From the introspective smooth jazz of the title track, to the country flavored coming-of-age GONNA BE ME, to the Sting influenced CHILEAN NIGHT, What You See is singer-songwriter Jeff Clark’s delivery of a variety of emotions to listeners who want a positive lift from their music. The lyrics are faith-based, and the music draws from influences like: CHICAGO, COLLIN RAYE, BREAD, STING, CHRISTOPHER CROSS, and STEPHEN BISHOP
A LABOR OF LOVE, ABOUT LOVE
If he'd chosen, Jeff Clark could have gone the pop music route and become another David Gates (of Bread fame) writing plaintive songs of longing about lost loves.
Lucky for listeners, he chose the road less traveled. By putting his talents and attention into inspirational music, Clark has carved out a unique niche for himself as a singer and songwriter and brought a little freshness to the field.
For "What You See" is, indeed "popular music"… popular in the sense of being "for the people." The melodies are memorable, the lyrics simple, yet interesting. With this CD, Jeff Clark takes us on a tour of life… from the cradle to the grave, literally… and shows that all life's roads really just point us one direction: to God. As St. Augustine put it, "Thou has made us for thyself, and our hearts find no rest until they rest in thee."
Jeff Clark offers the world his well-rested heart.
Some of the songs bear witness, some teach, none preach. My own favorites are the "sharing songs," pieces that take a slice of lived experience and offer it up with insight and perspective. "Gonna Be Me," "After the Flowers" and "Thank You" are especially successful. For such first-rate material Clark has also brought in some first-rate musicians and performers (Michael Dowdle, Randy Kartchner and Felicia Sorensen among them), to make sure his vision of things doesn't get lost in translation.
It never does.
In the end, "What You See" is … at once… intimate, yet strikingly universal. It is a labor of love, about love. If these songs don't reach a larger audience, the larger audience will be poorer for it.
One suspects even David Gates himself would agree.
Deseret Morning News