Norman Kelsey
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Norman Kelsey

North Hollywood, California, United States | Established. Jan 01, 2007 | SELF

North Hollywood, California, United States | SELF
Established on Jan, 2007
Solo Pop R&B


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



"A Talent For Loving - Album Review - 4 Stars"

Review by Michael Jacobson

Album ****

For years now, Norman Kelsey has been a shining star in the Los Angeles music scene as the charismatic frontman of bands such as Bat Country, Rush Hour Soul, and Idle Kings. He has toured the world bringing his unique style of funk-infested pop and rock to fans on both sides of the Atlantic. One might say he owes his fans a love letter. A Talent for Loving is just that.

Breaking free from the confines of a group setting, Norman has finally chosen to step out on his own and release his first solo CD, and A Talent for Loving trumpets his arrival with bravado and confidence. The singer, songwriter and bassist has been honing his chops and finely tuning his sound, which is a delightfully tight cornucopia of influences mixed into something new, fresh, and real. You might hear a little Prince, a little James Brown, a little Chic, a little Motown, a little Beatles, or a little Lenny Kravitz. These artists may provide an ingredient or two, but the soulful, danceable, soaringly harmonious end recipe is all Norman.

But wait...I know what you must be thinking. In this age of the easily-downloadable single, why take my word for it that the album is a good as that? Maybe purchasing entire CDs has become too 90s for today's music fans. That's fine...then allow me to steer you in the right direction. If you want to sample it using DigStation, let me recommend the first song and title track. "A Talent For Loving" was named the catchiest song at last year's International Pop Overthrow festival when Norman played it in London, and you'll see why. The sharp, jangling guitars and infectious hook will stick in your head, as well as get your feet moving.

Now doesn't it feel good to cut loose and dance? Then why not keep your groove going? Download "U Had the $" and the party won't have to stop. Norman's punchy bass line, combined with his impeccable harmonies and a snappy guitar will make sure your party doesn't have to stop. In fact, you can keep it going with a perfect trifecta of dance rock tunes. Download "Sucka" and let the funky wah-wah guitars call you back to the floor, even if it's only the floor of your own house.

Whew...that's a lot of energy for just three songs. By now, you might be needing a bit of a cool down. Download "Everything My Heart Desires". The CD's first ballad has a soaring chorus courtesy of Norman's amazing voice that seems to reach the stratosphere as he professes his love. It's a 70s groove made modern, and such a beautiful tune that my fiancée and I are actually planning to have our first dance to it at our wedding next year.

Now that you're in the mood for romance, no need to stop there. Download "Done Lost My Mind" for a gentle, open proclamation of sentiment. Get that arm of yours around someone you love and let the music guide you to the next level. But you shouldn't let the moment pass too quickly just because a song only lasts four minutes or prepared, and download the spectacular "Love Someone", the album's finale, to make sure your night doesn't end too quickly.

Feels great, doesn't it? Time for a little post-romantic encounter pick-me-up. "Everyone's Ingénue" is the perfect download. The Stones-esque guitars and hook will put a smile on your face, and the beat will get you back into the groove.

No need to stop there...keep it going. "Fall Out" is a crisp, punchy slice of funk and soul that will have you moving again, and if you're really feeling it, "Roosevelt's Revue" will top off a perfect evening of fun and romance. After that, you might as well enjoy a nightcap...I always like a little pure rock to wind myself down to, and if you're like me, you'll want to download "Down By Love" and "I Can't Cry For You", two songs that prove Norman is an artist as comfortable in rock as he is in soul.

By now, you've downloaded the entire album, and have had a total blast listening to it. And you've also realized this isn't your standard-issue independent release. A Talent For Loving is not some CD made in a guy's basement with a Radio Shack tape machine. Norman took his talent for music all over the world, using top studios in both the US and the UK to deliver a polished, fully produced, radio-ready release that's bound to have the record companies leaning in for a closer listen. As a music fan, I hear a lot of independent records, and as a reviewer, I enjoy telling our readers about ones they shouldn't pass up. This is by far the best indie release I've heard to date.

If you haven't actually started the single downloads yet, may I go back to my original point? A Talent for Loving is gigantic fun in a small package. Norman offers a little something for everyone, whether your taste is to dance, romance, or just rock out. It actually IS one of the rare offerings that merits buying the entire CD. Your heart, soul, and feet will be thanking you for a long time to come.

January 2008 - DVD Movie Central

"Norman Kelsey - Gig Review"

Review by Ian D. Hall

Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating 9/10

As Norman Kelsey stands on the stage at The Cavern Club and takes in the audience’s reaction, it would be easy to forgive him if for the briefest of moments the broad smile he has had on his face all evening suddenly became as wide as the River Mersey. For Norman Kelsey, the man who made his way from the West Coast of America to perform in this year’s International Pop Overthrow, to say his set was stunning would be a huge understatement.

For Norman Kelsey the impossible is not in his vocabulary, it is a phrase that just needs to be overcome and met with a huge smile, a personality that can make audiences swoon in his presence and a selection of songs from his latest album, the superb On The Rebound, all of that even before he has opened his mouth to sing and his fingers have pulled back on one string. For Norman Kelsey is perhaps the most coolest and suave man The Cavern is likely to have in its building during the whole festival. It is quite amusing to watch the audience take in the near majesty the musician exudes; it is also disheartening to know that no matter what you could never be as happy in your work as Mr. Kelsey.

With Adam Marsland, who had already performed a cracking set earlier in the day, by his side on keyboards and guitar, Norman showed exactly why he is so incredibly highly rated. His smooth voice is reminiscent of the great Marvin Gaye, his style as professional as you can ever likely find and all of this wrapped in a talent that knows no bounds. The only downside to all of this of course is that the time on stage for him is limited and for the audience who have taken him and his music to their hearts the ending comes far too quick.

However, the music he makes more than makes up for it and for those there to witness to this fine session, including tracks such as Huckleberry Finn, Your Majestic Rejection, the amazing Supermodels With Gatling Guns and So Sophisticated, will not forget this magical set.

One of the most outstanding talents of his genre, Norman Kelsey is a man with a very big future in front of him.
- Liverpool Sound And Vision

"A Talent For Loving - Album Review - 8 out of 10!"

Review by Christel Loar

Norman Kelsey’s A Talent for Loving is a non-stop, dusk ‘til dawn party. From the opening beat of the title track, which is both boastful and believable, to the closing command of “Love Someone”, Kelsey takes you from the bar to the dance floor to the bedroom and back again several sweat-soaked times. He’s a soulful R&B powerhouse vocalist, and he’s somehow managed to combine perfectly some of the best elements of ‘60s-era soul and Motown with a sense of style and command not seen since Prince was at his funkiest. Tracks like “Done Lost My Mind” highlight Kelsey’s slow, seductive, soul skills, while songs such as “Fall Out” will, as the chorus says, “Rock you so hard / We falling out of your bed.” No worries if you’re all alone, either. A Talent for Loving will have you dancing your ass off all night, flying on a rhythm-induced endorphin high.

Rating: 8 out of 10
13 May 2008 - Pop Matters

"A Talent For Loving - Album Review"

Review by Bob Davis

Norman Kelsey - A Talent For Loving

Norman Kelsey's album is what I would expect the "first Lenny Kravitz album" to sound like. It's full of better than average rock, soul, funk, pop songs. Simple 3 minute songs with hooks, that you can bop down the boardwalk to while you snap your finger. It's also got a few GREAT songs, that would be automatic hit records if they could be heard by the masses. And it shows a hell of a lot of potential for the artist himself to become a "universal fusion artist." It's the kind of an album that you can put on, leave on and think that you are listening to a Top 40 radio station from back in the day, playing a diverse set of music that somehow all "works together." The album as a whole reminds me of hanging out at the beach all summer and hearing great summer songs coming out of tiny transistor radios, from Memorial Day to Labor Day, that get played on BOTH the Black stations and the white stations. Buy this album now, it gets better and better with each listen, but wait till the summertime to play it for your friends, so that they can become hooked on this album, and not even realize why. - Soul Patrol

"On The Rebound - Album Review"

Review by DJ Readman

I was seriously not expecting this music.

Combine the early years of Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder, Prince and a slice of the Blues Brothers in a simple formular and you have some class songs on a great album by Norman Kelsey.

I find this album, very refreshing for the fact that it has a great retro feel, while keeping the style modern. Opens up with So Sophisticated, just goes in at the deep and and instantly reminds you of the 70s and 80s era of R&B.

In general, Norman, is very creative in the way has just has the right elements of the old R&B style, with pop, lounge and Soul, keeping it simple as well and great voice. In this genre, it stands out. I am a fan of the artists above, not huge but the earlier work is the best and Norman captures the sound in his own original works.

On the Rebound, very reminiscent of Prince, probably a tip to the hat to the artist. From that Supermodel with Gatling Guns, very tongue and cheek and a great pop song. The last song, A Miracle is on the way, very nice guitar work. This really is harking back to the great R&B days and very well recorded.

Anyone a fan of Prince, Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson and number of artists in this genre, this is worth buying. - DJ Readman

"On The Rebound - Album Review"

Review by John Borack

L.A.-based singer/songwriter Norman Kelsey’s sophomore solo effort, On the Rebound, finds him mining the suave soul man territory, to great effect. Kelsey’s vocals are top drawer (love the oft-present falsetto), the songs are across-the-board memorable (we particularly dig the Bee Gees homage “Our Love is Known By Name,” the silky “Huckleberry Finn” and the sweet, Prince-influenced ballad “Airport Kisses”) and he offers up a contender for Song Title of the Year: “Supermodels With Gatling Guns.”

Grade: B+ - Goldmine Magazine

"The Consummate Showman"

"(Kelsey) has totally reinvented himself as a soul man! When I first saw him perform in this milieu at IPO Liverpool 2006, I was duly impressed; the man was Prince, Marvin Gaye and Smokey Robinson rolled into one! Kelsey is the consummate showman who gives it his all... Put on the CD, point the laser to track four, grab a loved one, and prepare yourself for a romantic evening as you dance to 'Everything My Heart Desires.'"
- David Bash, Shindig! Magazine, Oct. 2008 (UK)

- Shindig! Magazine (UK)

"Catchiest Song"

"(Norman's song) A Talent For Loving, is the catchiest song of the whole festival"
- David Bash, Organizer and MC of International Pop Overthrow Festival, Liverpool, 2006 - International Pop Overthrow Festival

"A Strong Album"

Norman was in een vorig leven gekend als de zanger van de Amerikaanse band Rush Hour Soul en hij vond dat het nu de hoogste tijd werd op zich op solovlak te profileren. Hij is afkomstig uit Cleveland, Ohio maar verblijft nu in de bergen van Noord-Hollywood.
Dat deze schijf een verrassing was wist ik meteen na het beluisteren van enkele nummers want dit is inderdaad een man die zijn publiek weet te entertainen.
Als opener koos hij voor de titeltrack ‘A Talent voor Loving’ wat ons meteen op het juiste spoor zet voor de rest van de volgende nummers.
Dat hij een sterke backingband rond zich heeft verzameld wordt keer op keer bij ieder nummer duidelijk gemaakt. Bryan Farrar is dan ook de geschikte gitarist voor dit soort muziek.
Op ‘Fall Out’ krijgen we duidelijk te maken met Prince-invloeden maar Norman behoudt zijn eigen identiteit, en luister goed naar de hoge stemmen... je waant je in het koninkrijk van Prince. Ook hier steekt Farrar weer sterk van wal met een knappe solo waarvan Prince eigenlijk maar kan dromen...
Met ‘Sucka’ gaan we terug in de tijd en de wah-wah-pedaal wordt hier uitstekend bediend alsof de tijd in de jaren zeventig is blijven stilstaan.
Met ‘Done Lost My Mind’ krijgen we een rustpauze tussen al het funky- en rockgeweld. Toch moet dit nummer niet onderdoen voor de andere want het geeft een rustig gevoel.
‘A Talent For Loving’ is een sterke schijf die door een grote doelgroep zal gesmaakt worden en dit dankzij de diversiteit van alle nummers.
Norman tourde reeds in Engeland enkele jaren terug maar wanneer gaan wij hem hier eens kunnen bewonderen want hij lijkt me wel een sterke podiumact. Heren, promotors, als je eens een buitenbeetje zoekt voor je volgende zomerfestival...
- Keys & Chords (Belgium) (Feb 08)


"Huckleberry Finn" - Digital single, released July 30, 2013
"Huckleberry Finn" - Official music video, released July 30, 2013.
"On The Rebound" - CD, released Oct. 2, 2012
"On The Rebound" - Digital single, released Aug. 7, 2012
"Your Majestic Rejection" - Digital single, released May 15, 2012
"A Talent For Loving" - CD released 8 January 2008.

All titles are available at, iTunes, and more



The Clark Kent of Soul. The Disco Mystic. Norman Kelsey is on a mission to help you groove all night. He returns with his new album On The Rebound, the follow-up to A Talent For Loving. The new disc is filled with brass-laden pop tunes and heart-stopping ballads. Norman is supporting the release with full band performances and intimate acoustic sets in select markets. His live band, the Inimitables, features Adam Marsland (keyboard); Evie Sands (guitar); Teresa Cowles (bass) and Kevin Jarvis (drums).

The latest single from On The Rebound is "Huckleberry Finn," released on July 30, 2013. The single was accompanied by an official music video directed by Andrew Shuford. The song is about Norman's own personal artistic journey; tinged with a rootsy 70's R&B vibe. It's Summertime's new groove.

Norman is originally from Cleveland, but now hails from North Hollywood, CA. He is of mixed heritage and is proud of his family's roots in Scotland and Harlem, NY. He grew up on a steady diet of the Bee Gees, Beatles and Michael Jackson. He draws comparisons to Lenny Kravitz, Prince and Andy Gibb. Norman's goal with each album is to create a record with varied flavors, reminiscent of a Summer day back when radio would spin pop, funk, rock, disco, R&B ballads and stadium anthems back-to-back.

Norman recorded On The Rebound at Karma Frog studios in Reseda, CA with producer Adam Marsland. The album features ten original songs that continue the musical journey of his first record drawing inspiration from Mark Twain and the Gilded Age to the Dawn of Disco. Norman worked with an assortment of acclaimed musicians, including drummers DJ Bonebrake (X) and Kevin Jarvis; vocalists Evie Sands and Teresa Cowles; saxophonist Larry O. Williams (GAP band) and trumpeter Rahmlee Davis of the Phenix Horns (Earth, Wind & Fire). The record dropped on October 2, 2012.

For his Sophisticated & Solo acoustic tour, in advance of the release, Norman played a series of select dates in Britain in May, 2012, including stops at the Cavern Club and the Notting Hill Arts Club in London; and Los Angeles. He returned to the UK for the fourth time in May, 2013 for shows in London, Manchester and Liverpool.

Norman's solo journey, after being the lead singer and bassist of Rush Hour Soul, began in earnest with the release of A Talent For Loving. It followed on the heels of his first tour of the UK, which visited London, York, Sheffield and Liverpool, where his music was well-received. The title track "A Talent For Loving" was recorded at Monnow Valley Studio in Monmouth, Wales. The song's official video was directed by William Archer and shot on location in London.

Several songs from A Talent For Loving made an impact on radio and TV; including:

Stephen King's "A Good Marriage"

BBC6's The Craig Charles Funk & Soul Show. 

NBC's "Up All Night" episode: Day After Valentine's Day

NBC's "Parks & Recreation" episode: Fancy Party

ABC's "Eli Stone" 

"Gossip Girl" Dove Soap promo

"Las Vegas"

Norman, a proud voting member of the recording academy (NARAS), publishes his music through his own company, Mighty Ohio Music (BMI). He is married and resides in North Hollywood, CA.