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Turn Around

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Audio CD, September 19, 2006
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

The Grammy-nominated, Platinum-selling former prodigy blues guitarist and singer/songwriter who topped the Billboard New Artist chart with his first album at age 15, stands now as a mature creative force, made more sensitive yet also toughened by life's adventures. He's learned what it means to rise above hard times and to find meaning where chaos seemed to rule. These insights, and the emotions they unleash, make Turn Around the pivotal album of Jonny Lang's career to date a passage that links the triumphs of his past to the promise of his future. Produced by Ron Fair (Black Eyed Peas, Mary J. Blige, Counting Crows), energized through collaboration with songwriter/performers Drew Ramsey, Shannon Sanders and Steven Curtis Chapman, anchored and elevated by former Prince NPG rhythm dynamo Michael Bland, Turn Around is Lang's fifth album but it's also the first of what will become his most moving and enduring works.

The churchy organ that opens and closes Jonny Lang's fifth album reveals its direction. After 2003's Long Time Coming plunged the once-up-and-coming blues guitarist into more soulful and commercial waters, Turn Around completes the transition. Lang is lyrically direct in his spiritual awakening, and the uplifting if sometimes pedantic lyrics make it clear that any vestiges of the teenaged guitar slinger that knocked out an impressive version of the lascivious "Good Morning Little Schoolgirl" on his debut are far in the past. A few short leads aside, Lang shifts into full Stevie Wonder/Prince mode, but unfortunately without the quality material that made those artists' work transcend genre. With vocals that shift from guttural howls to sweet and screaming falsetto on tunes like "Don't Stop (For Anything)" and a penchant for oversinging, he's not aiming for subtlety. But there are some winning melodies here: songs such as "Anything's Possible" and "One Person at a Time" boast catchy choruses in a funkified, gospel-tinged, adult-alternative vein bound to appeal to audiences that lean towards obvious religious references in their music. This is a well crafted, undeniably heartfelt set from Lang, who makes it abundantly clear he feels his destiny is to make the world a better place through Jesus. It's a valid enough objective that doesn't quite connect with Lang's rather heavy-handed lyrics, affected singing, and derivative tunes. --Hal Horowitz

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song Title Time Price
listen  1. Intro0:17$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  2. Bump In The Road 3:40$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  3. One Person At A Time 3:02$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  4. The Other Side Of The Fence 3:03$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  5. Turn Around 4:40$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  6. My Love Remains 3:51$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  7. Thankful [feat. Michael McDonald] 4:03$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  8. Only A Man 4:15$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  9. Don't Stop (For Anything) 4:59$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen10. Anything's Possible 3:47$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen11. Last Goodbye 3:56$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen12. On My Feet Again 4:23$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen13. That Great Day 4:36$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen14. It's Not Over 5:31$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen15. Outro0:50$0.99  Buy MP3 

Product Details

  • Audio CD (September 19, 2006)
  • Original Release Date: 2006
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: A&M
  • ASIN: B000H7JDVS
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (190 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #40,729 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

116 of 135 people found the following review helpful By Randall Richmond on October 2, 2006
Format: Audio CD
Artists have the right to change directions and seek new audiences - and in some cases the change is well received. With that in mind, Jonny is no longer the blues guitarist of his earlier albums, he has taken a new direction into R&B - I agree with the reviewer that said he now sounds like Stevie Wonder. If that is what you like, then buy this. If you are looking for great guitar, look elsewhere.

(Have you ever noticed that when someone writes a review that doesn't give the artist 4 or 5 stars - the reviewer gets slammed in the votes?)
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26 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Steven Sly on August 4, 2007
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Yet another 3 years elapse between Jonny Lang albums. When the new disc finally emerges it is a very different Jonny Lang album than many of his fans are used to. Of all of the albums Lang has produced this one seems to divide the fans the most. His blues roots are practically non existent on this album. Instead what you have is mostly a soul / R&B / Gospel record with Lang's voice up front and the guitar tucked into the background. In fact if you are looking for patented Lang guitar solos you will not find many of them here. What you will find is soul encrusted smooth rock more along the lines of something you might hear from Stevie Wonder, Michael Macdonald (who duets here on the track "Thankful") or even Prince. The lyrics have a lot of religion to them as well. Make no doubt about it Lang is a Christian and wants the whole world to know it. The album never gets too heavy handed or preachy, but Lang makes no bones about where he is coming from on this disc. The gospel influence is apparent throughout. So what does this all mean? Is the album any good? Well, although I usually try to avoid music of this nature like the plague I have to admit that Lang really pulls it off well. This is a good album and as long as you can get away from the fact that Lang is not doing straight ahead blues anymore you may find a lot to enjoy here. My hope for the future is that Lang eventually goes back to the wailing guitar, but taking this album for what it is at this time in Lang's life, it is certainly a decent listen.
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36 of 44 people found the following review helpful By Darren on September 24, 2006
Format: Audio CD
Turn Around is the long awaited redemption we all needed from Lang's last project (Long Time Coming) which was a disappointment for many of his fans. This is not a pure gospel project but rather an enjoyable and explorational blend of gospel infused soul, funk and blues with some tinges of country and jazz. Lang's spirituality permeates the entire project which is what makes it so genuine and soulful. No, it's not "Smokin", "Lie to Me" or even "Wander this World" but it's a good transition album for the next exciting phase of Lang's musical evolution. For Lang, "Turn Around" is the 'real deal' as he showcases more of his own songwriting and also allows his spiritual renewal to permeate.

Turn Around conveys a spiritual theme and projects a positive energy, and musical vibration throughout. On this project, Lang transforms his blues energy into something more lyrically upbeat and positive.

Although I sometimes enjoy listening to the blues genre, the traditional blues have a tendency to get stuck in the low side of the energy level. Even when the passion and intensity of the story or message is there and the music is good, listening to the blues can often be very draining. It's like listening to someone's problems over and over. Although the person singing the blues may be a good musician and a good storyteller, the experience is often very draining as opposed to uplifting and rejuvenative. The blues have their place in my collection and my alotted listening time. In this project, Lang transcends his blues roots without abandoning them altogether.

In Turn Around, Lang takes his bluesy style to a "well-behaved" revival where he adds some soulful funk to his gritty vocals in addition to furthering the development of his falsetto.
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18 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Mario A. Trujillo on September 19, 2006
Format: Audio CD
Blues, Funk, and Soul make up this the 5th album for Jonny Lang. His last cd was a bit over done, didn't have that Jonny Lang feel, had more of a made for radio feel to it. This album gets Mr. Lang back on track. Funky yet bluesy sounds that will get your head bobbin and your neck stiff. And the message is enough to get anyone to take notice. Although not his best work, still high above his last cd.

1. Bump in the road... Not the best on the album, but still good none the less.

2. One Person At A Time... Great song! Great message! We all should take notice.

3. The Other Side Of the Fence... Raw emotion on this one. Rock but with a side a funk.

4. Turn Around.... My personal fav, I don't know why this song isn't a radio single but man the bluesy sound and the clapping in this song gives me chills.

5. My Love Remains.... Not the best song, but that is cause of the way he went about it. Nothing against trying to mix things up but IMO Mr. Lang should quit the Falsetto, I don't think it's his best voice. Notice in this song after the acoustic solo he goes back to his original voice. Sounds more raspy and deep, sounds better. Would have been a great song if he sang the whole tune like that!

6. Thankful.... A groovy hit, can't help to keep the toes tapping and the head bobbing on this one.

7. Only A Man... Okay when I first heard it I hated it cause of the Falsetto thing. But then after a few listens I realize that the message on this song may be the best of them all. And it isn't really Falsetto, it is Jonny just singing softer than usual. And his wife duets with him on this track, she has a very soft voice. An angel's voice if you will...

8. Don't Stop (For Anything)... Great song!
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