Texas Native Edwina Gray is ready to help you breeze through the summer with her melodic take on r&b. Flashback Forward, is her baby that she has curated and poured all the essential feelings that is missing in today’s current music. She has called it “a representation of the call to get back to the love and fun” and indeed she delivered. Her upcoming project is an eccentric take that oozes the essence of the old r&b elements that we all know and love, while still maintaining a fresh and current sound. She has been singing since the age of 5 and has that church background that can be heard throughout her riffs and runs as she flows through each song. Over the course of nine songs and thirty-minutes you will ride along on her journey of love and life as a very grown, black woman.
The introduction track, “Butterscotch LemonDrop,” opens with sultry harmonies over a late 80’s/early 90’s reminiscent beat. Edwina takes you on a journey with her as she dives into the emotions of growing feelings for a new love interest as it has her smitten and ready to take it to a next level. It focuses on the good, butterflies in your stomach side of love. The happiness and excitement of seeing your special person and craving more of their presence. It is the perfect vibe for those summer rides with your boo or even something to bop to as you get ready for a night out with the ladies. A vibrant introduction of what else is to come from the project.
With Flashback Forward, you feel a whirlwind of emotions as Edwina flows from each track and topic. From a demand to be loved right and standards met to being receptive to being loved wholeheartedly. “Temperature” is a soul ballad that deep dives into vulnerability and having the willingness to give yourself to someone, while also claiming your “territory” and telling the others to move around. “Open Up” is a beautiful twist to Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrel’s iconic “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough.” It speaks about being the ultimate ride or die chick for your man, but also maintaining self-worth. Knowing that even with loving you as hard as I may, I still love me just as much and expect the same energy to be reciprocated. But love isn’t the only feeling being explored throughout this ride. There are fun trap-like beats with guest rap features that celebrate confidence and accomplishments.
“Rejoice” is a fun track where she is joined by her mother and sister as they bounce back & forward on the beat with catchy queen-like mantras. “Been bout it! Been had it! Been got it! First to do it! True to it! You knew it!” Caption-worthy phrases for the IG posts. Overall, Flashback Forward, is r&b to the core that bounces from old school r&b with a twist to today's current sound. I found myself hearing characteristics of Jill Scott and Erykah Badu while also hearing fresh sounds that can’t quite become compared to anyone else. That is what excites me the most. It sounds familiar, but also original. It is something that can be enjoyed from all ages of life. I look forward to hearing more in the future from Edwina.
-Sabrae D. Thompkins