The Gospel Divas 2001
“Diva” connotes many things, but for purposes of this project, has been redefined as:
Recognizing that a Gospel diva is one “that exemplifies a high level of excellence in their everyday walk and ministry” this compilation is a celebration of the lives and accomplishments of these ladies while they are yet blossoming.
Notably, the CD is dedicated to living and legendary divas Albertina Walker, Shirley Caesar, Inez Andrews and Tramaine Hawkins.
Uniting with other labels to showcase the musical contributions of the women of Gospel from a wide spectrum, the project features cuts from the most recent projects of Shelley Gaines, Beverly Crawford, Deleon, Damita, Lexi, Kim Burrell, Angie & Debbie Winans, Karen Clark-Sheard, Nancey Jackson and others.
You also get a sneak peak at some upcoming gems from Vanessa Bell Armstrong and Vickie Winans.
Vickie Winans drops her energy on “J.E.S.U.S.”, a to-the-sky bomb from the pen of Marvin Winans that demonstrates the versatility of this long-time diva. Joyous and jumpy, the song features choir support and a raucous track. Recent projects left no doubt that she can sing church; perhaps this heralds Vickie’s return to contemporary stylings.
Also notable is the current tracking of Yvette Williams aka Ms. Tonéx aka Zsa Zsa, on the funkladen “Babyface”, as well as the down home regality of Dottie Peoples on “Testify”.
From the contemporary to the traditional, this project is a reminder of how women in music ministry hold it down. Often additionally working in other capacities of ministry, holding other jobs, being wives and mothers and then some, these ladies challenge us to do an excellent job in all things.
They let us know that while wearing many hats, there’s no harm in one of them being a tiara.
Tommy Boy Gospel
— reviewed by Stan North —
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