Eric Benet Says ‘Love & Life’ Represents His Musical Journey

Prepping for the release of “Love & Life,” Eric Benet says the forthcoming album is the “purest representation of me creatively. It’s almost a journey of the kind of music that made me fall in love with music.” Due September 9th, Benet’s new album integrates gospel, jazz and latin rhythms with traditional R&B framework easily showcasing the “You’re the Only One” singer’s unmistakable tenor voice. In a recent interview with Billboard, Benet talked about the concept for the hit single: “I was sitting with my longtime production partner Demonte Posey and my cousin, writer/producer George Nash Jr. We were talking about how well crafted R&B songs used to be; those by groups like Blue Magic and the Stylistics,” the Milwaukee native remembers. “That conversation turned into this jam. Then the next thing you know, we had a song … a song that sounds like a classic you haven’t heard in a long time.” “You’re The Only One,” which now sits at #21 on the Billboard Hot R&B/Hip Hop Songs Chart, up from #26 last week has quickly become a hit record. Benet maintains his classic and sensual approach throughout the 12 track album including the sensual and spiritual “Chocolate Legs,” the ’90s R&B-vibed “Don’t Let Go” and the sexually energized “The Hunger,” the second single. Other notable tracks include the poignant “Everlove” with Terry Dexter and “Still I Believe,” a personal treatise on love and hope with Benet’s 16-year-old daughter India handling background vocals. After the public firestorm surrounding his divorce from actress Halle Berry, Benet released his third album, the aptly titled “Hurricane,” in 2005. Although it spun off two singles, “Pretty Baby” and “I Wanna Be Loved,” the pop- and folk-laced album didn’t fare well saleswise. According to Nielsen SoundScan, “Hurricane” has sold 170,000 units. 1999’s “A Day in the Life” is at 897,000 and 1996’s “True to Myself” has moved 295,000. “To be honest, I was nervous about coming back with ‘Hurricane,”‘ Benet admits. “It was a departure from my expected genre and some people even described it as a little too apologetic.” Now on the other side of the hurricane, Benet says he felt early on that “Love & Life” would be something his core fans would love. “Now I feel I might get a halfway decent shot at more people discovering who I am musically,” he says. Source: Billboard

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