Friday, September 19, 2008

Jem's 'Down to Earth' album


She made a splash with her 2004 debut Finally Woken. Four years later she has returned with her sophomore album Down to Earth (ATO Records) and if you thought that there is a jinx Welsh singer Jemma Griffiths will not disappoint with this latest offering. I decided to give this album a listen yesterday and all night last night and being that this is a review for the album I have decided to give this as an opportunity to be an open letter to her.

I love that within the liner notes that you have appreciated the opportunity to enjoy music. Despite the fact that she was given exposure by the radio KCRW in Los Angeles and by my idol Madonna, Jem is truly becoming that artist that everyone should hear. So what is all this leading to you ask? Well, it means that the songwriting her on this current album is truly amazing. Not only is Jem showing that she can connected with people and bringing them together but she is also showing her interest in singing in Spanish ("I Want You To...") and Japanese ("Aciiid").

The track, "Amazing" is a standout thanks in large part to it being featured on the soundtrack to the "Sex In the City" movie but for me personally and for those who loss a person sudden the track that is truly great is "You Will Make It" featuring Vusi Mahlasela. Surrounded is Jem's lush vocals (I'm not hitting on her) it is the piano performed by Jeff Almajian and string arrangement of the Sonus String Quartet that makes this track special. When I caught myself and said that I needed to listen to this track again without interruption I was brought to tears.

Jem Griffiths, if you are out there somewhere and if and when you promote this album PLEASE perform, "You Will Make It!"

The songs are great on this album.

Rating: 4 out of 5

P.S. Jem, if you are anywhere in Hollywood, CA and see a person wearing a Madonna shirt that's me!

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