Testimony, Vol. 1: Life and Relationship

( 9 )

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Tracy E. Hopkins
On her third disc, neo-soul's reigning queen of positivity dives deeper into her emotional pool and emerges singing -- albeit briefly -- about pain and disappointment. Loving the skin you're in, taking pride in your hair…it's all nice, but heartbreak sure does make for interesting lyrical content -- just ask Nick Lachey. Of course, India still puts a positive spin on her pathos. On the haunting "Good Mourning," anchored by India's subtle acoustic strumming, she bids "Good morning to the harsh realities of life / Good morning to the fact we're not husband and wife" but ends the song with the epiphany "I know that God's will will be done / It's a good morning after ...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Tracy E. Hopkins
On her third disc, neo-soul's reigning queen of positivity dives deeper into her emotional pool and emerges singing -- albeit briefly -- about pain and disappointment. Loving the skin you're in, taking pride in your hair…it's all nice, but heartbreak sure does make for interesting lyrical content -- just ask Nick Lachey. Of course, India still puts a positive spin on her pathos. On the haunting "Good Mourning," anchored by India's subtle acoustic strumming, she bids "Good morning to the harsh realities of life / Good morning to the fact we're not husband and wife" but ends the song with the epiphany "I know that God's will will be done / It's a good morning after all." Over a funky horn riff and mid-tempo piano groove, "These Eyes" also reflects on love lost, and she even gives a gospel-lite reading of Don Henley's "The Heart of the Matter." The rest of the disc, however, finds the motivational singer up to her old tricks. Leave it to the likes of Alicia Keys to spew threats of the "what goes around, comes around" variety "Karma" -- India takes the high road "The Wings of Forgiveness," natch and thanks the one who trespassed against her for teaching her to forgive. And "I Am Not My Hair" revisits the theme of self-acceptance that permeated her breakout song, "Video." Although she may never rock as hard as her Peach State soul sister Joi or sing about the bitter side of love as plaintively as Jill Scott or Erykah Badu, India.Arie is the rare artist on a mission to spread her ray of sunshine, even when the forecast calls for rain.
All Music Guide - Andy Kellman
India.Arie's third album would've sounded much different if it had been recorded and released shortly after 2002's Voyage to India. It would've either been made just before or immediately after a major breakup, one that informs much of Testimony: Vol. 1, Life & Relationship. This isn't a bitter breakup album; instead, it's largely a breakup album that instead involves forgiveness, closure, and -- of course -- the kind of soul searching that Arie's fans have come to expect. Arie's relationship was apparently very serious, as demonstrated in "These Eyes," where she demands respect and wonders what her and his children would've been like. Though songs like "Good Mourning" deal with the immediate aftermath "Good morning silence, good morning to myself/Good morning to the pain in the center of my chest", they also seem to revel in it as just another part of being alive "Good morning acceptance, good morning inner strength/I'm loving every moment, even the inner strain". The album is a major production. Many of its songs involve well over a dozen musicians, some of which -- Rachelle Ferrell, Keb' Mo', Victor Wooten, Rascal Flatts, Acoustic Soul accomplice Mark Batson -- are bound to make some listeners freak. It's clear that Arie has been listening to a lot of country music; while these songs are completely hers with the exception of Don Henley's "Heart of the Matter," a song that easily fits into the scheme of the album, it wouldn't be surprising to hear a handful of them covered by contemporary country artists. Since a significant portion of the album is centered around heartbreak and moving on, some of Arie's fans might not ever connect fully connect with it, but it will certainly be of great assistance to any of her fans who find themselves coping with something similar.
Billboard - Gail Mitchell
An ambitious, aurally rich suite of storytelling songs (à la mentor Stevie Wonder in his '70s heyday) enhanced by Arie's expressive vocals.
Boston Globe - Sarah Rodman
Lovely acoustic soul.... [Arie] examines what it means to be alone, to forgive, and to thrive -- all through 15 thoughtful tracks.
Atlanta Journal Constitution - Nick Marino
[Grade: B+] Her album has a confessional feeling. Songs unspool like diary entries or prayers. The music can swell or bounce.
St. Louis Post-Dispatch - Kevin Johnson
[Grade: B] Rising from the pain of a failed relationship, the singer-songwriter unveils a new level of strength and empowerment as she looks at what happened and where she's going from there.

An ambitious, aurally rich suite of storytelling songs (à la mentor Stevie Wonder in his '70s heyday) enhanced by Arie's expressive vocals.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 2/8/2007
  • Label: Motown
  • UPC: 602517076563
  • Catalog Number: 000765102
  • Sales rank: 40,042

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Intro: Loving (1:30)
  2. 2 These Eyes (4:31)
  3. 3 The Heart of the Matter (5:15)
  4. 4 Good Mourning (5:27)
  5. 5 Private Party (3:52)
  6. 6 There's Hope (3:57)
  7. 7 Living (Interlude) (1:23)
  8. 8 India' Song (5:26)
  9. 9 Wings of Forgiveness (4:59)
  10. 10 Summer (3:14)
  11. 11 I Am Not My Hair (3:47)
  12. 12 Great Grandmother (0:34)
  13. 13 Better People (3:08)
  14. 14 Outro: Learning (1:32)
  15. 15 I Choose (4:45)
  16. 16 This Too Shall Pass (5:54)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
India.Arie Primary Artist, Acoustic Guitar, Piano, Trumpet, Vocals, Background Vocals
Bonnie Raitt Guitar
Rachelle Ferrell Background Vocals
Javier Solís Percussion
Courtney Branch Percussion
Trina Broussard Background Vocals
John Catchings Cello
Jon Cleary Guitar
David Davidson Violin
Darin James Percussion
LaMarquis Mark Jefferson Bass, Bass Guitar
Mike Lawler Organ
Ricky Lawson Cymbals
Tony Love Guitar
Cornelius Mims Electric Bass
David Piltch Acoustic Bass
Michael Rhodes Bass, Bass Guitar
Tammy Rogers Fiddle
Laurnea Wilkerson Background Vocals
Victor Wooten Upright Bass
Keb' Mo' Acoustic Guitar, Dobro
Mark Batson Bass, Piano, Bass Guitar, Keyboards
J.D. Blair Drums
Tarika Lewis Electric Violin
Blue Miller Guitar
Joyce Simpson Background Vocals
Matthew Johnson Background Vocals
Adrienne Woods Cello
Shannon Sanders Keyboards, Background Vocals
Eric D. Jackson Guitar
Chris Johnson Trumpet
Rascal Flatts Background Vocals
Abe Laboriel Jr. Drums
Frank Macek Bass, Drums, Keyboards
Double G Conductor
Bryan Brock Percussion
Lamar Carter Percussion
Pierre Medor Hammond Organ, Hammond B3
Alma Cielo Violin
Marisa Kuney Violin
Tom Lea Viola
Ricky Quinones Guitar
Steve Mackey Upright Bass
Kerisha Hicks Background Vocals
Chimere Scott Background Vocals
Dre Bowman Bass, Bass Guitar
Tammy Rogers King Fiddle, Mandolin
Doctah B. Percussion
Courtney Branch "Doctah B Sirius" Percussion, Chimes, Conga, Drums, Gong, Bass Guitar, Moog Synthesizer, Roto Toms
Branden Burch Guitar, Drums, Keyboards
Chenere Background Vocals
Ametria Dock Background Vocals
Simon "Woodchuck" Durham Bass, Bass Guitar
Jimmy "J Rok" English Bass, Guitar, Keyboards
Laurie Ann Fessler Background Vocals
Great Grandmother Vocals, Spoken Word
William Harriet Percussion
John III Howard Drums
Charles "Akahdahmah" Jackson III Percussion, Gong, Shaker, Wind Chimes, Bowls
Matthew Johnson Background Vocals
Trevor Larence Jr. "Trev Beats" Drums
Deronda Lewis Background Vocals
Jeanie Lim Viola
Miles Mosely Double Bass
Destiny Muhammad "Harpist From The Hood" Harp
Erik Rostad Strings, Violin
Moses Staimez Guitar
Cekoya Tolbert Background Vocals
Rob Wanda scratching
Drew Ramsey Guitar, Bass Guitar, Background Vocals
Alisha Bauer Cello
Typhanee Fitzgerald Background Vocals
Richard Johnson Jr. Drums
Kennth S. Crouch Piano
Doctah B Serius Bass Guitar
Natalie Keith Harp
Miles Mosley Double Bass
Thomas Lea Viola
Destiny Muhammad Harp
Technical Credits
Danny Duncan Engineer
Cindy Morgan Composer
Courtney Branch Audio Production
Neal Cappellino Engineer
Tracy Kendrick Engineer
Sylvia Rhone Executive Producer
J.D. Souther Composer
Philip White Composer, Producer, Audio Production
Mark Batson Composer, Producer, Engineer, drum programming, Audio Production
Bob Tucker Engineer
Anthony Terrebonne Engineer
Michael Parnin Engineer
Che Pope drum programming
Shannon Sanders Arranger, Composer, Producer, Engineer, Audio Production
S. Sanders Composer
Chris Johnson drum programming
Paul Pilsneniks Engineer
Frank Macek Programming, Producer, Engineer, Digital Editing, Audio Production, Vocal Producer
Double G String Arrangements
India.Arie Arranger, Composer, Producer, Engineer, Liner Notes, Executive Producer, rhythm arrangement, Audio Production, Vocal Producer
Annalee Valencia-Bruch Art Direction
Dru Castro Producer, Engineer, Vocal Engineer, Audio Production
Sam Thomas Engineer, Audio Production
Aaron Fessel Engineer, Vocal Engineer
Sarah Thomas Producer
Jared Gosselin Composer, Producer, Audio Production
Greg Fuqua Engineer, Vocal Engineer
Phillip Ramos Engineer
Courtney Branch "Doctah B Sirius" Producer, Engineer, Contributor, rhythm arrangement
Andre Burch Engineer
Branden Burch Composer, Programming, Producer, Engineer, drum programming, Audio Production
Ametria Dock Vocal Arrangements
Jimmy "J Rok" English Programming, Producer, Engineer
John III Howard Programming, Producer, Audio Production
Reen Nalli Executive Producer, Management
Herban Shamen Percussion Arrangement
Tony Terrebonne Engineer
Drew Ramsey Arranger, Composer, Producer, Audio Production
Sarah Killion Engineer
Robert Battaglia Engineer
Richard Johnson Jr. Audio Production
Doctah B Serious Audio Production
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 9 )
Rating Distribution

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(7)

4 Star

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Sort by: Showing all of 7 Customer Reviews
  • Posted October 1, 2010

    India is a fab singer

    emotional sing along love the beat music

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 1, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    I love India Arie

    Whether she is interpreting an old song in her own way or producing a new track. she delivers music that she be heard and understood by many generations. She has lyrics that speak to the mind, enlighten the heart and gives the soul peace. I love her music.

    Btw, Vol. 2 is just as good.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Wonderful Journey

    My daughter brought this record for me. She is a 20 year old college student. Just reading the label notes inspired me to listen to the album most intently. The amount of musicians "talented in their own right" beckoned me to wonderful journey of notes. This album is awesome. Every jam just a total experience in itself. The clarity of India's voice and message is something that all ages can relate to. Reminds of early Stevie Wonder and also, "Good Morning Heartache" kinda feeling in the experience of the voice. I love that she is a "women sharing the experience is powerful" type of artist. She encorages women to unite in feeling and excellence in music. I love this album because there is actual music with musicians who love to play and also mentor India. I felt Rachelle Ferrell in the spirit when listening - so it was no surprise to see her as a back-up singer. Purchase this album for yourself, your women friends, and younger women. The message is power. India - please keep making music to make others stronger in the shared word. Thanks so much. I have purchased three more to give as gifts.

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    Posted February 14, 2009

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    Posted May 8, 2009

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    Posted October 26, 2008

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    Posted October 25, 2008

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