BJ The Chicago Kid: In My Mind

bjBJ the Chicago Kid
In My Mind
(Motown Records)

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Connected to the music industry for over a decade now, BJ the Chicago Kid finally bestows upon us his major label debut. The Motown-released In My Mind is a hearty blend of nu-soul, R&B, gospel and electronica influences. Born Bryan James Sledge, the South Side of Chicago native infuses music that’s both carnal and spiritual, seductive yet gritty — an homage to an upbringing by choir directors and singing backup for gospel sisters Mary Mary. In My Mind is a delicate balance between the Word and good old-fashioned soul music. On the right-minded “Church,” BJ confesses, “She says she wanna drink, do drugs and have sex tonight, but I got church in the morning/Hopefully we can go to heaven/I pray/Hopefully we can go to heaven/’Cause I’m staying.” It’s in moments like these, the dichotomy of decisions, where the 31-year-old singer-songwriter is superbly relatable. With a knack for penning metaphorically and sonically pure songs like “The Resume,” where he asks “Can I work that body like it’s a 9 to 5?” is yet another reason In My Mind was worth the wait. That, and it’s full of relationship woes and straight-up sexiness. Other notable tracks include “Shine,” “Woman’s World,” and “The New Cupid.” Cameos on display include Kendrick Lamar, Chance the Rapper and Big K.R.I.T.

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About ND McCray

ND McCray is a former Brooklynite, now Beijing-based writer, penning pieces on arts, culture and other stuff.
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