One of those displaced gems is Nelly Furtado. A couple of months ago, I bought the CD Whoa, Nelly!. I listened to it a couple of times, then went on to other things. The last couple of weeks, however, I've been listening to it again. And again and again. And I'm not tired of it yet.
The music is a smooth but energetic blend that lands, to my ear, somewhere between modern reggae & trip-hop. Nelly's voice sounds to me
like a cross between Rickie Lee Jones & Edith Piaf. Yeah, really. (Nelly herself reminds me of Jenny S., the best two-stepping partner I ever had. That might be because of the curly hair & wholesome sensual look...but I digress). The lyrics are not inane pop crap, and her turn of phrase (I understand that she writes her own music) is delightful. Strings of words that just flow through the mind; it's lovely. The music is multi-layered, with the occasional brass accent, and there is plenty of skillfully placed bass undertone.
All in all, this is a CD I highly recommend, and I look forward to her future releases.