Top 10 Songs of 2015 – #3: “Coming Home” by Leon Bridges

24 Dec

Leon Bridges

Here is an immediate fun fact about Leon Bridges. He is not Otis Redding, Sam Cooke, or Marvin Gaye. He is, however, young enough to be any of those singers’ grandsons. That’s surprising isn’t it, especially after you listen to the following:

Let me repeat my earlier statement: Bridges is not one of those seminal soul artists; that said, he is doing his best to assure that the legacy of these individuals is not spoiled. I am going to make a proclamation; it’s bold, I’m just giving you bold morning. If Bridges had been his age in 1965, we would be talking about him in the same breath as the singers I mentioned earlier. Bold, yes. Reckless, no. Bridges is already a consummate musician and performer; he is deft and adroit, a passionate performer and baby-face smooth singer. Bridges is tremendous in every sense of the term. If he represents the future of music, music is in good hands.

For an “oldies” music lover like me who adores both Motown and STAX records, Bridges is refreshing. He is a chip off the old block. He is what music should be, what it should sound like. And the fact that Bridges’ song “Coming Home” was a Top 10 Most Viral Track on Spotfy that is a good sign for the direction of music. His debut album of the same name as the title track hit #6 on the charts depicting an insatiable urge of individuals for pure, old-fashioned, unadulterated music. There are no special effects here. It is Bridges, a keyboard, two guitars (one of bass variety), and some drums. The formula for great music is not complicated. When I wrote about this song some time ago, I also had some flattering comments about the song, which I will share below.

“Coming Home” immediately takes on the feel of “You Send Me” with tastes of “A Change is Gonna Come,” and Bridges soft croon, a smoother Hozier (to make a modern comparison), has a rich Gospel feel to it that is just the right kind of sweet, not mawkish and not overpowering – it’s a voice that you can sink into, like silky gelato. The song itself is classic early Motown. It is carried by a bluesy piano and guitar mixed with traditional percussion. It is not difficult to imagine Sam Cooke or Otis Redding singing this song, and Bridges’ voice is not really a step down; heck, I am almost willing to go so far to exclaim that Bridges parallels the singers in a sense. Not too shabby.”

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