Lalah Hathaway (Stax/Concord)

*“I did a great cover of Dad’s song, ‘You Were Meant For Me,’ recorded…where Nat King Cole recorded. It was a golden day for me,” said Grammy Award nominee Lalah Hathaway about her newest album release on the Stax/Concord imprint.

The “Where It All Begins” project takes Lalah vocally in a new direction from her past R&B/Jazz recordings. This project includes some Urban/R&B and Pop influences.

Hathaway said the album is a love letter to her parents Grammy Award winning Donny Hathaway and Eulaulah Hathaway (a classically trained singer).

Lalah brought on some hot producers and songwriters such as Mike City, JR, Leroy Hutson, Rahsaan Patterson and James Fauntleroy. Rachelle Ferrell is a featured vocalist on the project on the “I’m Coming Back” cut.

“I’m a musician at heart,” Lalah confessed. “Everyday I listen to music…until I die and still it won’t be enough.”

It was a delight to hear Hathaway show another side to her vocals on the “Where It All Begins” CD. My favorite selections on the project include “My Everything,” a nice R&B cut – with some Pop influence – is a hand-clapping offering; “Lie To Me,” a club number that’s powerful, yet a sweet all at the same time, is a song of love’s end; the first single, “If You Want To,” is a nice funky selection and her cover of her fathers song “You Were Meant For Me,” is a sweet track of love found.

For more information on the new Lalah Hathaway album, “Where It All Begins,” log onto www.LalahHathaway.com.

Joe’s back with a hot new CD, ‘The Good, The Bad, The Sexy,’ debuts at #1 on iTunes R&B

Joe Thomas (Kedar Entertainment)

*The wait is finally over, the newest studio project of Grammy Award nominee Joe Thomas, “The Good, The Bad, The Sexy” (Kedar Entertainment), has hit the stores. The highly anticipated album has already debuted at #1 at iTunes R&B.

Joe is known for giving us such signature hits as “All The Things Your Man Won’t Do” and “Don’t Wanna Be a Player,” produced by Rodney Jerkins. Thomas is back and I do believe this project may result in a couple more signature songs.

Producers on the new CD include Osinachi Nwaneri, Brandon “B.A.M.” Alexander, Gerald “Nasty Twin” Isaac, Brennan “Epic” Gragston, The Ambassadorz, and Anthony L. Saunders. Joe stays true to R&B on this album while covering all aspects of love: the good, the bad and the sexy.

Joe’s first recording contract was signed in 1993 with Polygram/Mercury and by 1997 he had a deal with Jive Records which released his “All That I Am” project that garnered the song “All The Things Your Man Won’t Do.” That album went platinum in the U.S.

My favorite cuts on the current “The Good, The Bad, the Sexy” album are “Losing,” a radio friendly song of love lost (which is accompanied by a music video), “Almost There,” an Urban/R&B flavored cut, and “Dear Joe”, a heart-felt selection of love lost where Joe shows some very impressive vocal acrobats (also accompanied by a music video).

Find out more on the “The Good, The Bad, The Sexy” album or upcoming performances dates to promote it, follow Joe on Twitter at www.twitter.com/JoeThomas563.

Shirley Murdock releases highly anticipated live recording, ‘The Journey,’ on Tyscot

Shirley Murdock (Tyscot Records)

*Grammy Award nominated Soul/Gospel singer Shirley Murdock’s live recording of her newest album, “The Journey” (Tyscot Records), takes you to church for a foot-stomping, hand-clapping, Praise and Worship day. Joining her on this highly anticipated project are Regina Belle, Kelly Price and Beverly Crawford.

Producer of the CD is Grammy Award winning Cedric Thompson (Marvin Sapp). “The Journey” released its first single, “Dream,” which became the most added Gospel song to radio. Known for her signature song, “As We Lay,” Murdock offers an album full of inspiration.

Recorded live in Charlotte, NC the CD is Shirley’s second Gospel project with her current label. Full of over 13 selections to listen to, “The Journey,” had me stuck on the first single “Dream,’ not only because of his history of being “the song that won’t die,” but its an anthem of hope; “Keep Lovin’ Me,” featuring Kelly Price brought tears to my eyes for its heart-felt message of God’s love; “Upward Way,” featuring Regina Belle has music support that is reminiscent of the days of Cab Calloway, both Murdock and Belle treat us with some scatting – I also love the horn support; ‘It’s In Your Hands,” a soulful number, and “The Winner in Me,” a powerful inspirational selection and I love the piano driven delivery.

For more information on Shirley Murdock or her latest album release, “The Journey,” log onto www.Tyscot.com.

BET’s ‘Sunday Best’ runner-up Jessica Reedy releases first album, ‘From the Heart,’ debuts at #1 on Billboard Gospel

Jessica Reedy (Light Records)

*“I wanted to do an R&B album first, but I got saved after having my son,” said BET’s “Sunday Best” runner-up Jessica Reedy about her debut Contemporary Gospel album, “From The Heart” (Light Records).

The project is produced and co-written by Warryn Campbell, Claude Kelly, Chuck Harmony, James “Big Jim” Wright, Shep Crawford, Daniel Moore, Mali Music and Jessica. The very talent singer has featured guest Faith Evans, The Soul Seekers and Doc Powell – on the CD.

The project debuted at #1 on both Billboard Gospel and iTunes Christian & Gospel Charts.

“I use to work at AT&T,” Jessica said about how she ended up on the “Sunday Best” BET competition. “Someone said, ‘Come on to Sunday Best (auditions) with me.’ I said I had to work and that I didn’t sing anymore. Well a week later I got fired. Part of me was happy.”

So Reedy took her friend up on the offer and you know the rest of the story she continued to advance in the competition. Currently on tour promoting her debut Contemporary Gospel album, “From The Heart,” Jessica arrives in Washington, DC Oct 22-23, 2011 (Baltimore on November 19th) and ends in Langos Nigeria December 13th.

“Out of my heart speaks volumes,” Reedy said when ask about the meaning of the project’s title, “From The Heart.” “How else can I talk to God.”

For more information on Jessica Reedy or her debut album log onto www.JessicaReedyMusic.com.

(Eunice Moseley is a syndicated entertainment columnist, www.ThePulseofEntertainment.com)