Donnie McClurkin enlists the help of some friends to be his guest on the new album.| Posted March 04, 2014
Donnie Mcclurkin has traveled the globe, won several awards and has sung in various languages while still pastoring a church in New York City. If anyone could be considered a pillar in Gospel music, it's him. He pays homage to the artists who influenced him through the years while taking the time to mentor and pour into newer artists. He has endured one of the toughest years of his life after losing both parents. Who would blame him if he took a step away from recording? Gratefully, he's not done as he puts out a highly anticipated Duets album. He features such artists as John P. Kee, Erica and Tina Campbell (on two different songs), Dorinda Clark-Cole and more.
One of the artists whom Donnie has served as a mentor to is Tye Tribbett. Tye joins Donnie on the triumphant, "We Are Victorious." This one has a pop, and fun vibe to it which is fitting for the two artists who tend to incorporate different genres in their repertoire. "Write My Name" is what some have called, "Church 101." This song is almost nine minutes of hand clapping, foot stomping, church music. Donnie gives one of the queens of ad libbing, Dorinda Clark Cole, plenty of moments to declare her anticipation of Jesus' return.
"I Am Amazed" is just a beautiful worship anthem full of lush background vocals and strings weaved throughout. Donnie and Preshea Hilliard make declarations of their wonder and awe of God's love. The song takes a more Gospel turn towards the end as Erica Campbell (of Mary Mary) steps in to help Donnie, "bring it home."
The standout song, "Encouraged," features Justin Savage, who is more known for his production on several albums. This one is an adult contemporary style ballad speaking of the encouragement that comes from Jesus himself. After hearing this one, I cannot wait until Savage releases his album.
"Let It Go" started off as a great song, but (I can't believe I'm saying this) it could have done without Donnie's and Clark-Cole's call and response at the end of the song. I was a little disappointed in "My Past" featuring Tremaine Hawkins. It just wasn't as good as it could have been.
Closing Thoughts: Duets is not Donnie's best album. However, there are some definite highlights and he will still minister to many when he performs these songs live. I am still a fan and grateful for Donnie McClurkin.