Wow! Talk about a famous and popular group! When it comes to favorite groups from the soul & doo-wop combo era, The Drifters are high on my list of groups! Very high!! The drifters were formed some time in the early 50s. They were originally supposed to be a backup group for well known artist named Clyde McPhatter. Some of you may remember Clyde for a cover song he made popular called “Little Bitty Pretty One” released in 1962. The song was originally recorded by Bobby Day.
The Drifters has gone through 2 dozen members (literally). I gasped when I realized that many people didn’t know/remember that the late Ben E. King was once a member of The Drifters. Mostly because King sang what I think probably the biggest, and memorable song in the Drifters’ career, “Save The Last Dance For Me.”
The Late Ben E. King Was A Member
You know, just a side note, it’s interesting how different Kings music became after he left the group. Don’t get me wrong, I love Ben E. King’s music too. I just couldn’t help but noticed that much of his music had a Caribbean flair to it. Ok. back to The Drifters 😄 It’s difficult for me to narrow down my favorites, as there are also favorites of mine that did not make the charts. But for the purpose of my blog, I will share some of the most famous ones. They include, Under The Boardwalk,” “This Magic Moment,” “Without Love – There’s Nothing, (many singers including the legendary Tom Jones covered this song)” “Bip Bam,” and “Some Kind Of Wonderful.” So many more.. Browse more of their music when you get a chance.
I’ve been meaning to write about these amazing and forgotten performers for a long time now. I remember shaking my booty to Jomanda’s “Got A Love For You” in my almost mid 20s. In terms of dance music, CeCe Peniston and Jomanda were huge in the gay community. Let me tell you, if you want to know about good classic club music; most gay people form the 80s-90s era are scholars in that department.
This Was A Hurley’s House Mix
This particular house mix was done by the talented (and handsome I may add) Steve Silk Hurley. Hurley’s brilliance included, Crystal Water’s “So Happy,” and he also contributed (along with other DJs) to En Vogue’s “Hold On.” Discogs has a few of his rare releases from back in the day. Of all the remixes I’ve heard, both in the clubs and on radio, his version of “Got A Love For You” was not only the best, but most memorable.
Another massive dance classic I remember from this same album is called “Make My Body Rock.” This song took off at a time when “organ house music,” was massively popular. I dare to say that organ house music back then, was popular in the same way that EDM is today in my opinion (the only difference is 80s/90s organ house sounds better (what can I say? I’m an 80s kid at heart)).
Jomanda’s Cover Of A Debarge Song
I stumbled across a song I totally forgot they did. Do you remember Debarge’s “I like It?” Well, Jomanda sang a cover to the song. Their version of “I like It,” was “bangin'” as the young kids used to say back then. I can get pretty critical when it comes to groups like Debarge; because their music is so perfect; I just couldn’t picture any other group performing this song as good as them. However, It turns out they did a really good job.
Unfortunately, The Group Jomanda had a very short career, only lasting a little more than 10 years. The group consisted of Cheri Williams, Renee Washington, & Joanne Thomas. After several years of fighting colon cancer, Joanne died in 2003. Although the remaining two are no longer performing, their music lives on!!
I will bet almost any amount of money that, until most of my readers saw this post, you totally forgot about P.M. Dawn! Well, that’s precisely why I started this music blog, to reignite those classic brain cells back again 😍 Their song “Set Adrift On Memory Bliss” released in 1991, had to have been my most favorite. This song obviously hit #1 not only on the U.S. Top 100 Charts, New Zealand, it was also #1 on Canada’s Dance Charts. The song also ranked quite high outside our country, such as Germany. P.M. Dawn was one of the few hip hop groups I enjoyed listening to. Actually, the original group didn’t just perform hip hop, they sang all kinds of other music too However, I think their hip hop (ish) songs were more popular (at least the way I remembered it).
Album Cover Brought Back Memories Of Black Hair Fashion
P.M. Dawn’s sense of fashion was unique to say the least. But, this particular album cover brought back memories of Black hair styles! This was at a time where it seemed every single African American was wearing beads! I also remembered when we used to use aluminum foil to keep the ends and beads from coming out! I found it hilarious in away, because when I was a teenager looking for a job, the first thing they would tell me was “no braids, and definitely no beads.” I don’t know how Black folk manage to make beads so popular back in the day. 🤣
In light of what’s happening in our culture in regards to race, I think it would be a very interesting conversation concerning the rights of potential employers and the rights of employees if this style was current today.
Attrell & Jarrett Cordes Were The Original P.M. Dawn
Brothers Attrell & Jarrett Cordes were the original members of P.M. Dawn. It is unfortunate that Attrell, also known as Prince Be, died a couple of years ago as a result of heart disease. Jarrett Cordes, also known as DJ Minutemix, is still performing and making music. Both men made many contributions to the hip hop community. Although the new P.M. Dawn, Doc. G, & K-R.O.K. are ok. My heart is with the O.G.
I’m pretty sure that for most of my readers, the name Crystal Gayle goes right over your heads. In terms of country music, Crystal Gayle was one of the hottest performers in the mid 70s. Her first single released in 1977 called “Don’t It Make My Brown Eyes Blue,” became a massive hit for Crystal. It shot up to #1 on the Country Charts, and #2 on the Top 100 Charts, and #1 in Canada! What this song was like what “Stormy Weather” did for Lena Horne. Crystal Gayle became a household name after her first single.
Her Long Hair Became Her Trademark!
Crystal was young, beautiful, reserved, and her class showed in her album covers. However, even with her (then) massive hit song, it appeared that people remembered her even more for her extremely long hair. It wasn’t before long that her hair became her trademark. I think this was a smart move, as very few female country singers kept their hair as long as Crystal. In fact, I dare to say that the majority of them back in the day wore a lot of wigs. Some of those being Dolly Parton, and let’s not forget about Loretta Lynn.
Her Music Transcends Age & Genre
You know, when I was a kid, I never thought of her music as “country music.” I simply saw them as beautiful ballads. I guess that’s when you know a song transcends over music categories and age groups. This is something I don’t think we’ll ever hear again in the streaming age; unless we are searching for classic music.
Duet With Eddie Rabbitt
She has also made some beautiful & romantic duets; one of which is my favorite called “You and I,” with Eddie Rabbitt. The song was released in 1983, and hit #7 on the Top 100 Charts. I think when I heard this song, was the first time I started to hear the country in her music. If you love Crystal’s music, I recommend another beautiful short ballad called “Talking In Your Sleep.” It was released in 1978 and reached #18 on the Top 100 Chart.
Still ruff dealing with my loss. But I figured the best thing to do is keep on writing. I want to share with you a song that came out this year. It’s a song produced for the University of Phoenix commercial. The song is called “You Get What You Give,” by Beacon Street. It doesn’t appear that I can find anything on this “band?” It could have been just a project specifically for the purpose of promoting the commercial.
People Must Have Really Liked This Song
Having said that, people must have really liked this song! Because if this was just for the commercial, I don’t understand why something like this would be out as a single on Spotify? For the longest time, when I heard this on TV, I thought the singer was Norah Jones. Which I love her music too btw; they both have that very smooth jazzy/folk style.
I Thought It Was Norah Jones
Although, I can’t seem to find the name of the female singing in the group (unless her name is really Mack); I did manage to find out that the song was actually a reinterpretation. This was originally performed by a group called New Rascals in 1998, and the song hit #36 on the Top 100 Charts. I barely remember this song. To be honest, I loved the way “Beacon Street” sang it better. Interesting that Beacon Street received a little more than 180k plays, from just hearing the song from the commercial. Imagine if it was properly marketed in the music arena? Hmmm
The man that I’ve always known to be my grandfather since I was born 51 years ago, has gone to sleep after years of battling cancer. I know my grandpa gone through a lot, and now his suffering is over My grandpa was one of a kind, and had a great love and respect for everyone and anyone. My grandfather had the kind of unconditional love that just doesn’t exist anymore. My grandfather loved him some good reggae love songs. So I’d like to dedicate one of my many favorite reggae songs, that was originally written by the BeeGees. The song is called To Love Somebody, by Busty Brown, released in 1969.
There’s actually two versions of Hurt Somebody by Noah Kahan I like. The first version is a duet with Julia Michaels, released this year. Despite the title and the lyrics, this is actually a surprisingly upbeat song. It’s somewhat danceable. The second is Kahan’s solo version. I think I like the first, with Julia better (although I think she’s trying really hard to get that Mariah Carey sound). There voices seem to blend perfectly, without overwhelming each other’s sound. I accidentally found this song while browsing through one of those “what’s happening now in music websites.”
Noah Kahan Is A Newcomer
As far as I can tell, Kahan started gaining notoriety sometime in 2017. I really like his type of music. I guess the best way to describe his music is, modern folk, laced with pop. He writes and performs his own music. Now, I find it incredibly interesting that Noah is an American artist, but, is popular outside the us! Hurt Somebody hit #14 on the Australia charts, and reached #29 in New Zealand. I guess validates the broad reach of music streaming!
Good Music, However His Videos Are Traumatizing
I’ve watched a couple of Noah’s music videos, and although I think he produces good music, however his videos are traumatizing. Meaning, a lot of his videos seem to convey he can’t do anything right, therefore the world is falling on top of him. Which is interesting because it’s a complete contrast to how good I think his music actually is. Then again, I have to take in to account he’s in his early 20s, so I guess that’s about right.
I want to write about one last song called “Tough” by Quinn XCII, which features Noah Kahan. It’s another great song that was released some time this year. Again, this appears to be another one of those “teenage struggle” songs. However, this one is unique, and yet deep at the same time. Now, this song feels very ambiguous to me, but then again, maybe the song was meant to be that way. The song appears to be somewhat of a love song, however it appears that the song doesn’t directly identify the gender of the person Noah is singing about. Although, I could not find any information as to whether or not he’s LGBT or not, I’m going to make an educated guess he’s possibly bi.
The Song Revealed No Gender, But..
The song flows so wonderfully, if I didn’t listen closely to the lyrics, I probably would have never noticed. Noah sings about someone who tries to act tough, but Noah knows he’s not as tough as the person make themselves out to be. Read the following beginning lyric, “Maybe it’s ’cause your mom never kissed you; If you ever cried, you’d wipe with muscle tissue. You bench pressing more than me’s not the issue I know you’re actually weaker than that; Let’s hope that nothing get deeper than that.” Ok, I guess it’s a safe bet that Noah is singing about a guy. “Muscle tissue,” is not the typical lingo or phrase we’d use talking about a woman. He then sings, “You’re not so tough, I know that nightlight’s on when you sleep. You’re not so tough. Yeah, you watch Eat Pray Love on repeat.” To mention “nightlight” suggest a closer than average relationship. So long story short, I perceive this song to be beginning love story between two guys, and Noah trying to get his insecure love interest to open up. I just loved the way Noah put this together, it was very subtle, yet a great positive song. Noah has a cool website, and he posted all his latest music videos. Also don’t forget to check him out on Spotify.
My new article “Music Artists, Understand Web Presence!” Is a necessary plea to artists, that talks about the vital importance for artists to have a web site (both from a blogger & a fan perspective). I know I’ve written about this before on my old blog, but I wanted to write a new one here as well (officially).
Bluntly Speaking, Facebook Is Just Not Enough
You know, I get it! I’m sure a lot of musicians are saying to themselves, “I don’t have time to setup I website!” Or, maybe you’re just starting out and you don’t have the financial resources to pay someone to build a professional looking site for you. So, to make it easier for yourself, you simply created a Facebook account, ’cause everyone is on Facebook right? Or maybe you’re old school, and still believe in the power of “word of mouth?” I guess that ol’ saying still applies to the new streaming generation. However, bluntly speaking, Facebook is not enough! At the end of the day you still need to have a website built, with your OWN URL.
Music Blogs Are Not Dead!
It appears as tho many new independent artists are programmed to stay on social media, as if music blogs are dead. I don’t know who started that rumor, but, music blogs are not dead! They maybe a little harder to find because of all the changes with search engines (programmatically speaking), however we still exist. You must take in to account that bloggers are a close nit community that are dedicated to specific genres of music. People are more interested in independent artists than ever before because of music streaming.
Niche Blogs Are Still Vital!
Artists, need to broaden their perspective, because niche blogs are still vital! Why do I say this? And how does this relate to you having a web domain? Well, first of all your web domain is part of your brand! Having a website makes your existence official. Second, bloggers who are dedicated to writing about specific genres, have fans that are more likely to be really interested in the music you have to offer. Also let’s not forget the fact that high ranking bloggers often have a large faithful following. If you don’t have a web presence, how do you expect bloggers to write about you? People who discover and like your music, will want to find out more about you. So, it’s critical to have meaningful write ups about who you are, what your music is about, and whatever else you’d like to share. Not to mention the fact that it will make a bloggers job a hell of a lot easier. 🙄