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Losing My Religion

Losing My Religion

by Kirk FranklinKirk Franklin


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No, the title of Kirk Franklin's 11th album is not a cover of the R.E.M. standard. It is, however, a provocative appellation for a modern gospel recording. "Losing My Religion" is named for the spoken word intro to these 13 tracks. It's a rhyming, socio-political-spiritual manifesto, an admonition to evangelists that religion masks God's love and mercy; it's a barrier rather than a bridge. This couldn't be more poignant in an era when religion (not faith) is a chosen weapon in America's culture wars: "I'm losing my religion, thank God/It's my job to help you lose yours." The rest is pure Kirk, much closer in sound and feel to the number one single "Wanna Be Happy" that makes such skillful use of Al Green's "Tired of Being Alone." Franklin enlists a brilliant cast of singers including Deonis Cook, Candy West, Chelsea West, Crystal Aiken, and Amber Bullock. The reggae jam "1-2-3 Victory" offers a monster of a bubbling bassline from Braylon Lacy (who also plays upright on "When" that also features vocal appearances from Lalah Hathaway and Kim Burrell). That's not to minimize regular bassist Keith Taylor's contribution and he's not only this band's anchor, but one of the funkiest players on the contemporary gospel scene. (Check him on the orchestral Sunday morning rave-up "It's Time," with guest vocalists Tasha Page-Lockhart and Zacardi Cortez.) The B-3-driven drama in "True Story" relates the twin plights of a single mother whose bills overwhelm her means, and a soldier who returns from battle only to encounter the violence raging on America's streets. The latter offers the musical vernacular of modern soul with a funky backbeat (provided by a cracking snare and a shimmering hi-hat groove) emboldened by strings and sweeping synths. A pair of ballads reveals vulnerability and need, the moving, "Pray for Me" and the tender "Intercession." "My World Needs You" commences tentatively and prayerfully, but becomes an awe-inspiring, anthemic altar call with vocalists Sarah Reeves, Tasha Cobbs, and Tamela Mann guesting. The set closes with the breakbeat-and-loop-driven "No Sleep Tonight," which underscores the exhortation in the title track. Its profession is that divine love and grace (not religion) are the world's answers. Franklin continues his life's work on Losing My Religion. He doesn't merely inspire this time, but directly engages and confronts Christian believers to leave judgment behind and practice what the New Testament preaches: acceptance and forgiveness -- because it has been shown to them. The spoken quotation of John 3:20 that closes the album is a fitting, bracing coda. Losing My Religion is typical Franklin: a set of carefully written, arranged, and produced songs that are fantastically performed.

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Product Details

Release Date: 11/13/2015
Label: Rca
UPC: 0888751394025
catalogNumber: 513940
Rank: 5845


  1. Losing My Religion
  2. Miracles
  3. 123 Victory
  4. Road Trip
  5. Pray For Me
  6. Wanna Be Happy?
  7. It's Time
  8. True Story
  9. Over
  10. When
  11. My World Needs You
  12. Intercession
  13. No Sleep Tonight

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Kirk Franklin   Primary Artist,Piano,Keyboards,Hammond B3
David Angell   Violin
David Davidson   Violin,Concert Master
Glenn Fischbach   Cello
Larry Gold   Conductor
Anthony LaMarchina   Cello
Keith Taylor   Bass
Caltomeesh West   Vocals
Chelsea West   Vocals
Dalon Collins   Vocals
Emma Kummrow   Violin
Monisa Angell   Viola
Karen Winkelmann   Violin
Roy Agee   Trombone,Bass Trombone
Myron Butler   Vocals
Shaun Martin   Piano,Keyboards,Vocals
Patron Thomas   Vocals
James Henderson   Vocals
Kermit Wells   Hammond B3
Elizabeth Lamb   Viola
Tyler Summers   Baritone Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone
Jennie Lorenzo   Cello
Ghislaine Fleischmann   Violin
Anthony Evans   Vocals
Maurice Brown   Vocals
Deonis "Pumah" Cook   Vocals
Phillip Lassiter   Trumpet
Luigi Mazzocchi   Violin
Faith Anderson   Vocals
Teaira Dunn   Vocals
Nathan Myers   Vocals
Crystal Aikin   Vocals
Michael Bethany   Vocals
Emoni Wilkins   Vocals
Joy Hill   Vocals
Robert "Sput" Searight   Drums
Melodie Davis   Vocals
Braylon Lacy   Bass,Upright Bass
Amber Bullock   Vocals
Mark Lettieri   Guitar
Conni Ellisor   Violin
Jonathan Kim   Viola
Elgin Johnson   Vocals
Niya Cotton   Vocals
Darian Yancey   Vocals
Ibanda Ruhumbika   Tuba
Robert Searight   Drums
John Montes   Vocals
Shawlesa Amos   Vocals
Blake Espy   Violin
Deon Yancey   Vocals
Darius Dixson   Vocals
Suren Babayan   French Horn
Adrian Oneal   Vocals
Gared Crawford   Violin
Barbara Fitzgerald   Harp
Simon Novsky   Flute,French Horn
Samantha Crawford   Violin
Svenja Kips   Flute
Steven Heitlinger   Viola
Sydnii Raymore   Vocals

Technical Credits

Green   Composer
Kirk Franklin   Arranger,Composer,Producer,Liner Notes,Executive Producer
Larry Gold   Arranger,String Arrangements
Caltomeesh West   Programming
Chelsea West   Programming
Monica Coates   Executive Producer
Shaun Martin   Producer
Jeff Gilligan   Art Direction
Tre Nagella   Engineer
Deonis "Pumah" Cook   Vocal Arrangements
Phillip Lassiter   Horn Arrangements,String Arrangements,Flute Arrangement
Michael Bethany   Programming
Melodie Davis   Programming
Lawrence Parker   Composer
Joel Mott   String Arrangements
Ronald Hill   Producer,Executive Producer
Darian Yancey   Programming
Max Stark   Programming,Producer
Deon Yancey   Programming
Simon Novsky   Producer,Engineer

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