Top 10 Albums of 2023 – D Rider’s Picks

After listening to over 1,000 albums, it’s hard to pick 10. But…
#1 is Kurt Elling funneling r&b, neosoul, psychedelic poetry through a jazz tunnel. Robin McKelle gives a loving interpretation of Ella standards. Morgan Heritage reaches back to their African roots with 21 songs featuring Jamaican and African superstars. The fun-punk duo, 100 gecs, have a second album. Skrillex hones EDM with special guests on every track. Russian experimental composer Kate NV mashes together a variety of playful sounds over voice and broken orchestra samples. The Detroit quintet Young Men are inspiring. Corey Ledet sings in the Creole Kouri-Veni language that was nearing extinction. Onipa are a UK-Ghanaian collective mixing African dance rhythms with EDM. The C’mon Tigre collective infuses Brazilian traditional rhythms with Afro-jazz and electronica.

General Top 10 List

Artist Album Label
1 Kurt Elling & Charlie Hunter SuperBlue: The Iridescent Spree Edition Records
2 Robin Mckelle Impressions of Ella Naive Records
3 Morgan Heritage The Homeland CTBC Music
4 100 gecs 10,000 gecs Dog Show
5 Skrillex Quest for Fire Owsla
6 Kate NV WOW! RVNG Intl.
7 Young Men 4 Christ Our Testimony Young Men 4 Christ
8 Corey Ledet Medikamen Nouveau Electric
9 Onipa Off the Grid Real World
10 C’mon Tigre Habitat Intersuoni

Only room for 10 from my Morning Sound Alternative r&b/soul sets with a little funk thrown in. October London is the voice of Marvin Gaye on all original songs. Qamp was a three day recording event with 20 Bay Area artists putting together tunes with no prior content or knowledge of fellow artists.

R&B/Soul Top 10 List

Artist Album Label
1 Marcus Malone and The Motor City Hustlers Interstate 75 Ramrock Red
2 October London The Rebirth of Marvin Death Row
3 Q Soul, PRESENT Columbia
4 Qamp Qamp II Qamp
5 The Soul Motivators Do It Together Do Right Music
6 Secret Night Gang Belongs on a Place Called Earth Brownswood
7 Mocean Worker Boom Box MOWO! Inc
8 The Allergies Tear the Place Up Jalapeno Records
9 Bobby Harden + The Soulful Saints Bridge of Love Dala
10 Breeze MrDo2Much Before Country Was Cool Melodic HeartBeat
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