Teisha Marie did not set out to be a musical artist, but one listen to her debut album, Addicted to Life — The LP, quickly dispels that notion. The voice of this England born/Maryland raised singer glides effortlessly across tightly-crafted production, giving her the canvas to paint vivid pictures about life — love found and lost, deception, determination and self-fulfillment.
On this recording, Marie channels the Philly sound, blending soul, jazz and reggae over fourteen tracks, each one with its own distinct style and flair. But while she thrives, listeners may be left searching for more standout qualities in Marie, as her voice and cadence sound similar to Jill Scott’s. Although her influences are noticeable throughout the album, Marie still makes her mark as a force to be reckoned with in today’s musical landscape, with just enough individuality to quench your thirst.
Marie sings with confidence, but the LP begins with a humble statement. “I don’t remember how I started singing these songs,” Marie says on “Addicted — The Definition,” the album’s intro. “I just started writing and then, I had these songs and I was like, I guess, maybe I should record ‘em?” Then on the uptempo title track, “Addicted to Life,” Marie proclaims that she’s “addicted to life, the ups, the downs, and in-betweens.” The drum snare summons the spirit of J-Dilla, and the rhythm sounds like a summer evening in the whip with the windows down.
But it’s not only about Marie’s personal path on this album. On “Txt Msg,” she plays the role of mentor, telling young women and men to strive for greatness, despite life’s lurking temptations. On the reggae-tinged “Professional Liar,” Marie addresses the dishonesty of former prez George ‘Dubbya’ Bush. “Unavailable” finds her making one last emotional plea to a significant other via voicemail. And on the ultra-smooth “Legacy,” Marie pays homage to her deceased grandparents through a spoken-word poem that conveys a clear message of respect and sense of appreciation for heritage.
Addicted to Life — The LP is a delectable morsel of neo-soul, suitable for adolescents and the grown and sexy alike. Listeners will enjoy Marie’s lyrics, easy-going nature and sweet voice, played against the crisp soundscape of Ahmed Sirour, Chris Lecount, Steadfast and others. With that said, her next project ought to have more of her own flavor. Teisha Marie is not a household name, but fans should not hesitate to pick up this album. As she puts it, “Everybody’s got their own path, let me tell you a little bit about mine.” Get addicted.
– Marcus Moore