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Event Archive - Jully Black, George

Mon. May 19th 2008 8:00 pm Element (No Minors) 8:00 pm
$20.00
Tickets at: Lyles Place, Strathcona Hotel, www.ticketweb.ca
Presented by: Atomique Productions, Kool FM
Jully Black has the look of a woman that's come into her own. She carries herself with an unshakable air of confidence; her eyes shine brightly, a smile is quick to spread across her face. She has the look of a woman in love with life and full of passion for music. Jully has the look of a woman embracing her destiny, a woman fulfilling the promise of her youth. Revival is the soundtrack to this awakening, this euphoric celebration, this moment of grace.

For the Toronto native, her much-anticipated sophomore album serves as an opportunity to meditate on where she is, and how she got there. Jully's journey has hit some high notes. She's penned songs for Destiny's Child and Nas, and shared the stage with Jay-Z, 50 Cent, Bon Jovi, Josh Groban and Usher. She's collaborated with virtually every influential hip-hop artist in the country and some of the nation's best songwriters, including Ian Thornley, Dallas Green and Hawksley Workman. Her compelling debut This Is Me firmly established her as one of Canada's most revered music stars. Now, her audience has grown further with a regular spot doing celebrity reporting on CTV's eTalk. After a stint touring with the Black Eyed Peas, Jully formed a strong friendship with Peas' drummer Keith Harris (Busta Rhymes, Fergie, Mary J. Blige and Michael Jackson), who produced Revival and continually inspires her to grow as an artist. "This album is our baby," Jully says with a laugh. "We made this together."

There's been low notes, too, and with Revival, Jully opens up, sharing the tears she's had along the way. The youngest of nine children, Jully grew up in awe of her hard-working mother, who was the glue that held the family together. "Even though I was raised in a single parent home, I didn't know that I was poor," Jully reflects. "We didn't feel poor. My Mom always found a way. I had a good childhood." Together, her close family shouldered the curveballs life threw at them: Jully's Dad wasn't around, he fathered several dozen other kids; her twin brother died at birth; her sister Sharon passed away at 24. "She would sing when she was painting," Jully remembers. "She didn't consider herself a singer, but her voice was incredible. I would say she left me her voice." ("Catch Me When I Fall" revisits that loss, and says one final goodbye to the older sister she adored, in the process transforming tragedy into triumph.)

Revival is a deeply personal outing, and in honour of that Jully wrote ten out of the eleven songs herself. The lead single "7 Day Fool," a spirited Etta James cover, sets the tone for the album's feel-good vibe. "DJ Play My Song" is the ideal record to throw on before a night out on the town. "My Baby" celebrates the first intoxicating stages of romance. Elsewhere, the haunting "Temporary Insanity" plunges one more time into darkness to better appreciate the light. "Something feels different this time," the singer says of her creative process. "I'm happy. My face hurts from smiling so much. It's a good time for me."

Jully has been through the storm, and like anybody who's pursued dreams in spite of adversity she's stronger for it. "Music saved me," she explains. And now it's her turn to give back through music. Guaranteed to inspire her growing legion of fans, Jully's rich, distinct voice delivers an infectious sense of joy. Revival will have you jumping out of your seat, clapping your hands and abandoning yourself to the dance, just as Jully gives herself over to each and every song.
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