Royce Hall wants some “Front Porch Love” and gives us some too.

“All of my thoughts were that of sundresses, rocking chairs, front porches, dancing barefoot in the grass, beautiful brown skin with smiles and joy”

Royce Hall

That statement is the kind of delighting picture Royce Hall paints with his new single Front Porch Love.

The Atlanta-based artist wants to spread positivity and awareness through multiple ways of self-expression. He is a recording artist, multi-instrumentalist, composer, MC, vocalist, actor, screenplay and poetry writer but he also commits as a transgender black man activist and public speaker for the LGBTQIA and black communities. Man of many talents, Royce Hall has some genuine love to give to his audience and proves it with the effortless Front Porch Love.

The track starts acapella with some doo-wop inspired vocals and a gospel melody instantly brings some deep-south roots to the song. When the instruments join in, many more influences show up: the drums remind of a boom-bap hip-hop beat, the bass line sounds like a classic jazz double bass, and the keyboard adds a smooth neo-soul background. All the ingredients are here for Royce to start spreading his front porch love. The flow seems so natural that we get caught up right after the first couple of words. The tone of Royce’s vocals is androgynous and we can easily hear some Lauryn Hill in his voice. 

He slowly takes us to his catchy chorus:

“I wanna take my shoes off, put my feet up there

(Gimme that front porch love)

I wanna put my head off in your lap, you can scratch my scalp babe

(Gimme that front porch love)

I wanna feel the sun rays on Sundays all over my soul 

(Gimme that front porch love)”.

Here, he describes some simple moments of bliss, all deeply related to the kind of love he wants to give and receive. In a statement he tells us: “‘Front Porch Love’ is a soulful call for the manifestation and affirmation of long-standing, deep south, down-to-the-bone, sweet love.’ 

The song is all about the idea of that unconditional love that will last for a lifetime but it is also about Black Love as the song refers to the deep south Afro-American culture. 

“… from Georgia, or Alabama, or Mississippi or maybe a little further north.’

All those states known for racial discrimination and segregation are also the cradle of the Black American culture and the civil rights movement. That’s why Royce Hall list them and locate his love story in this meaningful area of the United States. With the notion of Black Love he claims more than just loving his partner: he loves himself, his skin color, his community and culture.  Isn’t it the first step before giving and receiving love? 

In the middle of these troubled current times Royce invites us to relax in the shelter of his front porch and reminds us that nothing is more important than believing in true love. So just sit back in the rocking chair with your loved one, play Front Porch Love loud and feel the good vibrations. 

Julien Portenguen

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