "Souled Out;" guest vocalists Tonio Sagan, Sam Laiz & Caitlyn Duby, saxophonist Tyler Gasek, electric guitar player Fran Cathcart, omnichord player Camille Breslin, and bassist and back-up vocalist Brian Ross appear throughout Souled Out EP's five eclectic compositions. "All praises are due to the close friends who played instruments and had vocal features on the EP, to SubStation Studio for providing studio time, and to all of those artists who have sent shivers through [my spine] with powerful styles and ideas. My favorite artists are my friends," Jackson Whalan wrote in closing. Jackson Whalan's latest Souled Out EP is currently available for purchase and streaming from Adapted Records' Bandcamp page for $7 AUD or more... just in time for the holidays!