3MMR: EPISODE 13 – “Like Janet” by Relli Scanelli

Relli Scanelli has one of the most unique sounds on the Arizona Hip-Hop Scene!

Now that we got that out of the way, “what’s good this week, family?” Of course, it’s Wednesday so I’m back with more untapped AZ Hip-Hop talent, and this week we feature the incredibly versatile Relli Scanelli, and his 90’s influenced tribute to one Mrs. Janet Jackson, on his syrupy sweet single, “Like Janet”. 

Relli is a producer/rapper/singer that hails from Detroit, Michigan, and makes a solid attempt of the holy trinity on every track: produce the beat, lay the vocals, lay the raps. Triple double, no assists. On “Like Janet”, we hear Relli crooning to his early 90’s dream girl, and he makes sure we understand she is on his mind all day. By the end of the song you couldn’t be any clearer on this concept, and the repetition of the phrase “on my mind, on my mind, all day” becomes a bit unbearable on an otherwise very listenable song.  

Relli delivers an organic sound that matches his style with frequent melodies and use of lines like “I’m trying to see your wardrobe malfunction/ Ohh baby tell me what’s your function/ She says I’m all about control / Well I guess we’ll wait a while/”. While these lyrics lack many traditionally consistent hip-hop conventions i.e.  similes, metaphors, puns, etc, the easy-going nature and swooning vocal tones mesh extremely well with the beat, and the feeling Relli is looking to convey. Relli knows how to create and sustain a sound that quickly evolves into a mood, or vibe. Over the course of many songs in his catalog, he does this consistently, in part, because he makes his own beats. Eventually, on “Like Janet” the same vibe he establishes dissipates, because of the extended length of the track. Relli has a lot to say, but 4 minutes is too long for any artist that isn’t Drake, Kendrick Lamar, or J. Cole.

“Like Janet” provides superior sound quality because of Relli’s unique vocals and ability to what I call “R&B adlib”.  There’s a stark example of these adlibs at 1:16 where Relli sings, “that just how love is”, and suddenly you’re bombarded with two other saccharin voices that harmonize beautifully to create a throwback sound to the likes of a Soul For Real or Tevin Campbell. Again at 1:43, the light harmonizing adlibs continue to add another level of vocal depth. “Like Janet” get a 7 out of 10   this week as it accomplishes the mission of setting the mood for the now 30 something 90’s chicks, but forgets to quit while ahead. Please hit the link below and checkout standout tracks, “Where the Palm Trees Grow”, and “Belle Isle”, two of my favorites from Relli’s most recent release, “Where the Palms Trees Grow: Season One”. Thanks for checking in with the 3MMR this week. Peace and love as always and remember SUPPORT YOUR OWN!

Special thank you to @pandabase for putting me on to Relli Scanelli’s music!

Written by Bo | Follow Bo on IG and Twitter!