Once again in 2018, the RFT recognizes St. Louis' unparalleled musical talent by presenting the STL 77, our list of 77 acts who did big things in the last twelve months. From now through June 16, the kick-off date of our huge two-day music festival ShowcaseSTL, we'll be announcing two honorees per weekday on our music blog. For last year's STL 77 picks, go here; for the complete lineup for ShowcaseSTL, go here.
Brandon McCadney may seem like a standard-bearing beatmaker at first glance. The instrumental tracks on his debut LoveWaves
EP have enough of a rise-and-fall to make sense as stand-alone songs, but your ears are already filling in where a lyricist could wrap themselves in his electric pianos and woozy synths. Indeed, the guest vocalists on the album, Orlando Vaughn and Teresajenee, fit nicely amid McCadney’s Soulquarian vibes. But as Mad Keys, McCadney produces a warm, jazz-flecked space for listeners, and he kicks at the corners of the soft contours of urban lounge music with his classically trained violin flourishes, adding a crucial voice to his producer’s palette.
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Regina Carter, Robert Glasper, D’Angelo