MARSHA AMBROSIUS / “Marsha Ambrisius Sextapes Mixtape”
I am ambivalent about this week’s covers Mixtape. Sometimes the clash between my critical assessment and my personal tastes are too complex to allow for a simple yes or no, include or exclude sort of decision. In general I only go with what I like or what I think has major relevance within the music as a whole but sometimes—and this is one of those “sometimes”—sometimes I go back and forth. In one sense it started with up and down opinion of Floetry. Then after their breakup my general opinion was neither partner was as interesting on their own as they had been in duo. Since I ran off and on in regards to my responses to Floetry, that meant I wasn’t far from excited about upcoming albums. I listened to advance tracks and solo performances and was generally under-whelmed. Then I heard about Marsha Ambrosius’ Sextapes project. And you know what, I’m still ambivalent. In general I think of this stuff as fast food music for a slow night, i.e. momentarily satisfying but nothing memorable. But I also know that’s partially due to my tastes and not to particular deficiencies in the music. What Ambrosius does (and this is a crass assessment) is oohhh and ahhhh, moan and groan below and around some classic R&B love songs along with a few newer tunes thrown in. Ms. Ambrosius doesn’t do anything special with any of the songs, in fact it’s neither a remake nor a remix. What it is, is some strange combination of karaoke and voice-over. On the other hand, Ambrosius' three Sextapes are a quality, sort of Quiet Storm tribute that had to be a free Mixtape (go here to obtain downloads) because who could afford to get all the recording rights? I’m not sure this was simply a heartfelt tribute rather than a savvy PR move, but I’m willing to give Ambrosius the benefit of the doubt. It must be hard to be young and trying to make and match all the hip R&B music out there. It just occurred to me that there is one song missing that undoubtedly should have been included: “Butterflies.” After all, Marsha Ambrosius wrote that one. I’m through; enjoy (hopefully). —Kalamu ya Salaam Marsha Ambrosius Sextapes Mixtape Playlist Sextape 1 01 “Far Away Interlude” 02 “Come Away With Me My Angel” – Marvin Gaye 03 “Make Sure You’re Sure” – Stevie Wonder 04 “Sensuality Pt. 1 & 2” – Isley Brothers Sextape 2 05 “Uhh Ahh” – Boyz II Men 06 “Sumthin’ Sumthin’ ” – Maxwell 07 “Trust” – Meshell N’Degeocello Sextape 3 08 “Secret Garden” – Quincy Jones, Barry White, Al B. Sure, James Ingram, and El Debarge 09 “Once In A Life Time” – Backstreet 10 “Come Inside” - Intro
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