Sylvia Robinson

Pillow Talk: The Best of Sylvia

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Sylvia Vanderpool-Robinson's sexy voice first broke out on "Love Is Strange," a hit duet with guitarist Mickey Baker credited to Mickey & Sylvia. She mostly relegated the singing chores to others at All Platinum Records, which she owned with her husband, Joe Robinson, but managed enough sessions to crank out the alluring "Pillow Talk," proving that men still get hot and bothered listening to her kitten-ish delivery. She cut more cream puffs; however, none elevated as high. But after listening to "Sho Nuff Boogie" (with the Moments), "Sweet Stuff," and "Soul J'Aime" with Ralfi Pagan, you'll wonder why. All Platinum's house band lay down some infectious shuffling grooves on the ups and mid-tempo tracks and lay low on the slow stuff. She shows love on two Marvin Gaye songs: "You Sure Love to Ball" and the longing "Distant Lover"; while neither rank with the originals, they're interesting, particularly the former. Her update of Holland-Dozier-Holland's "Don't Leave Me Starving" is a different animal with a female vocal and "Pussy Cat" would get banned in Canada. Twenty songs may be too much sweet, sticky stuff to digest in one sitting, but Sylvia excites and relaxes you at the same time. A good CD to put on repeat and crash on, but beware of what you may dream.

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