Luther Vandross

Smooth Love

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Three years after Luther Vandross left Sony Music Entertainment, the label's Special Products division issued this budget-priced compilation, which looked back on his 1981-1986 recordings. Boasting only two Top Ten R&B hits ("Give Me the Reason" and the Gregory Hines duet "There's Nothing Better Than Love"), it could not be called a best-of. Rather, the anonymous compiler seemed to be trying to construct a typical Vandross album out of tracks originally used on several different ones. Most of those tracks were ballads that gave Vandross plenty of room to emote, particularly the pairing of two Burt Bacharach/Hal David covers, "A House Is Not a Home" (a staple of Vandross' live show) and "Anyone Who Had a Heart" at the end. But the disc was really a miscellany that did not improve on any of the albums the artist had assembled himself.

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