Stephen James Orr – “Ceramic” (feat. Danny Zaidman)


A soulful jam with smooth vocals and brassy additions, “Ceramic” is a recent track from Toronto-based musician Stephen James Orr. “Ceramic” features several notable artists within the Toronto live music scene, including vocalist Danny Zaidman. “Ceramic” started as a challenge Orr made to himself last year, to write an R&B infused slow jam in the style of Isaac Hayes. The aim is certainly achieved; the production masterfully balances the free-flowing brass’ soul with the smooth pop vocal styling. “Ceramic” is an atmospheric, suave charmer with a catching late-night soundscape.

Orr explains more about the track below:

“‘Ceramic’ explores the aftermath of a broken relationship, being left with painful happy memories that surface when the mind wanders, and wondering whether the person you once loved is haunted by the same thoughts.”

“I had been listening to a lot of Isaac Hayes and wanted to write a slow jam in a similar style, with my own take on it. I had originally envisioned those deep vocals overtop but Danny [Zaidman] took it to a whole new level with the lyrics/melody he wrote.”

“Ceramic” and other memorable tracks from this month can also be streamed on the updating Obscure Sound’s ‘Best of September 2021’ Spotify playlist.

The track is also featured in the genre-based, best-of Spotify compilation Emerging Indie Funk/Soul/R&B.

Mike Mineo

I'm the founder/editor of Obscure Sound, which was formed in 2006. Previously, I wrote for PopMatters and Stylus Magazine.

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