Meli’sa Morgan is an African-American R&B singer born in Queens, New York who had a string of urban contemporary and house music hits in the 1980s and 1990s. She got her start in the music industry while singing with a church gospel choir called the Starlets of Corona.
Her initial chart entry was as the lead singer of the dance group, Shades of Love. They had a single entry on Billboard magazine’s Hot Dance Club Play chart in 1982, the #26 “Body to Body (Keep in Touch)”.
That same year, music entrepreneur Jacques Fred Petrus asked her to join his newly created studio group, High Fashion, that featured Morgan and two other New York vocalists, Eric McClinton and Alyson Williams. High Fashion’s sole hit, “Feelin’ Lucky Lately”, reached #32 on the U.S. Black Singles chart. In 1983 Morgan left, and was replaced in the group by the jazz vocalist, Marcella Allen.
As a solo artist she topped the R&B chart with her cover version of Prince’s “Do Me, Baby” for 3 weeks, (the title track from her debut album) which also became her only Billboard Hot 100 entry, peaking at #46 in 1986. The follow up single “Fool’s Paradise” would go to #24 on the US R&B charts and would be her only single to hit the UK Top 50.
Melvin Glover (born May 15, 1961), known as Melle Mel and Grandmaster Melle Mel, is an American hip-hop musician – one of the pioneers of rap as lead rapper and main songwriter for Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five.
Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five began recording for Enjoy Records and released “Superrappin'” in 1979. They later moved on to Sugarhill Records and were popular on the R&B charts with party songs, like “Freedom” and “The Birthday Party”. They released numerous singles, gaining a gold disc for “Freedom,” and also toured. In 1982 Melle Mel began to turn to more socially aware subject matter, in particular the Reagan administration’s economic (Reaganomics) and drug policies, and their effect on the black community. A song entitled “The Message” became an instant classic and one of the first glimmers of conscious hip-hop. Mel recorded a rap over session musician Duke Bootee’s instrumental track “The Jungle”. Other than Melle Mel, no members of the Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five actually appear on the record. Grandmaster Flash split from the group after contract disputes between Melle Mel and their promoter Sylvia Robinson in regard to royalties for “The Message”. When Flash filed a lawsuit against Sugar Hill Records, their label, the factions of The Furious Five parted.
Mel became known as “Grandmaster Melle Mel” and the leader of the Furious Five. The group went on to produce the anti-drug song “White Lines (Don’t Don’t Do It)” (the unofficial music video starred up-and-coming actor Laurence Fishburne and was directed by then unknown film student Spike Lee). The record was falsely credited to “Grandmaster + Melle Mel” by Sugarhill Records in order to fool the public into thinking Grandmaster Flash had participated on the record. Mel then gained higher success appearing in the movie Beat Street, with a song based on the movie’s title. He became the first rap artist ever to win a Grammy award for “Record of the Year” after performing a memorable rap on Chaka Khan’s smash hit song “I Feel for You” which introduced hip-hop to the mainstream R&B audience. Grandmaster Melle Mel & The Furious Five had further hits with “Step Off”, “Pump Me Up”, “King of the Streets”, “Jesse”, and “Vice”, the latter being released on the soundtrack to the TV show Miami Vice.
Alwin “Al” Lopez Jarreau (born March 12, 1940) is an American jazz singer.
In 1975, Jarreau was working with pianist Tom Canning when he was spotted by Warner Bros. Records. Soon thereafter released his critically acclaimed debut album, We Got By, which catapulted him to international fame and garnered him a German Grammy Award.
One of Jarreau’s most commercially successful albums is Breakin’ Away (1981), which includes the hit song “We’re In This Love Together.” He wrote and performed the Grammy-nominated theme to the 1980s American television show Moonlighting.
In 1984, Jarreau released the album “High Crime” which featured the single “Raging Waters” which was remixed by Judy Weinsten & Larry Levan for the 12″ single release.
Tease were a R&B/Funk group formed in 1979 in California. The core members of the band were Kipper Jones (lead vocals), Cornelius Mims (bass), Derek Organ (drums), Rex Salas (keyboards), Thomas Organ (guitar) and Derek Organ (drums).
Tease recorded for the Epic label for the period 1986-1988 and during this time released two albums. The last of these albums was “Remember….” in 1988. The first single off the album was a cover of the classic “I Can’t Stand The Rain”.
“I Can’t Stand the Rain” is a song originally recorded by Ann Peebles in 1973, and written by Peebles, Don Bryant, and Bernard “Bernie” Miller. Other hit versions were later recorded by Eruption and Tina Turner.
The Tease version of the track was produced by James Mtume.
R. J.’s Latest Arrival was an American R&B, dance, and soul music band from Detroit, Michigan, United States, who formed in the late 1970s and reached the peak of their popularity in the mid-1980s. They released their debut self-titled debut album in 1979. In 1984, they scored one of their first big hits with “Shackles,” featured on their Harmony album. Drummer Rudy “Famous” Maldonado left the band during The Shackles Tour in 1984, although he was featured in the video for the follow-up single, “Harmony.” The group scored their biggest hit single in 1988 with “Off The Hook (With Your Love).” They scored other moderate hits on the US Billboard R&B chart throughout the 1980s. The group later became more based in traditional R&B and soul music, but broke up in 1990.
“Off The Hook” had additional production and mixing by Robert Clivilles & David Cole for the 12″ versions.
The Gap Band was an American R&B and funk band which rose to fame during the 1970s and 1980s. Composed of brothers Charlie, Ronnie, and Robert Wilson, the band first formed as the Greenwood, Archer and Pine Street Band in 1967, in their hometown of Tulsa, Oklahoma. The group shortened its name to The Gap Band in 1973. After 43 years together, they retired in 2010.
“Early in the Morning” was written by Charlie Wilson and producers Lonnie Simmons and Rudy Taylor. It was released as a single in 1982 and went on to become their biggest hit on the Billboard Hot 100, peaking at number twenty-four, and also topped Billboard’s R&B chart for three weeks. The single also peaked at number thirteen on the dance charts.
The song became a hit again when Robert Palmer covered it in 1988. This version peaked at #19 on the Billboard Hot 100 and is to date the highest charting version of the song on that chart.
The song was used as the music for a film-making montage in Michel Gondry’s 2008 film Be Kind Rewind.
“Say No Go” is a single by De La Soul from their influential 1989 album 3 Feet High and Rising. It reached number 18 in the UK charts. The tune is heavily based on sampling “I Can’t Go for That (No Can Do)” by Hall & Oates.
The song is a cautionary tale about the use of drugs, in particular “base” (otherwise known as crack cocaine); a topic they would tackle on their follow up album, De La Soul Is Dead, albeit from a different perspective, on the song “My Brother’s a Basehead”.
In the opening line, Posdnuos raps: “Now let’s get right on down to the skit / A baby is brought into a world of pits / And if it could’ve talked that soon / In the delivery room / It would’ve asked the nurse for a hit”.
The song’s relevance in 1989, and indeed at present time, was tremendous as it dealt with what had become a new phenomenon in largely urban neighborhoods. This phenomenon later came to be known as the Crack Epidemic.
The UK remixes were by CJ Mackintosh and Dave Dorrell (MARRS)
The Limit was a 1980s musical group composed of Dutch producers Bernard Oattes and Rob van Schaik. They released a full-length album in 1984, which yielded the hit “Say Yeah”. The song peaked at No. 17 on the UK Singles Chart and at No. 7 on the U.S. Billboard Dance/Club Play chart.
The duo also wrote and produced for other artists as The Limit Productions such as the hit single “Love Take Over” by Five Star.
In 1982, The Limit was briefly signed to the Arista label and released the single “She’s So Divine”.
Despite two successful 12″ singles and a full album little is known about Rozalin Woods. She burst on the scene in 1979 with the club hit “Whatcha’ Gonna Do About It.” She followed that with the 12″ single of “Flashback.”
The album was produced by guitar legend Eddie Martinez and Art Freeman. The duo were have a long list of credits as musicians, arrangers or producers on albums by LaBelle, Ray Barretto, Papa John Creach, Nona Hendryx, Kleeer, Kurtis Blow, Kashif, and Robert Palmer.
Despite a solid showing in sales, club play and chart action Rozalin never released another record.
Whatcha’ Gonna Do About It 7:56
Whatcha’ Gonna Do About It (Instrumental Version) 4:45