Patricia Louise Holt-Edwards (born May 24, 1944), better known under the stage name Patti LaBelle, is an American singer, author, actress, and entrepreneur. LaBelle began her career in the early 1960s as lead singer and front woman of the vocal group, Patti LaBelle and the Bluebelles. Following the group’s name change to Labelle in the early 1970s. After the group split in 1976, LaBelle began a successful solo career.
Artist: Patti Labelle
Title: Winner In You
Label: MCA Records
Winner in You is the eighth studio album by American R&B singer Patti LaBelle, released April 28, 1986, on MCA Records. Recording sessions took place during 1985–1986. Production was handled by several record producers, including Burt Bacharach, Carole Bayer Sager, and Nickolas Ashford, among others.
Ballads are the weakness of her new pop-soul album, her first for MCA Records. Though she is guilty of vocal overkill, even a subdued LaBelle couldn’t have salvaged hopelessly schmaltzy ballads like “Kiss Away the Pain,” “Finally We’re Back Together” and “Sleep With Me Tonight.” The real loser is “There’s a Winner in You,” another of those hokey inspirational ballads. Aimed at her middle-of-the-road fans, this Ashford & Simpson composition is meant to be uplifting, but it’s just bogus melodrama.
But LaBelle does exercise restraint most of the way on “On My Own,” her hit duet with Michael McDonald. This gritty, melancholy song–the finest pop duet ballad in years–features McDonald’s best singing since his Doobie Brothers days.
LaBelle has always been better on up-tempo songs–which make up half this album. Her singing is more relaxed and less frilly, probably because, with the emphasis on the musical tracks, she doesn’t feel the need to do all that vocal posturing. The up-tempo material–especially two danceable techno-funk tunes, “Beat My Heart Like a Drum” and “You’re Mine Tonight”–is all first-rate.
Of the many producers who contributed to the album, Richard Perry should be singled out for praise, since he produced those two cuts. The Pointer Sisters, who are also produced by Perry, should be miffed. Both songs would have been ideal for them.
1. Oh, People (5:19)
2. On My Own (feat. Michael Mcdonald) (4:50)
3. Something Special (Is Gonna Happen Tonight) (4:58)
4. Kiss Away The Pain (4:28)
5. Twisted (3:54)
1. You’re Mine Tonight (3:38)
2. Finally We’re Back Together (5:49)
3. Beat My Heart Like A Drum (3:50)
4. Sleep With Me Tonight (3:44)
5. There’s A Winner In You (4:18)