Picks and Pans Review: Feel My Soul

updated 12/05/1983 at 01:00 AM EST

originally published 12/05/1983 01:00AM

Jennifer Holliday

Holliday, a former gospel singer, is best known for her Tony-winning performance in the hit Broadway musical Dreamgirls, where she torched her way through the powerful And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going. With this solo album debut she shows that her vocal prowess is as impressive on records as it is onstage. While she has more than a touch of the blues in her voice, Holliday sings of love and optimism in this set. The titles—Shine a Light, My Sweet Delight, I Am Love and This Game of Love (I'm Never Coming Down)—give an indication of the predominantly joyful tone. There's no show-stopper on the order of And I Am Telling You, but producer Maurice White, the elemental force behind Earth, Wind & Fire, has marshaled a splendid band of studio musicians—including Greg Phillinganes and Paulinho da Costa. They nicely complement Holliday's jazzy R&B style. And This Day, a stirring variation on The Lord's Prayer written by gospel singer Edwin Hawkins, provides a fitting finale, as well as an expression of Holliday's Christian values.

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