May 11th, 2007
While The Gospel According to Patti LaBelle features collaborations with both sacred and secular artists and is primarily comprised of newly composed songs, Ann Nesby’s In the Spirit takes a different approach and exclusively contains black sacred standards as well as previously recorded and released black secular songs. Nesby is known for her work in the 1990s with the 30-member gospel choir Sounds of Blackness. Since then she has released a R&B album and has contributed to several gospel music recordings. The daughter of a Protestant pastor, Nesby maintains that In the Spirit is a tribute to her unwavering faith in Jesus Christ.
In the Spirit includes the gospel standards “Jesus Paid it All,” Pass Me Not,” and “I Can Go to God in Prayer.” The peak of the album is Nesby’s version of contemporary gospel artist Donald Lawrence’s song, “If I Can’t Say a Word.” Her traditional gospel vocal delivery matched with a well-written and arranged song by Lawrence creates a listening experience that captures the emotive essence of gospel music. Other tracks include Nesby’s rendition of Stevie Wonder’s “Heaven is a Zillion Light Years Away” and Bill Withers’ “Grandma’s Hands,” which provide a religious context. What unites the songs on this album is Nesby’s consistent stylistic delivery. Furthermore, Nesby relies on the backing vocals of her daughter, Jamecia Bennett (mother of American Idol star Paris Bennett), and Latrice Pace-Speights (of the famed gospel group The Anointed Pace Sisters) to support her vocal delivery throughout the album. That consistency enables the listener to follow her as she traverses gospel mainstays and popular music songs. (Continued in next post)
Posted by fredara mareva
Review Genre(s): Gospel Music and Spirituals