There is no mistaking that “Exceptional” by American Idol Season 4 Finalist Anwar Robinson, written and produced by Bo-Ty Productions, is exactly as the title states: exceptional. An exceptional story, performance and production. When music like this hits the inbox it’s just further confirmation that we’re going to be just fine in the music world if we can turn our attention to the folks who deserve it and ignore the rest.

“Exceptional” is as subtle as a 9pm ocean-side summer breeze, as reverent as some of the greatest tomes dedicated to the joys of matrimony and as majestic as Mussorgsky’s “Great Gate of Kiev” from Pictures At An Exhibition. For you see what “Exceptional” does so well is that it puts you in the moment.

As I listen to the song unfold I can feel myself looking at the clock on the wall imagining it’s 1:55pm on a Saturday in June, young hearts rapt with anticipation of what’s to come, all is silent until a key from the piano rings out and the door opens to begin the procession. If you didn’t catch what I was doing there, I was describing the intro to the song. The intro, remember those? This one is simply beautiful. There are more instruments in those 4 1/2 bars than a lot of people use in their entire productions. I mean that as the ultimate compliment to Tyrone Corbett and Bob Donzella of Bo-Ty Productions. What I’m talking about here is orchestration and arranging which the musical output of Bo-Ty continues to show this reviewer that they are very adept at. Tell me the last time you heard a Harpsichord used to great effect in pop music?

I cannot say enough of about Anwar Robinson’s vocals on “Exceptional”. Control, a myriad of colors, ethereal backing vocals it’s all in there. Just like any great journey, there is a constant build from the opening verse to the climactic out chorus. If you appreciate great singing as much as I do Anwar Robinson is an artist to watch. There is a lot that aspiring singers can learn from Anwar’s vocal approach on “Exceptional”.

Obviously, I’m not the first person to make this statement regarding “Exceptional” but I’m hoping that something that has been said here or more importantly the music itself will begin a movement. This songs needs to be the “Wedding Song”. So whatever we have to do to make this happen, let’s make it happen.

Now you don’t have to just take my word on “Exceptional”, the song has been getting some very, very well-deserved praise for some music industry heavyweights. Read what some of them had to say…

“I met Bob and Tyrone a few years ago and was immediately impressed with not only the quality but also the quantity of catalog of songs they produced. I invited them to have a meeting with David Foster and I because we were both impressed with their work. Tyrone shared a number of songs that we thought had really good potential. About a year or so later, Tyrone shared with me that he and Bob were working with an artist who was on American Idol…Anwar Robinson. I had been watching the show and had already taken notice of Anwar. Since that time, Tyrone shared with me a couple of songs that they wrote for Anwar (Exceptional and Night’s Hot). These songs show great creativeness and a high degree of writing skill. The marriage of song to artist is also an important point not to be overlooked as Anwar’s performance is quite breathtaking…especially on Exceptional.” – Carole Bayer Sager

“I truly love the song “Exceptional.” After performing with Anwar Robinson on American Idol, I immediately became a true fan of his voice and delivery. I also enjoy the wonderful textured and intimate production of this great song. It’s a pleasure to hear real depth and passionate lyrics in the songwriting efforts. In this midst of so much that is shallow on the playlists of today’s radio programming, this song is a welcomed relief.” – Gerald Albright

“Writers, producers, arrangers, engineers and all-around good guys. The consistent level of creativity and production is light years ahead of many of the top productions being heard on the airwaves today. Bo-Ty Productions is where good music needs to be in the 21st Century.” – Onaje Allan Gumbs

“What a beautiful song, yes I said “Song” something you don’t hear much of these days. It’s a great vocal and Production. Just when you think the song has reached its climax, Anwar takes it up a notch. There’s no room to hide as a vocalist on a song like this and Anwar has no reason to as he delivers what I consider to be a more than “EXCEPTIONAL” performance.” – Will Downing

Here’s the link to the Press Release for “Exceptional” and more information about Anwar Robinson and Bo-Ty Productions.

Listen

Purchase

Ivan Orr is a multi-instrumentalist, composer, performer, and writer. A native of Charlottesville, Virginia Ivan was involved with the forming and nascent days of The Music Resource Center as its first Program Director. A graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University’s Department of Music, Ivan currently resides in Richmond, VA where he maintains an active performance and production schedule while serving as the Music Editor for Grown Folks Music, a position he has held since 2010.