MENU Gil Scott-Heron Tribute at the Worldwide Awards & Free Download

Gil Scott-Heron Tribute at the Worldwide Awards & Free Download

January 26, 2012

MOST 16 or 17-year-olds could be forgiven for showing some nerves ahead of performing to a sold-out Koko crowd at this year’s Worldwide Awards. But it appears J’Danna and Joey are not your average teenagers. Asked to perform their own interpretations of Gil Scott-Heron classics, the fearless pair of South Londoners took it all in their young stride. Joey said: “We just felt this is what we do, we perform good music.” And while J’Danna freely admits to having some nerves, these disappeared as soon as she took to the famous Camden stage. “Singing is something I enjoy,” she said. “As soon as I start, it’s like second nature and everything just fades away.” But how did two talented but unknown artists come to be sharing the stage with the likes of Michael Kiwanuka, Jamie XX and SBTRKT?

Brownswood’s events manager Peggy Jean-Louis had this year wanted to pay tribute to Scott-Heron, who died last May, aged 62. To do this she wanted two young artists to perform their own interpretations of the great man’s songs. And this is where 2Morrows Victory came into the picture. Peggy manages the South London four-piece and asked drummer Raf if he knew anyone. He had no hesitation in coming up with an answer. J’Danna was a family friend who had sung at his parent’s church in Tooting and Joey someone he had seen at a nearby youth centre where he runs drumming and music workshops. Raf said: “I knew they had something special as soon as I heard them perform.” The next step was to help them work out their interpretations; Joey was given the raging polemic of ‘The Revolution Will Not Be Televised’ and J’Danna the sweet lament of ‘Winter In America’.

The backing tracks to their reworking of the Scott-Heron tracks were put together by 2Morrows Victory, who act as mentors, giving them advice and encouragement. The young pair’s performances on the night were ecstatically received by the sell-out crowd. Speaking for both of them, Joey said: “It was amazing. We had worked so hard perfecting it and when it’s appreciated, it’s the best feeling. It just confirmed that we want to do this forever.”

As well as being heard here, their performances will be released on 2MorrowsVictory Records.

Words by Paul Dietrich

You can download the two tracks performed by Joey & J’Danna for free HERE

2Morrow’s Victory’s next EP, Odeon, is released on their own label on February 21.