9. Michelle Williams “We Break The Dawn”

With everyone copping I Am…Sasha Fierce, I copped Unexpected.  Okay, this is pop, but if you understood my history with TLC, and what I like in artists, you’d get it.  TLC is my favorite (girl) group of all-time.  I always felt Destiny’s Child stole a little of their thunder.  I’ve always said TLC is Destiny’s Mama.  The influence was there and it’s obvious.  And they even opened for TLC for one of their tours, but it doesn’t seem like the  props are given where they’re due.

I do like some Destiny’s Child songs, I bought their first single “No, No, No,” and if I were to buy one of their CDs, it would have to be The Writing’s On The Wall.  But, if I was ever going to buy a Destiny’s Child solo CD, Michelle Williams would not have seemed the likely candidate.  But alas, she’s the wayward fourth and last step-child; she’s the one that finally stuck around and found her way into my ear.

In 2008, it’s hard to re-invent the musical wheel, but you can forge new ground for yourself, reach new horizons, and put your own stamp on it.  A lot of pop girls seem to be going in a more electro, Europe-club/dance-pop direction, so it’s not like it’s totally fresh ground for Michelle, but it is fresh for an R&B girl and especially for her and that’s alright.  I like artists that change up, musically and image-wise, and don’t do the same thing over and over.  I also like a whole package deal –  a little song, a little dance, a little style, and a lot of personality.

Not only did she go in a different direction than her previous solo gospel work, she has created her own lane next to Beyonce’ and Kelly (Kelly’s direction seems too much like Beyonce’s to me), which of all DC I would not have expected (no pun intended) from her, she also got herself a cute little bob haircut and some edgier clothes (at least for her CD booklet and photo shoots, anyway).  The album is not a perfect effort.  I don’t listen to it beginning to end, but it’s not a bad little collection of songs.  And, I do like most of them.  I also liked how interactive she was with her fans on her MySpace Page and it was creative of her to mirror her personal publicity of her release to Obama’s presidential campaign.

I liked the first single, Number 9, fresh out the box. There’s even a remix with Flo Rida that I’m throwing in today.  She had a crazy remix of another single on Unexpected, “Hungover,” that was on her MySpace Page and that has since been removed.  There’s one remix on there for it, but that’s not the one I was diggin’ on.  Anyway, check them out.