Judson Spence

Judson Spence

I Guess I Love It

Pioneer Music Group

It took me about 5-6 listens to this CD to start getting it. I did a search on the Web trying to find out some more information on him. Every hit I got was a Christian Music page of some sort. I was more than just a little bit surprised by this. Many of his themes have an underlying spiritual edge to them, but none of it is in-your-face Christianity. You wouldn’t hear a phrase like “It’s the same old shit that gets me every time” on any other Christian Music release. Neither would you hear a song like the title track, which is a not-so-veiled attempt at a good sex song.

Spence is the son of a missionary couple. He grew up in New Orleans and spent some time in Latin America. Due to all of this, he’s been exposed to the seedy side of life, a wealth of musical influences, and has lived amidst poverty, junkies, prostitution, and crazy people, all elements that can make for a very rich life experience and a better understanding of people, if you manage to survive it all. He doesn’t turn his back on any of it. As a matter of fact, he seems to have a genuine appreciation for how all these things make this a more interesting world to live in. If he is actually to be considered a Christian musician, he’s the hippest one I’ve ever heard. Someone like this could actually relate better to the people who need “saving” more than most of the mainstream religious figures we currently have ever could.

The range of styles on this recording is very broad. Some of the songs are very sweet and soulful. “Sputnik” rocks as hard as about any song I’ve heard in years. “N.Y.C.” is a cool and very smooth jazz offering. “Doin the Best I Can” is a song he wrote at about three in the morning after one of his usual musician late night jaunts where he’d wander the streets talking to those previously-mentioned crazies and street people who are out at that time of night. It’s really about us all. I might even be able to go to this man’s church and not feel out of place. http://www.judsonspence.com

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