Jack Knight

Gypsy Blues

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Jack Knight initially came to the forefront as an urban soul writer and producer, working with the likes of Total, Monifah, Blackstreet and Chico DeBarge. After scoring a couple of hits behind the scenes, Knight decided to move into the realm of recording, releasing his debut, Gypsy Blues, in the summer of 1999. Gypsy Blues is a weird hybrid of styles, drawing from classic and contemporary soul, hip-hop, gospel, funk and twisted pop -- the kind of record that is as intriguing as it is frustrating. That's a good thing, actually, since few contemporary soulmen are willing to be ambitious. Knight is certainly that, and while it can occasionally mean that the album is silly (the otherwise terrific first single "Who the Fuck Is Jack Knight" has a ridiculous title, as does "Gigolos Get Lonely Too"), it also means that it's always intriguing, even during the moments that don't quite work. Even when things get a little messy, Knight keeps everything in check through strong songs and solid performances. Gypsy Blues may not be perfect, but it's nevertheless an exciting debut.

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