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This was the album that opened my eyes and ears to the wonderful Gregory Porter. This is his second album.
I know this is naughty to admit, but the breakout year of this album was released and collided with a release from Kurt Elling, another amazing Jazz artist. I was, only slightly mind you, confused between the two voices I know, sorry.
Kurt Elling was firing on all cylinders and still is but Gregory Porter came back from releasing 'Water' his first album and out of nowhere he stormed the playlist and everyone was talking about him due to this album
The album for me, was nothing like anything I had heard in Jazz, it was a step away from the traditionalists and with a more blues and gospel feel than I was used to hearing, his faith really shines through here just like his latest release 'Liquid Spirits.'
The album tracks include
Painted On Canvas
On My Way To Harlem
Real Good Hands
The Way You Want To Live
When Did You Learn
Imitation Of Life
God Bless The Child
The tracks are epic and haunting on this album with the exception of On my way to Harlem, dare you to sit down to that one!
GOD BLESS THE CHILD
Will move you to tears. It is stripped back and Gregory Porters vocals are so exposed you can hear how he controls his voice, the notes, the arrangements, it stunning.
THE LIONS SONG
Once again, he pulls you in with his storytelling and spells out each word that drives deep into your soul, man it is that good. He knows what he is singing and why he is singing it and he wants you as a listener to go with him on that journey.
A song from a man about a woman who dances around his cage and she knows it.
ON MY WAY TO HARLEM
A song where he proudly sings about his roots, no matter how far he goes nothing can take the place in his heart for the place or the people.
Is memorable for the scat singing in, haven't heard that for a while!
For me, this was a showcase of talent that introduced me to a singer I can see myself following for a long time. The added bonus is that he has made that transition to mainstream recently so we get to hear more of him!
This album I felt was definitely more romantic than Liquid Spirits and more Nostalgic.
REAL GOOD HAND
Hate to say it, but it wouldn't be an honest review if I didn't add or warn you, is slightly cheesy. He is asking for someone's hand in marriage but we are hearing him talking to the parents, or singing really, telling them he's a good man, not really my cup of tea, I tend to skip this one, soz
The album prices obviously vary, do shop around this is available on Itunes and I brought it there for £9.99 the deluxe version was £10.99
The duration of this album is 01:02:02, savour every second.
Disc #1 Tracklisting
1 Painted on Canvas
2 Be Good (Lion's Song)
3 On My Way to Harlem
4 Real Good Hands
5 The Way You Want to Live
6 When Did You Learn
7 Imitation of Life
8 Mother's Song
9 Our Love
10 Bling Bling
11 Work Song
12 God Bless the Child