10 Songs, 42 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Joss Stone makes you believe in soul possession. The astoundingly self-confident performances that the 16 year-old British singer delivers on The Soul Sessions (2003) seemingly defy natural explanation. Stone avoids emotional grandstanding or vocal tricks, easy temptations for an artist this young and this talented. Instead, she pours aching desire into her readings of R&B gems like “All The King’s Horses,” “I’ve Fallen In Love With You” and “Some Kind Of Wonderful,” begging comparisons with the OId School Soul queens of yesteryear. Of particular note are “Dirty Man” (a sass-drenched track spiced by Stone’s growls and hesitations), “The Chokin’ Kind” (performed with bruise-tender intimacy) and “For The Love Of You, Pts. 1-2” (a caressing ballad with gospel undertones). Recorded in Miami, New York and Philadelphia, The Soul Sessions benefits from seasoned musical support, especially the silk-finish guitar of Little Beaver (Willie Hale). Singer, players and production coalesce to create the illusion that The Soul Sessions is a long-lost treasure from 35 years ago. But really, it’s the debut offering from a newly-fledged artist of truly scary talent.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Joss Stone makes you believe in soul possession. The astoundingly self-confident performances that the 16 year-old British singer delivers on The Soul Sessions (2003) seemingly defy natural explanation. Stone avoids emotional grandstanding or vocal tricks, easy temptations for an artist this young and this talented. Instead, she pours aching desire into her readings of R&B gems like “All The King’s Horses,” “I’ve Fallen In Love With You” and “Some Kind Of Wonderful,” begging comparisons with the OId School Soul queens of yesteryear. Of particular note are “Dirty Man” (a sass-drenched track spiced by Stone’s growls and hesitations), “The Chokin’ Kind” (performed with bruise-tender intimacy) and “For The Love Of You, Pts. 1-2” (a caressing ballad with gospel undertones). Recorded in Miami, New York and Philadelphia, The Soul Sessions benefits from seasoned musical support, especially the silk-finish guitar of Little Beaver (Willie Hale). Singer, players and production coalesce to create the illusion that The Soul Sessions is a long-lost treasure from 35 years ago. But really, it’s the debut offering from a newly-fledged artist of truly scary talent.

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