Julie Mahendran


by Julie Mahendran

Released 2008
Released 2008
Corinne Bailey Rae and Sade arm-wrestling at Chaka Khan's pool party- smooth soul-jazz with a pop flair.
Joanna Borromeo on Rhodes piano
Michael Herring on upright bass
Brennan Louw on electric guitar
Giampaolo Scatozza on drum kit

Engineered by Bernie Cisternas at Number 9 Audio Group, Toronto
Mastered by Andy Krehm at SilverBirch Productions, Toronto
Design by Will Skol
Photography by Anthony Toderian
Makeup by Wanda MacRae
Produced by Julie Mahendran

I dedicate this album to my grandmothers, Marie-Ange and Annalakshumi- both women of incredible strength, character and spirit whose life stories will always be a source of great inspiration to me.

You never know where inspiration will come from, and the sources were varied when it came to writing the 4 new original songs included on this album. Thank you to everyone who heard something promising in my earlier songs and encouraged me to create more- and to those who provided lyrical nuggets, however unintentional! I’ve also included songs from some of my favourite artists and eras- starting with a more upbeat arrangement of Rich Girl by Hall & Oates, which benefited by contributions from the whole band. I did the opposite with Lewis Taylor’s Lovelight, stripping the song down to a slow groove.

Annie Lennox’s cover version of Bob Marley’s Waiting in Vain gave me the inspiration to pair it with You have place a Chill in my Heart by the Eurythmics. I knew many of Bill Withers’ hits but had never heard Use Me until recently- it was love at first listen. Sheila Jordan first inspired me to sing Dat Dere, then Lee Morgan’s trumpet solo from the Art Blakey Ensemble’s 1960 recording inspired me to write a vocalese lyric, and now I dedicate it to my sister and her 2 wonderfully inquisitive little men.

Sade’s Love is Stronger than Pride has a hypnotic groove that somehow invites me to improvise endlessly. I first performed I Remember Clifford for composer Benny Golson as a Berklee student, and it is still one of my favourite standards. Ever since I heard the Nylons perform the Supremes hit Up the Ladder to the Roof, I knew I also wanted to make it my own. And finally, I dug beneath the sweet 80s sheen on Cyndi Lauper’s Change of Heart to showcase the gorgeous tune and clever lyric within.