Jay-Z’s ‘The Story of O.J,’ Travis Scott’s ‘Pick Up the Phone” among featured tracks on ‘Vol. 8: The Chicago Sessions’
Bringing people together through music. That’s always been the mission statement of Hidden Beach Recordings, the label that introduced music fans to acts such as Grammy Award-winning singer-songwriter Jill Scott, Kindred the Family Soul, a cappella group Naturally 7 and saxophonist Mike Phillips. Now the label is reintroducing its popular Unwrapped franchise with the release today (May 24) of Unwrapped Vol. 8: The Chicago Sessions.
The trailblazing, generation-bridging hip-hop jazz series dropped the mic on its run nine years ago. “There were too many copycats,” says Hidden Beach founder Steve McKeever. “And with the loss of brick and mortar outlets like Circuit City, jazz was getting taken out by all the pillars of the business.” But with the changing societal climate post-President Obama, McKeever decided to “roll my sleeves back up.”
“I never thought in my lifetime that the country would be so divided: young/old, black/white, blue/red state,” adds McKeever, who oversaw the production of Hidden Beach’s official Obama inauguration CD-DVD commemorative set, Change Is Now: Renewing America's Promise. "Obama always talked about how we are all more alike than different. Regardless of point of view, his campaign brought people together. The most unifying project we’d put together was Unwrapped. So I decided to ramp it back up."