We’ve known Ruby Velle as the vivacious vocalist for Atlanta band the Soulphonics for many years. Last year, the ensemble released its second album, State of All Things, to much deserved acclaim.
Also in 2018, Velle began issuing her own songs apart from the band, with different collaborators and producers. The first, the sassy and assertive “Fighter” (written by Velle, Lindsay Marcus and producer Owen Thomas), was picked up by HBO last summer for use in a promo clip for its new season’s hot shows. The second, the upbeat, rapid-fire, hip-hop infused “Go Get It” (written by Velle and songwriting/performing/producing duo Lo/Hi – Steve Rusch and Mischa Mandel), was used in the season premiere of Showtime’s Shameless.
Today, we’re quite psyched to premiere Ruby’s third solo track. The infinitely likable obsessive love plea “Nah Nah Please” bursts forth like a lost classic from soul music’s golden era.
”I’ve been blessed to work with two other highly talented soul musicians on this track – co-writer and producer Lindsey Jackson and songwriter, singer and absolute Queen of NZ Soul-Rock, Gin Wigmore,” Velle elaborates. “We recorded the song purposely outside my comfort zone in Los Angeles, as part of a collaborative effort through my label, Sugaroo! Records, which is based there. For the past year, they’ve been setting up these exploratory opportunities for me to relish in, so I’ve been enjoying warming up to new processes and creative outlets with people like Gin and Lindsey.
“Working with new artists and producers outside of Atlanta has become a fairly recent opportunity in my writing and singing career – and I have embraced it with open arms,” Velle continues. “These new co-creators have embraced my weirdness, my growing sense of spirituality and sense of purpose.”
As Ruby and the Soulphonics continue playing shows (they’ll be at Oakland Cemetery on Saturday, June 8 as part of the lineup for Tunes From the Tunes), these new directions for Ruby should be considered more of a branching out than a dominant focus. For now, she intends to continue issuing digital singles; ”Nah Nah Please” is also getting its share of TV exposure, as it’ll be heard on ABC’s For the People on April 4.
So far, Velle’s recent collaborative concoctions have been limited to studio recordings. But she reveals that she’ll be performing several of them during her appearance with the ATL Collective at City Winery on Sunday, April 14 (along with a song by Fiona Apple, whose 1996 album Tidal the Collective is recreating that night). “Beyond that date, I would like to take some time to plan the solo show I want to see, as I’ve been working to create more music I’d like to hear,” she says.
Suffice to say, we’re looking forward to it.
Photo by Elaine Torres.