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Saturday, August 15, 2015

Beverly: Heart & Soul (Advance) (Yab Yum/Elektra, 1999)

While Babyface's label LaFace led the way when it came to contemporary R&B in the 90s, not many people know that his wife Tracey E. Edmonds also had a small piece of the action. Setting up Yab Yum Records with her brother Michael in the mid 90s, the label was responsible for a handful of semi-popular acts back then, the most successful being Caucasian R&B singer Jon B. Unfortunately this impressive artist, former backing singer Bevely Crowder, was not one of them. Unfortunately she came at a time when the demands for another female R&B singer weren't exactly pressing. Between the release of Cheryl 'Coko'
Gamble's debut solo album Hot Coko and Tracie Spencer's comeback LP Tracie (both of which were significantly slept-on as it was), she was severely overlooked. It probably didn't help either that at the time Yab Yum was partnered up with the terrible Elektra Records (if that wasn't a recipe for failure, nothing was!) Despite being praised for her amazing vocal ability and likened to fellow church alumni Kelly Price, her debut LP Heart & Soul was shelved after only one single, the Rodney Jerkins-produced You Came Along.  Despite being a very in-demand producer at the time, it seems Jerkins has a massive back catalog of unreleased music.
 
Released to promo only in 1999, the album includes contributions from Soulshock & Karlin, The Characters and Babyface (Heart & Soul, Sugar Bear and Yours & Yours Alone.)

You Came Along    5:12   
So Into You    4:36   
Sugar Bear    5:08   
Old Ways    4:42   
I Really Do Love You    4:52   
You Don't Feel The Way I Do    4:15   
Here    4:21   
Heart & Soul    4:55   
Yours & Yours Alone    5:05   
You're My Man    4:49   
I Wanna Be Yours    4:25   
This Time    5:33   
Thank You (Outro)    1:09