“These are unprecedented times” is a phrase we will never get tired of hearing. Because just when you think you’re getting tired of it, something so UNPRECEDENTED will happen (another COVID-19 mutation, some political scandal, the spotting of extra-terrestrial activity), that you’ll find yourself helplessly muttering, “…that’s so unprecedented.” Omar Coleman is taking on these unprecedented times with his latest song, “Strange Times”.
Written as a reflection of the bizarre state of the United States of America during the global pandemic, the track hits with such relatability you’ll find yourself singing that memorable hook line “living in strange times”, repeatedly.
The musicianship and arrangement are jaw-droppingly excellent – the drums, keyboards, organ, bass, trumpet, saxophone, strings and then a harmonica solo?! Omar Coleman’s rich, expressive and velvety vocals top it all.
It’s like Muddy Waters and Otis Redding ended up in the same time machine, decided to go check out the 2020’s and were like “woah… these are (also) strange times..” After this, they went back to Otis’ time and recorded this very clear sentiment – because even the recording itself sounds vintage! And this analogue, organic vibe is one that the Tonemamas can get behind any day of the week!
This Chicago Blues artist is one you desperately need to be the voice of reason (and global mentality representation) as we slowly begin reflecting on the madness we are (hopefully!) beginning to emerge from.
Best listened to while: throwing your masks in the laundry and wondering when that became a staple part of your attire
Listen for this moment: 2:46, again…that harmonica solo?!