Friday, December 20, 2013

Charlotte's Anthony Hamilton guests in new video

Grammy winner (and current Grammy nominee) Anthony Hamilton duets with fellow classic soul singer Leela James on James' new single "Say That." He also appears in the above video, which is in rotation on VH1 Soul and Centric TV. The single is a precursor to James' upcoming 2014 album, which is tentatively scheduled for early next year.

When she debuted with 2005's "A Change is Gonna Come" it looked as if the Los Angeles' born singer with powerhouse sass would be the next big thing. VH1 named her one of its earlier "You Outta Know" artists. She received Soul Train and NAACP Image Awards nominations. The album boasted co-writes with Raphael Saadiq and Kanye West. You'd likely recognize her single "Music," which received heavy airplay. I really dug the funky, upbeat Wyclef Jean co-write "Ghetto."

James hasn't been quite as high profile since, but she's released critically acclaimed work like 2012's Etta James-inspired collection "Loving You More...In the Spirit of Etta James." That may change since she's also joined the cast of the upcoming season of the reality series "R&B Divas L.A." The cast includes Chrisette Michele, Chante Moore, Lil' Mo, Michel'le, and Claudette.

One thing is for sure. She may have toyed with her look on "Loving You More," but in the video for "Say That" James looks the exact same as she did eight years ago. The same funky `70s-inspired look and the same big hair; the same confidence and the same killer voice with that cool, raspy catch to it.

Hamilton, whose music currently appears on "The Best Man Holiday" and "A Madea's Christmas" soundtracks, is up for two Grammys in January. His song "Best of Me" from his album "Back to Love" is up for Best R&B Performance and Best R&B Song. He's competing against fellow Charlottean Fantasia in the latter category.