In an era where the industry is hungry for strong male vocalists and songs with substance comes Jason Champion with his debut solo effort, Reflections.
Though this is Champion’s solo introduction, he by no means is an industry novice. As a prominent member of Men At Large in the early 90’s and then a major contributor to Kirk Franklin‘s musical presentation, Champion has had his fair share of exposure. It comes as no surprise that Reflections is one of the year’s anticipated releases. Thankfully, it lives up to every bit of the hype.
The album’s strength is its combination of well-written songs and flawless vocals, with each selection both heartfelt and holistic in content and presentation.
Champion chooses to focus heavily on horizontal relationships in his material, addressing a plethora of issues that range from marital commitments (“For Better or For Worse”) to self-actualization (“Ain’t So Bad”). The album spends quality time addressing issues of low self-esteem, offering Christ as the answer to failing self-image as illustrated in the powerful “Find a Reason” and the title track.
As if that’s not enough, Champion has several major players lending their talents to the project. Warryn Campbell produces and co-writes seven of the album’s ten tracks. Impressively, Campbell stays true to Champion’s vision, producing authentic soul music that is certain to stand the test of time. Eric Dawkins (of Dawkins & Dawkins fame) assists with production and writing duties, as does Antonio Dixon and Gerald Haddon. of Mary Mary lends her writing and vocal talents to the funky pulsating groove “Always”, while Champion’s wife Paula joins him on the album’s title track.
Cover to cover, Reflections is one of the most exciting albums to hit the marketplace all year. Fusing relevant and timeless content with a mature and diverse musical presentation, Champion has a gem on his hands with this effort. Reflections is a must-have for any music lover.
Production: Various album release date: July, 2008
EMI Gospel / Brooks Entertainment Group
– reviewed by Gerard Bonner for Gospelflava.com–