I know; you didn't see that coming, did ya? When Doggy Style hit I was a 23-year-old knucklehead running the streets of New Orleans. I was working through a temp service called Holly Temp that was located on St. Claude Ave. I was able to work from sun up to sun down, drink a 40 oz. of St. Ides malt liquor and then start all over again. Ah..youth is truly wasted on the young.Read More
If neosoul music is a religion then Michael Eugene Archer, best know as D'Angelo is its high priest and Voodoo is its bible and the pinnacle of the movement. This record came out at another one of those marked moments in my life where so many things were changing in profound ways. Instead of giving you a review of the record that you could easily find anywhere I'd rather write about how the music affected me during that time.Read More
Of course, there was going to be more Prince on my list....c'maaaaaahhhhn! Lovesexy is Prince at one of his most brilliant moments. His tenth studio album was released on May 10, 1988, just over a year after Sign O' the Times which received critical praise and a Grammy nomination for Album of the Year Coincidentally, the 30 year anniversary was a couple of days ago on May 10. Lovesexy was issued as a substitute record after the last minute cancellation of the infamous Black Album which was planned for release as a follow up to Sign O' the Times but wouldn't officially see the light of day for many years.Read More
It's important for me to say that the records on this list of mine aren't arranged in order of favor but more in the order that they've come to mind for this project. If I listed them in terms of favor I would say that Tommy Sims Peace and Love would come in between 2 and 4. I was working at Rasputin Records in San Leandro, Ca. where on paydays we were able to dig through the promo box and take a few CDs. I came across this one by accident and was simply attracted to the picture of his hands draped across a Fender Jazz Bass. What I heard when I got it home was life-changing and I'm not screwing around...it was life-changing and that record remained a part of almost daily play for the next two years.
Tommy Sims is a prolific songwriter, bassist, and producer that has been in and around the background for a long time.... Tommy co-wrote Eric Clapton's "Change the World". To my knowledge, this is Tommy's only solo record and it sounds like if he only was ever going to make one record for himself it would be this one. That's the way that I've always heard it. There is nothing out of place or contrived, no filler.
Peace and Love feels like, reads like and sounds like a book. Perfectly bookended with a cover and reprise of "Which Way" by Jim Croce, Sims takes us on a journey of self, love won and love lost and social justice. This album is just beautiful to me, from the steady funk groove of "100" to meticulous songwriting, production, and performance of "Love's Patience". The record does what I want a record to do. It makes me feel. It doesn't just make me dance and while dancing is a perfectly fine activity born of perfectly fine emotion that is usually described as "happiness". It makes me feel a full range of emotions that I sometimes embrace and sometimes run away from.