Cassie

Unfortunately, stripping down or appearing as a leading lady in music videos (Cassie appeared in Mario's "Here I Go Again" video) might cut it with the MTV generation, but it won't hold up critically in the professional recording industry.

Producer Ryan Leslie has put together a relatively good selection of R&B, pop-infused tracks for Cassie's self-entitled debut album, but her vocal talents are not entirely convincing. This New Yorker needs to up her game if she plans on competing for record sales with fellow artists in her genre such as Ciara, Beyoncé, Letoya and Keisha Cole, to name a few.

Her sound is a bit juvenile, and at times on tracks like "Not With You" and "About Time" shockingly flat. Although "Just One Night", "Miss Your Touch" and "Long Way To Go" features enjoyable R&B, Cassie loses the plot with teenie-bopper bubblegum on "Ditto" and "What Do You Want".

If she hopes to be taken seriously as an R&B singer, Cassie and her producer need to reconsider the direction she wants to take her sound in on her next album – assuming there'll be a second one.

On Cassie Leslie practically runs a one-man studio. He's penned and co-penned every track, produced every track and even lends his vocals on "Long Way To Go" and "Kiss Me". Leslie has proved his talent working with Beyoncé, Donnell Jones, Mario Winans and New Edition.

It's a sad fact that most artists survive putting out average B-grade albums. Unfortunately, Cassie is just that, average. But when you're attached to names like Sean "P. Diddy" Combs and Tommy Mottola you shouldn't be allowed to release albums that don't debut at #1 on US music charts (whether it's your debut album or not).

**Cassie is signed to Bad Boy records and is managed by Tommy Mottola – let's hope she doesn't become the next Mrs Mottola.

- Megan Kakora
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