Lisa McClendon
My Diary, Your Life

For her solo debut, Lisa McClendon brings home a whirl of sumptuous neo-soul stylings. The big afro and large hoop earrings are appropriate hints at the great expanse of vocal expression this young singer brings.

My Diary, Your Life from the Shabach Entertainment camp is a glorious 19 tracks that McClendon uses to paint intimate My Diary, Your Life CDportraits of her faith, using her extensive palette of vocal colors and supported by organic instrumental textures that emphasize the rootsy nature of her alto pipes.

The project kicks off with the ingenious “Still Alive”. Derived from The Bee Gees' classic, the song is written from the point of view of Jesus, and is marked by soft urban rhythms steeped in plenty of gentle urban flute. A.M.P. injects a brief rap mid-track as McClendon sings her easy vocals on the hook:

Although you drove the nails through my hand
And broke my heart, I’m God and I’m still alive…

—from "Still Alive"

From there the project unfolds into ripples of soft soul vibes and comforting grooves. Writing all the songs on the album, McClendon shows herself to be a vast talent for placing a succinct Gospel message to melody. She brings the listener close enough to know her heart and conveys such a purity of spirit that that identification with her is always easy. The album title is entirely appropriate.

Mo Henderson’s expert hand on production shines through with uncluttered arrangements that are perfect for McClendon’s vocal vibe.

Lisa McClendonCuts such as “Clean Me” put the focus on the clarity of McClendon’s expressive vocals, and the brief “I Found You” finds a folk/soul niche with relaxed acoustic guitar.

Praise songs find their place midway through the project. “Hiding Place”, “Beautiful Is Your Praise” and “Praise Is Comely” are delivered back to back to back; each are sunny prayers backed by acoustic drums.

The album concludes with a pair of soft-drive invitational cuts titled “Revelation” (the second of the two being spoken word).

Then you realize that not only have you been allowed into the sanctuary of Lisa McClendon’s soulful diary of praise and confession, you have also been encouraged to join with her in bringing forth the praise to Jesus Christ —in newness of vibe and freshness of voice.

Producer: Mo Henderson
album release date: January 29, 2002
Shabach Entertainment

— reviewed by Stan North

  All content in GospelFlava © copyright 2002. No information to be reprinted or re-broadcast from this site without the expressed written consent of GospelFlava.com. All rights reserved.

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