During the 90’s R Kelly could do no wrong in my eyes. Kells KEPT hitting you in the head with hit after hit after hit and his remixes?!?!! Don’t get me started on his remixes. The Down Low remix?!?! The “I Can’t Sleep (Baby If I)” remix?!?!?! The “Bump ‘n’ Grind remix”?!?!? The “Ignition remix”?!?!?! Aiight…this could go on forever but ya’ll get the gist. So when Kells stepped in to remix this new shorty named Kelly Price’s song “Friend of Mine” as usual I was on board 100%. Now Kells has had his share of shorty’s he’s produced for like Changing Faces, Sparkle, etc .but it was something about this Kelly Price’s voice. She had that “church” sound pouring out her lyrics and I LOVE that “church” sound. My bad…the “church” sound I’m talking about is like…well, I can’t really explain it but if you’ve ever been to church, and heard a good gospel choir, then you know what I’m talking about. After the “Friend of Mine remix” I was officially on board with Ms. Price and was checking for her now. Her second album “Mirror, Mirror” had Kelly remaking Shirley Murdock’s “As We Lay” which is one of the greatest slow jams of ALL time and Kelly did the damn thing on it! And not for nuthin but “You Should’ve Told Me” is one of those songs I could NEVER get tired of hearing. And “It Will Rain” off the Life Sound track that paired Kelly back up with Kells?!?!!? Bananas!
So, knowing that I ride with Ms. Price, you could imagine that I was hype to hear she was dropping her first R&B album in 8 years (she dropped a gospel album “This Is Who I Am” in ’06) and that she’s linking back up with one of her original producers Warryn “Baby Dubb” Campbell. And trust me, her album “Kelly” doesn’t disappoint at all. The album sets off with “Tired” and THIS is how you set an album off! I don’t think a lot of artists understand how important it is to begin AND end your album on a strong note but that’s not a problem for Ms. Price. “Not My Daddy” with Stokley from Mint Condition blends that classic Kelly Price sound with that classic Mint Condition sound and anybody who knows anything, knows you can’t go wrong with that combo. “Himaholic” is Kelly’s moment of clarity that all addicts have to come face to face with she admits that she’s addicted to him. “I’m Sorry” is a beautiful ballad, which has Kelly forgiving herself for the mistakes she’s made. And with lyrics, “like a tv on mute, you got me, speechless, like a black and white silent movie, I’m speechless” you’ll understand why Ms. Price is “Speechless” which is the must have Prince influenced track that’s now an industry prerequisite for ALL female singer but is still a banger nonetheless. “Vexed” will give you flashbacks to Amerie’s “1 Thing” and “You Don’t Have to Worry” is that classic Kelly Price slow jam. But the way the album ends with “A ‘Lil Sumthin Sumthin” and “Get Right or Get Left” helps to explain why Kelly was so “Tired” in the beginning of the album. “A ‘Lil Sumthin Sumthin” has Kelly telling her man “that until he wants to do things right/that she’s keeping a ‘lil sumthin sumthin on the side.” And “Get Right or Get Left” is self explanatory and closes the album and will have you reminiscing of Aretha Franklin in her prime. If you’re looking for that “grown folk music” that everyone seems to be complaining is missing nowadays than you can’t go wrong with Ms. Price’s latest release.
4 outtta 5