SoundsGood 02: Sam & Ruby

One of the most unique sounds I’ve run across lately is from Nashville duo Sam & Ruby. As often happens in the acoustic, singer-songwriter world of solo performers, Ruby Amanfu and Sam Booker found each other through mutual friends in the Nashville music scene during 2005. After collaborating on a song Ruby was trying to place on the movie soundtrack for “The Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood,” they both realized their sum was greater than the parts. Sam was the 70s folk influence (think James Taylor & Cat Stevens), and the Ghana-born Ruby brought a love of gospel music and a Berklee education.

Their music together is some of the smoothest pop stylings I’ve heard in the last 2-3 years. Their album “The Here and Now” is a must-listen for anyone who enjoys artists like Corrine Bailey Rae or the 2007 Oscar-winning song ‘Falling Slowly’ by Glen Hansard and Marketa Irglova. In fact, you can listen to a full album stream at, who featured the duo in August.

For me, ‘This I Know’ (song #2) is an instant pop music classic. It was so incredible I’m ashamed to admit I pulled it up on to see if it was a remake – nope! Many of my newer music friends didn’t really understand my analogy, but this song reminded me instantly of a Mick Hucknall cut. As the creative force behind Simply Red in the mid 80s, Mick was quietly turning out amazing pop songs.

So if you appreciate smooth R&B sounds mixed with an acoustic vibe, this is a must-listen. Think a slightly more upbeat Norah Jones, a bunch of lush string-laden arrangements, and a little Adele flavor – all on top of the early Jennifer Nettles' Soul Miner’s Daughter harmony base. Great stuff for my ears…




Related Video

Dim lights Embed Embed this video on your site

Add comment