Bobby Goldsboro

We Gotta Start Lovin'

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While it isn't quite a concept album, Bobby Goldsboro's 1971 LP We Gotta Start Lovin' is easily dominated by songs about brotherhood, hope and the need for understanding among people, as if two years after the '60s were over, Goldsboro finally decided it was time to Make A Statement. However, in spite of the heavy-handed opening cut "My God and I," most of We Gotta Start Lovin' feels genuine and sincere, with Goldsboro's passionate but well-modulated vocal style lending a warmth and conviction to the proceedings, carrying its messages with dignity and aplomb. Goldsboro co-produced the set with his frequent studio partner Bobby Montgomery as well as writing five of the twelve songs, and while Don Tweedy's arrangements are polished and expansive, they leave enough space for Goldsboro's vocals without overpowering him; the album is at least one or two steps up from the standard soft rock material of the day. (Fans of lesser-known country rock acts of the '70s may be interested to know that John "Bucky" Wilkin wrote three songs for the album.) Significantly, the album's biggest hit was also the most sentimental, "Watching Scotty Grow," and its sugary tone seems a bit out of place here, but overall We Gotta Start Lovin' is a strong piece of work and a bit more ambitious in theme and execution than one might expect from Goldsboro.

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