It has been five years since Sandra St. Victor's impressive—but virtually unnoticed—1996 Warner Bros. solo debut, Mack Diva Saves the World.

It has been five years since Sandra St. Victor's impressive—but virtually unnoticed—1996 Warner Bros. solo debut, Mack Diva Saves the World. Now the earthy soul vocalist who has backed Chaka Khan, sung with legend Curtis Mayfield, and juiced up the 1990 Family Stand hit "Ghetto Heaven" returns with an equally rich array of songs about life colored by outside reality and inner optimism. Drawing on her Ella Fitzgerald/Sarah Vaughan meets the Ohio Players/Sly Stone persona, the songwriter/producer shifts from social consciousness ("Child's Gotta Gun") to spirituality ("Conversation With 'G' ") to love-filled sex ("Act of Beauty")—all to a moving, don't-categorize-me mix of R&B, jazz, gospel, pop, funk, and rock. Highlights include collaborations with the Roots ("Keep Playin' Me"), Roy Ayers and Donald Byrd ("Dizzy"), and the ethereal search for the right man, "Holding Out." Contact 757-473-3826.—GM

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