In this new entry in our ‘Diamonds In The Rough’ category, we want to introduce you to upcoming artists King Cole and Xavier Keyz and their brand new collaboration titled “Your Story Is Mine”.
When producer Barry Coffing invited Xavier Keyz down to Houston for a live-in-the-studio recording of songwriter King Cole’s rousing, socially conscious anthem “Your Story is Mine,” it gave the Chicago based, internationally renowned indie R&B singer/songwriter not only a golden opportunity to revisit his old school soul roots – a vibe he showcased on his critically acclaimed 2015 debut album Monday Thru Sunday – but also a fresh outlet for the overriding inspirational message that has long defined his artistry.
The session, which featured legendary former Kool & The Gang vocalist, songwriter and producer Sir Earl Toon, marked the first time that the prolific Xavier had tracked someone else’s song – and he found the experience fun and uplifting while pushing him vocally to places he never thought he could ascend to. Putting his own spin on Cole’s hard hitting lyrics (“We’re living in times so outrageous/What did it say?/All signs say contagious”) and unifying vision (“We know love is all it takes”), the singer – once dubbed “The Love Doctor” by an insightful industry veteran – shares his core soul reality.
“From the start of my recording career and even in my earliest musical endeavors, I’ve always been about using music as a tool to promote love and togetherness,” says Xavier, a child of the 90s and 2000s whose fondest childhood memories are family barbecues listening to Chicago’s classic soul station V103, which played a steady flow of Earth, Wind & Fire, Marvin Gaye, The Stylistics, The Isley Brothers and more contemporary old school influenced greats like Usher. “My takeaway from ‘Your Story is Mine’ is that we’re all in this together. Without love, we cannot advance forward. We are all part of each other’s story, whether we recognize it or not.”
“If we recognize and hone in on that idea as a culture and as a people, we can advance and get things done,” he adds. “In many ways, the song reminds me of Marvin’s ‘What’s Going On album, whose lyrics are still relevant today. Like the legends before him, Drew speaks to our collective moment with purpose and meaning, telling us to wake up and recognize that we’re at our best when we love as one. Music’s role has always been to make people aware of the present situation, and it can make or break a culture. It has the ability to get inside our subconscious minds and reprogram how we think. As creators, we’re given that blessed power to impact the world, and we need to take heed of that. I feel blessed to have the opportunity to be part of sharing Drew’s vision with the world.”