Any time a record can remind me of a favorite television show, I am pleased. So it is safe to say that ‘Sun Come and Shine’ by Jennifer Porter put a smile on my face as I could not help but think of NBC’s ‘This Is Us’ throughout the entirety of this record as much of Porter’s style is reminiscent to what the Pearson matriarch, Rebecca Pearson, would sing at the start of her musical journey. That beautiful, folksy singer-songwriter feel from the ‘70s that is soulful, heartfelt, and charming as can be.
From the press of play, Jennifer Porter commands one’s attention with strong vocals that more than carry their fair share of the weight of this record. Much like Carole King, she delivers a great time in the titular track that opens the record and sets the tone for what is to come. There is a lot of that wonderful ‘70s singer-songwriter vibe throughout from the opening track to “Show Me Your Love,” a song that serves as a way for listeners to just groove to “In and Out With You,” a song fit for a summer concert series underneath the sun as it begins to set. Jennifer Porter also shows off her sultry and more sassy sides with “Satin Shoes” and “Stop Your Talkin’.”
While the more upbeat tracks are plentiful, Jennifer Porter also showcases how well she can deliver a ballad as well. Wearing her heart on her sleeve and giving it her all in a myriad of tracks that help to keep the ‘Sun Come and Shine’ perfectly balanced. Be it the tale relayed in “Bitter New York Night” or the sugary sweet ways of “You’re So Easy to Be With.” There were two cherries on top though when it came to Jennifer Porter’s ballads.
The first being “Something On Your Mind.” This is the one that took me to ‘This Is Us’ in an instant. Any fan of the show could picture Mandy Moore’s character belting this out in a heartwarming flashback featuring her and Jack early in their relationship. If any of the producers of the show are looking for music to round out the final season, this song is it. The other was the track that capped the album, “I’ll Be Here.” I have always been a sucker for songs that are both loving and encouraging and as the matriarch of my family, my mother, sits in the ICU slowly healing from major heart surgery, this song hit me like a ton of bricks – in the best way possible.
With this being Jennifer Porter’s eighth album, it is clear that she knows what she is doing and does it well. ‘Sun Come and Shine’ dropped June 18th and was recorded alongside the iconic drummer and music director Bernard “Pretty” Purdie and his band in New Jersey safely throughout the summer of 2020 in between various surges and quarantines. ‘Sun Come and Shine’ also features Grammy-winners Christian McBride and Cindy Cashdollar and Grammy nominees, Ron Paparozzi and Jennifer’s friend, C.J. Chenier, horn extraordinaire Steve Jankowski (Blood Sweat And Tears, Chicago,) and Tom Timko (Blood Sweat And Tears, Tower Of Power).
Any musician who managed to make art in 2020 will not forget what it took, and how it all came about – Jennifer Porter included. And with any luck, this record will allow her to add to her growing list of accomplishments as she has already taken home several awards over the years including the 2019 Independent Music Network Award for Best Female Crossover Artist and the 2020 We Are The Music Makers Award for Best Roots/Blues/Americana album.
Those who love the soulful sound of singer-songwriters who put elements of folk and the blues into their music and are interested in hearing more from Jennifer Porter can check out
Written by Kendra Beltran