Kiley Dean

Make Me a Song

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Kiley Dean caught the ear of Timbaland while still a backup singer for Britney Spears, and soon found herself with her very own deal on the hit producer's Beat Club imprint. Like Spears, Dean has girl-next-door good looks and loads of Southern charm. However, her vocal style is more R&B-flavored, with similarities to singers like Ashanti, Christina Milian, and the late Aaliyah. Timbaland accentuates that similarity on "Make Me a Song," the advance single from Dean's forthcoming LP, Simple Girl. Her phrases hug the stuttering, stripped-down percussion, halt in just the right place for a breathy drop-in or typically Timbaland production component. Unfortunately the song sounds stilted, like an example of a Timbaland song instead of actually being one. As its title suggests, "Make Me a Song"'s chorus has Dean asking her producer for a song "that you and Missy wrote." As the hook isn't very resonant, the name-dropping seems too blatant. [Beat aficionados might take to the instrumental track that's included here; it really shows off Timbaland's less-is-more flair.]

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