Essence d'Âme
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Essence d'Âme

Orlando, Florida, United States | SELF

Orlando, Florida, United States | SELF
Band Hip Hop Soul


This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos



"Hip-Hop/Soul Group Makes Their Return To The Stage"

After being silent for a six month hiatus, Orlando's biggest up-and-coming hip-hop/soul group, Essence d'Âme, is back in business.

Laying down infectious grooves since early 2009, Essence d'Âme (meaning "essence of soul" in French) have made themselves known throughout Orlando by playing countless shows, self-promoting and wielding an addictive sound that blends hip-hop and soul music with a '70s style.

Formed three years ago by keyboardist and hip-hop producer Nick Palmer along with lead rapper Kenny Allen and singer Lou Magee, the band slowly began to climb its way to the top, adding Will Busby on guitar, Bryan Eastman on bass and Ryan Eiland on drums along the way.

"When it comes to writing music with hip-hop, we have a very worldly sound. There's a lot of different styles coming from each of us," Busby said. "If you leave after one of our shows, you probably won't be sure how to pronounce the name. You sure will recognize it from then on though."

Sharing the stage with artists such as Peter Baldwin, B-Liminal, One31 and The Whitey Tighties, Essence d'Âme built a fan base and gained a reputation for having great live shows with constantly changing set lists. The group also became known for being professional both on and off the stage.

"I love those guys. They're great, very professional," said Brian Panzella, guitarist for The Whitey Tighties. "They're on time, cool backstage and always stay out of the other bands' way when they're setting up."

After getting their name out in Orlando, the band eventually ended up with the chance of a lifetime earlier this year: playing with Ja Rule, Noreaga and Benzino at Chakra Lounge.

The band's luck took a turn for the worse, however, in the days leading up to the big show when Allen's kidneys began to fail, resulting in a severe spinal infection.

Over several months, the band went off the radar while Allen was taken all over the United States to find treatment for his condition. Thankfully, he eventually did receive the treatment he needed and made a full recovery. With Allen ready to pick the mic up again, it was time for the band to make a comeback.

On Aug. 26, at Hard Rock Live, the band will play their first show in six months.

"The Hard Rock is a good welcome back. They'll be seen by everyone in the world," said Rob Soviero, director of promotions at WPRK 91.5 FM and bookie of the band's show at Hard Rock Live. "I look forward to seeing that big, organic hip-hop sound at Hard Rock. They're back and better than ever."

Today, the tenacious six-piece continues to stand out not only with their blend of hip-hop and soul music, but with an overall positive message in their lyrics written by Allen and Magee.

"When you talk about the essence of soul, it's all positive and soulful messages, but it's still intellectual and interesting," said Palmer, who writes the majority of the band's music.

With lyrics speaking of freedom and making changes in your life for the better, the band also avoids cursing and derogatory terms frequently used in hip-hop music.

"There's a large amount of people that are unhappy with popular music that's on the radio and the message that hip-hop is going towards right now as far as being negative and thuggish," Palmer said. "I have strong faith that there's a ton of people waiting for a band to come along that's musical and that brings real music back with complexity, feeling and positivity."

The also band recently began recording their first full-length record at Real Feel Recordings, Palmer's own recording studio.

Essence d'Âme will be playing tomorrow at Hard Rock Live at 8 p.m. along with The Whitey Tighties, Random Encounter and Unit Shifters. Tickets can be found at Real Feel Recordings and Park Avenue CDs. - The Central Florida Future

"Local Orlando Band Defines "Music for Everyone""

If you have been at Rollins for any significant amount of time, you have certainly noticed Orlando's local music scene. Though small and somewhat unclaimed by any particular style, the music's lack of uniformity makes way for an unmatched level of versatility.

Orlando's music scene is infiltrated with every genre of music and performance, from the Orlando Gay Choir to 30-year-old men playing grunge instrumentals at the Social.

It is this versatility, however, that opens the doors for bands that are not necessarily cookie-cut into any specific musical category - which is exactly what local band, Essence d'Âme, strives to be.

Essence d'Âme (French for Essence of Soul) is the conflation of hip-hop, funk, and jazz with accents of soul, pop, and blues. Their mission is very simple. It is to create music that does not follow any rules.

"We don't cater to any specific group of people, because music is for everyone, and our lyrics tell stories about life experiences that everyone can relate to, no matter what walk of life they come from," says Nick "Ridiculous Nick" Palmer, the band's first and founding member. "You can appreciate our music from a multitude of angles - just don't try and put us in a box."

The band formed in 2009 when Palmer hit a wall with his own music production. Playing all the instruments over sampled drum beats, he began creating his own so-called hip-hop in his home recording studio, "but all the rappers told [him] it was crap."

Frustrated at non-musical artists who seemed to be excelling despite a lack of talent, Palmer sent his S.O.S. via a Craigslist ad requesting "musicians for a unique hip-hop band." His first response was from 24-year-old MC True Rhyme, who impressed Palmer with the "deep and spiritual" nature of his lyrics, and mind blowing speed and intelligence.The two paired up and slowly completed the band's final line up through classmates, friends, and word of mouth.

About a year later, the line-up now includes Jeremy Adams on the bass, Will Busby on guitar, vocalist Lou Magee, Ryan "Houston" Eiland on the drums, Ridiculous Nick on the keyboards, and of course, MC True Rhyme.

Since the band's first show in June 2009, which Palmer admits "wasn't great," Essence d'Âme has gained an admirable following and is arguably one of the most energetic and passionate local bands in Orlando.

Palmer describes the band's drive to improve with each show, developing not only in musicality, but increasing their fan base and their music business savvy.

Boasting a list of venues such as The Social, Backbooth, The Haven, and 57 West, the band is well on its way to a higher level of notoriety.

With shows this summer in Jacksonville and Atlanta and plans to record an EP at the end of the month, Essence d'Âme is poised to take 2010 by storm - starting with their next show - May 12 at The Plaza Theatre, hosted by Palmer's promotion company, Ridiculous Music.

Part of the band's greatest appeal is their ability to cut loose and have fun. In their live performances, they connect with audiences, posing for pictures, asking if concert-goers are "still awake," and reminding us to enjoy ourselves.

With an incredibly exuberant and energetic stage presence difficult to find in the typical selection pool of local bands, Essence d'Âme is most definitely worth checking out sometime this summer, next semester, or any time you find yourself in or around the greater Orlando area. As Palmer reminds us, "hip-hop music is alive - and more importantly - hip-hop music is for everyone. - The Sandspur


Essence d'Âme released their debut album, "The Essence of Soul EP" in November 2010, it's 5 tracks and it is available on iTunes.



About us

Essence d’Âme came together in the spring of 2009 when hip-hop producer Ridiculous Nick and MC True Rhyme linked up with a common interest - starting a live hip-hop/soul band. Together they started searching far and wide for the most talented and diverse group of musicians they could find to complete their vision of a live band with passion, energy and soul. Turns out they were just around the corner.

Named Essence d’Âme, french for “The Essence of Soul”, this new band had one mission - to prove to the doubters that hip-hop is music is alive - and more importantly - that hip-hop music is for everyone. This is one live show you shouldn’t miss!