Friday, October 21, 2016

Tammy Trent-Tammy Trent (1995)


ORIGINAL POSTING DATE: October 21, 2016

And now here's something to satisfy the spiritual soul: the self-titled debut album by Tammy Trent, a Christian contemporary pop singer whom I've just had the pleasure of listening to for forty-five minutes of my peaceful Friday night. This lady looks to be quite the prominent force within the world of CCM music, as showcased on her official website at https://www.tammytrent.com/. Meanwhile, she's surely a force to be reckoned with right here at "The Music Spectrum", where she brings a delightful smooth jazz/pop sound and a supply of heartwarming messages that both religious and non-religious music listeners will adore! When I scanned the track-listing, I wasted no time in jumping straight to a familiar song that the popular music world has heard time and time again: "You've Got A Friend". This Tammy Trent remake of the Carole King favorite is instantly appealing on all fronts—the vocals, the chilled, graceful rhythm and, of course, the unforgettable lyrics (that 'winter, spring, summer or fall, all you have to do is call' gets to me every time!); much deserved is the instrumental reprising of it later on. Then jumping back to the album's proper beginning—"Emotional" was indeed quite 'emotional' for me for multiple reasons: her praises about all of the wonderful things her Creator has done for her (her words of ' I've got peace, love and unspeakable joy ' declared midway say it all), the beautiful background music making my ears happy, and then the fact that she vocally reminded me of two other familiar singers whom I adore from the popular music mainstream: Janet Jackson and Karyn White. The Janet Jackson comparison, in particular, is very noticeable on "Hear My Heart" (ahh, the sweet sounds of the trumpet are so amazing here!) and especially on "Love's Not So Far Away", where Tammy's shouting of ' what's love? '—before the subsequent breakdown defining what true love is—eerily reminds me of the way Miss Janet shouts ' let's go! ' on her memorable 80's hit, "Escapade"! It's that tight, mid-90's swing that makes "Love's Not So Far Away" an awesome jam, and I'd have to second that notion for "Your Love Is 4 Always", where the meaningful message of eternal protection amidst the pop goodness and the saxophone sexiness is all in the title. It's a celebration reminding us that dreams do come true when we smile through pain and focus on things above on "Starting To Believe", the music arrangement being so beautiful that some listeners may even be driven to tears of joy. I really like what Tammy has to say on "Supposed To Be". Here, she makes a stand and declares that he wants a man who walks with the spirit and who will be faithful to her. It's almost like a continuation of previous track, the surprise dance jam "Someone To Love", where she's searching for that special someone to love, but further defines those qualities that the someone should have. "Someone To Love" has a couple of fun moments: the unexpected rap midway by the guest male MC—keeping with the theme of that male MC/female vocalist formula that was so prominent in the house/Eurodance movement of that decade—and MC's cheeky remark in response to the song's title itself: ' Doesn't everybody? '. Ending the soul-lifting celebration on a peaceful note (and quite literally, thank to the delicate piano and the soothing slow groove) is "Let It Go", where she encourages those dealing with the stresses and pains of life to just let it go and embrace the light:

1. Emotional
2. Your Love Is 4 Always
3. The Way To Love
4. Starting To Believe
5. You've Got A Friend
6. Someone To Love
7. Supposed To Be
8. Hear My Heart
9. Love's Not So Far Away
10. You've Got A Friend (Reprise)
11. Let It Go

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