SONGS IN A MINOR

JANE STEVENSON

, Last Updated: 3:35 PM ET


SONGS IN A MINOR
Alicia Keys
(J Records)

Another entry in the healthy neo R&B-soul movement, Keys' startling debut on Clive Davis' new label bursts with old-school urban sounds and attitude set against a backdrop of classical piano and sweet, warm vocals.

Keys, a New York-born-and-raised musical prodigy who began playing at age five, hooks up with Jermaine Dupri (Girlfriend), Prince (How Come You Don't Call Me), Isaac Hayes (Rock Wit U) and Brian McKnight (Never Felt This Way). But it's her own serious musical talent that stands out here.

As writer, arranger and producer of most of this collection, Keys belts it out gospel-style on How Come You Don't Call Me, Fallin' -- the gorgeous first single -- and the hidden track Lovin U. She sweetly croons on the more uptempo Girlfriend, Jane Doe and Why Do I Feel So Sad, and the funked-up Rock Wit U, A Woman's Worth and The Life .

Also worth checking out is her sly, seductive duet with Jimmy Cozier on Mr. Man, the pretty Never Felt This Way, which merges into the ballad Butterflyz, and the album-ending Caged Bird.

Keys is set to open for fellow R&B-soul artists Maxwell on his summer tour. No news yet of a Toronto date.

Track Listing 1. Piano & 1 (intro)

2. Girlfriend

3. How Come U Don't Call Me Anymore?

4. Fallen

5. Troubles

6. Rock Wit U

7. A Woman's Worth

8. Jane Doe

9. Goodbye

10. The Life

11. Mr. Man (featuring Jimmy Cozier)

12. Never Felt This Way (interlude)

13. Butterflies
 


Videos

Photos