Ms. Nicole Willis is a vocalist, songwriter, producer, visual artist, radio disc jockey and entrepreneur from Brooklyn, New York based in Helsinki. Ms. Willis had recorded with group Repercussions as well as Curtis Mayfield in earlier days of her career but is most known for her collaborations with the Soul Investigators. Nicole Willis & The Soul Investigators have received critical acclaim, and have been pivotal artists on the soul revival scene. President Barack Obama personally set his Spotify playlist for his re-election campaign to include the group, and thus was turned on to other musical projects like the duo Cola & Jimmu, Ms. Nicole Willis and partner, musician Jimi Tenor.
With the various projects that Ms. Willis has been involved, she has performed in cities such as Nairobi, Saint Gallen, Glasgow, Paris, Weissbaden, Liverpool, Christchurch, New York, Modena, Stockholm, Saas Fee, Montreal, Osaka, Rome, Perth, Cologne, London, Los Angeles, Barcelona, Ollioules, Cork, Hamburg, Amsterdam, Tokyo, Auckland, Quebec City, Manchester, Edinburgh, Madrid, Sydney, Concarneau, Dublin, to name a few.
Ms. Willis is known as a stylist, not as in clothing per say but as in vocal stylist. She leaves the acrobatics for the circus and writes songs that can be infectious. Feeling Free, from the album Keep Reachin’ Up by Ms. Willis & The Soul Investigators won a Song Of The Year award from the seminal Gilles Peterson Worldwide brand, with home base at BBC Radio 1. Craig Charles digs her too, and plays her latest collaboration with Bosq (Whiskey Barons), titled Bad For Me, on the Craig Charles Funk And Soul Show on BBC Radio 6. So the consummate taste-makers laud her work. Ms. Willis skips through genres like noboby’s business as she does reggae with The Flexatones on the track Fresh, does torch song on Pizzicato One’s A Little Bit Of Soap and visits her roots with soulful house inflections in Cola & Jimmu. The house beginnings started with Repercussions’ Promise Me Nothing, with a garage remix from Masters At Work, Soul Makeover an excursion with Maurice Fulton & Jimi Tenor, which charted new electronica territories for neo soul, that shows off remixes from Roberto Rodriguez and GusGus. But perhaps Ms. Nicole Willis shines the most as the soul revival frontwoman as in her collaboration with Shawn Lee on Jigsaw and her continued collaborations with The Soul Investigators. After the second release with the band titled Tortured Soul, the outfit are set to release a third album this autumn, titled Happiness In Every Style.