TGJ Replay: Cece Winans – ‘Alone In His Presence’

Much like our ‘Retro Rewind’ and ‘From the Vault’ segments, readers of That Grape Juice know what avid music lovers we are – especially of hits past.  So in a quest to re-spin the gems and jams of yesterday we introduced a new retrospective segment – ‘TGJ Replay’.

Unlike its ‘Rewind’ and ‘Vault’ predecessors, ‘Replay’ looks to dust off and showcase albums (and eras) from a library of pop music hits.  Today, we rewind to the genesis of Cece Winans solo career – 1995’s award-winning ‘Alone In His Presence’:

Today, Grammy, Stellar, and Dove Award winning songstress Cece Winans is undoubtedly one of gospel’s most prized acts.  Often attributed as part of the pioneering force of the modern contemporary gospel movement, the powerhouse vocalist has made a career out of sonically mixing Urban pop with praise.

Blasting to the spotlight as one of the youngest members of gospel’s most celebrated family The Winans, the earliest part of her career saw her teamed with brother Bebe to bring hits like ‘Heaven’ and ‘Addictive Love’ to R&B and gospel charts:

‘Addictive Love’

But after dominating charts with her older sibling, the soaring singer (whose stylings were often likened to friend Whitney Houston’s) sought to place a solo stamp on charts.  Enter 1995’s ‘Alone In His Presence’.  Led by single ‘Every Time’..

Though some critics initially feared fans would hesitate to embrace the gospel diva by her lonesome, the warm reception of ‘Every Time’ swiftly proved otherwise.  Interestingly, despite its radio-friendliness, the rest of the album is less reflective of her contemporary offerings with her brother.

Tunes like ‘Great Is Thy Faithfulness’,  ‘I Surrender All’, and fan-favorite ‘His Strength Is Perfect’ sonically lend themselves to more traditional praise and worship offerings.

‘His Strength Is Perfect’

The album would not only later reach platinum status, but also give Cece her first solo Grammy win a mere year later.  And, though nearly two decades of hits like ‘Alabaster Box’, ‘Well, Alright’, and ‘Hallelujah Praise’ fill her catalogue, many-a-fan still cite the singer’s debut solo offering as a favorite.

Singer Brandy presents CeCe Winans with first solo Grammy

If anything, it remains the catalyst that effortlessly allows the singer to straddle the fences between contemporary gospel and traditional praise/worship tunes.  For that, we ode ‘Alone’ for the solid body of work that it is and continue to play it side by side with Cece’s later releases.

‘Alone In His Presence’ (title track)


Your thoughts?

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  1. CICI SLAAAAAYS March 24, 2013


    • noMAAM March 24, 2013

      lol im sure most peeps say that about your FAVE! lol. how do you come for one of the queens of gospel with the username “cici slaays”.

      i can guarantee the world is much more aware of this CECE than your CICI

      • Mother Mariah March 24, 2013

        Kiiii!! These Ciara stans have some nerve.

    • ENOUGH ONIKA (KMART QUEEN) March 24, 2013

      And with your standards reaching only at Ciara (very low), it’s no shock you’ve never heard of this legend. She can actually SING, I know that’s foreign to you..

  2. king z March 24, 2013

    i looove this album. my big sis really wore it out when i was a kid. i wont lie, im shocked u guys used it as a replay but im glad u did! this might b the only Jesus some of these stans ever get

  3. Mr. GQ March 24, 2013

    Love Cece Winans!

  4. . : : h 2 o : : . March 24, 2013

    أيري ب محمد

  5. Breakfast March 24, 2013

    Cece Winans and Whitney were always played in my house as a kid. Such soul-stirring voices. Cece is one of the prettiest women to me, as well.

  6. Dequan March 24, 2013

    No way!! I literally just listened to this album for the first time in years today and thinking about how it’s my favorite Cece album…then I come home and see this posted. Wow, TGJ!

    But thank you for posting more gospel music…especially since Cece is my all time favorite singer. I got to meet her in person once, she’s very warm and sweet.

  7. ENOUGH ONIKA (KMART QUEEN) March 24, 2013

    Everlasting Love was her BEST album to date! “Well, Alright” “I Am” and the duet she did with Lauryn Hill are my favorites. Oh and “What About You.” Love that album.

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