Hil St. Soul
The stunning and talented Zambia born, London raised, singer/songwriter Hilary Mwelwa, is set to shake up the American R&B and neo soul scene with Copasetik & Cool. Hilary along with musical partner, writer/producer Victor Redwood Sawyer (founder of the award-winning hip hop group Blak Twang) make up Hil St. Soul (pronounced Hill Street Soul), one of the hottest groups to emerge from London's underground music scene in recent years. This dynamic union has toured with such heavyweights as Macy Gray, Angie Stone and D'Angelo. Copasetik & Cool showcases Hilary's powerful chops and soul stirring, ultra smooth gospel-drenched vocals that beg to be heard.
Originally issued in the UK last year on Gut Records, Copasetik & Cool proves that Hil St. Soul can hang with the best and has all the makings for cross-over success like fellow Brits Floetry, Craig David and Miss Dynamite.
The soft-spoken and earthy Hilary Mwelwa describes Hil St. Soul as "an amalgamation of soul, R&B with hip hop undertones, reflections of jazz, a bit of gospel, but mostly soulful."
Copasetik & Cool is a follow up to Hil St. Soul's acclaimed debut, Soul Organic. The CD's single "For Your Love" received top 20 airplay on the Billboard R&B charts, while the song "Until You Come Back To Me" received considerable airplay on US jazz stations across the country. Blues and Soul Magazine called Soul Organic "one of the best records of the year." Copasetik & Cool showcases 15 tracks of originals (with one exception) of wall to wall funk laden beats, potent vocals and harmonies, positive lyrics and upbeat bass bumpin' danceable grooves.
Standouts include the bhangra flavored "All That (+ A Bag O' Chips)," the uplifting "Reach As One," the title track featuring MC Roots Manuva, the get on the dance-floor anthem "Alright," and the gritty and downright soulful "What's Goin' Down."
Also included is the laid back and free flowing "Mad Love," the Isley Brothers classic "For the Love of You," the inspirational gospel inflected "Lonely Road" and the India.Arie tinged "I've Got Me," co-written with
singer/songwriter Gordon Chambers. Copasetik & Cool was mixed by Bad Boy engineer/producer Ed Raso.
Hilary shares, "Copasetik & Cool is a lot more personal and edgier than Soul Organic. The title really refers to something that makes you feel good and gives you that euphoric feeling. I think that captures the mood of the
album...on this CD I am attempting to fill people in on what I've experienced over the past couple of years; the changes I have noticed within myself as a woman and trying to come to terms with the things I see taking place within my physical and emotional surroundings."
Born in Zambia, Hilary Mwelwa moved to London at the age of 5 with her family. As a child she was inspired musically by her father's musical taste which ranged from Stevie Wonder and Aretha Franklin to traditional African music. She adds, "I'm a soul chick at heart. That's my roots, but growing up, I went to boarding school and was exposed to pop music. I remember listening to the Eurythmics and Blondie. I just like good music!" These days Hilary is more inspired by artists like Eric Benet, Jill Scott and D'Angelo. The multi-talented songstress is a graduate of the University of Westminster, where she earned a degree in Biological Sciences. She says, "I could have pursued a nice comfortable career path....I am not knocking the time I spent studying sciences. I have enjoyed it immensely and I believe that everything you do in life leads you to your ultimate destiny.