An evening with Silk Sonic | Rediscovering retro vibes
An evening with Silk Sonic is the debut studio album of award-winning American duo Bruno Mars and Anderson Paak, better known as Silk Sonic, released on November 12th, 2021.
It’s nine tracks of pure sixties and seventies groove and is an album that wants to get away from heavy topics and just bring vibes of happiness and lightheartedness.
Bruno Mars is a multi-instrumental musician, singer, songwriter, and producer, and a hit-maker and winner of 11 Grammys. Anderson Paak is a singer/rapper, songwriter, producer, and skilled drummer. He currently holds 4 Grammys and boasts collaborations with rap legends such as Eminem, Snoop Dog, and Dr. Dre.
The two artists met in 2017 during Mars’ 24K Magic World Tour. Paak was the opening act for the European leg. During the tour, a deep friendship was born, leading to night jam sessions and the idea of creating something together in the future.
Amid the pandemic, Mars contacted Paak, asking if he was ready to start their project.
With the fear of never being able to play live again, the duo wanted to put together an album that sounded and felt like a show. The chemistry was already there, the collaboration felt very organic and natural.
Silk Sonic debuted in March 2021 performing at the 63rd Grammys Awards with the first single, Leave the door open. Two other singles, Skate and Smoking out the window, anticipated the release of the album.
Vibes from the ’60s and ’70s
We gon’ lock this groove in tight (Yeah, uh, well, lock it in then)
Don’t have us lock this groove down for nothin’ (Get down)
With the special appearance of Bootsy Collins who baptized the duo, the one-minute Intro sets the tone for the album. The record is permeated by sixties and seventies soul and funk atmospheres.
Like mathematicians, the instruments were adapted to emulate old-school playing styles. The right guitar pick, the drumming. The nine tracks see the two artists come together and talk about love, romance. People can vibe to a stylish and sexy groove.
For instance, Fly to me brags about how lucky a woman would be to be involved with either of them. They portray themselves as players but also admit the need for their significance as in Put on a smile.
When it comes to creating music, the two artists have different approaches. While Mars is meticulous, questioning “what are we talking about, what are we trying to say and how are we gonna kill’em on the hook”, Paak says that his process is more fluid, intuitive, a worm’s eye view kind of way.
The union of those different views professionally enriched Mars and Paak, strengthening the chemistry and letting them have a blast while working together. As has happened for several other artists, the album would not have come to life if it weren’t for the pandemic.
The aim was simple, to bring joy. As Mars says: “For me? I know I wasn’t listening to depressing music. We are already in a weird spot. I want to escape!”.
The duo’s first album debuted at n°1 on the Billboard Top R&B/Hip Hop album and at n°2 on the Billboards 200. It also received 4 nominations for the upcoming 64th annual Grammy awards. 2021 has been a fortunate year for the duo and fans of Mars and Paak can just enjoy An Evening with Silk Sonic. A gift of two artists coming together, making feel-good music.