397. Judson Spence – Judson Spence


Judson Spence

I was married in 1988 and if the Church we got married allowed dancing we probably would have played more than a handful of selections from Judson Spence’s eponymous debut. Very few artists have as much going for them as Spence did. A debut album produced by Monroe Jones, David Tickle (Prince), Executive Produced by Jimmie Iovine and featured a literal who’s who collection of guests performers including Jeff Porcaro (Toto), Dann Huff, Billy Preston, Mick Jones (Foreigner) and Alex Acuna.

Add to the above the face the album was released on Atlantic and received a pretty decent push, especially for the first single, “Yeah, Yeah, Yeah,” which reached the top 30 as well as finding a home on MTV. A well deserved hit, the song is just good old fashioned fun song about going out for the evening with you lady.

The most interesting aspect of the album is how this sexy, steamy, sweaty and soulful sound is filled lyrics about patience, purity, piety and the perils of promiscuity. This is no more evident than on the tune “Hot and Sweaty.” Here, though, Spence limits the getting sweaty to the dance floor, rejecting the vixen’s offers, making in interesting by reversing the normal roles of hunter and hunted. There are Prince, Terrence Trent D’Arby, Michael Jackson and, most notably, Robbie Nevil influences all over this album.

The ballads have a very David Pack and Gino Vanelli feel pushed along by very big production values. Spence has gone on to record a few more solo projects in drastically different and eclectic veins including pop, soul, funk and country and has had several song recorded by artists as diverse as Amy Grant and Cher.

  1. October 16, 2010 at 5:52 am

    This is one of my top ten album of all time for me…

  2. shawnuel
    November 6, 2017 at 5:45 am

    Hey…..way after the fact. A cool part of Spence’s history is that a member of his original band, with which he played a set of legendary label showcases, was Will Owsley, who was hired as part of Amy Grant’s live band and toured with her until he killed himself April 30, 2010. He also played in a band with Ben Folds and Millard Powers until Folds left before the band named themselves The Semantics and released Powerbill, a lost power pop classic. Their drummmer was, one, Zack Starkey (yup….Ringo’s son).

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