Last week, we lost one of the greatest blues/soul vocalists of all time: Etta James passed away after a long battle with leukemia. By way of tribute to the fallen musical icon, Norfolk, Virginia soul newcomer Shateish uses James’ 1968 classic, I’d Rather Go Blind, as the creative springboard for her own latest promo single, the similarly-themed I’m Leavin. Nottz cooks up an inspired blend of old-school soul and modern hip-hop influences, slicing and dicing samples from the original record over a punchier breakbeat. Over the heavyweight producer’s era-bridging backdrop, Shateish recounts her struggle to avoid the heartbreak described in Etta’s cut: “Something deep down in my soul says ‘cry,’ but I won’t let these tears fall / And I know that I should probably let you go, so seeing you with her won’t hurt me no more.” Through it all, she exhibits an arresting vocal style, imbuing the cut’s vintage melody with a dash of modern-day attitude. This heartfelt homage is, as mentioned above, just a promo single, but those feeling it can stay tuned to our front page for all the latest from the rising soul starlet.
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