Who Is Jill Scott? Words and Sounds, Vol. 1

Who Is Jill Scott? Words and Sounds, Vol. 1

4.9 34
by Jill Scott

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Home to soul legends such as Patti Labelle, the O'Jays, and Teddy Pendergrass and hip-hoppers the Roots and Eve, Philadelphia has long been a crucible for urban music. The latest to emerge from this creative outpost is singer,


Home to soul legends such as Patti Labelle, the O'Jays, and Teddy Pendergrass and hip-hoppers the Roots and Eve, Philadelphia has long been a crucible for urban music. The latest to emerge from this creative outpost is singer, songwriter, and poet Jill Scott, whose self-assured debut brings a fresh, young urban female perspective to modern soul music. Much like earthy songbirds Angie Stone and Erykah Badu (who sang the memorable Scott-penned hook on the Roots' Grammy award-winning single "You Got Me"), Scott embodies the neo-soul aesthetic, complete with her natural locks and syncopated delivery. On Who Is Jill Scott?, Scott's thoughtful and often raw prose floats atop the Fender Rhodes riffs, funky bass lines, and romantic strings that permeate the album. While deeply entrenched in the R&B vein, Scott's vocal style carries a healthy dose of jazz inflections (Roy Ayers' "No Stranger to Love" is sampled on the bass-heavy "Watching Me"). A woman of many moods, Scott shows her softer side on the live-sounding, go-go inspired track "It's Love." And on "I Think It's Better" and "He Loves Me (Lyzel In E Flat)," Scott's imploring soprano echoes the quiet strength of Faith Evans, as her remembrances of a special loved one unfold. But on the bluesy first single "Gettin' in the Way," Scott proves that she's no joke when it comes to her man, with fightin' words like "You better back down before you get smacked down." After one listen to this brilliant debut, no self-respecting soul lover will wonder who Jill Scott is. She's a rare and honest talent. Marlynn Snyder

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - William Ruhlmann
Though start-up label Hidden Beach and its manufacturer/distributor Sony may have been hoping for another Lauryn Hill in this eloquent young African-American from a Middle Atlantic state, Jill Scott turns out to be something of a hip-hop Patti Smith, a street poet who, on her first album, hasn't quite made the transition from spoken word performances to music, despite an excellent singing voice. With any luck, she will retain her sense of the power of words, since the best parts of this album are the ones when she lets fly, drunk on her verbal virtuosity. Producer Jeff Townes (of DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince fame) and his team of associates from the A Touch of Jazz production company set up sympathetic musical backgrounds for Scott that support her without requiring her to fit her spoken and sung excursions into strict meter. That gives her range to pursue her interests, which include a strong sense of her north Philadelphia neighborhood and such idiosyncratic concerns as food, with many meals listed in detail. But the album has a story to tell, and for the most part it is a love story. Scott describes a relationship from many different angles, including an encounter with her boyfriend's ex in a super market ("Exclusively") and her warnings to that girl (or some other) to stay away ("Gettin' in the Way"). She also breaks painfully from an old boyfriend in favor of the new one ("I Think It's Better"), but mostly she celebrates the relationship ("A Long Walk," "He Loves Me (Lyzel in E Flat)," "It's Love," "The Way"). But with "Honey Molasses," things turn sour, and on "Love Rain" and "Slowly Surely," she frees herself, concluding that "One Is the Magic #" and toward the end of the album moving on to social concerns with "Watching Me" and "Brotha." This narrative structure gives Scott ample room to express a variety of emotions and to display her "verbal elation." Like many poets, she sometimes delights in a torrent of words for their own sake, but it's hard to fault her when the result is such a fully articulated world view. There is no existing slot in R&B/hip-hop into which this album fits, which only means a new one will have to be created. (The CD marks a new complexity in the use of bonus and hidden tracks. After the 17th track, "Show Me," there are 26 four-second blank tracks, followed by a 44th track, the bonus song, "Try." One minute after this song ends, there is a hidden selection, an alternate version of "Love Rain" that features Mos Def.)

Product Details

Release Date:
Hidden Beach

Related Subjects


  1. Jilltro
  2. Do You Remember
  3. Exclusively
  4. Gettin' in the Way
  5. A Long Walk
  6. I Think It's Better
  7. He Loves Me (Lyzel in E Flat)
  8. It's Love
  9. The Way
  10. Honey Molasses
  11. Love Rain
  12. The Roots (Interlude)
  13. Slowly Surely
  14. One Is the Magic #
  15. Watching Me
  16. Brotha
  17. Show Me
  18. [Untitled Track]
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  44. Try

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Jill Scott   Primary Artist,Vocals,Background Vocals
Larry Gold   Cello
James Poyser   Keyboards
Ted Thomas   Bass,Percussion,Drums,Keyboards
Jeff Townes   Bass
Black Thought   Vocals
Emma Kummrow   Violin
Igor Szwec   Violin
Gregory Teperman   Violin
Mos Def   Vocals
Andre Harris   Percussion,Drums
Keith Pelzer   Keyboards,Synthesizer Bass
Vidal Davis   Drums
Jafar Barron   Trumpet,Pocket Trumpet
Charles Parker   Violin

Technical Credits

Larry Gold   String Arrangements,String Conductor
Ed King   Producer
Steve McKeever   Executive Producer
James Poyser   Producer
Jon Smeltz   Engineer
Ted Thomas   Producer
Jeff Townes   Producer,Engineer,Executive Producer
Richard Nichols   Producer
Andre Harris   Producer
Keith Pelzer   Producer,Engineer
Grand Wizards   Producer
Jill Scott   Vocal Arrangements
Vidal Davis   Producer,Engineer,Vocal Arrangements
Scott Storch   Composer

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Who Is Jill Scott?: Words and Sounds, Vol. 1 4.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 34 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a very soulful and strong voice. Another fine artist from Philadelphia.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This lady can cold put down some lyrics. I can't even begin to choose a favorite track. Buy it...and you will agree, this is the hottest R&B release of 2000.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I've heard a few songs off this album pre-release both in California and New York, and all I can say is ''WOW!'' This lady is destined to be a star.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This album is incredible...a touch of jazz, blues, and hip hop. I think this album would appeal to any true R&B fan. It has smooth music tracks with funky bass lines. With the increased interest in spoken word in the African American culture, Jill Scott definitely has an audience. If you are looking for a CD that you can pop in and listen to without skipping tracks...this is it!!!! WOW!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I saw Jill in NYC. She was wonderful. The album is hot!!! The lyrics are hot!! It's a great buy!!!. If you like the Roots, Outkast, Cello, Common, Mos Def, Gang Starr, you'll definitely like Jill!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This CD has a touch of jazz, R&B, hip hop, neo-soul and vocals that will leave grooving track after track after track. A must have for all music lovers.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I first heard Jill on the ''In Too Deep'' Soundtrack and I thought, ''This is a pretty good song.'' Lo and behold, this sista can S-A-N-G! This is the best release so far this year BY FAR. Jill mixes soul, jazz, and spoken word so well, you would think she invented the three genres herself. This is a definite ''put on and let play'' cd. I gurantee you will love this cd. And by the way...once you've experienced her, tell a friend!
Guest More than 1 year ago
What the 90's did it's best to destroy, Jill comes through to ''rebuild'' music in such a way that it reminds us of what made feel so good when we were young and just being ourselves. This work is refreshing, smart, thoughtful and SPECIAL. I worried that Jill would be underappreciated and caught in the shadow of ''Badu'' but she beautifully carves out a niche for herself while providing us with a smooth place to chill and reflect. I am excited with the breath of fresh air she breathes into r&b/soul/funk and music in general. Jill is the type of talent possibly less commercial than a Lauren Hill, but one that artists from all genre's of music would love to collaborate with to bring a new-and-improved flavor to the mainstream (that's a clue for record executives to stand up and earn your check,ok.). Needless to say, this is a great album and an important one. You cannot fake passion and Jill has enough of that and talent to develop a strong & lasting career. Kudos go to the talented team at A Touch of Jazz for their top-notch work. ''Who bangin'?''---Philly.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I love peotry. I like what Jill Scott had to say in her poetry, through her music. Who is Jill Scott? Say your name girlfriend!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Its not often i can listen intently to every song on an album and seriously love something about each and every track. And the realization that every track in fact sounds different, adds even more embellishment. Jill Scott has a signature style all her own that i both respect and admire. She is a breath of fresh air in this seemingly monotonous world of urban music.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have this one 5 MAJOR STARS!!! This CD sends sweet sounds and poetry through my entire house. I have never raved over a CD before but Jill Scott has me telling all my friends to get this CD. I just ordered the TAPE for the car!!! If you like D'Angelo, Maxwell and Erikah then you will absolutely love Jill Scott!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
A cd like this has been needed for a long time. With all of the rap, hard-core rap, video and wannabe gangstas trying to take over the charts, someone needed to come along and show everyone how a real sista does it. And that is exactly what Jill Scott does, and with essence. She says everything that Foxy Brown, Lil Kim, and Eve says, but with class. I tip my hat to this Queen. She deserves much props. Whomever was in Jill Scott's life and whomever these songs and poems are about on her cd.... thank you for touching this lady's soul, whether positively or negatively. You brought out the best in her. Jill Scott is surely one of the ''QUEENS''...Lauryn Hill, Erika Badu and J.I.L.L. S.C.O.T.T.
Guest More than 1 year ago
If this woman is not on the list as a nominee for Best New Artist at the Grammy Awards next year, someone needs to have their hearing checked! Jill Scott is a talented singer, writer, and poet. Heard the song ''Gettin' in the Way'' and loved it. But still hadn't purchased the album. But after seeing her perform live on BET, I HAD to get the album. This is an artist who doesn't need choreography or special effects. The magic is in the music - she enjoys the art form and it shows on her album and in her performances. Favorites: Exclusively, Gettin' in the Way (song and video), A Long Walk, He Loves Me, Love Rain, The Way, Honey Molasses...oh forget it...all of them!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Jill Scott's CD is absolutely awesome. ''Getting in the way'' is Not her best song by far... Her enticing ''Better'' leading into ''He loves me'' in E-flat shows that she is definitely in a league of her own. She has TRUE talent. Her music isn't 'mainstrean'--it's on a whole different level. I am forever a Jill Scott fan!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is the b-e-s-t that there is.. Words can't even begin to describe how much I love all of the tracks. I happened upon her by word of mouth and I havent regretted it yet.
Guest More than 1 year ago
With depth far deeper than oceans, Jill Scott's cd affects you much like an addict is affected by a drug...it's PURELY ADDICTIVE! This Philly poet puts it down track after funky track! When people try to make comparisons between her and other artists, much like the ''All Music Guide'' guy did, that's a mistake to begin with. I guess there 'has' to be an alternative opinion placed out there, just for the sake of having one, but i'm not really sure WHO'S cd he was listening to. But I do agree with him on one point: Jill Scott CANNOT be 'classified' as an R&B artist, but not because of the reasons he stateed, but because she simply CANNOT be classified. She's created a category of her own. She is setting the standard for the next movment in spoken word and music as well. If you're not familiar w/ the spoken word scene, this is a definite 'easy on the ears and mind' way to familiarize yourself! Her talent shines throughout the cd, placing you in 'her mood'. The sista has control like that. It's one of those rare cd's you can rock while cleanin' the house, down the street in ya ride, on long road trips, and oh yes, ya gotta listen to it in the rain! The Diva stands on her own, and when you listen to her, you'll find out just who Jill Scott is. Ms Scott, much power and long life to your flow. light~
Guest More than 1 year ago
Her music is so refreshing, a little bit of jazz, hip hop, and r&b all rapped up in one. She is dynamic. The lyrics are hot. You go girl!!!!!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Move over Sade, Jill Scott is the next sultry, sexy and jazzy voice of the year. This is an extraordinary album that has exquisite taste and style. Keep em comming Jill!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Jill Scott is the best. Coming from a young teenager (13) who wants to hear real music instead of some of the garbage that's out now. She's wonderful to listen to and she is not like any other. She will be known because she has the talent and her witty attitude will scare everyone else off the charts. Boo Ya!
Guest More than 1 year ago
''It's so hard for me to say this ... I'm struggling to find the right words.'' Jill Scott is refreshing ... She's what we've been lacking -- She's what we've all needed and finally found. Who else would be able to write a song about the man in her life and make us all jealous? With lyrics like ''You love me from my hair follicle to my toe nails, You got me feelin' like the breeze, Easy and free and lovely and me ...'' Some people talk about how they have never been in love before -- Well go out and get this CD and experience what love could be like if you had the right person in your life. With her jazzy notes and R&B Soul -- Jill Scott invites you to her world ... and you appreciate every minute of it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
When you listen to Jill sing, you feel where she is coming from. Her music relates to our lives, whether you are from the hood or not. That ghetto love vibe saturates her melodies. Not only can she sing, she creates a scene in your mind that you can almost touch. Her songs don't get tired no matter how often you play them because they are not of this time, they are about our lives. Issues of love don't change but they way they are communicated can sometimes become warped by what the mainstream demands. Jill has stepped out of that ring and is singing from her heart. Allow her to sing to you and with you because she knows what you are feeling and what you wish you could really say.
Guest More than 1 year ago
It has been a long time since a singer has captured my ear & my soul. Jill Scott's voice moves me in every way. Her lyrics make my heart smile & my day easier. I play her CD nonstop, all the way through to the end & back to the begining. I never get enough. She's as real as it gets.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Jill Scott is highly recomedable to all those souls who love the soulful sounds of music mixed with great poetry.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Her soulful and sensual music touches the soul and grasps ones inner self. Her sexiness is uninhibited and very welcomed. I love this cd. It is up there with Billie Holiday on the legend factor. She simply is the best.