It looks like there’s more going on in Vancouver this year than just the 2010 Winter Olympics like that isn’t enough! Coming from Richmond BC Canada, I present to you the mother-daughter act of Cherelle and Ajaye as The Jardines. This brand new act was even lucky enough to land a spot on the main stage for the opening ceremonies at the Ozone in Richmond. Thinking back to The Judds, the world hasn’t seen a successful mother-daughter team since then. The Jardines are hoping to change all that and make some new history of their own. So it seems there is a whole lot of excitement in the air this time of year in the British Columbia region!
This duo is bringing you a mix of alternative country & roots that is honestly quite pleasing to hear. The two singer/songwriters are both very talented and seem to compliment each other extremely well as musicians. Cherelle handled lead vocals on eight songs & harmony vocals on two while her partner in crime, Ajaye, took the lead role on three tracks and harmony vocals on seven. Cherelle also played acoustic guitar on the new album as well as taking on the duties of executive producer. It’s worth adding that this artist has four CDs to her name with her last release, Head Traffic, getting rave reviews. Mom has a lot to be proud of not just for her own music career, but for the musical growth Ajaye has undergone in such a short amount of time. Ajaye has an impressive resume herself and to think she is just 19 years old! This young starlet co- produced the new record, assisted in engineering the project and wrote all the vocal harmonies. Not to mention, Ajaye is also studying theatre in school and has even appeared in numerous film & music video projects. Besides being a good singer, she also has experience in playing flute, piano, acoustic guitar and mandolin. Following in her mother’s footsteps, Ajaye proves to have huge potential as she further develops her singing/songwriting abilities.
The Jardines were without question the shining stars on this record, but there were many other people that made this album possible. One such person is Kirk Douglas (not the actor) who produced, engineered and mixed the record along with adding in his own drum, percussion, classical & electric guitar and mandolin parts. There were a number of talented players on this disc that supplied a plethora of sound through the use of diverse instruments such as: electric guitar, fiddle, harmonica, keys, bass, pedal steel, lap steel, dobro and organ. The entire instrumentation really added a full & wonderful-sounding dynamic to the whole mix while setting the mood.
The CD starts up with a song titled “Here I Come” that has a pleasantly cool & easy-going flow. This track actually has a bluesy rock feel to it thanks in big part to the harmonica emphasizing that notion. On track seven, “Facebook”, you just get a fun, jammin’ country tune that is full of life. Next up, “Neptunes’s Daughter”, has Cherelle putting on one hell of a show vocally. What a feeling the listener is receiving here as the older Jardine really plays it up and let’s you have it. Song nine, “Mercy”, feeds off of a gospel background with encouraging lines like “have a little mercy” & “You better make sure you leave a good memory.” I’m just loving the positive display of energy being portrayed on this number. By installment 10, “Gone”, you really are just appreciating every single word & note that Cherelle Jardine belts out of her mouth. The recording ends with a powerful & sincere song called “Sleep”. A definite peaceful vibe is evident as the stylistic mood captures the true essence of a restful night through the power of music. If you fall asleep on this Canadian duo, you might want to wake up right now!
I noticed interesting aspects about the two artists and that is that they have completely different qualities. Cherelle displays a raw & refined approach with much more deep-rooted emotion when she sings. On the other hand, Ajaye has more of a youthful spirit about her that comes across as subtle. Ajaye’s vocals are pop-heavy & pop-friendly as she appeals to the TODAY audience. From a music standpoint, it appears that Cherelle is taking on the assertive side as Ajaye decides to take the innocent route/without-a-care-in-the-world approach. Funny how this relates directly back to parental roles and family relationships…ironic. I’d like to add that I favored Cherelle’s vocal performance overall because it had a bigger impact on me.
In the end, both individuals are meant to sing and write songs together. They literally hit all the right notes as a team. The pitch & tone along with the harmonies & melodies are spot on! First The Judds and now The Jardines hit the scene with their truly genuine touch of sound. For more on The Jardines and their exciting new release, SKOPE out www.thejardinesband.com.
By Jimmy Rae (firstname.lastname@example.org)[Rating: 4/5]