Trying To Get To You

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Introducing Soul Lite

What first drew me to soul music as a teenager was the both the pain and longing I heard in it and the possibility of transcending that same pain and fulfilling the longing. Maybe that's why when I hear an album like Joss Stone's new one, Introducing Joss Stone, I bristle when people refer to it as a "soul" record. It occurs for me as a hollow album, showcasing the considerable vocal talent of an artist who has absolutely nothing to say and says it even less interestingly. Great soul singers can make the most banal, cliched lyric feel profound. Joss Stone could sing a song with lyrics with a Dylan-like depth, and it would come off as empty. Don't get fooled by this one - it's not even in the vicinity of true soulfulness.


Anonymous said...

I was standing in line waiting for a prescription last week and heard one of her songs. Not sure of the title 'Messin' with my mind'?

I just don't get all the critical praise heaped on this singer. Aguilera sings with more conviction and pain in her own way. I always think a great soul singer sings to 'you' the listener; when I hear Stone I can almost see her in the recording booth with the lyrics in front of her, turning up the angst. Is it me or is she just not 'believable' as an artist..?

There is a complete disconnect between what comes out of her mouth and any kind of emotional reaction within me (the listener). Sorry to rant, but this one really gets under my skin. Remember her duet with Melissa Etheridge, I think it was the Grammys - she struggled to keep up and I wouldnt call Melissa a 'soul singer'! ....

Ben Lazar said...

I agree - I don't find her believable as an artist at all. She rings completely hollow to me. Great soul singing is about emotional depth - and she's living in the shallow end of the pool.

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