Jon Bap – “Gooder Than Before/Forced” (Sterogum Premiere)

Buffalo-based singer/songwriter/producer Jon Bap is an art-school dropout that couldn’t say no to getting involved in the family business of music. Like many soulful singers, Bap developed his musical sensibilities through singing and drumming in his church’s choir and would get the music bug honest from his father, who showed him drum techniques and chords on the organ after services. His debut EP, 2014’s Let It Happen, was solid, but slept-on. It was a small, dense collection of songs with alluring crooning, and irresistibly groovy beats. Perhaps people will pay attention this time around as his latest offering is a reissue of sorts. The original tracks from the EP will be accompanied by a B-side of unreleased instrumental demos cleverly dubbed Almost Happened salvaged from an old hard drive crash before he could lay down vocals.

The first single from the re-issue is “Gooder Than Before/Forced.” It’s a signature soulful jaunt with swinging drums, a loose, slippery chicken grease guitar chord and Bap’s smooth tenor sliding in and out of falsetto. I have no clue how people ignored the man before, but do your ears a favor and listen this time around.

Let It Happen is out 5/27 via Fresh Selects.

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