Friday, January 11, 2008

TBGB Reviews...Wess Morgan

Look At Me Now
Wess Morgan
Oak Tree Productions 2006

I must admit that when I first saw the dapper, bow-tie adorned Wess Morgan in a crowd at the Gospel Music Workshop of America last year, I thought he might be a CCM singer trying to get into gospel. Hearing his Look At Me Now, released in April of 2007, I realize that first impressions aren’t always the right ones. Morgan is true blue-eyed urban inspirational. In fact, if you close your eyes and just listen, you’d think he is right out of John P. Kee’s choir.

With a moderately husky voice that fits somewhere between George Benson and Michael McDonald, the Nashville-based Morgan is a soulful singer, capable of balladeering as well as shouting. As if to confirm his authenticity to the skeptic, Morgan opens with an effective harmonica and bottleneck guitar backed gospel blues. The rest of the project, however, is infused with cool, uptempo, jazzy arrangements. For example, “Sing Unto the Lord” has a salsa flavor, while “Love My Hurt Away” and “Can’t Stop Thinkin’” owe debts of gratitude to ‘70s Earth, Wind & Fire.

The entire project is musically adventurous in a Winans sort of way, while the lyrics stay focused on the redemptive power of belief in God. While the title track and "He Brought Me Out," the latter sung with Daryl Coley, are the radio picks, “You May Not Know Me” contains the project’s most bracing lyrics. Morgan sings about a life of substance abuse and other anti-social behaviors that could well be based on what he witnessed during his time as a street minister.

Morgan closes Look At Me Now by singing a medley based on “I Won’t Complain” in traditional gospel solo fashion, complete with church-wrecking vocal runs. He passes the baton to his mother, Yolanda, to handle the project’s final moments by completing the medley.

In addition to those who like some bounce in their sacred music, fans of Canadian gospel singers Danny Brooks and Jim Byrnes will find Look At Me Now an agreeable listen. A companion DVD is available as well.

Three of Four Stars


Anonymous said...

I just can't believe what he's been through! I just love his songs!

pamela9078 said...

The cd Look At ME Now is excellent. I really think he sounds like Anthony Hamilton a little to me. Every song on this cd will bless you but my favorite is IT's My Pleasure" please don't sleep on this it's HOT!!!!!!

Ms Roni said...

This man came to my church, New Life Covenant Oakwood Church this past Sunday.

I didnt expect the brother to bellow out those tunes as he did.

He was awesome! It was a moving and uplifting experience. He has a deep wrenching voice that moves the soul!

Pastor Phil said...

Pastor Wess,

You know its only God that can allow you to sing the way you do. ANOINTED!!!!!! God has brought you from a mighty long way.
I am looking forward to working with you one day...
Luv you Brother
Be Blessed!

Anonymous said...

I love this album I have been playing it non- stop since i bought it three weeks ago. It is truly uplifting, all of his songs just hit close to home.

Anonymous said...

I first heard pastor Wess on the gospel station. One Sunday morning I was unable to attend church that day for the heaviness that was upon me. And I turned up the volume on the tv and low and behold, the man that sang with such a anointing. Basically God used this man of God to minister this song that had to be written for me for such a time as this that I am enduring. YOU GAVE ME HOPE !! Was more than words could express.I can truly say that the more I played it over and over again, because I was able to record it at that time. The weight came right off my back. So in other words pastor, this song gave me hope, and still continues at this present time. Keep allowing the good Lord to use you. Because your gift was not just for you, I received the lifting of my head through this gift. God bless you and I am not just saying this, I really mean GOD BLESS YOU

Your sister in Christ
Lisa Perry

Anonymous said...

I have heard a lot about him and didn't know who i was listening to on 104.1..I sing the songs all the time not knowing..and now i hear so much about him. His DVD and CD will be in my collection soon. Truely used by GOD.
My other comment is for Sister Lisa Perry who posted a comment and that is "To God Be the Glory"

Tommie Abrams said...

This pastor is amazing. I accidentally ran across his song "You gave me hope" I went to every store I could find and not one had this CD, finally my daughter ordered it on Wess Morgan website along with the DVD and i cannot get enough of watching and listening to the DVD/CD. The is the most moving CD I have ever listened to. God Bless you and keep on singing.