The duo we always imagined, but didn’t know how badly we needed, is finally here. Brace yourself to be transported back decades to the old-school funk, smooth rhythm and blues and jazz era with a modern take — Bruno Mars and Anderson .Paak have joined forces for a new funk band, Silk Sonic, and the vibes are immaculate.
The duo's forthcoming album, "An Evening With Silk Sonic," is already completed, as revealed on Twitter by .Paak. Although the official release date hasn't been revealed, Silk Sonic released their first single, “Leave The Door Open,” accompanied by a sultry music video for the track, on March 5.
The music video for the debut single is set in a retro-vibed studio where the duo can be seen harmonizing their vocals and surrounded by the background musicians and vocalists for the track, transporting viewers back to the days of live-music jazz clubs. The vibe is incredibly suave, giving us a taste of what we can expect from Silk Sonic’s creations.
In addition to “Leave The Door Open,” the pair also released an opening track, titled “Silk Sonic Intro,” that sets the scene for our evening. Funk legend, Bootsy Collins, is the “special guest host” of the album, and takes the role of master of ceremonies on the opening track.
The project seems to be a musical experience of a night at the jazz club, and the duo could not be a better mix to pull it off.
In an interview with Apple Music’s Zane Lowe, Mars and .Paak spoke about the origins of their band, what it was like creating with each other, and their absolute need for listeners to experience this live.
"It was like, 'Well, want to come back tomorrow?'" Mars told Lowe. "And we kept coming up with music. It felt like why you fall in love with music in the first place. And jamming with your buddy … There’s no plan, just working out the parts and trying to excite each other."
The chemistry between Mars and .Paak is unmatched, both musicians feeding off of each other’s energy and heightening their talents.
“I’d never created music like that, with drums being the focus … Andy is this monster behind the drums and you’re going to hear that all over the album" Mars said about .Paak.
Mars also elaborated on the challenges of creating music that currently can not be experienced live, due to the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, but said he dreams of the day he can share "An Evening With Silk Sonic" with the world.
"We were in a situation right now for guys that grew up playing live. That's another thing. That's heartbreaking for it to be in the studio and trying to write songs, but the live element is gone," Mars said. "While I'm writing songs, that's a part of my whole thing. It goes to like, 'I can't wait till people hear this.' And it's also, 'I can't wait to play this for people. I can't wait to be with my band.'"
Bruno’s last album was 2016’s "24K Magic," which was awarded six Grammy Awards in 2017, while .Paak’s last was 2019’s "Ventura," which boasted features from Smokey Robinson, Lalah Hathaway, Jazmine Sullivan and André 3000.
This project could be the evolution of both of their careers, with .Paak beginning to blossom into the mainstream music industry and Mars being a certified veteran, this collaboration could transcend their legacy and bring modern music back to the old-school.