Rob Johnson aka rAce

Rob Johnson aka rAce

    Rob Johnson, the Asbury Park, New Jersey native, left home at age 19 and moved to New York City to pursue he dream of being a professional singer.  After seven years of pounding away, practicing his trade both in the U.S. and abroad, Rob Johnson (a.k.a. Race) teamed up with the new record company One Step Beyond Music Works and released I Found Lovein 2004.

    Start to finish, the production on I Found Love was crisp, pretty innovative and absolutely infectious.  Also great vocal arrangements throughout.  It had some old school flourishes to it (such as a nod to Kool & the Gang's "Ladies Night" on the title cut), but was thorougly modern.  A big credit goes to producer Christian Whitted for giving this album a fresh, bright sound. Equally strong are the musical compositions by Whitted and Robert Johnson.  The album is hooky and the tunes are memorable and wonderfully presented.  I haven't been able to get the title cut and "Up In The Club" -- two dynamite dance cuts -- out of my head for a week.  Also memorable are the ballad "Open" and the midtempo cut  "He's the Reason."  The disc isn't perfect, though.  Unfortunately, like many of his Neo Soul comrades, Race doesn't appear to have much to say lyrically, other than that he really likes making love to women.  The problem is not as noticeable on the dance cuts, but the inane lyrics hurt the otherwise solid ballads "Spend the Night" and "Right Next to You."   

    Johnson continued working regularly on his craft and ultimately formed the band rAcemusic with instrumentalist Glen Mauser. They released their debut album As One in 2011.

    by Chris Rizik

    Available Music