Gladys Knight & the Pips

Pipe Dreams

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AllMusic Review by

Some singers have branched out and become equally famous for their acting, but Gladys Knight isn't one of them. In 1976, she had a leading role in the film Pipe Dreams (which also starred Barry Hankerson, her husband at the time). The film was a commercial flop, and even though Knight continued to command a loyal, devoted following as a singer, she never became huge as an actress. Because the film received so little attention, it isn't surprising that the soundtrack album didn't fare much better commercially. This LP, which was reissued on CD in 1999, had a fine single in the melancholy ballad "So Sad the Song," but most of the other material is merely decent -- and that is true of the funky "Alaskan Pipeline" and the perky "Find a Way," as well as the jazz-minded "Pot of Jazz." Knight and her Pips didn't record a lot of jazz-influenced material, and the tune was an interesting departure for them. Overall, this isn't a bad album -- it just isn't a great one. Far from essential, Pipe Dreams is only recommended to Knight's most hardcore fans.

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