Magazine article Ebony

Sounding Off

Magazine article Ebony

Sounding Off

Article excerpt

With talent and passion, PRU debuts a refreshing self-titled Capitol recording. The Texas native draws inspiration from spirited gospel, cool blues and jazz, sultry soul and edgy rock. Among memorable tunes are "Candles," which takes its groove from the Miracles' "Tracks of My Tears," the moody, soulful "Prophecy of a Flower," the poignant slow-jam "Hazy Shades," and Pru's take on Sade's "Smooth Operator." She showcases a rich, earthy voice and lyrical talent influenced by ancient scripture and great poetry.

Music lovers young and old--those who favor hip jazz, hip-hop and R&B--all will enjoy master guitarist GEORGE BENSON'S ANTHOLOGY (Warner Archives/Rhino). The two-disc collection offers 32 outstanding performances from the artist's 46-year career, during which he released more than 30 albums. Among the favorites on Disc One are a live recording of "Summertime" with Hubert Laws, "Breezin'," "This Masquerade," "The Greatest Love of All" and "On Broadway." On Disc Two are "Give Me the Night," "Turn Your Love Around," "Love All the Hurt Away," featuring Aretha Franklin, and "Mt. Airy Road" with Earl Klugh. Throughout, the self-taught guitarist who started performing as a child also showcases his angelic voice.

Though only 21, USHER has quite a reputation to uphold, and he does just that with ALL ABOUT U (LaFace/Arista) with producers Babyface, Jermaine Dupri and She'kspere. The catchy first single, "Pop Ya Collar," was heating up the airwaves even before the official release, and other gems follow, including the Latin hip-hop-flavored "She Got the Part" and "U-Turn," which spotlights the artist's own dance sensation. Though he has delved into other areas of entertainment, including acting, Usher proves he has not forsaken his recording roots.

KEITH SWEAT helps you get your groove on with DIDN'T SEE ME COMING (Elektra) on which he continues to show his mastery of layering hip-hop and R&B rhythms with his grooves. …

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