Chaka Khan

In the news ... Tinashe, back in the fall of 2012 Tinashe released her acclaimed second mixtape ‘Reverie,’ which helped the young star build a strong indie following and eventually lead to her record deal with RCA. Now a major label artist with hit singles and a very impressive debut album under her belt, fans can’t wait to hear more from the singer/songwriter. Currently touring overseas, Tinashe just released her surprise mixtape ‘Amethyst,’ but if that wasn’t enough, the full version of a previously released snippet has now surfaced! The song, titled “Sweet Satisfaction” was only featured as a hidden bonus song at the end of track 3, “Yours,” off her ‘Reverie‘ mixtape.  A well deserving full release, the smooth and seductive song finds the singer letting her man know that she is ready to give him all of her lovin. “You love me with a fire and a passion / I think I’m falling hard for you too / So please touch me, give me sweet satisfaction,” she sings. More & tune

Born today in history ... Pearl Bailey  in 1918, in Newport News, Virginia. The daughter of a preacher, Bailey began singing at the tender age of three. Her brother, entertainer Bill Bailey was beginning his own career as a tap dancer, and suggested she enter an amateur contest at the Pearl Theatre in Philadelphia. She entered the amateur song and dance contest and won and was offered $35 a week to perform there for two weeks but the theatre closed during her engagement and she wasn’t paid. She later won a similar contest at Harlem’s famous Apollo Theater, and decided to pursue a career in entertainment. More

Playlist for Sunday 29-03-2015

Luther/Jools Holland - Any Love
Helen Baylor - Oasis (2006 remix)
Grover Washington Jr - Jamming
Shirley Jones - Because You Love Me
Robin Thick - Lost Without U
Derrick Lucas - Realize
Charlie Wilson/Shaggy - Unforgettable
Joe - Come Get To This
Next - Just Like That
D'Angelo - Higher
Katie Cole - Think About It
The O'Jays - Darlin', Darlin' Baby(rmx)

Chaka Khan x3
1 One For All Time 2 Make It Last
3 Everywhere

Allure - Head Over Heals
? - Georgy Porgy (remix)
Vivian Green - Get Right Back To Me Baby
Nina Provencal - Chance With Me
Aretha Franklin - Wonderful
Leroy Hutson - Paradise
J. Rawls - Inhale, Exhale
Luther Vandross - Lets Make Tonight The Night

Chaka Khan's Biography:
Born Carole Yvette Marie Stevens on 23rd March 1953, Great Lakes Naval Training Station, Illinois, U.S.A., Chaka Khan was raised on Chicago's South Side, and at the age of 11 formed her first group, the Crystalettes. While still in high school, she joined the Afro-Arts Theater, a group which toured with Motown great Mary Wells; a few years later, she adopted the African name Chaka Khan while working on the Black Panthers' breakfast program. After quitting high school in 1969, Khan joined the group Lyfe, soon exiting to join another dance band, the Babysitters; neither was on the fast track to success, but her fortunes changed when she teamed with ex-American Breed member Kevin Murphy and Andre Fisher to form Rufus.  Debuting in 1973 with a self-titled effort on the ABC label, Rufus was among the preeminent funk groups of the decade; distinguished by Khan's dynamic vocals, the group earned half a dozen gold or platinum albums before she went solo in 1978.
Chaka began her solo career with the hit, "I’m Every Woman," a tune written especially for her by the songwriting team of Ashford & Simpson. Since then, Chaka has recorded nine albums and been honored with five Grammy Awards. Her solo hits include "What Cha Gonna Do For Me?" "Clouds," "Papillion," "I Feel For You," and "Through The Fire." Sister of Yvonne Stevens Taka Boom. (discogs)


Atlantic Starr

The saxophonist, arranger, and teacher, Paul Jeffrey, has died. Paul was 81. Throughout her career, Paul performed with many performers, including, Thelonious Monk, Charles Mingus, Dizzy Gillespie, Clark Terry, Lionel Hampton and B.B. King. Born in New York, Paul graduated from Kingston High School in 1951.

He went on to become a Bachelor of Science at Ithaca College in 1955. In the fifties he toured with several bands, who featured the likes of Illinois Jacquet, Elmo Hope, Big Maybelle, and Wynonie Harris. He later toured the U.S. with B.B. King, Howard McGhee, Clark Terry, and Dizzy Gillespie. In 1968, he released the album ‘Electrifying Sounds’ on Savoy Records. He toured with the Count Basie Orchestra, and collaborated with Thelonious Monk and Charles Mingus. Paul performed with Thelonious Monk’s band at various shows throughout he US and Japan. In 1974, he set up a 15-piece band for a tribute concert to Thelonious Monk at Carnegie Hall. Throughout the seventies, Paul collaborated with Charles Mingus, performing with the Mingus’s big band at the Newport Jazz Festival in 1972. During 1973 and 1974, he released 3 studio recordings on the Mainstream Records label. As a teacher, he taught saxophone at Columbia University in 1973. He went on to teach at Jersey City State College in 1974, the University of Hartford between 1975 and 1983), at Livingston College of Rutgers University, between 1978 and 1983, and at Duke University, between 1983 and 2003. (soulwalking)

Happy birthday today to Stephanie Mills, Beverly Knight & George Benson. Benson's recording career has spanned a half century, George Benson has proven himself one of the most influential and versatile performers in popular music. Discovered at an early age by jazz great (and strong influence) Wes Montgomery, Benson served his apprenticeship with organist Jack McDuff, and was signed by Columbia in the early 60s. He recorded a handful of jazz-bop albums and began to develop a sizable following in the jazz world as one of the hot young stars of the genre.  But unlike what Benson described as the "brainy" jazz that Miles Davis and others were emphasizing at that time, Benson's music celebrated the danceable jazz of the 40s as well as rhythm and blues, and was both more melodic and accessible than much of the jazz sounds emanating from other artists at that time...> READ FULL

Playlist for Sunday 22-03-2015

Hour One
Ann Nesby - I'm Still Wearing Your Name
BeBe & CeCe Winans - I'll Take You There
Garbar Szabo/Bobby Womack - Breezin'
Phil Perry - A Better Man
Saun & Starr/Dapp Tones - Look Closer
Gladys Knight/Pips - Keep Giving Me Love
The O'Jays - Used To Be My Girl
Kazu Matsui Project - Let's Pretend
Syleena Johnson - He Makes Me Say
Tony Monrelle - Everythings Alright
Cherri Maree - Rebirth

Hour Two
Atlantic Starr x3
1 Don't Take Me For Granted
2 Love Me Down 3 When Love Calls

Switch - Keeping Secrets
Claudette Monet - Sweet Stuff
Chantel - Sending My Love
Calvin Robinson - Home In A Minute
Cooley's Hotbox - Take It
Lin Roundtree - Rockin' My World
The Chi-Lites Go Away Dream
Tracy Carter - Everyday

Atlantic Starr's Biography:

The group was started in 1976, in Greenburgh, New York, by trumpeter Duke Jones (who left the band prior to their first recordings), along with drummer Porter Carroll Jr., bassist Clifford Archer, percussionist and flutist Joseph Phillips, Sheldon Tucker (Guitar; parted ways with the band before the first recordings), and three brothers: David Lewis (vocals/guitar), Wayne Lewis (keyboards and vocals), and Jonathan Lewis (percussion and trombone). The band's membership eventually stabilized around Carroll, Archer, Phillips, the three Lewis brothers, lead singer Sharon Bryant (who was later replaced by Barbara Weathers), trumpeter William Sudderth, and saxophonist Damon Rentie (who was later replaced by Koran Daniels). In 1977, the band came to Westwood, California, and performed on the nightclub scene under the name "Newban," which they agreed to change at the request of A&M executive Herb Alpert when they were signed. Having already agreed to keep the Starr part of an early idea for a new band name, the members decided to add the word Atlantic, because of their East Coast roots. The nine-member band were now A&M employees. more @ wiki


Gap Band

The Civil Rights campaigner, the Reverend Willie Taplin-Barrow, has died. She was 90. Willie was not only the godmother of the current U.S. President, Barack Obama, she was also the mother of the late Soul Singer, Keith Barrow (who recorded ‘You Know You Want To Be Loved’).She was nicknamed ‘The Little Warrior’, due to the fact she was only, just, 5 feet in height.Born in Burton, Texas, to Nelson and Octavia Taplin, Willie was one of a large family. She had six brothers and sisters. Willie began her Civil Rights campaigning at a very early age, organising protests regarding the lack of bus transport for black students, who were made to walk to school, whilst the White kids were allowed to ride. As a teenager, she relocated to Portland, Oregon, in order to study at the Warner-Pacific Theological Seminary. Willie went on to work with other African American residents in Portland who combined to create one of the first black Churches of God. In 1943, Willie joined the National Urban League. In 1945, she joined the National Council of Negro Women. During World War 2, Willie took on a role as a welder at the Kaiser shipyards in Swan Island, Washington. It was there where she met, her soon to be, husband Clyde Barrow (the two were married for 56 years). more at soulwalking.co.uk

Marvin Gaye's Family Speak Out On $7 Million 'Blurred Lines' Verdict; Find Fault in Another Pharrell Song. Not only is Robin Thicke’s lawyer appealing the verdict, which says Robin and Pharrell must pay the Gaye family over $7 million, the Gayes are still side-eyeing Pharrell. Marvin Gaye’s family (Gaye’s son Marvin Gaye III, daughter, Nona, and ex-wife, Janis) spoke with Entertainment Tonight about the verdict. During the interview, they mentioned they agree with people who say Pharrell’s biggest hit “Happy” resembles the late singer’s 1966 song “Ain’t That Peculiar.” “I’m not going to lie. I do think they sound alike,” claimed Nona admitted. But they don’t plan on coming after Pharrell with another lawsuit; they just want to bask in their legal win. “We’re just in the moment today and we’re satisfied,” Janis said. Or maybe is it because it wasn’t Marvin Gaye who wrote “Ain’t That Peculiar,” but rather Smokey Robinson is responsible for the #1 Motown single?  (singersroom)

Playlist for Sunday 15-03-2015

Hour One
Al Green - God Is Standing By
John Legend - Stay With You
Rone-Iff - Halle, Halle
Etta James - At Last
Angie Stone - No More Rain In This Cloud
Hill St. Soul - Until You Came Back
Betty Wright Thank You For The Many..
Luther Vandross - Lovely Day
Stephen Bishop - On & On
Richard 'Dimples' Fields - Jazzy Lady
Gwen Guthrie - Love In Moderation
Whitney Houston - For The Love Of You

Hour Two
Gap Band x3
1 Wednesday Lover 2 Yearning For Your Love
3 Keep Holding On

Natalie Cole - Can't We Get It Together
                      + This Will Be
Nina Simone - My Baby Just Cares For Me
Barbara Acklin - Love Makes A Woman
Emotions - Best Of My Love
Marvin Gaye - Got To Give It Up
Yvonne Elliman - Love Me
Freddie Jackson - Rock Me Tonight
Staple Singers - I'll Take You There

Gap Band's Biography:
The Gap Band, centered around brothers Charlie, Ronnie, and Robert Wilson, toiled in obscurity for several years prior to becoming one of the most popular funk groups of the late '70s and 1980s. The Tulsa, OK natives produced 15 Top Ten R&B singles ranging from ferocious funk anthems to gorgeous slow jams. Many of their hits, such as "Burn Rubber (Why You Wanna Hurt Me)" and "You Dropped a Bomb on Me," featured instantly memorable, rippling synthesizer basslines. All of them featured Charlie's deep, invigorating lead vocals. While casual R&B fans and most critics associate the Gap Band with the early '80s, the Wilsons' run of hits spanned nearly 20 years, from 1977 through 1995. More here

Betty Wright - In The Middle Of The Game (live) by mickeynold



Debora Cox is to play Josephine Baker in A Broadway Musical. She’s been cast as the legendary entertainer Josephine Baker in the musical “Josephine,” inspired by Stephen Papich’s book “Remembering Josephine,” which is about the life of Baker between the years 1939-1945. “Josephine” will be directed and produced by Tony Award-winner Kenneth Waissman and will premiere sometime in April. According to a press release, the musical “will revolve around Baker’s stint as the star of the Folies Bergere in Paris between 1939-45, her scandalous affair with Swedish Crown Prince Gustav VI, and her heroic service in the French Resistance during World War II.

” Waissman adds, “For a number of years, I had been intrigued with the idea of recreating the glamorous and exotic world of Josephine Baker in a stage musical. She was a larger than life African-American expatriate who transcended her color, her gender and her times. Her exotic looks, fabulous gowns and feathered headdresses, her obsession with her royal lover and her life-risking exploits in the French underground during WWII provide the sex, romance and intrigue of this original new musical.” Cox is a Broadway veteran; she’s been cast as Aida and as Lucy in the 2013 revival of Jekyll & Hyde. (singersroom)

Brownstone singer dies. The singer with the group Brownstone, Charmayne Maxwell, has died. Charmayne died as a result of complications, following a recent fall. She was 46. Brownstone were a Grammy-nominated band, who were best known for their 1995 hit single, ‘If You Love Me’. Charmayne later released a solo single entitled ‘When I Look Into Your Eyes’ in 2000. She was a member of Brownstone between 1994 until 1998, later rejoining the group between 2007 and 2015) Charmayne was married to the Danish producer Soulshock.

Playlist for Sunday 5-3-2015

Hour One
Al Wilson - Show & Tell
Anita Baker - Angel
Sam Rucker - Before I Let Go
Charlie Wilson - I Still Have You
Prince - This Could Be Us
Conscious Plat - Black Pharaohs
Calvin Richardson - We Gon' Love Tonite
Omar/Angie Stone - Be Thankful
Patti Labelle - If Only I Knew
Teddy Pendergrass - When Somebody..

Hour Two
Chi-Lites x3
1 Have You Seen Her 2 Running Around
3 Homely Girl

Blue Zone - Big Thing
Faith Evans - Good Life
Michael Cooper - Steppin'
Justin Timberlake - Worthy Of
Sunburst Band - Everyday
Dramatics - Key To The World
Dante - 7 Days A Week
Kashif - Help Yourself To My Love

Chi-Lites Biography:

In the 60s, Smokey Robinson virtually reinvented the sweet soul ballad and paved the way for a number of groups that would make the early 70s a ballad lovers dream era. And no act epitomized that genre more than this hard working group from Chicago with an underappreciated musical genius at the helm. Like many popular soul groups of the 60s and 70s, the Chi-Lites found each other as teens, singing together and apart in various groups in their native Chicago until joining together as the Hi-Lites in the mid 60s. By the time they signed with the local Brunswick label in the late 60s, they had added a "C" and become the Chi-Lites. The Chi-Lites marriage with Brunswick bore fruit quickly, as they had their first R&B hit in 1968 with the sweet ballad, "Give It Away." More at


J. Blackfoot

In the news this week ... Usher kicks off the European leg of his “The UR Experience” tour in Copenhagen tonight. On Thursday, as a very welcomed surprise to locals on the streets of the Denmark capital, the R&B superstar walked up to random people and gave them tickets to tonight’s opening show! Of course that caused plenty of others to rush and get photos with the singer, who obliged as many as he could. (this is R&B)
Alicia Keys and Swizz Beatz Share First Photo of Baby Genesis. Superstar Alicia Keys and husband Swizz Beatz welcomed their second child together on Dec. 27 (2014), baby boy Genesis Ali Dean. "The joy of joy is joy!! It’s a boy!! we are so grateful!! #blessings!!" Keys shared at the time on Instagram. Now, the power couple is giving the world a first look of their new bundle of joy in a new family portrait, which also includes their 4-year old, Egypt Daoud, and Swizz's son, Kasseem Dean Jr. "Blessings and love!! #GenesisAliDean," captions Keys on the beautiful family photo. Adorable! (Singersroom)
Wassifa news ... Finally, I get to break some amazing news that I have been sitting on for weeks! Drum roll .....  It's fabulous news everyone: The Wassifa Caribbean Show on Channel 8 - Big Centre TV (Freeview only) on which I am a presenter, will air TONIGHT and Wednesday at 7pm.   The show will feature reggae artists and from wider afield, community leaders and movers and shakers and more! Birmingham is on the rise! Make sure you tune in! If you haven't got the channel already, re-tune your TV/Box and it should appear. Currently it is only on Freeview and online: www.bigcentre.tv (Not Sky and Virgin, etc...). This station only airs in Birmingham and surrounding areas. But you can all see it on online. (wassifa)

Play List for Sunday 1-3-2015

Hour One
Angie Stone - Sisters
Gwen McRae - I can Only Think Of Of You
Kim Waters - Step In The Name Of Love
Impressions - I wish I'd Stayed In Bed
Eric Dryas - Can't Get Enough Of Your Love
Celo Green - My Kinda People
Marsha Ambrose - Butterflies
Marcus Houston - Wonderful
D Angelo - Higher
Ryan Lesley - Rescue
Maxi Priest - One More Chance

Hour Two
J. Blackfoot x3
1 I've Been Having An Affair
2 Show Me 3 Taxi

Maze - We Are One
Papik - Let The Music Play
Manhattans - Crazy
Lo-Key - Good Ole Love
Shiani - Get On The Dance Floor
Kenny Lattimore - Weekend
Rafael Sadeeq - Chic
Faith Evans - I Just Can't

J. Blackfoot's biography:
John Colbert was born in Greenville, Mississippi, moving as a child to Memphis, Tennessee with his family. Generally known as "J." or "Jay", he acquired the nickname "Blackfoot" as a child, for his habit of walking barefoot on the tarred sidewalks. In 1965, while spending some time in Tennessee State Penitentiary in Nashville for car theft, he met Johnny Bragg, the founder of the Prisonaires vocal group. After leaving prison, Colbert recorded a single under his own name for the small Sur-Speed label, before returning to Memphis. There he was heard singing in a street corner group by David Porter of Stax Records. After the plane crash that claimed the lives of Otis Redding and four members of The Bar-Kays, Colbert joined the reconstituted group as lead singer, and performed with them for several months, but did not record.

In 1968, after Sam & Dave had moved from Stax to Atlantic Records, Porter and his songwriting and production partner Isaac Hayes decided to put together a new vocal group of two men and two women. They recruited Blackfoot, together with Norman West, Anita Louis, and Shelbra Bennett, to form The Soul Children. Between 1968 and 1978, The Soul Children had 15 hits on the R&B chart, including three that crossed over to the Billboard Hot 100, and recorded seven albums. more at wiki