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Howard Hewett: I Commit to Love

Album Notes

Howard Hewett made a smooth transition from being a member of the trio Shalamar to becoming a bona fide solo artist. His first single to hit the Billboard R&B charts was the romantically enchanting "I'm for Real." Too fast to be a ballad and not fast enough to be a jam, Hewett still captivated radio and his audience with this moderate number. The Ohio native glides from his lacerating tenor to his striking falsetto highs supported by cogent backing vocals. The classic piece peaked at number two on the charts. The single "Stay" has a crossover appeal, but it never made a dent in the pop charts. It is not half as impressive as "I'm for Real." However, it did manage to show at number eight on the Billboard R&B charts. "I Commit to Love" falls short as well. It too is saturated with pop seasonings. Nonetheless, it tipped in at number 12 on the Billboard R&B charts. The final release was the inspirational selection "Say Amen," which is Hewett's personal testimony of being given a second chance after his battle with life's various vices. It has become an anthem for many. Inside ten weeks, it peaked at number 54. The shortcoming on this album is the material. As Hewett can deliver on the vocals, the songs do nothing for his talent as they lack excitement and mesmerizing melodies; the two elements commonly associated with his great voice. ~ Craig Lytle


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