Howard “Minquel” Ingram and Daniel “Woody” Ingram, the brother duo who make up the group Ingram Street, remember hearing a steady dose of Motown and Aretha Franklin being played in their Columbus, Ohio home. That was the music of their parents. They liked that music as well, but as with all young people, Minquel and Woody gravitated to the music being played on the radio as their personalities and musical tastes were being formed. As children of the 1980s and 90s they gravitated to the music of Michael Jackson, Prince and New Edition.
Those 1980s and 90s influences can be heard on Paint the Town, the latest recording from Ingram Street. Minquel and Woody definitely look to recapture the smoothness, vocals harmonies and romance that could be heard from R&B artists that dominated the airwaves in that era. The album leads off with a series of up-tempo tracks that populate the first half of the album like the bouncy, disco influenced “Here 2 Stay,” energetic steppers’ cut “The Friend Zone,” the breezy title track and “More than Gold,” a cut that finds the brothers bringing pop and rock influences into the mix
It is then balanced by the quiet storm numbers found later on the disc. The stylistic diversity found among the ballads includes the acoustic guitar driven “Can’t Get You Out” and “Beautiful Possiblity,” which is the number that will appeal to those who remember holding a dance partner close back to the dance floor. The track combines a soulfully swinging bass line with deft work on the keys, a touch jazz in the form of an acoustic guitar solo that leads into a vocal monologue that is an homage to the love songs of the 70s.
Lyrically, tunes such as the aforementioned “Beautiful Possibility” and “Keeping It Special” harken back to a time when virtues of romance, chivalry were common ballad components. Those elements are often dismissed as hackneyed and kind of corny. However, there is a longing for that kind of musicianship that the Ingram brothers fulfill on Paint the Town. Recommended
By Howard Dukes