Second Decade 1993-2003

Second Decade 1993-2003

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by Michael W. Smith

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He's still at his creative peak, but as Christian-pop phenom Michael W. Smith has been making hits for 20 years now, a new retrospective is due. Second Decade 1993-2003 offers 15 tracks that largely span the past decade ("Friends 2003" is a re-recorded version of his 1983 hit, while "Signs" and "Raging Sea" are new cuts). Interestingly, Smith's greatest…  See more details below


He's still at his creative peak, but as Christian-pop phenom Michael W. Smith has been making hits for 20 years now, a new retrospective is due. Second Decade 1993-2003 offers 15 tracks that largely span the past decade ("Friends 2003" is a re-recorded version of his 1983 hit, while "Signs" and "Raging Sea" are new cuts). Interestingly, Smith's greatest crossover success came during the '80s, but as Second Decade makes clear, his recent work is easily his best. "Breakdown," "Cry for Love," "Love Me Good," and "Missing Person" are solid message pop, with strong bass-line beats and profound -- and radio-friendly -- lyrics. Smith's heartfelt ballads resonate as powerfully now as they did during times of national pain: "This Is Your Time," written after the Columbine High School shootings, and "Above All," which found its audience following the September 11th attacks, are two notables. Second Decade does include a few clunkers (such as the bombastic instrumental "Freedom"), but the greater sins are those of omission. The tender "Love Is Moving," his track from the Joshua soundtrack, and "There She Stands," his patriotic anthem, are two shining moments that should never have been overlooked. There you have it: A 15-track retrospective isn't large enough to encompass a decade's worth of great music by Michael W. Smith. Is there any greater compliment to this groundbreaking artist?

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Aaron Latham
For an artist in any musical genre, releasing a disc celebrating ten years of popularity and hits is quite an accomplishment. To be able to do the same thing ten additional years later is truly amazing, and Michael W. Smith is one of the fortunate few who has had the enduring popularity to achieve this feat. Although The Second Decade 1993-2003 is full of hit songs, this retrospective is not necessarily a greatest-hits package but a general overview that highlights the best moments of a ten-year period in a remarkable career. Therefore, popular songs like "Let Me Show You the Way" or Smith's duet with Jim Brickman, "The Love of My Life," are omitted in favor of other career highlights like the title track to Freedom, his passionate instrumental album from 2000. Also taking space away from the hits are two new songs that bookend the collection; however, these are welcome additions that merit inclusion. "Signs," with lyrics co-written by his son, Ryan, opens the disc with quiet, solitary piano lines as Smith's gravelly voice joins in and drives the song forward to an exuberant and memorable chorus. "Raging Storm" is a piano-based ballad that gracefully closes the disc, and the decade, for this talented singer/songwriter. In addition to brilliant hits like "Missing Person" and "This Is Your Time," a new remix of "Breakdown" beefs up the driving sound of this 1995 song. Concert performances of "Above All" and "You Are Holy (Prince of Peace)" from Smith's set of live Worship albums warrant inclusion by showcasing his talent on the stage, but sound a bit out of place amid the studio tracks. Taken from the Dove Hits 2003 compilation, "Friends 2003" is an all-star update to one of Smith's most durable standards, but even with guests like Amy Grant, Steven Curtis Chapman, and Point of Grace, this well-worn early hit could have been left out to make room for a more appropriate hit song. However, it's a small concession to make when the balance of the disc offers some of the best music that Michael W. Smith has created over his second decade in the spotlight, and with his 2002 Dove Award for Artist of the Year, it seems he is well on his way to a successful third decade.

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Product Details

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Michael W. Smith   Primary Artist,Acoustic Guitar,Piano,Keyboards,Hammond Organ,Background Vocals
Raymond Boyd   Percussion,Drums
Nashville String Machine   Performing Ensemble
Antoine Salley   Bass
David Hamilton   Conductor
Nirva Dorsaint   Background Vocals

Technical Credits

Brown Bannister   Producer
Michael W. Smith   Composer,Producer,Liner Notes,Executive Producer
Brent Bourgeois   Composer
Wes King   Composer
Paul Baloche   Composer
Mark Heimermann   Producer
Wayne Kirkpatrick   Composer
Tom Laune   Producer
Lenny LeBlanc   Composer
Bryan Lenox   Producer
Patrick Leonard   Producer
Deborah Smith   Composer
David Hamilton   Orchestral Arrangements
Rob Burrell   Engineer,Remixing
Ryan Smith   Composer
Tim Parker   Graphic Design,Cover Design
Traditional   Composer
Stephanie McBrayer   Art Direction
Ron Roark   Graphic Design

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The Second Decade 1993-2003 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
Being a twenty-something Christian man, Michael W Smith's music has been a big part of my walk with the Lord through the years. And though I've fallen at times and strayed, Michael's music has always helped bring me back to what is lasting, what is important. The Second Decade makes a good collection of songs, though it is by no means a complete set of all his best music in the last ten years. Two new songs begin and end the compilation, including "Raging Sea", being a tender and assuring dialogue from God to humankind. His albums Live The Life, I'll Lead You Home, i2eye, Worship, and his instrumental album Freedom are all represented on the disc, as well as a special rendition of his most popular song, Friends, featuring Amy Grant, Point of Grace, Steven Curtis Chapman, and others. If you're new to Michael, start with this disc and its predecessor, The First Decade. If you're a Michael fan, this will make a good addition to your Smith collection, especially if you can nab the special edition that comes with music videos of "Secret Ambition", "There She Stands", and others. Feel like chatting about Michael and his music? Contact me. It's always good to hook up with a fellow fan.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I love this Cd of Michael W.Smith's because it is a mix of some of his older and newer songs. I love his old style,but I also love some of his new songs.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago