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All People is about the beauty of diversity, being your authentic self in a crazy world and the infinite power of love. For everyone that's been with us for days or decades, I really appreciate the love that you've given us. The music is for you and you inspire us.
This Deluxe edition features 5 additional tracks:Gangsta Girl,I Don't Wanna Go; Do It For The Love; Let It Go; and Life Is Better With You(Acoustic)
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Longtime fans of Franti will probably be disappointed with this album. It's essentially "Michael Franti: the Lite Edition"--which doesn't necessarily have to be a bad thing. Yes, it's less political and certainly is lacking the depth of earlier albums, but it's also probably his most accessible album. Before the cries of "corporate sellout", it's important to realize that this album managed to combine very catchy and well done music paired with positive messages of equality, hope and love in a manner that is highly listenable and not sickeningly cheesy. And I think this could have been a great thing.
While Franti certainly has his fans, it wasn't until 2009's "Say Hey (I Love You)" that he gained wide attention. This album is very much a continuation of that type of sound (albeit with a little more pop and hip hop thrown in). Franti's current sound is very much an evolution and amalgamation of all of his previous work. It often has a reggae like groove, but now uses music from other genres--folk, rock, hip hop, pop, jazz and funk all make appearances to combine into a layered yet generally fast paced and upbeat sound.
Lead single "All People" blasts off with a party of different instruments and electric sounds. While lyrically repetitive, if it doesn't put a smile on your face--then you're probably the type of person who also kicks puppies in your spare time. However, "11:59" quickly pulls things back into a more serious yet sweet tone: "One Love/One Blood/ One Heart/ One soul/One drum and only one rhythm/ One tribe and all of us singing.... If I'm gonna die tonight, I want heaven--with You." It's probably one of my favorites off the album, and lyrically is very representative of the album as a whole.Read more ›
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I have to agree with the other two-star reviewers on this. It pains me to write something not totally positive, considering I have every album/CD Michael Franti has ever put out. He began strongly in a more hip-hop vein but his artistry, activism, and poetry was evident as the years went on. I think Sound of Sunshine began the trek towards a light, pop, bubble gum sound. I miss the grist of anti-war and anti-death penalty lyrics set up in a meaningful, not preachy song. I may sell the tickets I bought to see him in October - this sound is too movie soundtrack for me. Yell Fire, Songs from the Front Porch, and even All Rebel Rockers are much richer and more complex.
I can understand why some fans are disappointed. The music is not as "politically in your face" driven as his earlier work. But Michael is not in the same angry young man place either. He's matured and so has his music. He is still a poet, and activist, and now can say it in a way that is reaching more people.Hopefully the new fans will go back and listen to his earlier work.
I LOVE this album. There are a few songs that I find myself playing over and over. 11:59 and Long Road Home are two of my favorites. Over all a feel good album with a message of love and peace.
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I write this as a huge Michael Franti fan: Everything from Stay Human (2001) to All Rebel Rockers (2008) rank among my favorite albums, & he & his band Spearhead were certainly among my very favorite musical artists during that time. The combination of political consciousness, spiritual upliftment, clever wordsmithing, & infectious grooves just couldn't be beat, in my opinion. The music was DEEP -- deep thoughts & deep grooves. I felt mildly disappointed in The Sound of Sunshine (2010). It felt less deep, with more of a pop sheen. Apparently it also charted higher than previous efforts.
Franti has continued in that direction with All People -- it feels like the shallowest & popiest (is that a word?) record he has made yet. Maybe it should be called "Pandering to All People." Don't get me wrong: There are still some good songs here. "Earth from Outer Space," "11:59," & "Show Me a Sign" stand out as bright spots. The single "I'm Alive (Life Sounds Like)" is a cute & catchy love song. It's not a BAD album -- it just feels more shallow & mediocre than what I expect from a Michael Franti/Spearhead release. Too much feelgood fluff, not enough depth.
Downloaded this new album from Michael Franti as soon as I woke up this morning!
First for the negative-at just 40 minutes it's too short and I wanted more! Also, I do miss the hard social commentary that helped define Michael so well over the years especially in Yell Fire which is still my favorite album. There is still some of that here but merely sprinkled in where before it was the main body of his work. I did read somewhere where he said he wanted to bring people more joy and happiness rather than always pointing out the problems with the world, so hard to fault him with this approach. Also, its obvious through listening to this album Michael is in a different place. He sounds like someone who is in love and in love with life and it comes through in this album. He sounds more reflective and lyrical. It's hard to find anything negative to say about this approach. I do miss some of the more organic music as a lot of this almost sounds tecno in parts. Overall I will still take Michael's music over 99% of what other artists are offering! Peace!