America America

Bebe Winans

Razor & Tie Records, 2012

REVIEW BY: Tom Haugen


In the world of R&B and gospel music, few names are as noted as the Winans, a family known for endless accolades within their field. Bebe Winans is among the most gifted and prolific of the siblings, with six Grammy Awards, ten Dove Awards, and one Soul Train Music Award, just to name a few. One of the few things Winan hasn't accomplished is a concept or theme album. Enter my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 America America, Winan's present to the country in a time when people's spirits could use some uplifting. Seeing as the election is just around the corner and the Olympics just ended, there really isn't a better time then to celebrate the heritage and history that bonds us each as people living in the U.S.A.

This is an album made up of traditional songs that everyone will be familiar with. Winans also adds three originals to the mix, as he is a talented songwriter in his own right. Though many of the traditionals have been reworked numerous times already, few renditions have the impact of Winans' versions. His soulful, inimitable tenor illuminates these songs in a way that few can, breathing new life into time honored classics.

Starting out with "Star Spangled Banner,” Winans doesn't waste anytime letting his remarkable voice shine with this gorgeous recreation. One of his originals follows, "America America," which is a patriotic track with a very modern sound – it’s probably his best original here. Another of his own songs, “We’re The United States Of America,” comes soon after. It has a very theater-like tone, which clearly separates itself from the rest of the album. His final original ends the disc, "Ultimate Sacrifice," which was penned specifically about the military. It's a very emotive moment, an ideal way to conclude an album in a time when America's thoughts are often with the troops.

At a time when many feel the country is sorting through a lot of strife – politically, socially, and economically – America America brings us all together in song and can easily reaffirm anyone's wavering pride. Winans’ distinct yet powerful voice and often calming arrangements make this an enjoyable listen regardless of your level of patriotism, and his own songs radiate timeless beauty as well.

Rating: B

User Rating: Not Yet Rated


I can't wait to get this album. It is kind of riscky to do a patriotic album theese days. which is why I'm eager to hear it. Nobody better in gospel than the Winans. I hope it is really good and not just interesting.

© 2012 Tom Haugen and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Razor & Tie Records, and is used for informational purposes only.