Tuesday, August 12, 2008

inthe SPOTLight: Matt Morris

inthe SPOTLight


The first release from the forthcoming, "The Un-American LP" on Tennman Records,
co-produced by Matt Morris, Justin Timberlake and Charlie Sexton.

I have made no bones that my 'reviews', this time around, are really celebrations. I don't feel I'm particularly qualified to judge another's hard work or efforts, especially in these delicate areas of songwriting and performance. My only requirement of my brothers is that they truly TRY their very best, never phoning in an opportunity to be exceptional when mediocre would still get them the same paycheck.

I'm so proud to be aware of Matt Morris and his contributions to so many artists that you've not only listened to, but have sung along with. This isn't going to be one of those name-dropping articles 'cause those names could over shadow the simple fact that they're just 'his friends' and in most cases, he's grown up with them. What I find all the more fascinating is that with powerful friends like that, he's remained in the shadows as a songwriter and producer when he's sooo talented as a vocalist and instrumentalist as well. Time has sweeten his gift, like berries on a vine and what we're about to hear in this major label release is nothing short of genius.

I first became aware of Matt, as I stumbled upon his indie-release, UnSpoken and instantly became a friend of his gut-wrenching lyrics and soaring vocals. He sang of Faith and Love with equal grace in a way that few could or ever had. I loved that release so much, I became obsessed to know more about him. As I discovered his musical pedigree, I still didn't get the answers for what I knew he was doing musically. He truly was authoring songs from another source beyond his life experience. I have waited patiently with his other fans and friends for this follow-up to that prophetic release with a special anticipation as we've been given a rare, up-close, behind the scenes listen and preview through his many web services, like Twitter and his official site, www.MattMorris.net . What's coming, soon, is going to truly establish this brother to his rightful place in rock-folk-soul history. The Un-American LP will be 'the release' others will undoubtedly ask you time and again, if you've heard it. So, get ready to truly become a MATT MORRIS fan, like the rest of us. You'll know fully then that I haven't written with a single hyperbole. He's just that special.

DON'T YOU DARE miss out on being one of the first to let him know how much you love his music. Click through the artwork and visit his page and get to know the man behind the music.


Monday, August 11, 2008

DESERTATIONS: Reflecting GOD's Glory

Yesterday, I responded to a query about life with the simple phrase, 'we were designed to glorify GOD'. At 51, I've observed that ALL our problems as an individual, people, nation and world, are a direct result and are in direct proportion to how much we understand that relationship. If our first and only response is 'how does my actions Glorify GOD?', we might find ourselves NOT doing most of what we do, that ultimately brings us pain and Him, shame.

Here's a challenge.., for 24 hours, ask yourself this question before you respond to your everyday choices and temptations.


In the end, make the decision you want.., but don't go blaming GOD for the collateral results if your intentions never were to bring him Glory or Honor.

Peace, In.

Reflecting God's Glory
by Os Hillman

"They will tell of the glory of Your kingdom and speak of Your might, so that all men may know of Your mighty acts and the glorious splendor of Your kingdom."
Psalm 145:11-12

How do you measure your effectiveness in God, or should you even be thinking like this?

The early Church turned the world upside down in that first century. What made them so effective? Was it their theology? Was it great preaching? Was it due to one man's influence apart from Jesus?The Scriptures are clear as to what made the early Church effective. It is at the core of God's heart, and it is quite simple. God desires to reflect His nature and power through every individual. When this happens, the world is automatically changed because those who reflect His glory affect the world.We serve a jealous God. He is a God who will not share His glory with anyone. God sets up situations in order to demonstrate His power through them. He has done this since the day He created man. His desire is to reflect His glory through you and me, so that all men may know of His mighty acts and the glorious splendor of His Kingdom. The apostle Paul understood this principle:

"My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit's power, so that your faith might not rest on men's wisdom, but on God's power." (1 Cor. 2:4-5)

If you do not see His glory being reflected through your life, then you need to ask why. He has promised to do so if we will walk in obedience to His commands.

Friday, August 01, 2008


I've been thinking all day that I've needed to say something, but didn't quite know what was brewing beneath the surface. I think I have words now, thanks to Lalah Hathaway, the talented daughter of the late, great, Donny Hathaway.

I've been listening to Lalah's latest release, Self-Portrait and the more I listen to the musicality (and the lyrics), I'm beginning to believe again, in R&B music. I must admit that after the untimely death of Donny H. and Phyllis Hyman, I haven't truly cared about any of the artists on the horizon for all seem derivatives of those two greats. What they brought to a lyric had NEVER been heard (or felt) before and for my money, since.., 'till now. I think Rahsaan Paterson is a genius, but this article is not about him, as much as I love what he's done, he's never moved me like this. It's not lost on me that this gem of a release is genetically linked to one of those incredible sources of inspiration. I can't begin to describe to you what this CD might mean to the future of R&B but I can bet you it's going to be a wake up call to many who consider themselves artists in this genre.

Here's what I suggest.., if you've ever listened to either of the artists I mentioned as the ultimate inspirations, you owe it to yourself to get onto iTunes, or to the nearest CD store..., and get this CD and listen through it, with your favorite drink, or on your favorite drive.., or with your best friend.., and be prepared to go back in time, when the music mattered so much, we would take off work to get the album, shut the door, take the phone off the hook and listen with our full souls engaged for the moments that were sure to come when we knew that our favorite artist had not only written about us and our troubles.., but had written to us, specifically. It was a cosmic experience, then and Lalah has done it for this writer, again.

THANK YOU for making a believer out of me and for healing my soul of the loves lost and distant and gone too soon. Remember these sentiments when you get to ON YOUR OWN.

Peace, Dear Friends.