Remember that talented young singer called JoJo? The teen who had every girl in the early noughties singing about the angst of love with hits like Leave (Get Out) and Too Little, Too Late?
Well, you may not know this but she never really left the music scene – even if she hasn’t released an album since 2006.
After being stuck in a toxic contract with former label Blackground records, the singer just won a lengthy legal battle to be released from her contract and has moved on by signing a new deal with Atlantic.
With a new deal comes a more mature sound, as the teen has grown into a bit of an R & B goddess during her time out of the spotlight. Nothing highlights this more than her latest free mixtape release, #LOVEJO.
The free set has been put together by hitmakers Da Internz and sees JoJo put her spin on romantic hits such as Caught Up In The Rapture by Anita Baker and Take Me Home by Phil Collins, as well as serving up some serious vocals on Glory by Kathleen Battle.
The EP intro sees JoJo recite a poem over a symphony of strings leading smoothly into Caught Up In The Rapture. The choice of songs show just what makes JoJo different from some of her peers in the charts right now.
This is a vocalist who has been influenced by the greats; a singer more focused on the music than twerking antics. As she manages to make Take Me Home her own, I truly feel like there is a place in the charts for JoJo to join the likes of Jhene Aiko and Janelle Monae who have chosen to stick with the less mainstream sound and focused purely on their brand of R & B and Soul.
As the EP ends in the stunning rendition of Glory, I can only hope that no matter what happens, a talent like JoJo is not wasted. Yes, she will have to battle against what’s popular and against other young vocalists such as Ariana Grande, but she’s got enough fight in her to leave her mark. Now we just need to wait and see what her next album will bring!