Growing up in Philadelphia, Bilal Oliver (better known as Bilal) lived in a world full of church music, soul and jazz. Taking his passion to New York, he performed frequently at night clubs, eventually forming strong relationships with artists such as Common, The Roots, Q-Tip and J Dilla.
Labeling his music as "jazz-fusion/rock type funk," the genre-hopping crooner released his sophomore album Airtight's Revenge last year — his first record in nine years. Interscope infamously shelved 2006's Love For Sale when it leaked online.
"[Common] started calling me Airtight and it kind of stuck," Oliver tells World Cafe host David Dye about the album title. "The revenge is talking about my last record that was bootlegged. It never came out, but it started a lot of buzz underground.
"Even though it was bootlegged, the revenge is that we're still going strong." (link)
Spoon "My Mathematical Mind" Stranger Than Fiction Soundtrack
Devotchka "100 Other Lovers" 100 Lovers
Keane "Stop for a Minute" Night Train
Raphael Saadiq "Stone Rollin'" Stone Rollin'
Bilal "Think it Over" Recorded Live for the World Cafe
Bilal "Little One" Recorded Live for the World Cafe
Bilal "Levels" Recorded Live for the World Cafe
Iron & Wine "Tree by the River" Kiss Each Other Clean
Primitive Radio Gods "Standing Outside a Broken Phone" Rocket
LCD Soundsystem "Home" This is Happening
Social Distortion "California Hustle and Flow" Hard Times & Nursery Rhymes
Deerhunter "Helicopter" Halcyon Digest
Aimee Mann "Freeway" @#%&! Smilers
Prince "Take Me With U" Purple Rain
Minus the Bear "My Time" Omni
David Wax Museum "Yes, Maria, Yes" Everything is Saved
Bob Dylan "Mozambique" Desire
Poi Dog Pondering "Love Vigilantes" Fruitless EP
Old 97's "Champaign Illinois" The Grand Theater, Vol. 1
The Subdudes "All the Time in the World" Primitive Streak
Van Morrison "Days Like This" Days Like This
Sufjan Stevens "I Walked" The Age of Adz
Warpaint "Ashes to Ashes" Ashes to Ashes