Florida based singer-songwriter/producer, Cliff Whitakker, released his latest single, Throwing Shade, last month, and we’ve been taking a relaxing and chilled out listen to it here at the Send Me Your Ears studio today.
Throwing Shade is a dreamy, spacey, reverb heavy track that would be suitable as a chillout track or perhaps a “study vibes” tune. Taking references from blues stylings but also a touch of hip hop, this charming and peaceful track moves along gently with a simple head-nodding tempo.
The electronic drum track remains pretty constant throughout and it is the changes in dynamics in the vocals and instrumentation that make this track stand out.
Whitakker’s voice is calm and warm. The vocals are clear and present with changes in the reverbs used on them throughout to change the feel and emphasis. The early part of each verse is quite dry and intimate and as the verse progresses and into the chorus, the addition of harmony vocals and the increase in reverbs help you to just melt away in a sea of calm.
Throwing Shade is a simple, but highly effective, track. With touches of John Meyer in the stylings, this is a track sure to appeal to a wide audience.
At around 3 minutes 40 seconds, there’s a rather superb fuzz guitar solo with simple note choices but a solo that is extremely effective in generating just a touch more excitement and intrigue as the song develops. The addition of some very subtle harmonies later on in the guitar solo are a great boost to the song and we all found ourselves nodding and smiling as this beautiful song faded out.
This is a track which, in terms of production really stands out and needs nothing else. A small boost at around 60Hz would add to the thump of the kick drum. We also think a wide boost across the high mids and highs centred around 6-7kHz would add the already bright and intimate feel of the song. It would bring out the definition in both the synth feel of the background sounds as well as the fuzz of the guitar solo. Once again, this is already a really pleasant track full of smooth passion and closeness.
Cliff Whitakker’s throwing shade is a song for a late night sipping whiskey and mellowing out. A track which has truly warmed our hearts today and one which we found extremely appealing.