Res channels Stevie Nicks on ‘Refried Mac’

The singer's newest album, "Refried Mac," drops tomorrow. Credit: Getty Images
The singer’s newest album, “Refried Mac,” drops tomorrow.
Credit: Getty Images

She’s the soundtrack to real hip hop.

Her voice howls like a ghostly siren in the background on Talib Kweli’s “Too Late.” Then, without flinching, she can turn straight diva on her solo hit, “They Say Vision.”

Her name is Shareese Renee Ballard, better known by her stage name, Res. Born in Southwest Philadelphia and raised on the Main Line, she’s the true definition of fresh local talent. Res started singing when she was 8, listening to her parents Motown records, then experimenting with Broadway tunes in high school. She grew up around the corner from the late, great Teddy Pendergrass.

She signed her first demo deal at age 19. In 2001, she released her debut album, “How I Do,” with its first single, “Golden Boys,” being famously remixed by rapper Nas.

“I’m the hometown hero, right?,” Res tells Metro. “It’s great being from a city that has so many great musicians, but that wasn’t the scene I lived in. I wasn’t in the clubs and all that growing up. I met The Roots and Jill [Scott] after I started doing music. Philly has great music, but the camaraderie isn’t there.”

On the surface, she may appear to be a hip-hop junkie, but that’s far from the truth. Res has experimented with everything from classical music to ’80s retro pop. Her newest offering, “Refried Mac,” is a full album of Fleetwood Mac cover songs that she worked on with instrumentalist/producer Tom Spiker. It’s set to be released tomorrow, with pre-sales ongoing on iTunes and Amazon.

“People told me I sounded like Stevie Nicks and I was like, ‘Who is this girl?’” Res says. “I found out who she was and was like, ‘Oh, I know her. I love these songs.’”

Res has another offering, entitled “Reset,” loosely set to drop after the New Year. She’ll also be performing at World Cafe Live in University City on Nov. 17. Like with everything Res does, expect the unexpected.

Res and Kweli: Best friends
Listening to Res talk, it’s no wonder the biggest influence on her career has been Talib Kweli. The deep-thinking rapper was the one who gave Res her big break, at a time when not a lot of people would put their money where their mouth was.

“When we first met, I didn’t have a deal yet,” Res says. “He told me, “Look, I’m a fan and I have the means to do it [help her], and he did it. A lot of people talk, but don’t do anything. I’m pretty lucky.”

Kweli and Res have been friends since the early 2000s and formed the group Idle Warship in 2008. Their debut album, “Habits of the Heart,” was released in 2011.

“She’s one of my best friends,” Kweli says. “She’s one of the greatest live performers I’ve ever seen. She has such a unique sound. It’s time for her to shine.”



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

California passes 'yes-means-yes' campus sexual assault bill

Californian lawmakers passed a law on Thursday requiring universities to adopt "affirmative consent" language in their definitions of consensual sex, part of a nationwide drive to curb sexual assault on…

National

Syrian refugees top 3 million, half of all…

By Stephanie NebehayGENEVA (Reuters) - Three million Syrian refugees will have registered in neighboring countries as of Friday, but many remain trapped by the advance…

International

North Korean leader's money manager defects in Russia:…

A senior North Korean banking official who managed money for leader Kim Jong Un has defected in Russia and was seeking asylum in a third country, a South Korean newspaper…

Local

MAP: New York City Street Closures August 29,…

The Department of Transportation and NYPD said there may be residual delays near all of the street closures on August 29, 31 and 31. Several streets and avenues will be…

Going Out

'Friends' coffeehouse Central Perk coming to NYC —…

"Friends" is coming back for a one-off special: "The One with the Free Coffee." Warner Bros. is bringing a pop-up replica of Central Perk, the…

Movies

Interview: 'As Above, So Below' directors: 5 ways…

The fraternal directors of the found footage horror "As Above, So Below" dish on the best ways to frighten the bejesus out of audiences.

Movies

Criterion's new Jacques Demy box mixes the light…

Jacques Demy, the most effervescent of French New Wave filmmakers, gets a Criterion box all to himself, with classics like "The Umbrellas of Cherbourg."

Entertainment

Comedian Joan Rivers, 81, rushed to New York…

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Acerbic comedian and fashion critic Joan Rivers was rushed to Mount Sinai Hospital in New York on Thursday after she reportedly…

NFL

3 things we learned in the Giants preseason…

The final score didn’t matter — a 16-13 win by the Giants — but it would’ve been nice to finally see Big Blue’s new-look offense get on track.

NFL

NFL Power Rankings: Seahawks, Broncos, Patriots, 49ers start…

NFL Power Rankings: Seahawks, Broncos, Patriots start at top

U.S. Soccer

5 facts about new England captain Wayne Rooney

Manchester United striker Wayne Rooney was named as the new England captain by coach Roy Hodgson on Thursday.

NFL

Jets vs. Eagles: 3 things to watch

A win on Thursday night at the Eagles would give the Jets a 3-1 record and just their second winning preseason under head coach Rex Ryan.

Style

Trend: White hot on the 2014 Emmy's red…

White was one of the big trends on the Emmy's red carpet.

Food

Recipe: Samuel Adams beer-marinated grilled shrimp

Summer calls for two things: a cold beer and light food. Sam Adams' Latitude 48 IPA fairly bursts with citrus notes, making it an ideal marinade…

Wellbeing

4 healthy ingredient swaps to make your meals…

When it comes to eating well, everyone knows they could be doing better. But cooking in an apartment on a busy schedule is a recipe…

Wellbeing

Heart trumps brain when it comes to movies…

When you need a good cry, do you reach for the movie that’s “based on a true story”? Science says you’re giving your brain far…