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I'm For Real – The Elektra Recordings 1986 to 1992 (I Commit To Love/Forever & Ever/Howard Hewett/Allegiance/bonus tracks) (4CD set)

CD (Item 123926) Elektra/Soulmusic.com (UK), Late 80s/Early 90s — Condition: New Copy
4CD
$29.99 ...

CD

List Price: 40.99
Howard Hewett may have came a bit late on the scene in 80s soul – but by the end of the decade, he really left his mark – as you'll hear on these four classic albums, served up with lots of bonus tracks too! First up is I Commit To Love – an 80s classic from Howard Hewett, and just the kind of set that made the singer one of the freshest voices in soul at the time! Hewett's vocals are lean and right on the money – perfectly suited to fit the 80s groove mode of the backings – especially the bubbly, bouncy kind of cuts that were always Howard's catchiest numbers – and which, honestly, should have had him crossing over much bigger at the time! Beats and keyboards glide along nicely throughout – and titles include "Stay", "Say Amen", "I Got 2 Go", "Last Forever", "I Commit To Love", "Love Don't Wanna Wait", and "Let's Try It All Over Again". Forever & Ever has a nice degree of crackle all the way through – that snappy, soulful style that Hewett did so well back in the day – working here as almost a one-man powerhouse on production and arrangements too! The tunes are catchy, but never too crossover – and Hewett has this way of bringing in a subtle drama on the upbeat tracks, while avoiding some of the cliches of his contemporaries – then sliding into some mellower moments that really hold the album together strongly. Production is definitely in a late 80s R&B mode, but with a style that really sets it apart – and titles include "Strange Relationship", "This Time", "Good Bye Good Friend", "Challenge", "Natural Love", "Once Twice Three Times", "Shakin My Emotion", and "Share A Love". The self-titled Howard Hewett set is standard-setting album from Howard Hewett – the kind of record that made him a dominant force in soul at the start of the 80s, and for good reason too! Hewett knocks it out of the park with the very first tune – his great duet with Anita Baker on "When Will It Be" – then flows wonderfully through a set of tracks that build with a nice sense of subtle drama, and use enough of the best contemporary elements to remind us that we're in the world of soul, not pop – on cuts that include "Don't Give In", "If I Could Only Have That Day Back", "Show Me", "I Do", "Let Me Show You How To Fall In Love", and "I Know You'll Be Comin Back". Allegiance is one of the biggest albums ever from Howard Hewett – already a superstar in 90s soul by the time of its release, and a master of the new sort of quiet storm that was taking over in the decades! The beats are a bit heavier than the years before – that lesson that mainstream R&B was starting to learn from the streets – while still keeping the best focus on the sort of romantic charms that first got Hewett noticed in the first place, on a set of tracks that have a gently-stepping vibe throughout. Titles include "Can't Get Over Your Love", "Say You Will", "Masquerade", "Ronnie O", "Save Your Sex For Me", "Can We Try Again", "Allegiance", "Just Like A Woman", and "To Thee I Pray". Bonus tracks include the duet with Roberta Flack on "Let Me Be A Light To Shine", one with David Sanborn on "Got To Give It Up" – and tracks that include "Stay (before midnight mix)", "Ten Commandments Of Love", "Strange Relationship (ext)", "If I Could Only Have That Day Back (12" ext voc)", "Obsession", and "I Can't Tell You Why".  © 1996-2022, Dusty Groove, Inc.

There may be different interpretations or standards used to grade pre-owned vinyl record albums & CDs. These are the grades that we use and what they mean for items that are not new copies.

Used Vinyl Grades

Below are stated conditions for a used vinyl records at Dusty Groove. Grading for the cover should be assumed to be near (within a "+" or "-") the grading for the vinyl. If there is significant divergence from the condition of the vinyl, or specific flaws, these will be noted in the comments section of the item. However, please be aware that since the emphasis of this site is towards the music listener, our main concern is with the vinyl of any used item we sell. Additionally, all of our records are graded visually; considering the volume of used vinyl we handle, it is impossible for us to listen to each record. If we spot any significant flaws, we make every attempt to listen through them and note how they play.

The following grading conditions apply to the vinyl component of an album or single:

Sealed

This is what it says, that the record is still held fast in shrink-wrap. We tend to be pretty suspicious about these things, so if the shrink-wrap doesn't look original, or if the record seems to have undergone some damage over time, we'll probably take it out of the wrapper to ensure that it's in good shape — which is why we don't have more of these. In some cases the shrink-wrap may be torn in spots, but if it's not possible the record has been taken out and played, the record will still qualify as "Sealed".

Near Mint

Dusty Groove does not use the grades of Near Mint (or Mint, for that matter) because in our experience, we find that no records ever qualify for such a high grade. Even sealed records tend to have one or two slight faults, enough to usually qualify them for a grade of NM- or lower. We've often found that records which are clearly unplayed will have a slight amount of surface noise, especially in quieter recordings.

Near Mint - (minus)

  • Black vinyl that may show a slight amount of dust or dirt.
  • Should still be very shiny under a light, even with slight amount of dust on surface.
  • One or two small marks that would make an otherwise near perfect record slightly less so. These marks cannot be too deep, and should only be surface marks that won't affect play, but might detract from the looks.
  • May have some flaws and discoloration in the vinyl, but only those that would be intrinsic to the pressing. These should disappear when the record is tilted under the light, and will only show up when looking straight at the record. (Buddah and ABC pressings from the 70's are a good example of this.)
  • May have some slight marks from aging of the paper sleeve on the vinyl.
  • Possible minor surface noise when played.

Very Good + (plus)

  • Vinyl should be very clean, but can have less luster than near mint.
  • Should still shine under a light, but one or two marks may show up when tilted.
  • Can have a few small marks that may show up easily, but which do not affect play at all. Most marks of this quality will disappear when the record is tilted, and will not be felt with the back of a fingernail.
  • This is the kind of record that will play "near mint", but which will have some signs of use (although not major ones).
  • May have slight surface noise when played.

Very Good

  • Vinyl can have some dirt, but nothing major.
  • May not shine under light, but should still be pretty clean, and not too dirty.
  • May have a number of marks (5 to 10 at most), and obvious signs of play, but never a big cluster of them, or any major mark that would be very deep. Most marks should still not click under a fingernail.
  • May not look near perfect, but should play fairly well, with slight surface noise, and the occasional click in part of a song, but never throughout a whole song or more.
  • This is clearly a copy that was played by someone a number of times, but which could also be a good "play copy" for someone new.

Very Good - (minus)

  • Vinyl may be dirty, and can lack a fair amount of luster.
  • Vinyl can have a number of marks, either in clusters or smaller amounts, but deeper.
  • This is the kind of record that you'd buy to play, but not because it looked that great. Still, the flaws should be mostly cosmetic, with nothing too deep that would ruin the overall record.
  • Examples include a record that has been kept for a while in a cover without the paper sleeve, or heavily played by a previous owner and has some marks across the surface. The record should play okay, though probably with surface noise.

Good + (plus)

  • Vinyl may be dirty, or have one outstanding flaw, such as a light residue, which could be difficult to clean.
  • May have marks on all parts, too many to qualify as Very Good-, or several deeper marks, but the record should still be ok for play without skips.
  • In general, this is a record that was played a fair amount, and handled without care. A typical example may be a record which has been heavily played by a DJ, and carries marks from slip cueing. Depending on the quality of the vinyl, may play with surface noise throughout.

Good

  • A record that you'd buy to play, cheap, but which you wouldn't buy for collecting.
  • Will have marks across all parts of the playing surface, and will most likely play with surface noise throughout. May have some other significant flaws, such as residue, or a track that skips.
  • In most cases, a poor quality copy of a very difficult to find record.

Fair

This is a grade we rarely use, as we try not to sell records in very bad condition, though in some rare cases we will list a record in such bad shape that it does not conform to the standards above. A "Fair" record will have enough marks or significant flaws that it does not even qualify as "Good", but is a copy you might consider for playing, if you're willing to put up with noise and/or flaws. An example might be a recording with surface noise so heavy that it is equal to the volume of the music. For records listed as "Fair", we will describe the extent of the condition in the comments.

Poor

Like "Fair", we rarely list records in this condition, as they represent the extreme low end of spectrum. These records typically have multiple serious problems, and we offer them as "relics" or "objects" only — for those who want to at least have a copy of a record, even if it is not really worthy of play, perhaps for the cover alone. For these records, we will describe the extent of the condition in the comments.

Additional Marks & Notes

If something is noteworthy, we try to note it in the comments — especially if it is an oddity that is the only wrong thing about the record. This might include, but isn't limited to, warped records, tracks that skip, cover damage or wear as noted above, or strictly cosmetic flaws.


Used CD Grade

We only use the grade "Used CD" for non-new CDs. This all-encompassing grade was chosen it because we only buy and offer used CDs in the best possible condition.

When you purchase a used CD you can expect the disc to be free of all but the lightest of surface marks, the case to be clean (we often change the cases ourselves), and the booklet to be in good shape. Used CDs may show some signs of use, but if there are significant details or defects we will describe the item's condition (just like we do with LPs), so look for notes on cutout marks, stickers, promo stamps or other details before ordering.

All of our used CDs are guaranteed to play without skipping or flaws. After you receive a used CD from Dusty Groove, you have 1 week to play it to determine that it plays correctly. If it does not, you can request a return for a full refund.


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