It’s a warm evening in a Cambridge, MA coffeehouse, a small crowd of customers sit around the small café tables, or towards the back on the over-stuffed couches and love seats. Their conversations and entries into their laptops and Blackberries slowly fade into an attentive silence as the descending riff of a Nord reproduced Hammond organ calls the room to order. A rich, powerfully soulful voice belts out an opening riff over the groove filled game of call and response between his left and right hands on the keyboard. Mwalim opens his set with a rendition of Bobby Caldwell’s “What You Won’t Do For Love” that has the entire room bobbing their heads and tapping their feet.
Mwalim is the type of soul artist who embodies the time-honored tradition of the multifaceted singer, songwriter and producer. Emerging from the east coast small club circuit, followed by several years lending his talents to other artists projects and a writer, musician, producer, and remixer, adding his ‘Mwalimadelic’ soul-touch to numerous remix compilations. Some might consider it to be an ominous sign of the times when people think of a remix artist or dance music producer, the last thing they often think of is a singer and songwriter from the coffeehouse circuit. “A lot of my music is based on grooves, even the laid-back coffeehouse stuff.”
Mwalim has shared the stage with The Four Tops, ,King Britt, The Last Poets, KRS –ONE, and Angie Stone, small gigs and venues like this are among his favorites kinds of gigs. “I get to test my material in the rawest form in gigs like this: just me and my keys.” It was years ago that my grandfather (late big band jazz band leader and arranger, Allan H. Nurse) told me that it’s only a good song if it sounds good on just a piano or guitar. The rest is dressing.”
His debut single, “Thief in the Night” (Midnight Groove/ OTC) came out in 2000 and became an underground hit; followed with a vinyl only E.P “Jazzy-Soul Club Grooves” (Midnight Groove Records), establishing Mwalim as an artist among House Music and Rare Groove Djs world-wide. After a ‘bid’ as he calls it, signed to a major label, Mwalim focused his attention on producing, writing, arranging and producing remixes for other artists, adding the ‘Mwalimadelic’ soul-touch to remix compilations of numerous singles. Last year, his work as the composer and producer on the critically acclaimed nu-jazz CD “Sketches of a Neighborhood” by The Bass Mint Bros (Liberation Music/ MGR).
His forthcoming album, ‘The Liberation Sessions: Collaborations for the Soul’ (Liberation Music/ MGR) is an eclectically funky, party record featuring collaborations and Mwalim’s soul-jazz remixes of recordings from his friends, including vocalists like Amaris, Phillip Aaron, and Robert Taylor, Jr.; world-class MC Tah Phrum Duh Bush!; and internationally renowned spoken-word artist Tantra Zawadi. The debut single from the effort “Ain’t Done Yet” Featuring Amaris is available as a Free download on iLike.com and reverbnation.
Aside from his own artistic works, Mwalim is currently developing a marketing site for soul artists from the New England Region called the LORE Music Group, allowing artists and labels affiliated with the project the ability to market and sell downloads of their music. Watch TheLoreLounge.vox.com for details.
Welcome to Mwalim Dagno Music Professional Entertainment Space