Cole Degenova asks what it means to be human with his new album, really human.
Chicago “electro-soul” artist ColeDeGenovareleased his long-awaited album, Really Human, on April 24 off of Ropeadope Records, featuring co-production from the critically-acclaimed Georgia Anne Muldrow.
As the former keyboardist inGallant’sband and as a full-time musician, DeGenova had been working on his solo record over the past three years when he had been off of touring. But when Gallant canceled his North American tour over a year ago, DeGenova found an opportunity to finish his solo album he had been piecing together for years.
“This is the first time in the last five years that I’m not touring with someone else project,” he told the Chicago Tribune, “I’m solely focused on my own art, which is both terrifying and amazing.”
As a musician who has been performing jazz and the blues in Chicago since he was a teenager, DeGenova later graduated from the Berklee College of Music. He then focused on his career in music for years — recording or playing alongside with the likes of Chance the Rapper, Lupe Fiasco, Meshell N’Degeocello, the legendary engineer Eddie Kramer, and many more —often delaying work on his own art to make a career out playing music.
Georgia Anne Muldrow’s co-production electrified the sound on Really Human, which quickly set the tone and direction for the record. Her spaced-out funk contributions can be heard best on songs such as the title track, “Really Human,” and on the record’s triumphant “Full Grown.”
Really Human places DeGenova in a new realm of transcendent electro-funk laced with introspective themes of finding self-love, spirituality, and self-liberation. “The lyrics shine light on the artist’s journey to overcome social restraints to grow spiritually, emotionally, and individually,” Cole added.
Additionally, the city of Chicago’sDepartment of Cultural Affairs and SpecialEvents (DCASE)recognized the originality of Cole DeGenova’s art and message, awarding him a grant to support his album and his vision.