Jordin Sparks – Debut Album

    So far so good. That’s what I have to say as I’m listening to Jordin Sparks’ debut self-titled album on Britney Spears’ label Zomba. Well for the most part anyway. Currently playing is an atrocious, over the top cheese-fest ballad called God Loves Ugly. I mean seriously Jordin…WTF? Save the depth for a book of poetry (a la Jewel) or something. But the other tracks…not bad. Am I still thinking that Blake Lewis’ album is going to be better? Yes. Most definitely. But it’s a good effort. It’s a (mostly) solid, pop/R&B album. Slick production by StarGate and Bloodshy & Avant (Britney Spears) and Jordin’s vocal talent make this a safe and kind of fun album. It’s definitely heads above last year’s American Idol runner up Katharine McPhee (the last Idol CD I was genuinely excited about). McPhee’s album was a big mish mash of crap. McPhee’s debut album had so much potential.

    In my opinion, McPhee is far more talented that Sparks (vocally speaking…keep in mind that Sparks is quite a big young and holds infinite potential for growth) but her CD failed in the production department. It was just all over the place. Danja Handz produced much of it, with Babyface producing a track as well. I think a lot of people were expecting McPhee to come out with a Norah Jones inspired album…and that it wasn’t. I mean I guess part of that was McPhee’s decision…she wanted to appeal to a younger market. Fine. OK. But Jesus…there wasn’t a single song on that album that was remotely close to having the hit potential of Miss Independent. Love Story was a pretty good single, and a good single…it just didn’t take off.

    Do I think Sparks’ debut features any HUGE hit-worthy singles? Not particularly. No Air, Sparks’ collaboration with R&B sensation Chris Brown is pretty hot but not hot enough. If this song does well it might be because of Brown. We shall see. I DEFINITELY thing a smart second single would be No Air. Hopefully Jordin can go on to be another American Idol alum to make a top-charting album. If this album doesn’t chart, she has a good number of years ahead to hone her craft and find the right niche for her.

    As a side note…the ONE song on the album where she shares songwriting credit, Freeze is kind of hot.