Over the course of his 13-plus year career, Ginuwine has been many things: singer, actor, sex symbol, dancer. And on his sixth studio album, A Man's Thoughts, which was released in the U.S. on June 23, 2009, G finds himself still transitioning his image and style from that of a ladies man in his early 20s to that of a husband and father in his mid-30s. A Man's Thoughts continues the growth found on his last few albums, but just barely. Creatively, it's very possible that Ginuwine has reached his peak as an artist. But despite that, he still has enough talent and charisma to be considered one of R&B's leading men.
Gliding & Soaring
It seems like it was just a couple of years ago since Elgin "Ginuwine" Lumpkin was dancing on a table and gyrating in the video for his first hit single, "Pony." But it was actually way back in 1996, a full 13 years ago, and in the years since, Ginuwine's career has had its ups and downs. Likewise, his sixth studio album, A Man's Thoughts
, has it's own ups and downs. Among the ups: the album's strong first single, "Last Chance," a mid-tempo jam about trying to keep a fractured relationship together. The song, which was written and produced by Bryan Michael Cox and Adonis Shropshire, has great lyrics and production that properly showcases his thin but emotional singing voice. Other winners include the uptempo dance track "Get Involved," featuring Timbaland and Missy Elliott, whom Ginuwine hadn't collaborated with in years; and "Lying to Each Other," which sounds Timbaland-produced, but was actually helmed by Elvis "Blac Elvis" Williams.
Unfortunately, Timbaland only contibuted one song on the album: much of the production duties fell in the hands of various people, most notably RL, the former frontman for '90s vocal group Next. And much of the production is uninspired and dated, not to mention cliched. Ginuwine is able to overcome this flaw on some tracks, but on others, like "Orchestra" and "Touch Me," he can't. Since his vocal style is fairly subdued, producers have always played a very important part in whether or not the listening audience feels his music. Unfortunately, only about half the time throughout A Man's Thoughts do the songs soar instead of merely glide.