In this year’s Grammy’s Awards, most categories revolve around a short list of unsurprising names in pop music: Iggy Azalea, Sam Smith, Sia Furler, Meghan Trainor, Beyonce, Taylor Swift and (of course) Pharrell Williams. Luckily, we find quite an eclectic mix of throw-back and retro-style compositions in the nominees’ list for Best R&B albums. And this’s where we arrive at the focus of Swinging on a Star today: Aloe Blacc’s third studio album Lift Your Spirit.

This album has great potential to become a Grammy winner this year for many reasons. It’s a feel-good, upbeat and hooky album weaved between layers of soul-pop and folk-acoustic elements. It is an exceptionally radio-friendly album (despite lacking well-deserved airplay mainly due to…oh right…the explosive presence of names like Iggy Azalea and Nicki Minaj) and it truly does what the title promises: it lifts your spirit.

In case you forgot that Aloe Blacc is ‘The Man’ who co-wrote and sang lead on Avicii’s smash hit “Wake Me Up”, Lift Your Spirit wastes no time to jog your memory with an EDM-free version of the song. If that wasn’t enough, then his second track, also the first single from the album, will pound the self-recognizing hook “Yes I am, Yes I am, Yes I am” right into your consciousness for audio registration.

Combining the genius of veteran Los Angeles hip hop producer DJ Khalil, multiple Grammy-winning and Michael Jackson-collaborating keyboardist Theron Feemster, as well as the impossibly popular and the highly coveted (not to mention the very expensive) Pharrell Williams, Lift Your Spirit pays its dues to 70’s soul/funk music genres. Be it Stevie Wonder, Bill Withers, Jackson 5, or Sam Cook, Aloe Blacc’s gospel delivery with hip hop swagger showcases a wide range of influences that makes apparent a truly laborious record to produce. But with his warm and elegant lyrics, Blacc effortlessly brings the melody of a whole decade to our ears in 12 short tracks.

If you are curious to find out more about this record, then join Joey as he takes and in-depth look on the Midday Show @ 1pm on ICRT FM 100.