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6 Degrees Entertainment

Title - 'Sweet Soul Song' [EP]
Artist - James Holvay

For those not in the know, after four decades out of the music limelight, singer-songwriter-guitarist James Holvay makes his return with a vital five-song slab of authentic Chicago-style soul music, Sweet Soul Song on his Mob Town Records imprint and set for release on April 16th, 2021.

The collection is a vibrant tip of the hat to the music Holvay witnessed and then played in during its 1960s flowering, when such hometown stars — all saluted on its title track — as Curtis Mayfield (lead singer-guitarist-songwriter of the Impressions), Major Lance (whose 'The Monkey Time' was one of several smashes penned by Mayfield), and Gene Chandler (nationally known for 'The Duke of Earl') ruled the R&B roost in America.

1. 'Working On It'
2. 'Sweet Soul Song'
3. 'Still The Fool'
4. 'Love Has Found A Way'
5. 'Talkin' About'

One of Holvay's originals opens Sweet Soul Song, in the form of the up-tempo stomper 'Working On It' which bleeds seamlessly into the rhythm and blues of the title track 'Sweet Soul Song' and then we get the string-decorated ballad 'Still the Fool.'

With the entire EP lovingly embracing the glory days of Windy City soul, an era that Holvay was able to experience first-hand as an aspiring adolescent guitarist and songwriter, we then find him dip into the Motown-esque, horn-imbued 'Love Has Found A Way,' with the EP closing on the hand-clapping, foot-tappin', sweet soul ambiance of 'Talking About.'

The EP’s background vocal arrangements were helmed by one of Holvay’s oldest musical compatriots, the Mob’s Gary Beisbier. Every aspect of Sweet Soul Song was designed for maximum authenticity, right down to the last detail on the record’s cover art, a careful recreation of the LP jacket for Gene Chandler’s 1964 Constellation Records title Just Be True.

Crafted with care and played and sung with punch, James Holvay’s debut recording in his own name is sure to delight the most ardent soul music fans.

Holvay himself may be most tickled by praise the record received from Johnny Pate, the legendary arranger of the Impressions, Major Lance, Betty Everett, Bobby Bland, B.B. King, and other stars.

“He’s 97, and living in Texas now,” the musician says. “I sent him a copy of the record, and he said, ‘Ah, Jimmy, that brings back such beautiful memories.’”

Amazon Digital Purchase Link

James Holvay @ Facebook

James Holvay @ Instagram

James Holvay @ Soundcloud