Is Terrence Howard Capable of Making ‘Beautiful’ Music?

For all intents and purposes, the first time Terrence Howard made an impact on our consciousness was as the straight-forward, no-apologies troublemaker Quentin in 1999's The Best Man. In that role, he was also a bad mother (hush yo' mouf). What? I was just gonna say plucker, as in he wowed us with his guitar playing skills. And although he seemed to be playing a supporting role in damn near every movie released from that point forward, his next pivotal role was as the struggling D-Jay, a plucky pimp-turned-rapper in 2005's Hustle and Flow. So, it's safe to say that Terrence likes to dabble in music, yes?  That's all well and good, but just because you like something doesn't necessarily mean you should practice it. Hell, I like medicine, but I think it'd be wise to keep me away from all scalpels and stethoscopes.

Nevertheless, all the talk about an upcoming T-How Bad album is true. It's "urban country," he says, a combination of Spanish guitar and R&B, and is due out in September. The first single to surface on the web is "Love Makes You Beautiful." I'll say it: I'm underwhelmed but still trying to keep an open mind to it. Especially since he's following his dream, making it happen. And in the meantime, subjecting us to it. Take a listen for yourself. And then tell us if you think it's beautiful music, or if it's hard out there for your eardrums. Also, because this track has been out for a while, and to show a wider range of his "portfolio," we're doing another Twin Spin, hipping you to another leaked track called "Sanctuary."  Enjoy.

Terrence Howard: "Love Makes You Beautiful"

Terrence Howard: "Sanctuary"

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21 Responses

  1. I can get with his guitar skills.Is that him singing?????????

  2. I think his music might not be for the Soul Bounce crowd, but it has that feel of Seal and Lenny Kravitz and may be more suitable for that type of audience.
    Can't knock his hustle and flow though.

  3. thank God he has acting to fall back on because as a singer he sounds like shit. The first song is actually a beautifully crafted song he just again sounds like shit. That needed to be said.

  4. Hmmm... nice songs... too bad they aren't being sung by someone with a stronger voice. Still, can't knock the hustle.

  5. I agree with Coltrane...his voice just wavers too much. It's too 'undecided'. LOL. But the melody of the songs is cool. I added him to my myspace for sh*ts. We'll see how he fares; and thank Jeebus indeedy he has acting to fall back on. 😉

  6. Not bad actually. Here's the thing...If we didn't know him as a successful thespian, and judged his music on its own merits, I think that most would view it as interesting, different from what's on the radio, which is a good thing of course, and certainly worthy of further investigation i.e. giving it a few more spins and/or searching for more tracks.

  7. Beautiful melodies. Bad voice.

  8. Well I won't front....when he hits a good note in Love Makes You Beautiful around min 2...he sounds like Seal...
    I'd be happy to see the video...that would be some eyecandy...

  9. his whispering has me giggling. I actually do like the first song "Love Makes You Beautiful" just not him singing it.

  10. Hmm. He is on a singer songwriter trip (in that case you should not be too picky on his voice). If he really wrote the stuff, I think he didn't do a bad thing at all . I believe "Love makes you beautiful "is not a bad song. I think he would like to be in the Ben Harper/Terry Callier league… unfortunately the production is way too clean an smooth for that. I prefer to remember Howard from his "Crash" appearance, the way he breaks down there is Oscar shit…superbe actor!

  11. Nice Melody and Lyrics I just can't get past the fact that I know Djay is singing this.... I will only cosign this track after hearing him singing it live.....thats the real test

  12. Overall, I like 'Loves Make You Beautiful". There are some parts of the song where his voice is 'ehhh', but I think he did a good job.
    I want to hear the song be done by Alice Smith, I think she would kill it.

  13. Heard the entire CD on AOL Music a few weeks ago and was not thrilled. Music does indeed have potential, but up against the really gifted male vocalists like Eric Benet or Will Downing or even a relative unknown like Jose James, the vocals are not cutting it. And, if you're into that media 2.0 kinda thing, T Howard's on Facebook too. 🙂

  14. Hmm. The jury is out on this one. The song has potential. But it sounds like a better vehicle for someone like Corrine Bailey Rae.

  15. I think there's a distinction to be made here between simplicity and mediocrity. I don't think either of these is mind-blowing, but there's a low-key workmanlike appeal to their construction that reminds me of the blues. There is something to be said for music like this.
    I also think that there's something charming about the rough naivete of his vocal performances here. This is a man who seems to be truly singing for his own benefit. This isn't self-conscious self-indulgence, which it very well could have been. I think we should note that because it's important.
    Of course an Alice Smith would KILL both these songs, but that's says more about how specific a vocalist she is than it does about Terrence's voice. In fact by even citing other vocalists for the songs, I think you concede that the songs construction holds up.

  16. As my Korean brotha would say.. Me No Likey! I can't take Mr. Howard serious, and his music sounds like he acting more than actually singing. Kind of like Hustle & Flow with folk singing instead of rapping. I think he'd have done better playing the guitar while others sang the music.
    I don't hate, but I just don't like it.

  17. I actually like LOVE MAKES YOU BEAUTIFUL...he is singin for his own benefit and that alone makes it even a better song. He is just showing the talent that he has...from acting to writing to playing the guitar...Some will find him soothing others will find him doo-doo. I

  18. Hmmmm....interesting. I would of liked Love makes you Beautiful minus the background vocals. Without that I think the song would have been more intimate as if he was just singing to me and only me. Also, eventhough he doesn't have a great vocal range I dig the authenticity, passion, and intensity in his vocals.

  19. hmmm.... I kind of like it..... yeah his voice isn't amazing.. but I think it is pretty good and I look forward to hearing the rest..... his voice is a mix of different styles and sound. I agree he is just singing for the love of music there is no fluff or studio adjustments about his sound... sounds raw.... that's great took guts....

  20. I like sanctuary a lot better than the other one. Love makes you beautiful has lots of potential but I'm just not sure it fits his voice well.
    He did better on sanctuary.

  21. I like it, but not the background singers, they sound real cheesy.


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