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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

CD Review-Ruthie Foster:The Phenomenal Ruthie Foster

CD Review-Ruthie Foster:The Phenomenal Ruthie Foster

By Isaiah Smith/entertainment editor

ruthiefosterTexas native Ruthie Foster shows her soulful side on The Phenomenal Ruthie Foster, her fifth studio album.

With a classic tone and vocals that will blow the speakers out, Foster earns the title phenomenal.

“ This CD is what happens when all the elements come together,” she said in a press release.

Foster knows how to groove. “Beaver Creek Blues” incorporates the sounds of a Southern night with high-energy, cheeky vocals. This is definitely a good single.

“ A lot of folks don’t know this,” she said in the release. “I come from a deep background of old-soul, blues and even R&B. Early on, before I got into the folk thing, I was doing more soul on acoustic guitar.”

“’ Cuz I’m Here” is a great example of Foster’s soul side with tender, emotional vocals. Foster has great control over her tone on this song. This woman is a legend in the making, and if this were 30 years ago, she would already be famous.

Foster also lets a more vulnerable side of herself show to fans with “I Don’t Know What to Do with My Heart,” a song she wrote about a failed relationship. The raw emotion heard on this track will connect with radio audiences nationwide making this another great single.

“ This record’s all about what I’ve been through the last couple of years, and then some,” she said. “You’re not sure people want to see your vulnerability like that, but in the end it’s necessary.”

“ Harder Than the Fall” is another track written about Foster’s past few years and takes a look at a more recent, relationship. The chorus is great, very memorable, and the openness of this song is striking.

In addition, Foster gives a clapping, stomping, stunning, a cappella performance of the Son House cover “People Grinnin’ in Your Face.” It is so hard to stay on pitch singing a cappella, yet Foster is still flawless.

“ Phenomenal Woman,” a Maya Angelou poem set to music, is an artfully executed song.

“ I’m a big, big fan of Maya Angelou,” she said. “I grew up wanting to be a poet, so running across this poem in a song was just beautiful to me. I had to record that one.”

Foster believes every woman, and man for that matter, should listen to “Phenomenal Woman” and feel that good about themselves.

Overall, Foster is genuinely The Phenomenal Ruthie Foster. I give this album five stars. Both this brand of soul and this type of vocalist are hard to find these days.

People need to appreciate this artist for what she is—phenomenal.

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