7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Thicke with Sensation,
This review is from: Love After War [2 CD Deluxe Edition] (Audio CD)
As a person who grew up during the era of some of the greatest, and undoubtedly the greatest proliferation, of R&B/soul singers, I could easily place Robin Thicke in that group had he been born 15-20 years earlier. He sings and I say, "Praise the Lawd an' pass the fan! It's get'n HOT in here!" He and his music are, together, a singular sensation.
The quality I've always loved about Robin Thicke is that he's never been afraid to share a part of himself with the listener. Yes, there are others who can say the same, Mary J. Blige immediately comes to mind. However, what makes his music resonate with me is that I can easily imagine him speaking many of his lyrics to his wife, actress Paula Patton, soon to be a name on the tip of many a Hollywood tongue after her performance in the newest Mission Impossible film. The two have known each other since they were teenagers as they spent much of that time in and out of a relationship as they both battled their inner demons and grew into true adulthood, (ie., in their late 20s). This is one Hollywood couple that won't be breaking up anytime soon. The love they share may hit rough patches, but it always points toward true north. If one listens carefully, Thicke makes at least one subtle reference on no less than three CDs about the challenges of being a white man married to a black (actually, she's biracial) woman. On this newest release, it's I Don't Know How It Feels To Be U. He's right. He'll never know what it's like to be a black or biracial person, but he definitely knows what it's like to watch helplessly as his wife, and one day all too soon, their son, is adversely affected by racial bigotry. Yet, he is more than optimistic about the future as he demonstrates with the track The New Generation. He sees the world changing as a new generation begins to realize that race, along with other divisive qualities, are social constructs used to benefit a few. Perhaps he can even make a jaded journalist like me become a little more hopeful if I listen long enough.
Unlike some, I absolutely relished Sex Therapy--so much so that I can't listen to it any more as a single woman. Yes, it is very explicitly sexy, but again, it's obvious he's singing about his relationship with Patton. Nevertheless, that CD could get a mostly lesbian chick like me in deep, deep trouble . . . and it would be worth it! There hasn't been a "baby makin'" track like most of those found on Sex Therapy since Marvin, Teddy and Barry in their heyday. For those too young to know who they are, ask your parents. You might find that's how you were conceived. Now that their mutual project has been produced in the body of their baby, Thicke has gone back to paying homage to his lady. That is as it should be. If anything, he probably loves her more because she gave him a precious son. Damn, that's sexy!
When one looks at Thicke's body of work since The Evolution of Robin Thicke, we've seen his darkness, his insecurities, his hopes, his fears and, most of all, his love. Few artists would be willing to open themselves to such intense scrutiny by the anonymous public, much less music critics. This former boy has the intestinal fortitude of a mature man. He's just the kind of man most women would kill to have, though a reasonable facsimile would do.
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Initial post: Jan 10, 2012 3:55:46 PM PST
Reginald D. Garrard says:
As you know already, I thought "Sex Therapy" was his weakest album, relying too much on guest rappers, "performers" that don't do it for me. However, I respect your opinion and I'm glad that we both share our likes of Robin Thicke.
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