Self-Proclaimed Hippie Puts The Blues Back In R&B

By Susan Pruitt
Senior Editor

allen.stone.by.jason.tang.04

Photo courtesy of Jason Tang

   With MTV saying he has the best effing voice it’s ever heard, and CNN thinking his voice reminds listeners of Stevie Wonder and Prince, 24-year-old Allen Stone is definitely on the rise.

   Stone, a self-proclaimed hippie, sports long blonde hair and wide-rimmed glasses. By his looks, listeners would never imagine he could belt out some of the most awe-inspiring soul music since Marvin Gaye.

   As the son of a preacher, Stone starting singing in church. He did not discover soul music until he was a teenager.

   “Soul music from that time wasn’t just about bumpin’ and grindin’ at the club—it was a huge part of a cultural movement. That’s where my inspiration comes from,” says Stone.

   In Stone’s second album, the self-titled “Allen Stone,” he sings about his thoughts on political issues, as well as social problems. Stone signed to ATO Records after previously selling out shows coast to coast.

   Stone sings about the current economic crisis in one of his songs entitled “Unaware.”

   “Everyday taxes increase/ So is this our land or is this our lease/ Papa says son it’s the land of the free/As he broke his back trying to make ends meet,” he sings.

   Stone’s first public appearance on “Conan” came after a music booker saw Stone performing “Unaware” in his mother’s living room on YouTube. Stone has also appeared on “Jimmy Kimmel Live,” “Last Call with Carson Daly,” “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” and “Live from Daryl’s House.”

   Another song entitled “Contact High” not only features Stone’s ultra-smooth falsetto, but also discusses society’s overuse of technology.

   “Whatever keeps you occupied/ whatever gives you contact high/ whatever keeps you busy, baby/ Will never make you satisfied,” Stone sings.

   In addition to singing songs about issues of today, Stone also sings songs about yearning love.

   In the toe-tapping song “Satisfaction,” Stone sings about a girl who makes men fall in love with her by sleeping with them. In the song, he sings about being a victim to her schemes.

   Other songs on his album include:

  • “Your Eyes”
  • “Say So”
  • “The Wind”
  • “Nothing To Prove”
  • “Celebrate Tonight”
  • “What I’ve Seen”
  • “Sleep”

   After his digital release in 2011, Stone’s album jumped into the Top 10 of Billboard’s Heatseekers chart and entered the Top 5 of iTunes’ R&B/Soul charts.

   Stone’s first stop on his upcoming tour is the venue Royale Boston in Boston, Mass. on Jan.20.

   To hear Stone’s songs, please visit http://allenstone.com/.

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