James Cleveland

In Honor of the King: The Music Lives Forever

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The brief compilation In Honor of the King: The Music Lives Forever contains ten tracks (31 minutes of music) cherry-picked from the label's recent series of reissues of Reverend James Cleveland's classic traditional gospel sides. While the disc has some utility as a general overview of one of the greatest gospel performers of his era, it's not a particularly good introduction for the newcomer: the songs aren't in anything approaching chronological order, the notes aren't particularly informative, and it gives little hint of the context of these recordings, either in Cleveland's career or in the development of gospel music as a whole. While it's hard to fault any of the Reverend's music, this collection is a haphazard jumble, programmed seemingly at random. The label's reissue series is overall very good, despite its faults, and the albums themselves are budget-priced entries into some of Reverend Cleveland's lesser-known works, but it's easy to skip this sampler. 1998's Great Day: The Very Best of the Reverend James Cleveland is a better choice for a single-disc anthology.

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