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Nov 1st 2004


Stepping back into things - Michael Cooper Michael Cooper - Stepping to a Love Song : (Thump Records)


Just where has this geezer been the few years? Well it's good to see that Michael Cooper is back on the block (and sounding better than ever I might add). It's been several years since we last heard from the former ConFunkshun lead singer (not since 2001s This Heart of Mine) and now he returns with a new set and a new label in the midst.

So just what has he been doing with himself you might ask well according to a recent interview "I'm living life. I've been married for 17 years, all of my kids are grown and gone so my wife and I have plenty of time to chill with our kids and grandkids as well as with each other. We are able to deal with the ups and downs due to maturity. Most folks under 40 are still out there, per se. I'm content and very happy" With that said let's not forget that he also has a new album out called 'Are We Cool'.

In the same recent interview he gave with a fan, Michael was asked about the project and how he can up with the title for the new CD - his response was - "This was created out of concerns for building a platform for the classic R&B sound. The focus is on what those mature artists are doing today. Although I am elated about the idea, I am concerned about how much these talented artists will be received. I love some hip hop but it's no secret that it came in and basically killed what we have grown to know and love about R&B music". When you sell yourself out, there goes your artistry. I don't record what a new school person wants to play or hear. I stay true to myself."

And regarding the title of the CD he said "After writing the title track and then moving onto the others, Gino [Blackmale] and I kept saying "So are we cool?" and after a while, it just stuck"

You can always recognise a track that's sung by Michael, he has that distinctive baritone about him but what most might not know is the singer also plays a mean guitar as well, evident on the title track to the album.

The song on display today is the 2 stepping groove 'Stepping to a Love Song'. The song has similarities in the baseline thats very much reminisce of the R. Kelly track 'Step in the Name of Love' from a few years back (not to mention Musiq's 'ForTheNight') but that aside, it's all Michael from that point on. Michael delivers a song that breathes life into you that tells a story of love and passion, with strong production and excellent vocal range devulged from deep within his reservoir of baritone tenor.

A song worthy of your listening ear for many months to come I'm sure and you'll want to listen to this one again and again. The album is avaiable in record shops and on line at amazon.com and hmv.co.uk. A worthy TY-D pick indeed - period


Listen to Michael Cooper - 'Stepping to A Love Song'




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