Exploring the Soul and Rock Genius of RES

Listen to 5 essential tracks from progressive soul and rock chanteuse Shareese Ballard, known widely as RES.

Classically-trained Philly-native RES grew up on sound stylings of Gamble and Huff, Bobby Womack and Teddy Pendergrass. After graduating from Temple University, she was a highly sought-after singer/songwriter when MCA Records signed her to a record deal.

With a kaleidoscopic sound that incorporated alternative rock, rap, reggae, trip-hop and drum n’ bass, her debut album “How I Do” was a shot heard around the world of alternative and progressive soul, quickly and demonstratively establishing RES as an artist with a distinctive voice and unique story to tell.

Click on the player above to hear “5 on 5: RES” and get a feel for the Philly songstress with these five essential tracks:

The Progressive Underground’s 5 on 5: RES

1. They-Say Vision

Off of her debut album, How I Do, “They Say Vision” put RES on the map. This song transcended musical categories and boundaries, as she demonstrated her unique voice and ability to story-tell. “How I Do” has been cited as one of the most influential of the neo-soul era.

2. Golden Boys

Also featured on How I Do, “Golden Boys” highlighted the artists’ sound versatility. “Golden Boys” sent a message to her listeners, cautioning them against the praise of false idols. “How I Do” had the power to send a message and blend musical genres without sounding calculated.

3. For Who You Are

RES used her ability to craft lyrics to tell long-lasting and enduring stories that served as a strong commentary on black culture. Her listeners found that her music served as a place to embrace pro-feminist and female empowerment themes. Off of her independent 2008 album, Black Girls Rock, her soulful rock sound, combined with her empowering storytelling themes, were showcased in “For Who You Are.”

4. Rhiannon

From her EP Refried Mac, RES’ reinterpretation of the track “Rhiannon” was an ode to her musical heroes, Fleetwood Mac.

5. Invincible – Brian Cid feat. RES

Serving deep house sounds, RES collaborates with producer Brian Cid to give us “Invincible.”

RES has stayed busy musically throughout the years, releasing independent masterworks, performing as part of the hip hop/electro outfit Idle Warship. She actively tours and works with numerous collaborators, expanding her already eclectic tastes into even more expansive musical territory.

Haleemah Aqel contributed to this web story.

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