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Sound Off – Jennifer Hudson

Posted by ThatsMyJamRadio on January 11, 2009

The latest albums making noise

The third season of American Idol featured the powerhouse trio of Fantasia, LaToya London and Jennifer Hudson. Though success came quickly for Fantasia and somewhat for London, Hudson remained quiet for a few years until her big-screen debut in Dreamgirls opposite Beyoncé and Jamie Foxx. Upon winning an Oscar for her performance in the movie, the questions from everyone revolved around when Hudson would release her first album.

The wait was over once her self-titled disc dropped in September. The set is lead by “Spotlight,” an uptempo groove that epitomizes the best of today’s non-hip-hop-infused R&B and showcases Hudson’s powerful range. This doesn’t, however, stop the diva from taking it to the streets on “Pocketbook,” a humorous empowerment anthem punctuated by a tight flow from Ludacris.

The guest appearances continue on “What’s Wrong (Go Away),” which features T-Pain‘s signature, Roger & Zapp-esque computer voice, and on “I’m His Only Woman” with Fantasia. The latter is reminiscent of Shirley Brown‘s “Woman to Woman,” though in parts more accurately channels Jewell‘s street remake from the ’90s.

“Can’t Stop the Rain” showcases Hudson trying to console a young girl who tragically lost her family in a drunk driving accident, which, when one possesses the knowledge of Hudson’s own losses last year, seems especially bittersweet. Perhaps that’s why “We Gon’ Fight” is particularly uplifting, as Hudson vehemently straps up to do what’s necessary to keep her relationship strong.

The collection is a strong initial effort and, when coupled with the tragedies she’s recently experienced, forecasts some potentially strong music in the future once she’s weathered this storm.

That’s My Jam’s Rating:
5. Get It Now
4. Get It On Sale
3. Get It As a Gift
2. Get It To a CD Exchange Store
1. Don’t Get It At All

Track List:
1. “Spotlight”
2. “If This Isn’t Love”
3. “Pocketbook” with Ludacris
4. “Giving Myself”
5. “What’s Wrong (Go Away)” with T-Pain
6. “My Heart”
7. “You Pulled Me Through”
8. “I’m His Only Woman” with Fantasia
9. “Can’t Stop the Rain”
10. “We Gon’ Fight”
11. “Invisible”
12. “And I Am Telling You I’m Not Going”
13. “Jesus Promised Me a Home Over There”

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