Jessica Cleaves was a member of the 80s disco act Raw Silk and would have been 70 this week.
They were assembled in New York by two former members of Crown Height’s Affair, Ron Dean Miller and Bert Reid who brought in three females, Jessica Cleaves, Valerie Pettiford and Tenita Jordan. Jessica took the lead vocals on their biggest hit, Do It to the Music.
Two of the ladies had previous music experience, Jessica was a former member of the Friends of Distinction and has sang backing for Earth Wind & Fire, Funkadelic and Parliament and Tenita is a former understudy for Jennifer Holliday in Dreamgirls.
After two hits and one album, the band broke up. Cleaves died in Los Angeles, California, aged 65, following complications from a stroke. Let’s remember their biggest hit from 1982.
Fuse ODG is celebrating his 30th birthday this week.
He was born Nana Richard Abiona in Tooting, south London, but raised in Ghana but grew up in Ghana. In the early noughties he returned to London for the remainder of his education. Fuse’s name comes from his fusion of musical styles, and O.D.G. stands for Off Da Ground a musical collective he was once part of.
His first hit Antenna reached number seven in 2013 and later that year he was awarded Best African Act on the 18th anniversary of the MOBO Awards.
The follow-up was called Azonto, an infectious dance song which was inspired by a Ghanaian freestyle dance craze of the same name that Fuse first saw being performed in the Ghanaian city of Tema.
Stacy Lattisaw had had first UK hit in 1980 with Jump to The Beat, she was just 13 years old at the time, this week she will be 52.
She was signed with Narada Michael Walden who produced her biggest hit and the follow-up, Dynamite. In 1981 she was invite to open for the The Jacksons on their Triumph Tour in 1981. Five years later she signed to Motown records and had a US R&B number one duet with Johnny Gill called Where Do We Go from Here in 1989.
In 1991 she got married and retired to raise her two children Kevin Jr. and Kayla.
This is one of my favourite songs of 2018. Sounding a little like Elle King, Mattiel Brown is from Atlanta, Georgia and works as an ad designer and illustrator at MailChimp by day and singer by night. Only BBC6Music is really playing this track at the moment, let’s hope other follow.