For this week’s Second Listen Sunday, I decided to visit the Buckeye State and pay homage to The Rude Boys. The Cleveland-based quartet consisted of Larry Marcus, Melvin Sephus, Edward Lee “Buddy” Banks, and Joe Little III. Initially breaking onto the scene in 1990 with the hits “Written All Over Your Face” and “Are You Lonely For Me” from their debut, they wasted no time returning to the studio.
Slow Jam Saturday : Johnathan Butler, Love Songs, Candlelight and You
Johnathan Butler was a decade into his career when his self-titled album arrived in stores in 1987. Listeners may recall his hit singles “Lies” and “Overflowing” from that album. However, I wanted to highlight the project’s second track, “Love Songs, Candlelight & You,” for this week’s Slow Jam Saturday.
Butler’s music frequently carries the description of R&B, jazz fusion, or worship music, but with “Love Songs, Candlelight & You,” the South African-born singer-songwriter and guitarist, elegantly solidifies intimacy. Butler opens the track with lush instrumentation and smooth cooing before kicking off the first verse.
“In the middle of the night, the doorbell rings
My baby’s come to call
She wants to make love, and I don’t mind at all
‘Cause nobody loves me the way she does
She’s got that special touch
It’s just too much, the way she makes me climb the walls
Butler then glides through the pre-chorus before giving us the chorus.
“So, give me some love songs, candlelight and you
It’s the perfect situation
Love songs, ooh, candlelight makes dreams come true
And all I wanna do is be with you”.
“Love Songs, Candlelight & You” was one of the many songs I discovered in my mid-twenties while deployed to the Middle East. At the time, Al B. Sure was hosting the romantically themed nighttime music program, The Secret Garden. Sure’s radio show was on the programs broadcast through internet radio. Thirty-five years later, the song still holds up as Butler creates a vibe of sensuality while avoiding vulgarity.
Final Grade: A
“Love Songs, Candlelight & You” from Johnathan Butler is available on all streaming platforms.
More reviews to explorer
Valentine’s Day 2024 may have come and gone, but I still plan to use highlight songs with the V-word for February’s Slow Jam Saturday. The artist I chose is a southern gentleman by the name of Lloyd. Initially breaking onto the scene as a member of the preteen-boy band N-Toon, Lloyd’s solo career kicked off in 2004 with the hit “Southside.”
As we continue to celebrate the month of love, I chose “Valentine by Ryan Leslie as the second song with the word valentine for February’s Slow Jam Saturday. Leslie broke into the music industry in 2003, writing hits for Beyoncé and New Edition. Leslie released the singles “The Way That U Move Girl” and “Used 2 Be” featuring Fabolous. However, his debut album was never officially released due to creative differences with his record label. In late 2007, Leslie finally broke through with the bop “Diamond Girl,” and his self-titled album would finally hit record stores on February 10, 2009. Leslie also succeeded with the follow-up singles “Addiction” and “How It Was Supposed to Be.” Surprisingly, though, Leslie didn’t drop “Valentine” as the fourth single, which would have timed perfectly with the album release date.