Vanessa Williams

Greatest Hits: The First Ten Years

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When former Miss America/Penthouse poser Vanessa Williams picked up a microphone in 1988 with The Right Stuff, her managers did the business-smart, and expected, thing: They buried her beneath a coat of glossy production and dancefloor beeps and bips to disguise whatever vocal shortcomings this walking mannequin might have. But a funny thing happened within a few years. It turned out that Williams, when given the right material, could actually sing. And when handed torch songs that emphasized her natural slow burn -- like on the glorious ballad "Save the Best for Last" -- Williams was a genuinely sexy and capable performer. Greatest Hits: The First Ten Years gathers the biggest 13 songs from her first decade. The club tunes are generic and could be served just as well by anyone, but the finest tunes here ("Save the Best for Last," "Love Is," and "Colors of the Wind") are smoldering slices of R&B that certify Williams is more than just a pretty face.

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