Review - Ultimate Collection

Artist: El DeBarge

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Predominated by jazzy, wine-and-candles love songs, this greatest-hits album spans 15 years, pulling 16 songs from 10 albums. Although most tracks are solo efforts, some are by DeBarge the group, and there are also a few collaborations with Jermaine Dupri, Quincy Jones, Fourplay and Dionne Warwick, which make the album a nice mix. Along more recognizable radio hits of the mid-1980s such as "Who's Johnny" and "All This Love," are songs that made it only to the R&B charts, such as the beat-infused "Slide," and some that didn't make any charts, but are still good. Hip-hop fans will recognize "Stay With Me," which was sampled by Tupac Shakur, Biggie Smalls then Ashanti, proving DeBarge as a solid mark in R&B. The absense of any new material prevents this album from being a must-have, but it is a nice recap of El DeBarge's musical career for the fan who doesn't already have his albums.

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