H. Doobie Powell
H. Doobie Powell’s 2002 debut, The Offspring has drawn the attention of not only those undeground music dwellers whose ears are always drawn to that next up-n-comer headed your way, but has also created a buzz in the world of that 'Nureau ninja' himself, Tonéx.
The Connecticut-based producer, instrumentalist and vocalist prodigy offers up seventeen tracks in varying genres, although each find a commonality in the urban pocket. Each features Powell’s smooth pipes on vocals, and a heavy smattering of guest talent.
“Clap Your Hands” serves to kick things off, and does so with a funky instrumental jazz vibe, as Powell vocalizes the praise over track. The vibe continues with a bounce beat on “Glad He Did”. It’s joyous head-bobbin’ meeting up with hip hop influence and smooth jazz.
Guest Ivan Powell (Vanessa Bell Armstrong, Karen Clark Sheard, John P. Kee and the New Life Community Choir) steps in on “Fall Down”, a funk-driven, organ-filled number that also incorporates choir as it increases in its musical complexity. Powell exhorts us to “fall down because He is worthy to be praised”. Guitarist Jonathan DuBose Jr. and bass maestro Charles “Volley” Craig add to this one.
The ride is smooth on “He Is”, with simmering keys and a shuffle rhythm. In the same vein is “Love”, the same song that captured Tonéx enough that he included it on one of his prolific series of underground compilation tapes (see Nureau 2003 article). Co-written by Gwen Henderson, the song grabs with its catchy melody and singable lines.
Add a generous helping of more songs (“I Got Jesus”, “Dance”, “Hold On’) and you’ve got yourself a must-find.
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Producer: H. Doobie Powell
album release date: 2002
Chip Off The Block Records
review by Stan North —
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