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Eric Benét: True To Myself (Warner Bros.)

Michael A. Gonzales, Vibe, October 1996

SOMEWHERE IN Hitsville, U.S.A., aging music critics wearing faded dashikis and bad attitudes gulp endless glasses of chilled white wine, reminiscing about the days of soul. Years after buying their first 7-inch singles and discovering the pagan wail of Chaka Khan or the gospel sex of Al Green, these scribes refuse to accept that the old Motown sound is dead, Rose Royce hasn't recorded in decades, and Gamble and Huff stopped producing hit records years ago. Watching them weep, I'm tempted to paraphrase the sweaty Godfather of Soul and tell them to dig deeper in papa's brand new bag — disregarding designer R&B groups or plastic funk-and grow some soul of their own.

Total word count of piece: 328

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