The New Mastersounds — currently, Eddie Roberts (guitar, production), Simon Allen (drums), Pete Stand (bass) and Joe Tatton (keys) — can trace their origins back to the late 1990s: At the time Roberts was promoting a club night in his native Leeds called The Cooker. When The Cooker moved into a new venue with a second floor in 1999, there was both the space and opportunity to put a live band together to compliment the night’s DJ sets.
As it turned out Roberts and Simon Allen had previously played together in The Mastersounds, an act that featured a different bassist and no keyboards. Through friends and the intimate nature of the Leeds scene, Pete Shand and Bob Birch (Hammond) were recruited to join the band, which became The New Mastersounds. Their earliest material was raw and leaned heavily towards boogaloo — but their first rehearsal was so memorable and so hot that Blow It Hard Records released it on two limited-edition 7″ singles in 2000.Since then, the band has released 24 more seven inch singles, 13 full-length albums, three live albums, a remix album and three compilations released in the uK, Japan and the States. During that same period, the band went through a major lineup change with grizzled Leeds scene veteran Joe Tatton replacing Bob Birch on keys and organ.
As a band and individually, The New Mastersounds have collaborated with an eclectic and diverse array of musicians, DJs and producers including Lou Donaldson, Corinne Bailey Rae, Quantic, Carleen Anderson, Keb Darge, Kenny Dope, Mr. Scruff, LSK, Lack of Afro, Page McConnell, Grace Potter, Karl Denson, Melvin Sparks, Idris Muhammad, Fred Wesley, Pee-Wee Ellis, Maceo Parker, Bernard Purdie, George Porter, Jr., Zigaboo Modeliste, Art Neville and Ernest Ranglin.
The New Mastersounds’ latest single “A Brighter Day” can trace its origins back to just after the 2020 election: the band’s Eddie Roberts had written a buoyant and uplifting composition that sonically seems indebted to Curtis Mayfield and classic Motown soul. Roberts then invited some of Color Red Music‘s top vocalists to contribute lyrics to the song. As the story goes, Josh Hoyer and Soul Colossal‘s Josh Hoyer had written down some uplifting lyrics and put them in the can — for whenever an opportunity would call for them. Little did he know, that the occasion would be Roberts calling him to invite him to contribute lyrics. Lyrically, the song is centered around the hope of a brighter, fairer and inclusive new day for all, after a brutally difficult and uneasy few years.
We got work to do y’all. Let’s get to it!