Kelly Price

By the time Kelly Price debuted in 1998, she was already a seasoned veteran. She paid her dues behind the scenes as a background singer for Mariah Carey and being a session singer on some very known songs, such as Mase's "Feel So Good" as well as The Notorious B.I.G.'s "Mo Money Mo Problems". A lot of people wanted to see the face behind the voice, so Kelly delivered her debut album "Soul Of A Woman" that featured her big hit "Friend Of Mine". Things got off to a good start for her until 1999, when a corporate merger resulted in a label shake up where the former Island Records recording artist was moved to Def Jam Recordings. In 2000, she released her sophomore album, the long winded "Mirror Mirror"- accompanied by a newly svelte image from the fomerly full-figured Price. A few years later, she released her third album, the critically acclaimed but commercially underperforming "Priceless". She laid low for a few more years and issued her long talked about gospel album "This Is Who I Am" in 2006, and disappeared into relative obscurity shortly thereafter. Her hiatus ended in summer 2010 when she emerged with the song "Tired" followed by the internet leak of her Mint Condition duet "Not My Daddy" several months later. Both songs elicited a generally positive response from fans about her new material, so she released her first secular album in eight years- the aptly-titled "Kelly" on southern soul label Malaco Records.


On this new album, she is reunited with her previous producers- Warryn Campbell and Shep Crawford- both of whom worked with her on her albums "Mirror Mirror" and "Priceless". On this new effort, Kelly does something that she has never done before- a record that is mostly live instrumentation. She makes a blatant retro dance track with "And You Don't Stop", while being addicted to a man on "Himaholic". On "I'm Sorry", she apologizes to herself for making bad choices in past relationships. She channels the sound of New Orleans band The Meters on "Vexed" and pays tribute to Prince and the Minneapolis Sound on "Speechless". She extols the virtues of being happy in a relationship on "Feels So Good", which should not be confused with the song of the same name by Mase that she sang on almost fifteen years earlier. The closing track on the album "Get Right Or Get Left" sounds like the best song that Aretha Franklin never recorded, and is Kelly's shining moment for her vocals. Overall, Kelly Price's "Kelly" could be viewed as her best produced album- and possibly her best studio album- as it has the material that complements her voice. She sounds as if she's really proud of this album- as she should be. The only real problem with this record is the fact that she didn't release it sooner.

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