Pub. Date:
A Better Man

A Better Man

by Phil PerryPhil Perry


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On his seventh album for Shanachie, singer and songwriter Phil Perry and longtime producer Chip Davis lay out a set of excellent covers, originals, and a throwback surprise. Highlights include the glistening groove in the opening title track, wherein Perry offers the set's statement of purpose -- in some way, virtually each of these ten tracks zones in on what it takes to become a better man -- in spirit, in thought, in relationships, etc. The Curtis Mayfield nugget "I'm So Proud" features the lyrical saxophone of Kim Waters, and is one of numerous tracks on which guitarist Rohn Lawrence shines: he adds elegant fills, colorful chord voicings, and his signature rhythmic approach -- check the way he plays under Waters' solo. As has been Perry's wont on earlier recordings, he takes on a true soul classic in Mayfield's Impressions hit "Gypsy Woman." Despite the iconic weight the tune is imbued with, Perry's read -- with wonderful help from Lawrence -- adds rather than detracts. Perry's vocal here is silky but finds its way right into the seam of the lyric and exposes the finer points in the songwriter's poetic use of metaphor. Slightly funkier and ripe for sophisticated clubbers is "Feelin' You," with lithe trumpet lines by Rick Braun. Just before the close, Perry delivers a stellar -- and thoroughly revisioned -- take on "Dreaming's Out of Season," which he first recorded with the Montclairs. The innovative vocal chart reveals why some songs are eternal. Reinforcing the album's theme is the closer "Stand Up," a killer duet with Howard Hewett that nods back at classic, '70s-era Marvin Gaye. Perry ups his game on A Better Man, choosing to rely on real lyric substance as well as an abundant vocal style. He hasn't left the loverman behind, he's just added more dimension and character to his profile.

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Product Details

Release Date: 01/20/2015
Label: Shanachie
UPC: 0016351542427
catalogNumber: 5424
Rank: 41690


  1. A Better Man
  2. You're the Only One
  3. Feelin' You
  4. Sorry I Let You Go
  5. Let it Rain
  6. Gypsy Woman
  7. Beautiful Girls
  8. I'm So Proud
  9. Dreaming's Out of Screen
  10. Stand Up

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Phil Perry   Primary Artist,Vocals,Background Vocals
Wayne Bruce   Guitar
Dawn Tallman   Background Vocals
Rashaan Langley   Background Vocals
Rhon Lawrence   Guitar
Isaac Clemon   Background Vocals
Timmy Maia   Background Vocals
Ace Livingston   Bass
BJ   Guitar
James "Bro" Minnis   Background Vocals

Technical Credits

Curtis Mayfield   Composer
Phil Perry   Composer
Chris "Big Dog" Davis   Composer,Producer,Engineer,drum programming
Jake Subin   Engineer
Sunny Kelley   Engineer

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