Artist: John Legend
Title: “Get Lifted”
Format: Compact disc (Spotify)
John Legend’s debut album, “Get Lifted,” catapulted him to stardom, Grammy awards and heaps of critical praise.
I picked up this record because of “Ordinary People,” a timeless soul crooner that showcases Legend’s honeyed voice.
Being on Kanye West’s G.O.O.D. Music label informs both the composition and production, an R&B flavor with a knowing nod to hip-hop.
The record yields guest spots to West and Snoop Dogg, who fly in to give street cred to something that might otherwise be dismissed as an adult neo-soul alternative.
Another criticism is that sometimes, Legend sounds too much like his ’70s soul influences and not enough like himself. Considering “Get Lifted” is a debut album, that is more easily forgiven.
I’ll have to check out “Once Again” or “Evolver” to see if Legend improved upon this formula and developed his own voice.
Our Music Year is Daily Republic popular culture writer Nick DeCicco’s yearlong online review in 2012 of albums he had previously not listened to. The reviews will appear in print on their corresponding days during 2013. Reach him at 427-6966 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/ndeciccodr.