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(January 16, 2020) Anyone who has been reading SoulTracks know that we think Gregory Porter may be the greatest singer of his generation. And while he tours regularly, it has been three years since his last studio album (the Nat King Cole tribute album, Nat and Me) and four years since Take Me To The Alley, his most recent disc of new material.
That is entirely too long for our taste, so we are joyful to the max that today, Porter has announced his upcoming album, All Rise will be coming April 17th, and he gives a preview with a first single that is getting us clapping and stomping our feet. Far from many of the jazzy ballads that have become concert staples for Porter, “All Rise” is a rousing, joyful, upbeat number that sounds like it came right from the church of Porter’s minister mother.
“This is straight-up gospel. This what I heard in church. When somebody caught the Holy Ghost this was the beat,” says Gregory of “Revival,” which was co-written with the album’s producer Troy Miller. “Troy knows the importance of message in music, but the message that we both agreed on with the lyric was what I believe in, that renewal of the spirit and the energy. It’s both heavenly and earthly. You don’t have to be a believer to understand revival and renewal, starting all over again afresh. For me, it’s the message of walking into this life and having some fear and some self-doubt, and at the point that you grab onto something that you know is real, the truth. Once you can grab onto the truth then this fearlessness comes.”
I’ll be seeing Gregory Porter in person for the fifth time when he arrives in Detroit with Ledisi in March, and I can’t wait to hear live previews of All Rise. In the meantime, his legion of fans will no doubt be rejoicing with him as they listen to “Revival.” This is a great way to start 2020.
By Chris Rizik
Gregory Porter – “Revival”