Sunday June 5th, 2005
New CD's this past week:
-Temmora - Any other girl
Music news headlines this week:
Bobby Brown Warrant Issued By Massachusetts Judge
Embattled performer Bobby Brown's child support woes continue.
Massachusetts family court judge Paula Carey issued an arrest warrant for
the singer Wednesday (June 1st) after he failed to appear in Canton for a
compliance hearing. The warrant can only be executed in the New England
Patrick McDermott, the court's Register of Probate, told AP that a local
counsel for Brown informed the court that the one-time King Of Stage
became ill on the way to his Boston-bound flight and was taken to an
Atlanta hospital for treatment. Court officials were unable to confirm
Brown's story, though McDermott noted the judge might have postponed the
hearing of the story proved true.
Brown has failed to make payments toward the educational trust fund he
promised to set up for two of his children, and has also not proven he has
a source of income. The singer also failed to come up with his most recent
monthly child support payment, which was due by end of business Wednesday.
Carey sentenced Brown to three months in prison last year when he fell
behind in support payments for Bobby Jr. and La Princia, his children with
former girlfriend Kim Ward. The sentence was suspended when Brown
immediately made payments totaling $15,000.
At a May 4th hearing the Roxbury, Massachusetts native told the judge that
he should be able to make four payments toward the educational fund within
the next sixth months based on his upcoming reality show and music
If Carey finds Brown has violated the terms of the court order, she can
impose another 90-day sentence.
Brown's reality show, Being Bobby Brown, is slated for June 30th debut on
Bravo. The show, which will feature wife Whitney Houston and other family
members and friends, will reportedly follow the former New Edition member
and new jack star's attempt to revive his career.
Janet Jackson Working On New Album
Singer Janet Jackson is back in the recording studio working on her new
untitled album. The singer is working with Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, the
Track Boyz, and Kwame on the project, which is being executive produced by
her boyfriend Jermaine Dupri.
Kwame, who has produced hits for Will Smith, Tweet, Lloyd Banks, and Mary
J. Blige, has already recorded six songs with Jackson . The producer says:
"I'm trying to just give her something that's just knocking. I don't want
to see Janet Jackson into Janet turns hip-hop or Janet is this. Janet is
Janet. That's a icon."
Kwame added: "My job is to put my best foot forward track-wise. Every
record I do I try to make it sound different, but they're a lot of records
on the vibe of the Tweet record ("Turn Off Da Lights"), that tempo, that
In related news, HipHopDX.com reports that Jackson makes a cameo as a
stripper in Jermaine Dupri's new video, "Gotta Getcha," from his upcoming
album, Jermaine Dupri Presents; Young, Fly, & Flashy Vol. 1. In the video,
Dupri visits a strip club and views a peep show. The rapper checks all of
the women out but the last woman is Jackson dressed in plaid mini-skirt
with riding boots.
Berry Gordy & Smokey Robinson Returning To Detroit For Motown Celebrations
Motown founder Berry Gordy Jr. and Smokey Robinson will be returning to
Detroit later this year to honor Gordy's sister, Esther Gordy-Edwards, who
founded the official Motown Historical Museum. Gordy will serve as the
honorary chair for the tribute to his sister on November 10th at the Park
West Gallery outside of Detroit , with Robinson hosting and performing at
the museum's 20th anniversary gala on November 12th at the Detroit
Marriott Renaissance Center .
The Motown Historical Museum , which features one-of-a-kind artifacts from
Edwards' personal collection, is housed in the "Hitsville U.S.A" studios,
the site of the original Motown headquarters. Each year, the museum
attracts thousands of visitors from around the world. Its mission is to
preserve the legacy of Motown Record Corporation and "... to educate and
motivate through its archival exhibitions that promote the values of
vision, creativity and entrepreneurship."
Smokey Robinson spoke about Gordy-Edwards to the Detroit-Free Press and
admitted, "I love her. She's my family. She deserves any accolades and any
honors that may be bestowed upon her." Robinson, who went on to become a
vice-president at Motown, added: "I wish I had known back then that we
were not only making music, but we were making history. I would have saved
every little piece of scrap that I wrote a song on, or everything I did."
When asked if he ever grows tired of Motown music, says: "Of course not.
It never gets old. It's always wonderful and I'm always delighted. I'm
grateful to the people that still want to hear it, and dance to it, and
remember things from it, and enjoy the love that's in it."
Former Motown songwriter and musician Robin Terry recalls that back in the
'60s, everybody laughed at Gordy-Edwards for saving Motown memorabilia:
"Everywhere that we went on those tours, she saved everything... all the
pictures, all the placards, and we laughed (at her)."
Terry concluded, though: "What a wonderful thing she did. Because of her
we have that museum, we have that place where people can go and see that
Rhino Revives Anthony Hamilton's 'Soulife'
An album soul vocalist Anthony Hamilton recorded prior to his 2003 Arista
breakthrough "Comin' From Where I'm From" will see release for the first
time next month. "Soulife," which was shelved after the Soulife label
folded due to financial difficulties," is due June 28 via Rhino and boasts
10 previously unreleased cuts.
The set also includes the Macy Gray duet "Love and War," which was
previously released on the 2001 Universal soundtrack for "Baby Boy."
Onetime Soulife labelmate Sunshine Anderson guests on "Last Night."
Hamilton is at work on the follow-up to "Comin' From Where I'm From,"
which earned him a Grammy nomination for best male R&B vocal performance.
Last month, Arista issued the DVD "Comin' From Where I'm From, Live &
More," which included a bonus disc of remixes and live cuts.
Marcus Miller Includes Luther Vandross Tribute On ‘Silver Rain’
Bassist, composer, and producer Marcus Miller's latest album project,
Silver Rain, includes Miller's versions of several pop and R&B tunes.
Among them is a version of "If Only For One Night," a tune made popular by
vocalist Luther Vandross, who continues to undergo rehabilitation therapy
after his April 2003 stroke.
Miller produced several of Vandross' best-known albums of the '80s and
'90s, and says that he wanted to include a tune to pay tribute to his
friend despite the fact that the tune he picked wasn't written by
Vandross. In fact, "If Only For One Night" was a song both Miller and
Vandross heard when the two were part of the backing band for singer
Roberta Flack. Miller told LAUNCH: ["I do a Luther song on the Silver Rain
album. But I did 'If Only For One Night,' which is a Brenda Russell tune,
who's an amazing songwriter herself. But you know I was just looking for a
song that you know instantly when you play the first five notes -- there's
that Luther song. And it's funny with Luther because he wasn't the first
to record that song. Brenda Russell had done it on her own, and then
Roberta Flack did it. Luther and I were actually in Roberta's band back in
the early '80s when Roberta was singing that song."]
Miller adds that he had mixed feelings at first about last year's smash
Forever, For Always, For Luther album simply because he was involved in so
many of Luther's original recordings. He adds that he's happy longtime
friend and frequent tour guest Lalah Hathaway has had a chart hit with the
title "Forever, For Always, For Love." He said: "The Luther album, you
know the tribute album that they did? It's a trip for me to listen to it
because I remember when we recorded those things. It didn't seem that long
ago and now people are doing like tributes, it's freaky. I'm praying for
Luther, I know everybody's praying for Luther so he can come back and sing
his own songs. But I'm really happy for Lalah and pulling for Luther."
Motown Planning More Vault Releases In Celebration Of Upcoming 50th Anniversary
Universal Music, which owns the Motown catalog, plans to keep a steady
stream of new releases coming out until Motown's 50th anniversary in 2009.
So far, Hip-O Select, Universal's Web-only collectors' label, has released
two box sets -- The Complete Motown Singles, Volume 1: 1959-1961 as well
as The Complete Motown Singles, Part Two: 1962. The label plans on issuing
a 10 more sets -- totaling 65 CDs -- covering the years up through 1972,
when the Motown label left Detroit and moved to Los Angeles.
Thane Tierney, the senior director of Hip-O Select, explained to the
Hollywood Reporter that, "So little of what is in these first three
packages had made it to the CD era, or even to the LP era. It offers an
unparalleled insight into probably the only label in history where, if you
say the name of the label, it sets off a sound in your head."
Otis Williams of the Temptations, who is the last remaining original
member still performing with the group, said that he feels like he represents
Motown's golden era each time he performs: "We like to think that being
cornerstones of Motown and still carrying the Motown banner, you know,
we try to help perpetuate what's been going on and what people know of
Motown. And all that they don't know, we are here to try and let 'em know
that Motown's music stands head and shoulders above just about some of
Hip-O Select has been releasing monthly rarities from the Jackson Five,
Smokey Robinson & the Miracles, the Supremes, Martha & the Vandellas, and
In celebration of Motown's 50th in 2009, a complete set of all the Motown
singles from 1959-1972 will be packaged together in a scale replica of the
old Hitsville U.S.A. building that housed the first Motown studios.
For more information, log on to hip-oselect.com
Co-Founder of Essence Magazine To Release Café Soul All-Stars Debut Album
'Love Pages' due in stores July 26 will feature George Benson, Peabo
Bryson, Glenn Jones, Vesta, Christopher Williams, Jon Lucien, Roy Ayers
and many others
"The goal is to bring back quality music. Music that engages people
emotionally, intellectually and spiritually" says Clarence Smith,
co-founder of Essence Magazine and now CEO of YOU Entertainment, who along
with producers Duke Jones and the legendary Norman Connors, is the guiding
force behind one of this years' most refreshingly musical, star-studded
collections in Love Pages. A conceptual album by a collective aptly named
The Café Soul All-Stars, Clarence feels it fills a definite void in the
musical marketplace. "Like many others, I love and appreciate two seminal
eras in American music: Jazz and R&B. Both have had a profound impact on
my musical tastes and they've also greatly influenced my sense of what
constitutes great songwriting and musicianship. For me, the idea behind
the Love Pages project was simple, create an environment that allows great
players and singers who share a similar reverence for the musical
traditions I've always held dear to showcase their talents on one
The story behind Love Pages is a fascinating one. It dates back to the New
Orleans-based Essence Music Festival of 2000. Clarence, on a musical high
from the event, enlisted musician/producer and friend, Duke Jones to
recruit a band from the festival to play on a cruise ship he was
chartering for a trip from New Orleans to Mexico. Having listened back to
the nightly sessions they recorded on the ship, both Clarence and Duke
realized that this simply had to be heard by the masses. Duke, who has
been a staple in many classic R&B bands from the 70's onwards, was given
the enviable task of assembling a line up that would bring the band's name
and album concept to life. He responded by enlisting some of the most
respected names in both jazz and R&B; George Benson, Peabo Bryson, Glenn
Jones, Vesta, Christopher Williams, Jon Lucien, Maysa (of Incognito fame)
not to mention the Earth, Wind & Fire horn section among the many noted
musicians. He also summoned up long time friend and fellow
musician/producer Norman Connors (who discovered R&B legends Phyllis Hyman
and Jean Carne), in whose band Duke had been a mainstay for many years, to
help steer the ship.
Love Pages is anchored by the Café Soul All-Stars, who are comprised of an
equally stellar cast of renowned session musicians; Duke Jones - trumpet,
Chris Albert - trumpet, Bobby Lyles - keyboards, Kaspar Galli - guitar,
Steve Williams - drums, Rene McLean - sax and Alex Blake - bass. The end
result is a riveting collection of songs that segues effortlessly from
radio friendly, soulful R&B jams such as the first single, "What You Gonna
Do" featuring Glenn Jones and "Used To Be" featuring Christopher Williams
to Vesta's heartfelt vocals on the superlative, "One More Bridge To
Cross." New offerings from Peabo Bryson (his powerful delivery on "Don't
Make Me Cry" is a standout) and George Benson (singing the melancholic
title track) remind us why they remain two of the most important names in
the last quarter-century of urban music. Round this out with the sensual
sound of Café Soul All-Stars own Bobby Lyle's and the steamy fusion brew,
"Urban Jungle" (featuring Roy Ayers and Kenny Garrett) and it should be
readily apparent why Love Pages is destined to become a staple in every
true R&B lover's collection.
"When you consider the range and level of creative talent present on Love
Pages I felt Norman would be the perfect person to help bring it all
together" says Duke. "I also believed his prior experience putting
together concept albums would be invaluable to our efforts." It was a wise
move. The end result is a CD that brims with the best there is in Soul and
Jazz, allowing musical connoisseurs and casual fans the chance to revel in
legendary names performing new material that will remain, like their older
Asked how he made the transition from magazine publisher to record
executive Clarence Smith is pragmatic: "I believe there's a huge, untapped
market for music whose appeal focuses on consumers who are 25 and over. I
started YOU Entertainment, in part, as a vehicle to address this need
because I believe the success of contemporary artists whose appeal fits
this profile like Norah Jones, Alicia Keys, Jill Scott and Kem, to name a
few, is not accidental. Although the medium is different, Essence was
created with a similar fundamental belief: that high-quality content
targeted towards an underserved and upwardly mobile consumer-base would
resonate. I believe YOU Entertainment's timing is perfect to fill that
void in the market."
Duke Jones concurs, while offering a further take on the project's
origins: "We called our collective Café Soul, because in most cultures, a
café is typically a destination point that allows diverse people to come
together, relax, and immerse themselves in music, without fear of
conforming to commercial stereotypes or restrictions. This is the
conceptual vibe we sought to create and thankfully Clarence Smith gave us
the green light to do that. Hopefully, listeners will appreciate the
quality and sense of musical freedom that makes this album what it is. It
was an incredible environment in which to create and be creative." The
results speak for themselves.
Love Pages is executive produced by Clarence O. Smith and the album
producers are Duke Jones and Norman Connors.