How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.
Angie Winans, one of the Winans Sisters, strikes out on her own with this contemporary gospel music album, which has elements of R & B, smooth jazz and rock. Her deep feelings about why and what she is singing is evident throughout the session. Sound effects are used to help punctuate the message Winans delivers with the lyrics. There are wind-like swishes on "Spirit Lullaby" and the starting up of a car on the album's kick off tune "Come Go with Me". On this tune, Winans' voice is textured as background, making it one of the instruments. An artful tracks is "Changing My Whole Life" where Winans adapts Roberta Flack's monster hit "Killing Me Softly" into a story about Jesus. "I Wonder" is one of the few tracks where Winans' voice isn't camouflaged by all the electronic wizardry. Turns out she has an imposing set of pipes.
Winans gets a lot of help. There's a bevy of background singers creating a call and response effect. There's the synthesizers imitating keyboards and other instruments. Finally there's smooth jazz sax favorite Kirk Whalum, who regrettably is not on all the cuts, but whose contribution to "Mack Avenue" is heavenly. That Winans possesses a ton of talent there is no doubt. If you like gospel blended with other musical genre, you cannot do better than Melodies of My Heart. Some purists might be offended with the contemporary version of the "Lord's Prayer". I found it to be one of the premiere tracks on the album. Lyrics are in the liner notes.
Track Listing: Come Go with Me; Changing My Whole Life; The Lord's Prayer; Spirit Lullaby; Let `Em Go; He Loves Me; Mack Avenue; I Wonder; Theme from "Little Debbie"; Roses Again; Tribute to Lady Wisdom
Personnel: Angie Winans - Vocals; Kirk Whalum - Sax; Darwin Hobbs, Joey Kibble, Mark Kibble, Tiffany Palmer, Dwaune Starling Kevin Whalum, Angie Winans - Background Vocals; Kaylor Parker, Marvin Winans - Ad lib Vocals