Citizen Copeby Citizen Cope
If there were such a thing as an urban beatnik, Citizen Cope, aka Clarence Greenwood, would be it. His unique message-oriented self-titled debut is in the spirit of music by Wyclef Jean and Arrested Development, but rich in his own brand of underground street stylings, which find their flavor in the sounds and soul of the Deep South. The album combines an ever-so-slight bit of island flavor, R&B, hip-hop, smoky-club lounge, and blues. The former live keyboardist and DJ for Basehead fills his songs -- which are often cool, laid-back, and understated -- with messages surrounding the struggles of life, but more so, street life. And Greenwood's voice is smooth and full of yearning, but not over the top. It can be likened to the style of Maxwell. Listeners, whatever they take from this innovative disc, will no doubt walk away feeling as if they just exited a small, hole-in-the-wall club -- the kind that oozes character and atmosphere -- at six AM, squinting at the blaring morning sun. There are many winning moments on this disc. "Contact" describes how cops sometimes wrongfully stop and even arrest youth. The slow and shuffling "If There's Love" is steeped in Southern blues flavor and portrays love's power to lift the human spirit in a difficult world. Elsewhere, "Salvation" and "Holdin' On," in their understated and minimalist approach, are the disc's home runs. The bare yet abundant tracks feature a shuffling snare and brush playing, with Greenwood's haunting and raspy voice floating on top. Greenwood is an artist with very personal and social messages on his mind. His outlet for these thoughts is a musical soundtrack in a class all by itself. Whether the theme is perseverance, street hustling, or lust, Greenwood gets his point across loud and clear in his modest approach, and captivates audiences with his cool and hypnotic brand of underground street music. After listening to this choice disc, it becomes clear as to why Greenwood chose Citizen Cope as his performing name. He, like everyone else, is just trying to live through the day, as his music suggests. For those looking for an inspiring, creative, and refreshing outlet to help them cope in daily life, or if you're simply looking to enjoy some great, unconventional music, this winning debut will more than get you by.
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Performance CreditsCitizen Cope Primary Artist
David Mann Flute,Alto Saxophone,Soprano Saxophone
Bashiri Johnson Percussion
Peter Davis Vocals
Clarence Greenwood Guitar,Keyboards,Turntables,Vocals,Clavinet
Jesse Levy Cello
Michelle Lewis Vocals
Meshell Ndegeocello Bass
Jay Nichols Drums
Bob Power Bass,Guitar,Electric Piano
Kenneth Wright Keyboards
John Ginty Organ,Percussion,Piano,Hand Clapping
Jim Connolly Turntables
Danny Parker Bass,Percussion,Hand Clapping
Abe Laboriel Drums
Technical CreditsClarence Greenwood Composer,Producer,Engineer,drum programming,Audio Production
Tim Latham Engineer
Bob Power Producer,Engineer,drum programming,Audio Production
Danny Parker Engineer
Brian Liu Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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Citizen Cope's music AMAZED me, after hearing them in concert. I bought the CD right after the show and have listened to it everyday since then. I'm a huge fan of ORIGINAL music, and I highly recommend buying this CD.
if you like insightful lyrics combined w/ an edgy, ecclectic style...then citizen cope's an artist you can't not know...definitely a c.d. you can have on rotation for weeks on end...i cant say enough good stuff about it, i just wish this kid would go on tour
The album is great top to bottom. It's mainly a roots-rock type feel to it, but the hip-hop and blues influences are definately evident. A must for any open-minded or adventurous listener!
wow im in love with citizens cope you need to buy this cd now trust me im obbsessed!!!
Clarence Greenwood, (A.K.A Citizen Cope,) Is a wondeful artist, i recently bought his album after hearing him play on Santana's latest album shamun, his music is soft and beautiful, but strikingly strong when needed. Many of the songs on the album are very good. My favorite is "Salvation" it is a must hear song. The album becomes a little week after the first 8 tracks or so, but overall he is a great artist who simply needs more publicity in order to have a better career.
This album is so sweet. If you enjoy laid back music when your high, or sober this is the album for you. One of my favorite songs on this album is Let the drummer kick it. It is a great song and Citizen Cope is a great band.They kick azz