Timotha Lanae - Rewind (2014)

Timotha Lanae
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The deep run on American Idol will always be a part of Timotha Lanae’s resume, but she has quickly moved well beyond being just another pop music contest contestant. Timotha Lanae’s new project is called Rewind, and that title has multiple meanings .The new project includes two Lanae tunes that appeared on the artist’s debut CD, Red. Both tracks, “Radio” and “My Man,” had contemporary R&B or hip-hop production techniques. The hip-hop infused “Radio” contained the storyline of Lanae calling a radio love line and dedicating a song to her man. The version of “Radio” that appears on Rewind is a mid-tempo funk number complete with horns and features Lanae singing different lyrics. The hook and melody are the only things connecting the rewound (or reimagined) version to the one heard on Red.

The deep run on American Idol will always be a part of Timotha Lanae’s resume, but she has quickly moved well beyond being just another pop music contest contestant. Timotha Lanae’s new project is called Rewind, and that title has multiple meanings .The new project includes two Lanae tunes that appeared on the artist’s debut CD, Red. Both tracks, “Radio” and “My Man,” had contemporary R&B or hip-hop production techniques. The hip-hop infused “Radio” contained the storyline of Lanae calling a radio love line and dedicating a song to her man. The version of “Radio” that appears on Rewind is a mid-tempo funk number complete with horns and features Lanae singing different lyrics. The hook and melody are the only things connecting the rewound (or reimagined) version to the one heard on Red. Likewise, “My Man” features is more percussive with its kicking drums, as well as more prominent backing vocals. Both tracks benefit from being reworked.

Both tunes also reflect Lanae’s choice to embrace the fuller and richer sound heard in the R&B and funk music of the 1970s and 80s. The opening track, “Who’s That Girl,” wraps Lanae’s vocals around those Memphis styled horns, deep funky bass line and guitar riffs. Lyrically, the track’s narrative is about a woman who has fallen so hard for a man that she no longer recognizes herself.

She follows that number up with the title track, a torchy, regret filled ballad about a woman who wants a second crack at a relationship after not being ready to go all in the first time around. “God Love Music” has the album’s most distinctive arrangement with its booming percussion giving the track a power packed drum beat and bass line. The song also packs some pretty clever lyrics as Lanae lays down her list of demands to a guy making a play for her affections. “My mamma always told me/Be careful what you do/Ain’t nothing more expensive than your time/And daddy always told me/Be careful who love/Them knuckle heads will mess with your mind/You pique my curiosity/But can you give me what I need.”

Lanae’s American Idol run will have a less prominent role as time goes on in this what-have-you-done-for-me-lately world. As it is, winning on Idol is something of the musical equivalent of landing the Heisman Trophy – no guarantee success at the highest level. Close but no cigar artists such as Lanae will never be able to depend on Idol’s much diminished but still formidable hype machine.

Fortunately Timotha Lanae proved on Red that she has the chops to more than capitalize on her time as an Idol alum, and Rewind establishes the vocalist as an artist prepared to take the next step and become a force in her own right. Strongly Recommended.

By Howard Dukes

 
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