Now there's yet another group of female singers on the scene whose goals though lofty, seem attainable. The JazziePhatNastees are the duo of Mercedes Martinez and Tracey Moore. Both of these talented vocalists connected in southern California. But in '92 the Jazzies (as they are also known) was a quartet who met through mutual friends. Eventually four would become two after an amicable split.
In the beginning the duo occasionally worked with hip hop producer J-Swift, (Pharcyde) doing background vocals here and there.
Fast forward to 1994. The Jazzies meet up with famed hiphop group, The Roots. They opened for the band at a West Coast venue and developed a working relationship a year later. This connection would eventually lead them to their current recording deal with Motive/MCA Records as Motive is owned by members of the Roots band and distributed by MCA. The first signing by the label, the Jazzies' album, The Once And Future was soon recently.
The bulk of the LP was produced by and feature Roots band members -- drummer Ahmir "?uest Love" Thompson, keyboardist Scott Storch and bass player Leonard "Hub" Hubbard. However, the Jazzies wrote or co-wrote the entire album. In an interview with MetroConx, Martinez said, "We wanted this album to relay a message of self-healing, self-love...We wanted to make good black music, good music period." And they certainly did.
To experience an incredible performance by the Jazzies, check out their March 29 performance at Black Cat beginning at 8:30 p.m. Admission: $10. Call 202-667-7960 for ticket and information. The event is sponsored by Black Lily, a musical movement dedicated to providing a forum for female performers. You can learn more about Black Lily by visiting www.blacklily.com