ABB Launches ABB Soul Imprint

Top: Peven Everett

Above: Studio Confessions
album cover

Over the course of the last several years, Oakland’s ABB Records has expanded from being a regional rap label specializing in servicing 12" vinyl to hiphop djs to become a nationally recognized label that has helped to launch the careers of numerous established artists, including Dilated Peoples, Joey Chavez, and Defari. Peven Everett’s album, Studio Confessions, is the flagship release on the recently launched ABB Soul imprint, a division of ABB Records, owned and operated by Beni B, who also runs the Bay Area Hip Hop Coalition. This was, in fact, only the second full length album released on cd by ABB. Also in the first quarter this year, ABB dropped its third album, entitled The Listening, by North Carolina hip hop crew Little Brother. Both albums have received substantial national and international attention and are effectively taking ABB to the next level.

Peven Everett, based in New York since 1992, returned home to Illinois in 1998 to pursue his career as a producer, writer, multi-instrumentalist and vocalist. Peven Everett first came to national recognition on Roy Davis, Jr.’s single, "Gabriel". He plays all the instruments on his album, including guitar, keyboards, drums, bass, trombone, flute, saxophone and trumpet. He’s also a very talented dancer. Peven’s background as a jazz artist is clearly evident in his live show in which he sings, plays acoustic guitar, and Fender Rhodes keyboard along with his band, Séance Divine. The album was produced, arranged and performed by Peven, and demonstrates his jazz background, having been a student at Berklee School of Music and in the touring group with Betty Carter, Wynton Marsalis, and Branford Marsalis.

"Studio Confessions" contains smoky vocals over slow funky beats that should appeal to jazz, pop fans as well as hiphop fans of artists like the Roots and Slum Village. The album is a moody marriage of styles. His sound includes, among other things, soul music's funky tension and release, the hypnotic long-form of house and hip hop's compacted beats. Everett has a gift for finding the common rhythmic denominator that lets him move gracefully among the mediums.