Myself When I Am Real
|Myself When I Am Real|
|Studio album by Bebo Norman|
|Released||September 10, 2002|
|Bebo Norman chronology|
Myself When I Am Real is the fourth studio album by Christian Contemporary-Folk-Pop-Rock musician Bebo Norman. The album is the second with Essential Records, and his fifth album overall including his first independent release. This album was released on September 10, 2002, and the producers are Ed Cash and Bebo Norman.
|1.||"Our Mystery"||Cash & Norman||3:33|
|2.||"Beautiful You"||Cash & Norman||3:48|
|3.||"Falling Down"||Cash & Norman||3:49|
|4.||"Great Light of the World"||Norman||4:11|
|5.||"Where the Trees Stand Still"||Norman||4:38|
|6.||"Everything"||Cash & Norman||3:08|
|7.||"Just ot Look at You"||Norman||4:59|
|8.||"Long Way Home"||Norman||5:41|
|9.||"Under the Sun"||Cash & Norman||3:48|
|10.||"So Afraid"||Cash & Norman||3:58|
|12.||"Back to Me"||Norman||3:56|
|US Billboard 200||114|
|Jesus Freak Hideout
|New Release Tuesday
|The Phantom Tollbooth
AllMusic's Steve Losey said that "Myself When I Am Real is an exercise in well-produced, acoustically driven folk-pop that presents itself as a powerful package, eliciting one memorable song after another." In addition, Losey wrot that "Myself When I Am Real is the type of disc that offers one powerful melody after another. It's a gift from a powerful performer sharing his talents with the rest of the world."
Christianity Today's Russ Breimeier said that "Myself When I Am Real suffers a little by allowing a mid-tempo folk shuffle to carry most of the songs on the album, a problem also present on Jennifer Knapp's The Way I Am (is it a coincidence that both artist's third national release have similar titles?). It would have helped if Bebo had included a couple upbeat tracks such as 'The Man Inside' or "I Am." On the other hand, Bebo's songwriting skills have developed greatly; this album includes his finest melodies to date. His usually quiet and somewhat raspy baritone voice absolutely soars as he explores a tenor range that you never knew he was capable of singing, especially on 'Great Light of the World' and 'Our Mystery.' Fans of Bebo's music will want to sing along more than ever on these power choruses. Myself When I Am Real is a good album, no better or worse than his previous works. It's interesting that each project has brought a new songwriting skill to the table. Now if he can just bring those skills together – the melodies of this album, the insight of Ten Thousand Days, and the eclecticism of Big Blue Sky – then Bebo Norman could create the perfect pop album.
Cross Rhythms' Trevor Kirk said that "overall, this is a reversion to the gentler feel of 'Ten Thousand Days' after the poppier sound of 'Big Blue Sky', but what hasn't changed is the obvious talent of the man, and this album showcases it perfectly. Highly recommended."
Jesus Freak Hideout's John DiBiase said that "Bebo goes for broke lyrically on Myself When I Am Real, exposing his heart and soul to listeners, set to infectious rhythms." Furthermore, DiBiase wrote that "the honesty-soaked pop that makes up Myself When I Am Real is what makes this album so solid. Norman fans will eat this one up, while listeners just looking for something a little more transparent and personal will find these catchy tunes being spun in their players over and over."
Melodic.net's Johan Wippsson said that "once again he delivers an album filled with lovely harmonies in a melancholic pop folk package. This time we?re given at least three extraordinary tunes like in ?Everything?, which is an all time top three song from him in my opinion. The sad ?Beautiful you? is another fine one as the catchy ?Falling down?. Those ones are my favourites on the album, but the rest of the album is almost there with a nice consistency all through. His previous albums are really good acoustic based pop in the Cat Stevens league, but this is the best release from him so far. A perfect album now for romantic evenings when fall is here."
New Release Tuesday's Kevin McNeese said that "Bebo Norman pretty much has the formula down pat. To say that he's reached perfection might be too bold, but nothing seems to be going wrong on his third album, Myself When I Am Real." McNeese followed with "Bebo Norman is wonderful at taking angst and directing it towards the heavens, where we are supposed to be bringing our burdens. He presents honesty and an openness with both his faith and his world around him that is simply unmatched in today's music. It's easy to pass on Bebo's music as boring and uninspired, but there are so many layers to both his music and his storytelling that to say that would simply be acknowledging that no time has been spent with the record."
The Phantom Tollbooth's Josh Hurst said that "unfortunately, Norman's third record, Myself When I am Real, finds him just where we left him. He's still poised to make his big move. He's still not working to his full potential. While not at all a poor album, Myself could have been much greater." Hurst wrote that "though, in the case of Myself When I Am Real, the glass is definitely half empty, Norman's well has not totally run dry."
The Phantom Tollbooth's Curt McLey said that "Myself When I am Real seems contrived to such an extent that I have a difficult time listening to it without distraction. As I listen to the songs, recurring visions of teenage girls staring in rapt attention dominate my mind. Facing the stage, hands folded in the classic prayer posture and placed vertically to one side of their face—the young ladies convey a reverence reserved only for the boyfriend who will always be out of reach. Why? Well, because he’s a rock star." Lastly, McLey wrote that "most of the songs on Myself When I am Real--dare I say it--appear to have been intentionally written with mixed meaning. Songs written with layers can be artistically satisfying. But honestly, these songs go too far, which almost makes me a little queasy."
The Phantom Tollbooth's John Wehrle said that "while this album has selected riveting songs, overall the project lacks the potential that Norman has to rock the Christian music world. While the vocals, guitars, and musicianship is solid, the songwriting on the project is lacking."
- Billboard (September 28, 2002). "Myself When I Am Real - Bebo Norman : Awards". AllMusic. Retrieved October 18, 2012.
- Losey, Steve (September 10, 2002). "Myself When I Am Real - Bebo Norman : Review". AllMusic. Retrieved October 18, 2012.
- Breimeier, Russ (August 22, 2002). "Bebo Norman Myself When I Am Real (Essential) Review". Christianity Today. Wayback Machine. Retrieved October 19, 2012.
- Kirk, Trevor (September 4, 2002). "Bebo Norman - Myself When I Am Real". Cross Rhythms. Retrieved October 18, 2012.
- DiBiase, John (August 31, 2002). "Bebo Norman, "Myself When I Am Real" Review". Jesus Freak Hideout. Retrieved October 18, 2012.
- Wippsson, Johan (September 10, 2002). "REVIEW: Bebo Norman - Myself When I Am Real". Melodic.net. Retrieved October 18, 2012.
- McNeese, Kevin (June 30, 2007). "One Of The Best Of 2002". New Release Tuesday. Retrieved October 18, 2012.
- Hurst, Josh (October 7, 2002). "Myself When I Am Real Review". The Phantom Tollbooth. Retrieved October 18, 2012.
- McLey, Curt (August 14, 2003). "Myself When I Am Real Review". The Phantom Tollbooth. Retrieved October 18, 2012.
- Tedder, Lisa (October 1, 2002). "Myself When I Am Real: Bebo Norman" (PDF). CCM Magazine. p. 48. Retrieved October 18, 2012.
- Wehrle, John (November 18, 2002). "Myself When I Am Real Review". The Phantom Tollbooth. Retrieved October 18, 2012.