Yolanda "La La" Brown & iCandi

The forgotten Midwest R'n'B duo that met a tragic end.

Ne-Yo

Unreleased from 2001, Ne-Yo as "Shaffer".

Mya's Liberation

Mya's doomed fourth album.

Girl Power!

Unreleased R'n'B/UK Garage from 2001.

From Tha'Rayne To The First Seed

Unreleased Yummy Bingham from 2006.

Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Petit' feat. DJ Donae: Sho Me (Demo CDS) (Self-Released, 2003)

A further girl group demo from STL, MO featuring mostly minimal G-Funk/synth production. A silver CDr with inkjet printed artwork, this is a pretty underground release so I was not able to find any information on them or their co-contributor D.J Donae (a link to a webpage on the Waybackmachine simply links to a website "under construction") but two of the producers hailed from Victorville, CA which is not far from where I am from. Probably the most underground girl group I have come across thus far, even the artwork was made by "the Photoshop"

Get On The Floor (Oh Sh**!) 3:23
Sho Me 4:03


Monday, March 30, 2020

Tina & Serena: Self-Titled (EP) (Royaltee Entertainment, 2008)

Yet another obscure mid-2000s (sibling?) duo from the South and a mixture of sample-heavy R&B, crunk-lite and lullaby-esque production with stylized 2000s hip hop vocals. I don't know anything about them but they hailed from Florida and had a MySpace page which sadly like most of the site has since gone the way of the Dodo. There is no information about them anywhere but they were last active in 2018 when they provided backing vocals to two hip hop tracks by the Young Bosses.

Diary 3:48
Don't Wanna Blow It 3:00
Nice Friend 4:13
Danger Zone 2:03
Coming Soon 2:19

A.S.E.: Self-Titled (Shepepp Music, 2007)

A further obscure sister group from the 2007 era and a mixture of mid-2000s synthy production with numerous southern styles from crunk to bounce to soul. "Beat Drop" in particular gives a slight nod to Monica Arnold's 2006 song of the same name while "I Love You" adds a touch of The Emotions and other classic soul groups of the 60s and 70s. I don't know much about them but they hailed from Montezuma, GA and the name A.S.E. was derived from their names Ashley Suai and Ebony. The project was re-released to streaming platforms in 2010 with a different track list titled "Live, Life And Learn."I am uncertain if any physical copies of this version existed or not.

Beat Drop ( Remix) 4:18
Don't Make Me (Ooo) 4:42
Baby Come Back 4:42
Only You 4:38
Crazy For You 4:01
They Like It 4:38
I Love You 4:48
You Wanna Move 4:38
Why? 4:22
Don't Wanna Cry No More 3:00
Beat Drop (Regular Mix) 4:09

Sunday, March 29, 2020

Missy: Free Your Love (Beatnik Entertainment, 199x)

G-Funk inspired R&B from Pittsburgh with Missy Copeland, an artist that I have not seen before and know little about but appeared to be related in part to fellow Pittsburgh hip hop trio Misfits In The Attic. No date of release but the style is somewhat similar to former Death Row artist Shatasha Williams.

It's A Beatnik Thing 3:46
Way You Want It 4:58
Give Back The Love 4:59
Free Your Love 4:46
I'm The One (You Need) 5:04
Good Side 4:11
Celebration 2:59
Give Back The Love 4:41
New Reality 5:04
(OOH) You Got To Feel It 4:16
Free Your Love (Remix) 5:12
At The Party 4:36

Mesha: Broken Glass (Acclaim Records, 2003)

Here is more contemporary R&B with a southern soul edge from Mesha, an artist whose music tells the ups and downs of love while delivering solid vocals and stellar production. I don't know much about her but spawned at least two singles "Gotta Get Mine" and "Something In Your Kiss." Somewhat similar to Dee Dee Wilde, Kristine and other contemporary soul artists I've posted here...again this was another one Stuart and I were curious about after seeing the album being sold for an absurd amount on eBay a few months back. Was it worth the $200 it was being sold for? No, but it was certainly worth the $50 that we got it for. Thank you Stuart :-)

Beauty Salon 1:10
One Night Stand 5:16
Everything Called Love 3:15
Don't You Hate It 3:58
We Cried Together 4:37
All Men 3:57
I Gotta Get Mine 3:54
Rock A Bye-Bye 3:37
Love Is 4:55
Something In Your Kiss 3:56
They Don't Know 4:25
See You Peepin' 3:45
Ain't Here For You 3:45
True Love 5:37
My Dedication 1:16
Lord I Thank You 4:27

Saturday, March 28, 2020

Ashley Támar (aka Tamar Davis); My Angel (EP) (Jaboi Records, 200x)

Early independent release from former Destiny's Child member and Prince protege Tamar Davis and recorded under her real name Ashley Támar sometime in the early 2000s. More in line with the stuff her former group was doing at the time, this EP is different from her later work although you can perhaps hear nuances on the title track "My Angel." After a chance meeting with Prince at a house party in 2004, Davis was mentored by him and her album (originally titled "Beautiful, Loved & Blessed") was to be released alongside his own as sort of a package deal. Sadly, after being pushed back numerous times by Universal Records, it never saw the light of day - except for a very, very limited release in Japan - and Davis has been a struggling artist ever since. She was last seen in 2016 as a contestant on The Voice...

My Angel 4:15
Playin' Games 4:13
Bye Bye 4:13

Friday, March 27, 2020

BeatFactory Presents: On Da Move (Beat Factory Productions Inc., 1995)

Further music from BeatFacory, a Canadian independent label that was mainly active in the 90s. Founded in 1982 as originally a management/production company, it kick started the careers of many popular artists in the early 2000s including Glen Lewis and Kardinal Offishall whose first singles appeared on various rap and R&B compilations that they released in the late 90s. Sadly by the time the millennium rolled around, they had gained major label distribution and stopped focusing on homegrown talent in favor of Usher, R.Kelly and other Billboard Hot 200 nonsense. I posted two of the later volumes by the label last year but here is an earlier compilation from before they had mainstream recognition. Featured here are rare tracks by Canadian MC Michie Mee, Filipino R&B group Kuya and pop singer Jazmin (Baird.) Mee (real name Michelle McCullock) was the first female Canadian MC to get a US deal while Kuya are probably best known for their pop productions in the 2000s. I don't know if McCullock's partner DJ L.A. Luv features on her tracks at all but the two parted ways following the release of her debut album in 1991. Pop singer Baird - although she probably started out as a somewhat serious contender - is probably best known for her 1999 album "Better Be Good" which saw her molded into yet another Britney Spears clone. She had been active since the mid 90s where her music was slightly less bubblegum. Here she takes on Mariah and Celine with two big power ballads. A further male funk/soul act Just Cool I don't know anything about but they only ever seemed to have appeared here. Their music is a mixture of classic soul and rhythm and blues with a slight pop edge.

Michie Mee - Loosin' My Mind 3:26
Michie Mee - Denial 4:49
Michie Mee - True Love 4:30
Michie Mee - It's Alright 3:52
Kuya - Don't Say Goodnite 4:39
Just Cool - Body In Motion 4:19
Just Cool - I'm In Love 4:29
Just Cool - Let Me Know 4:58
Just Cool - Your Way 4:52
Jazmin - If It Takes A Lifetime 5:08
Jazmin - Where Do I Begin 4:43

Further tracks by Kuya and Jazmin can be found on BeatFactory's subsequent releases here.

Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Phink Kings & Drop Records Present: G*Hop Soul (Promo CD) (Drop Records, 2005)

More quality R&B music from early 2000s UK with G*Hop Soul, a compilation masquerading as a mixtape featuring up and coming heat from the UK underground and previously unheard material from some big names not limited to Estelle, Floetry, Shola Ama and others. Among the standout tracks include "In Your Eyes" by Sef, "Spend On You" by Movemakers and "Fallin' Out Of Love" by Vola. Not much is known about many of the artists but one Lonyo was previously a part of UK R&B duo Bon Garçon and another Evi-Dence was previously signed to Loud Records in the mid 90s. Also noteworthy is Nathan (aka Starboy Nathan), an English Mario who went mainstream in 2003 with his single "Come Into My Room" and Sadie Ama, younger sister of Shola Ama. Familiar names include Shola herself with the mellow "With You" and Floetry with their track "Fantasize" which is one of the first tracks they ever worked on together. Compiled by the Phink Kings with production from Syklone (Wayne Lawes & Riccardo Reid), Terror Danjah and others.

Tamara - Capture Me 3:55
Corinne Gray - Day Like This 3:40
Nathan - Round & Round 4:09
Nayla - Call Me 4:26
Estelle, Beverley Knight, Terri Walker, Ms. Dynamite, Shystie - Dancin 4:11
Lonyo - Fall In Love 3:51
Universe - Heavenly Bodies 4:58
Movemakers - Spend On You 3:48
Joy Silver - Know You Better 2:39
Shola Ama - With You 2:37
Lejaune - Feel Me 4:01
Sef - In Your Eyes 4:07
Sadie - So Sure 2:41
Floetry - Fantasize 4:45
Wayne McNeish - Military Lovin 4:03
Evi-dence - Pretty 3:53
The Poet Known As CR - Give Urself To Me 8:03
Vola - Fallin Out Of Love 2:26

Sunday, March 22, 2020

Soundbwoy Presents: Ill Hype 'The Studio Sessions' (Promo CD) (Soundbwoy Entertainment, 2004)

Further music from the British Isles with Soundbwoy Entertainment, an East London collective of various cultures and backgrounds and founded by Gerald "Soundbwoy" Logan in 2003. Initially disappointed with his experience as a writer at Warner Chapel Publishing, Logan decided to start his own label for the music he was most passionate about, R&B. Described as having a heavy vibe, relevant lyrics and positive outlook to life, two featured tracks "1, 2, 3" and "If Only I" later made "tune of the week" on BBC1 Xtra and "1, 2, 3" in particular later got a remix by London Grime MC Lethal Bizzle (known back then as Lethal B.) It wasn't until 2006 though that they finally got recognition, releasing a single "Never Wanna Say" on Smoove Records, an urban sublabel for UK dance label Ministry of Sound Records. It later made no18 on the national chart. Logan later went on expand his roster even further with R&B/grime artist Young Nate (Nate Young) and did remixes for UK R&B artist Shawn Emanuel, Kelis, Tinie Tempah and others.

Soundbwoy Ent - Ill Hype (intro) 1:16
Soundbwoy, T'Neek, E.C, Baby Bling, Shay - Dance 2 Dis 4:05
Soundbwoy Ent - 1 Xtra (Interlude) 0:52
E.C, Soundbwoy - 1, 2, 3 3:36
Mel Divine, E.C, Jr.C - Hypnotise 3:53
Soundbwoy Ent - Snagga Dagga (Interlude) 0:23
Soundbwoy, E.C, Baby Bling, Shay, Feat. Snagga Dagga - Dance 2 Dis Part 4:20
T'Neek, Adam - Temptation 3:13
Jr. C, Casino, Soundbwoy, T'Neek, Adam - Dem Na Beta Den We 3:10
Soundbwoy Ent - Old Man 2:59
C Shay - If Only I 4:18
Simone - Soul Mate 3:11
Jr. C, Leah, Casino - I Luv U 2 3:12
Soundbwoy Ent - Soundbwoy (Interlude) 0:22
Shay, Soundbwoy, Jr. C - Fire/Hot Hot 2:45
Baby Bling, Shay, Feat P-One - Naya 3:36
C++ - Slowly Surely 4:15
E.C, Soundbwoy, Casino, Jr. C - 1, 2. 3 Terror Remix (Exclusive) 3:18

Friday, March 13, 2020

Meleka: Boot Camp (Promo) (Sweet Harmony Records, 200x)

Sampler of early work by Meleka aka Malika Ferguson, a singer/songwriter who has performed many genres of music from R&B and reggae to most recently electronic music. Just sixteen years old when she started out, she was then compared to Brandy and Jamelia but her album appears to not have been released. She later found notoriety in the reggae genre and in 2010 collaborated with UK dance act Crazy Cousinz on the track "Go." 

Boot Camp [Remix] 3:42
Say A Little Prayer 3:34
Boot Camp 3:41
The Truth 4:01
The Truth [Edge Remix] 3:56

Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Aaron Soul: Album Sampler + more unreleased music from Def Soul

Further unreleased music from Def Soul with Aaron Soul, a Craig David clone whose name came about after a Def Soul executive misread a demo saying "Aaron Soul" instead of "Aaron's Songs." He was one of a handful of artists signed to Def Soul UK along with Terri Walker and ex-Popstars contestant Warren Stacey. While Stacey attempted to cash in on his appearance on Popstars, Soul's claim to fame was that he went to the same school as Craig David. He along with Stacey released one single and had a few soundtrack/promotional features but nothing else ever became of them. The only one that had any semblance of success appeared to be Walker who had backing from Mos Def and Warryn "Baby Dub" Campbell. I am guessing that Def Soul just weren't committed to the success of the UK Garage scene which was a shame. With the right backing, I am sure that the scene was big enough for both David and Soul. Meanwhile over in the U.S., albums never materialized by Playa, LovHer, Jazz (formally of Dru Hill) and another fantastic female singer Kandice Love. Aside from Playa, many of the artists appeared to be related in part to former Dru Hill member Sisqo. LovHer and Kandice Love especially had been heavily championed by him. Though it is doubtful that he had anything to do with their failure, it did not help that his then forthcoming album and Dru Hill's reunion album both tanked in the charts.

Soldiers 1:23
Soundclash 1:29
Broken 1:33
DJ Lighter 1:35
Ring, Ring, Ring (Original Mix) 3:55

Cassis Henry: Sampler (Promo) (Edel, 200x)

Further unreleased music from the UK with Cassius Henry who came and went after a few singles in the early 2000s and later appeared as a contestant on the UK version of The Voice. His first single "Broke" (prod. by the Ignorants) was a fantastic incarnation of early 2000s UK R&B but he was later whisked off to the U.S. to work with Kayne West on a follow-up "The One." I think they were intending to turn him into the British version of Ne-Yo but in my opinion he was better off as he was. In 2012 he made it to the live shows of The Voice. Thanks again to Stuaaart and his friend for the contribution.

Broke (Without Rap) 3:42
Cassius 4:27
Good Night (No Drums) 3:39

Sunday, March 8, 2020

Various: Diesel Records 99 (Promo) (Diesel Records, 1999)

Various lost projects from Diesel Records, a London-based urban label mainly known for the three-piece New Jack Swing group Kreuz in the mid 90s. Formally on Motown Records in the early 90s, they released their sophomore album through the label in 1996 before two members (Wayne Lawes and Rickardo Reid) formed the popular UK production/remixing team Full Crew. By the turn of the millennium Diesel became home to Full Crew Records before it went defunct in the early 2000s. Notable artists on their roster back then include Kruez, Celetia Martin, Shaila Prospere and Sara Jane Skeete (daughter of 90s street soul singer Beverly Skeete.) Unfortunately only a few projects only ever saw the light of day, the most widely known about being Prospere's critically acclaimed album "In My Shoes" which was released in 2000. Artists that went unreleased completely include 3-piece vocal group Gems, male R&B group Form 1 and female R&B/Pop singer Deborah Andrews. The inside also makes mention to a further artist Jarvis but he is not anywhere on the disc. There are also unreleased tracks from Kreuz, Skeete and Martin. No producer credits given but guessing the vast majority were produced by Wayne Lawes and Rickardo Reid as Full Crew with additional production from Michael Daley. Prospere's single "Sorry" spent 16 weeks on London's Choice FM Station and her album was described as being one of the "best urban soul albums ever produced." Sadly Diesel and Full Crew Records went no further but Lawes and Reid remained popular as Full Crew up until the early 2000s.

Shaila Prospere - Sorry 4:14
Kreuz - Bouncy 3:52
Sara-Jane Skeete - Jump To It 5:34
Ricci Collins - What U Want 3:38
Gems - Everynight 3:29
Celetia - Give It Up 3:40
Celetia - Can U Love Me 4:11
Shy 1 & Baby G - In Our World 5:07
Deborah Andrews - Over You 3:54
Val Redd - Our Love 3:14
Form 1 - Going On 3:27
Gems - One Night 4:53
Sara-Jane Skeete - The Love U Need 5:11
Shaila Prospere - In My Shoes 5:01

Saturday, March 7, 2020

Full Crew Presents: RNB 2000 - Xclusive Sampler Pts 1 & 2 (VLS) (Diesel Records, 2000)

Diesel Records was a London-based independent urban label that was mainly known for the male New Jack Swing trio Kreuz. Formally on Motown Records in the early 90s, they released their sophomore album through the label before two members (Wayne Lawes and Rickardo Reid) formed the popular UK production/remixing team Full Crew. By the turn of the millennium Diesel became home to Full Crew Records before it went defunct in the early 2000s. With Lawes and Reid at the helm, they really began to shine with artists such as Sara Jane Skeete (daughter of 90s street soul singer Beverly Skeete), Floetry's Marsha Ambrosius and later Shaila Prospere. Prospere's single "Sorry" especially spent 16 weeks on London's Choice FM Station and her album was described as being one of the "best urban soul albums ever produced." Sadly many of the projects and Diesel Records went no further but Lawes and Reid remained popular as Full Crew, remixing singles from many popular artists not limited to Craig David, Mis-Teeq and others.

Disc 1
Kreuz - Hit You With The Ooh 4:20
Kreuz - Hit You With The Ooh (Instrumental) 4:20
Marsha - Movin' On 4:21
Marsha - Movin' On (Instrumental) 4:21

Disc 2
Sara Jane Skeete - Everyday 4:32
Sara Jane Skeete - Everyday (Instrumental) 4:32
Royston - Why 3:34
Royston - Why (Instrumental) 3:31

Thursday, March 5, 2020

Millionaire Status & UK Allstars (Promo VLS) (200x)

Further UK-only R&B and Rap with Millionaire Status aka Graham Jules, a producer, songwriter and engineer and cousin of Red Dwarf actor Danny John Jules. All of the featured artists were unsigned and produced by 928 Productions, a now defunct production outfit from Central London. The tracks are a mixture of hip hop, urban-crossover and ragga-tinged R&B. None of the artists ever appeared anywhere else but here but one Cassie Compton (as Cass) made it through to the X Factor Finals in 2004. The project spawned one single "Got What U Want" which was released in 2004.

 Vol. 1
Cass - Rude Girl 3:06
Orlando - Let It Go 4:05
Face Leonardo - Head Up 4:20
Nisa - Sacrifice 3:49
Face Leonardo - Head Up (Instrumental) 4:20

Vol. 2
Beverly - Got What U Need 3:24
Millionaire Status & UK Allstars - UK OK 3:32
Adaine - Take A Picture 3:37
Frankie Fury & Leanne La - Chinese Eyes 4:27
Louise Telles - Tick Tock 3:45