banner.jpg (5045 bytes)

Home   |  Articles   |   Deep Groove Encyclopedia   |  Reviews
ATD Records  |   Deep Groove Radio   |   Links   |  Contact

Ashanti - Ashanti

Tweet - Southern Hummingbird

In the rush to generate a new battle in the r&b wars (see: Stax vs. Motown, Prince vs. Michael Jackson, Alicia Keys vs. India Arie), observers have pitted newcomers Ashanti and Tweet against each other. With Ashanti's record-setting status as the first woman to begin her career with three top 10 singles (including her collaborations with Fat Joe and Ja Rule), early returns have her winning the battle.

But other than being proteges of famous crews (Ashanti is down with Murder Inc., Tweet is a friend of Missy Elliott), legitimate comparisons between the two are hard to find.  In terms of emotional depth and musicianship, these sisters are coming from different places.

Much like Craig David, Ashanti's music is aimed at the 21 and under market, so don't expect a lot of variety here.  As r&b newcomers tend to do, Ashanti's primary subject matter is relationships. But the simplicity of the song titles - "Foolish," "Dreams," "Happy" - reflects Ashanti's inexperience in the game of love.  Give Irv Gotti credit for masking Ashanti's deficiencies with ear-pleasing production that emphasizes the hooks, one reason she's on the radio every half-hour.  Murder Inc.'s franchise player, Ja Rule, makes a couple of appearances, but the real interest in the album comes from seeing Ashanti's emergence as a songwriter.  As she matures, she could develop into a talent deserving of her hype. 

By comparison, Southern Hummingbird announces the arrival of a fully formed artist.  Now 30 years old, Tweet draws upon her talents as a self-taught guitarist and drummer in addition to her struggles with depression to give Hummingbird a level of sincerity missing from most artists.

The first single "Oops (Oh My)" is one of the year's hottest jams, but not an accurate portrayal of the album.  Instead check for ballads like "My Place" and "Motel," where Tweet's gentle but expressive voice comes to the forefront.  Tweet's amalgamation of Prince and classic soul marks her as one of the most promising acts of the year.   

Ashanti may well be the princess of r&b, but Tweet is more of a natural woman.

Copyright 2002 AllThingsDeep.com.  All rights reserved.

cover

Released 2002 on Universal (click on cover to buy)

Selected Tracks:

Foolish
Dreams
Voodoo

cover

Released 2002 on Elektra (click on cover to buy)

Selected Tracks:
Beautiful
Drunk
My Place 

Home   |  Articles   |   Deep Groove Encyclopedia   |  Reviews
ATD Records  |   Deep Groove Radio   |   Links   |  Contact