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Ryan Shaw - This Is Ryan Shaw - Columbia/Red Ink

The very first time we heard Ryan Shaw's voice, we knew we were listening to something very, very special. He possesses an extremely emotional set of vocal chords. Fortunately for us, it is showcased in a great fashion on This Is Ryan Shaw, his debut album. It's a calling card for a gifted singer, a guy that should be around for a long time.

Raised in the church, the gospel underpinnings on this debut album are always on display. His phrasing and range are always emotional. Whether he's singing an invite to the dance floor ("Do The 45"), or singing about that old R&B standby ("I Found A Love"), Shaw does it with confidence and feeling. The 26 year old Decatur, Georgia native Shaw, along with producers Jimmy Bralower & Johnny Gale (who also played on the disc), wrote the first single "Nobody", but they also covered some real soul gems from the likes of Wilson Pickett and Shaw's real musical throwback, the great Sam Cooke.

There's really nothing not to like about This Is Ryan Shaw. He's obviously a true believer in the power of music, and he certainly knows how to get all the emotions across effectively.

Written by Dan Reed

CD of the Month May 2007