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Derrick Dunn

Second Listen Sunday: Ready For The World

For this week’s Second Listen Sunday, we are taking a trip to the Great Lake State and showing some love to R&B Band Ready for The World and their self-titled debut album. Arriving in stores on May 14, 1985, via MCA Records, the album on which the band produced their first single was “Tonight.”

“Tonight” is a ballad composed by Melvin Riley and Gordon Strozier, members of a music group. The song portrays a passionate and intense sexual encounter between two individuals. The lyrics depict a late-night scenario where the protagonist urges someone to stay with them and engage in intimacy. The follow-up single “Deep inside Your Love” was also a ballad. Similar to the debut single, “Deep inside Your Love” the group’s portrayal of a deep-seated sense of isolation and a longing for romantic affection, brought about by their encounter with the young lady mentioned in “Tonight.” The lyrics express the group’s sentiments of desolation and detachment while underscoring their yearning for companionship and meaningful human connection.

The band’s third single, “Oh Sheila,” is a timeless classic that impeccably encapsulates the group’s signature sound. The track’s catchy hooks, pulsating beats, and soulful vocals make it impossible for listeners not to dance along. Its enduring appeal has solidified its status as a symbolic representation of the band’s artistic prowess. The album displays a notable influence of Prince and Midwest funk, with the remaining ballads, “Slide Over” and “Out of Town Lover,” serving as solid album tracks. The up-tempo numbers “Digital Display” and “Ceramic Girl” are presumed to have been exceptional during the group’s prime days.

Ready for the World exhibits remarkable versatility throughout the album, skillfully blending soulful ballads with upbeat dance tracks. The production is sleek and polished, with each instrument and vocal harmonizing ideally to create a cohesive and dynamic sound. Lead singer Melvin Riley’s smooth vocals effortlessly glide over each track, delivering sincere lyrics with conviction and style. Although some tracks may appear somewhat dated due to the 80s production style, the overall quality of the songwriting and musicianship shines through, making it a solid debut in the R&B genre.

Final Grade: B+

“Ready for The World” is available on all streaming platforms

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Second Listen Sunday: Ready For The World