Teddy Pendergrass


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Teddy Pendergrass was near, if not at, the pinnacle of a prosperous music career upon this album's release, which spawned two Top Ten singles. "Can't We Try," with its tender introduction, slowly builds into a dramatic vamp in which Pendergrass' domineering baritone clinches each lyric with absolute conviction -- an awesome display of vocal power and control. The compassionate number peaked at number three on the Billboard R&B charts after 16 weeks. Pendergrass did not lose any steam on the charts. The follow-up single, "Love T.K.O.," came on strong. His testimonial lead carried this crafty number to the second position on the charts, holding down that slot for five consecutive weeks before bowing after 18 weeks. However, the best track on this album is the duet with Stephanie Mills; "Feel the Fire," penned by Peabo Bryson, rings with passion and sensuality. Pendergrass and Mills' vocals strikingly contrast each other in an admirable way. The song was never a single release, but remains a constant on quiet storm formats. On a few numbers, such as the Ashford & Simpson remake "Is It Still Good to Ya," Pendergrass labors through the verses, struggling to find his form. Though a great song, it does very little for the former Blue Note. Notwithstanding, there are quite a few gems here.

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