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Gold Coast

56 customer reviews

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Audio CD, June 30, 2010
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

Rhian Benson is a new African/British artist with a distinctive mix of R&B/soul, jazz and reggae. 'One of today's brightest new prospects, mold-breaking music straight from the soul' says USA Today; Oprah Magazine calls her 'simply celestial' and Vibe Magazine describes her music as 'a unique blend'. Singer, songwriter, musician and producer, Rhian Benson has a fascinating story to tell. Born in Ghana, West Africa, she grew up surrounded by music. Her father, from the Ashanti tribe of Ghana- is a guitarist; her mother, from Wales in Great Britain- is a singer and her grandfather led a big band in the '50s and '60s. Rhian took up the piano while a child and has been writing songs and poetry her whole life. Now a resident of Los Angeles, she also lived in India and England while growing up and studied at the London School of Economics and Harvard University. Gold Coast, her debut album is already receiving critical acclaim from publications as varied as the Los Angeles Times, Performing Songwriter, Honey and Billboard. All songs on Gold Coast were written by Rhian and composed by her on guitar and keyboards. In addition, Rhian co-produced the album along with Grammy Award-winning producers James Poyser (Lauryn Hill, The Roots, Jill Scott) and Bob Power (D'Angelo, Tribe Called Quest, Me' Shell Ndegocello).

Review

Some packages seem just too good to be true. Rhian Benson was an articulate and well educated woman (MBA) before she embarked on her musical career. So, she is able to control her musical destiny far more seriously than most artists. She is drop-dead gorgeous and her voice has a sultry quality. It's unfortunate to often hear her compared as just another Nora Jones;, when Rhian Benson's depth and intensity frankly put Jones down a notch. Benson wrote all of the songs on this debut CD which is amazing as many new artists don't dare (I was shocked to note that Nora Jones scarcely writes any of her own material, as lovely as her voice is). Ladies, listen well to Benson's lyrics on her track 'Invincible'. Well worth the buy! --tirefire123

I first heard this CD while listening to WCLK online out of Atlanta, Tavis Smiley intervied her and played samples of most of the songs. Not only did she appear very humble to be soo beautiful as I now see, but she was intelligent, heartfelt and compassionate. She discussed her life in her hometown of Ghana and her migration to Los Angeles, both being Gold Coasts. Her music is authentic and her Song Sing to A Child almost brought tears to my eyes, she said that the children in Ghana inspired it. She's true to herself and her music and lyrics are reflections of that. I also like Say How I Feel and Spirit. Her voice is different and her music is really nice. This is a star rising...one to buy! --musical_empress

I love this album. I have had the pleasure of seeing Rhian perform twice in LA and I was very impressed each time. To describe what this album does to me would be too difficult, but suffice it to say it REALLY moves me. Rhian's lush vocals adorn beautifully arranged tracks that transport you to a land where the bittersweet becomes the beautiful. My faves are Sing to the Child, Young Girl, I'm in a Bind and Invincible. The music is richly organic and I kick back to it when I'm stressed out. Thank you Rhian for bringing your wonderful spirit into my life, I need it. --A Customer


1. Words Hurt Too
2. Say How I Feel
3. Stealing My Peace Of Mind
4. Soul Boy
5. Shake It Away
6. Invincible
7. The One
8. Sing To A Child
9. I'm In a Bind
10. Gold Sky
11. Freedom Song
12. Young Girl
13. Spirit

Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 30, 2010)
  • Original Release Date: 2003
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Icarus Music Limited
  • ASIN: B0000CF340
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (56 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #312,737 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By tirefire123 on January 21, 2004
Format: Audio CD
Some packages seem just too good to be true. Rhian Benson was an articulate and well educated woman (MBA) before she embarked on her musical career. So, she is able to control her musical destiny far more seriously than most artists. She is drop-dead gorgeous and her voice has a sultry quality. It's unfortunate to often hear her compared as "just another Nora Jones", when Rhian Benson's depth and intensity frankly put Jones down a notch. Benson wrote all of the songs on this debut CD which is amazing as many new artists don't dare (I was shocked to note that Nora Jones scarcely writes any of her own material, as lovely as her voice is). Ladies, listen well to Benson's lyrics on her track "Invincible". Well worth the buy!
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Musical Empress on October 8, 2003
Format: Audio CD
I first heard this CD while listening to WCLK online out of Atlanta, Tavis Smiley intervied her and played samples of most of the songs. Not only did she appear very humble to be soo beautiful as I now see, but she was intelligent, heartfelt and compassionate. She discussed her life in her hometown of Ghana and her migration to Los Angeles, both being "Gold Coast's". Her music is authentic and her Song "Sing to A Child" almost brought tears to my eyes, she said that the children in Ghana inspired it. She's true to herself and her music and lyrics are reflections of that. I also like "Say How I Feel" and "Spirit". Her voice is different and hte music is really nice. This is a star rising...one to buy!
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 15, 2004
Format: Audio CD
I love this album. I have had the pleasure of seeing Rhian perform twice in LA and I was very impressed each time. To describe what this album does to me would be too difficult, but suffice it to say it REALLY moves me. Rhian's lush vocals adorn beautifully arranged tracks that transport you to a land where the bittersweet becomes the beautiful. My faves are "Sing to the Child", "Young Girl", "I'm in a Bind" and "Invincible". The music is richly organic and I kick back to it when I'm stressed out. Thank you Rhian for bringing your wonderful spirit into my life, I need it.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Michael Ledeux on October 13, 2003
Format: Audio CD
This album has such an amazing feel and vibe, it took me away on a musical journey. It has been a long time since I heard such a beautiful work of music and for me it matches anything I have heard this year. Congratulations to all the musicians who made this work.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By silhouette_of_enchantment on May 5, 2004
Format: Audio CD
Rhian Benson's cd is one that I truly wanted to like. I picked up this cd after reading the four and five star reviews on amazon.com about how wonderful Rhian was. Reviewers also compared Benson's style to Sade's. Sade is one of my favorite urban artists for the last 10 or so years. The las thing that sold me was that Benson's albums was produced by some of hip hop's finest: James Poyser(who produced the Roots, Jill Scott, and Lauryn Hill) and Bob Power (who produced a Tribe Called Quest, D'Angelo, and Erykah Badu). The last thing that sold me was Benson's pouty pretty face on the album cover also led me to believe that this would be a wonderful album.
What could possibly go wrong with this combination? Benson's album lacks imagination and emotion. While listening to the songs off this album, I felt that Benson was emotionally disconnected from her material. She has a nice voice, but it fails to inspire because she sings her material without passion. Sade still manages to infuse emotion in spite of her minimalistic approach, which Benson fails to do. The backing band's instrumental arrangements are surprisingly stale and uninspired.
I know that many reviewers will disagree with me. But frankly, I've heard better. Benson's album sounds like a bad cover of an r&b album from the 80s. I'd recommend any of Sade's albums or Amel Larrieux's "Infinite Possibilities" rather than this work.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Erykah on April 6, 2004
Format: Audio CD
Write Alice Walker once said that most things worth obtaining, are usually found by accident. I have found this statement to be true on numerous occassions. Finding Rhina Benson's Gold Coast certainly fits the bill here. I caught a bit of her video for the song "Stealing My Peace of Mine," and instantly connected to her. Her voice is rich and sultry and her lyrics are sophisticated and mature. I love every track on this CD. My favorite are "Say How I Feel," "Stealing My Peace Away," Shake it Away," "I'm in a Bind," and "Spirit." "Spirit" is the last song that provides a powerful and uplifting message of hope in the Ghanian language. It is a beautiful finale to this project.
Several reviewers have compared Benson to Sade, but I don't think that is fair. She has a sound all her own and does not emulate any pop star. Her music is very grounded and positive. Her love ballads are fresh, unlike much of the contrived crap you hear on the radio. Her songs also contain messages of empowerment such as "Young Girl;" every teenage girl should hear this song. And her song "Song for the Children," is so appropiate in this day and age of parental advisory stickers. It makes you wonder who today's music is really for.
I can go on and on about this CD. I am very glad I purchased it and look forward to hearing more from our Gold Coast sista.
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