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Thursday, March 31, 2016

Ron Adams: Love Letter (Self-Released, 2004)

Yet another obscure item found hidden on a popular shopping site, this time a smooth male artist from the south. Unfortunately - despite my best efforts - I cannot find a scrap on information on him. His Myspace page has long been deactivated but the record company Hittin Records was based out of New Orleans, LA. Mainly a mixture of club tracks and super smooth R&B jams in the style of Usher Raymond and others. Very polished production but the disc is basically just a Verbatim inkjet-printable CDr. I don't know if it was ever available on CDBaby or not. If it was, it has now been removed and as of 3/31/2016, any remaining physical copies have sold out also.

Another fine exclusive brought to you by Persnickety...just remember u heard it here first.

Intro 0:53
Nothing But A Party 3:32
Throw Your Hands Up 3:34
Love Letter 5:01
Meet Me In The Middle 4:19
Amazing 4:09
Go Ahead 3:07
Something Beautiful 4:31
Woman Like You 4:33
Year And A Holiday 4:29

Jasmine Jai: Be Easy (EP) (Self-Released, 2002)

Hailing from Philly, another hidden item found on a popular shopping site. The artist was a former VJ on Philadelphia video show Urban X-Pressions and toured with Kelis, Amerie, 50 Cent and others before embarking on her own solo career in the early 2000s. The above work was recorded under her former moniker "Jasmine Jai" but she is now known by her real name Jade Alston. Blending hip hop, soul and rock music, she was once described as having a Pink-meets-Missy Elliott type of vibe but these days she is doing a fantastic job at blending in with the current music scene.You can check out her latest work on Amazon and CDBaby.

Just remember you heard it here first.

I Am Jasmine Jai 1:24
In My Dreams 3:03
Trippin 3:37
Be Easy 3:23
Stop, Rewind 0:25
In My Dreams (A Capella) 2:57
Trippin (A Capella) 3:03

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Ina: S/T (Sovereign Records, 2004)

Found hidden on a certain popular shopping site, further indie R&B from Arlington, Texas. The singer Ina mostly appears to be a contemporary Christian artist although her music leans more towards hip hop rather than gospel. Predominantly very upbeat with much input from Tilden Dexter, currently a member of the DC hip hop outfit Sunset Terr along with the other featured artist LK (Lawrence King.) Unfortunately I don't know much about Ina but you can learn more about Dexter and King here.

Just remember you heard it here first.

Intro Joint 1:01
The Take Over (With Tilden Dexter) 4:07
Free 2:39
Get Ready (with Tilden Dexter) 3:19
Let It Go 3:46
Simple Pleasures 4:04
Moments Of Decisions (Remix) (with Tilden Dexter) 2:50
Sistas 3:21
It's Your Life (with LK) 3:21
Feel The Power (Ina & Tilden Dexter) 4:28
Baby Doll (featuring artist LK) (Bonus Track) 4:44
Bye Bye (with Tilden Dexter) (Bonus Track) 4:32
Free (Remix) 2:49
Moments Of Decisions 3:02
Outro Joint 1:15

Red Bone Ruby: Who Ya Gonna Do (EP) (Dawg Gone Mess Records, 199x)

Further indie release from Chicago, IL with LaSonia Reed, also known as Red Bone Ruby. There's no date of release but probably late 90s judging by the G-Funkish sound. According to the disc, all tracks were to be featured on her then-forthcoming album Bone Street which was sadly never released. Entirely written and produced by Chicago musician Darryl "Animal" Williams who is still quite active in the local music scene.

Who Ya Gonna Do? 4:16
Do What Lovers Do 4:10
Dark Obsessions 3:39

Monday, March 21, 2016

Janine (Ex-Fabu): All Over (EP) (Alkey Records, 2001)

I don't know for absolute certain but I believe this lady got her start in the biz in the short-lived Detroit duo Fabu in the mid 90s. They were signed to Big Beat Records and released one single Just Roll in 1995. Sadly they were pretty much slept on - they never released anything else - but the above lady - who I believe was Janine Williams from the duo - released this EP in the early 2000s. A full-length album was supposed to follow, which unfortunately again never materialized. The production - mainly early 2000s contemporary R&B - is very good but sadly whoever was responsible for mixing it did not do the best job. The audio is very quiet and often times it sounds like Williams' voice - a husky contralto similar to Toni Braxton's - is too far from the microphone. Another ill exclusive brought to ya by Persnickety...props again to my good friend Stuart for sending it my way. 

All Over 4:41
I See U In The Distance 4:06
Better Without You 4:52

Kellee: Kellee-N-Wondaland (Smoker Entertainment, 200x)

Another obscure release that's already been mentioned on a few blogs. There's no information to be found on the singer Kellee Sims and the domain given for her label smokefx.com is now up for sale. I believe she heralds from DC although I am not 100% certain. Mostly contemporary R&B, neo soul and a little blues-rock a la Tracey Chapman. No date of release given but for some reason most people have it tagged as late 90s. However, the mention of the word "crunk" in one song probably puts the release date more in the early 2000s. .

Oooh 1:11
Chemistry 3:17
Outer Space 4:43
Kellee-N-Wondaland 3:44
Move On 4:20
Believe 1:28
Kindergarden Games 3:17
Anutha Girl 3:53
Lil White (Duet with MOTIF) 5:14
IF I Stay 3:07
Love Someone 5:22
Angel 4:54
U R My Everything 4:04
Believe 7:35

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Katrenia: Come Back Home (Finesse Records, 2002)

Early hard-to-find release from Jackson, Mississippi's Katrenia Jefferson and released on a local label Finesse Records in 2002. Jefferson has since gone on to make a name for herself in southern soul scene1 but the above album is still extremely hard to find. Although released in 2002, two songs Since You've Been Gone and Quick Shot were originally recorded and released in 1990. I have no idea if they were re-recorded or not but most of the material on the album could be from either decade. A "powerful songstress from the south", Jefferson knocks socks off of many - if not all - of the contemporary R&B wannabes out there influenced by the greats of yesteryear. This lady is the real deal so if you like the sound of her album, be sure to show your support by buying her latest work & let's keep this sort of music alive.

The above album is currently out of print and unavailable anywhere.

Many thanks again to Stuart for sharing it ;-)

Cause I Love You 7:12
Quick Shot 4:26
Hold ing On 3:51
Since You've Been Gone 3:52
Never Wanna Live Without Your Love 5:25
Sorry Won't Fix It 5:18
Come Back Home 5:14
I Got A thang For You 6:14
The Man For Me 4:28
Chance of A Lifetime 6:12
Thank You Lord 2:00

Monday, March 14, 2016

Lady J: Sneakin' Love (Strawberry Scan Records, 199x)

First of two releases from Louisiana rhythm and blues artist Charlotte Johnson (AKA Lady J) and released via Baton Rouge label Strawberry Scan Records in the late 90s. There's nothing about her online but according to the inlay card she was formally a member of a quartet called The Minor Tones. Mainly a rhythm and blues record with modern soul and funk elements, she can do contemporary R&B too (True To Love, Strong Like The Wind.) Some tracks later appeared on a subsequent release Missing You (1999) (which does not contain any new material) but sadly both are equally as impossible to find. Also includes 3 bonus tracks by her producer Lee Daniels (Radio Show, Tell Her You Love Her, So Sorry Baby) mixed in randomly. The two latter two are modern soul and blues but Radio Show is smooth R&B to the fullest. Likewise, I don't know anything about him either but he is evidently not the film director...

Another amazing exclusive brought to you by Persnickety...just remember you heard it here first!

Sneakin' Love 3:20
Missing You 3:57
Holding On 2:27
Same Old Bull Shit Handed Down 2:55
Blues Thang 4:05
Stay True To Love 3:57
Radio Show 3:46
Part Time Love 4:25
Damn You 3:13
Believe Me, Baby 3:16
You Ain't Fooling Me 3:11
Caught Up On The Wings Of Love 4:02
Tell Her You Love Her 4:18
I'm A Teaser 3:24
Strong Like The Wind 3:41
Tell Me 3:03
Slide Into 2000 3:24
So Sorry Baby 3:50

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Dream: Reality (Press Advance) (Promo CDr) (Bad Boy Entertainment, 2003)

It was the latest trend in the early 2000s for major hip hop producers to have a token pop act on their roster and the above group was the brainchild of Bad Boy impresario Sean "Diddy" Combs. After jumping on the contemporary R&B bandwagon in the mid 90s, the Bad Boy brand was responsible for many popular acts including Faith Evans, Total and 112. Sadly by the time the millennium rolled around with its preference towards shitty pop music, many of them began to fall out of favor and once again Combs had to decide on a

Friday, March 11, 2016

Wild Orchid: Hypnotic (Yellow Brick Records, 2003)

The quite low-key third release from Fergie's former group Wild Orchid and released independently in 2003. As a trio with Ferguson, they released two albums together. A third effort Fire was cancelled in 2001 and following Ferguson's departure from the group in 2002, the two remaining members decided to continue on as a duo. At that time, they were not signed to a major label and the

3 Dvyne: S/T (Full Code Recordings, 2005)

An obscure teenage trio from Charleston, South Carolina and a mixture of hip hop, R&B and urban pop with both crunk and gospel influences. They originally got their start performing in church concerts and talent shows under the moniker 'The Brokenbrough Sisters' but changed their name to 3 Dvyne for this album, of which they were all under 16 for the recording of. These days I have no idea if they are still active in the mainstream R&B arena or not but as of 2009 they are back performing as 'The Brokenbrough Sisters'.

3 Dvyne 3:26
Get Crunk 4:20
So Over You 3:19
Prelude 0:52
I Will Sing 2:49
Oh Boy 3:30
Knocking 2:52
Living Without You 5:01
Mary Don't Cry 4:19
Bad Girls 0:21
Bad Boys 3:44
Tell Me You Want Me 4:45

NOTE: No longer available on CD Baby but it seems it is still available as a digital download on pay-site emusic.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Kaelyn: S/T (The Music Store Inc., 1997)

More smooth & funky indie R&B from Ohio and another that sadly did not go beyond one album. The artist had previously appeared in a production of The Wiz and did lead vocals on European Power Play's Love Don't Live Here album, though despite having somewhat of an established career, there is still very little information to be found on her.

Her album spawned one single that I know of, a cover of The Three Degrees' When Will I See You Again. 

Bob UR Head 5:19
Say The Word featuring J-Bei 5:33
Can't Deny 5:19
Every Little Bit Hurts 4:36
What About Me 5:11
When Will I-C-U Again 4:43
Same Old Lies 4:59
Phoney Love 4:18
Sway 4:16

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Janice: Back In The Day (N'Zone Records, 1997)

Further independent artist from Baltimore, Maryland and a mixture of New Jack Swing, mainstream AC soul and bass music with massive vocals. It spawned two singles, the Minnie Riperton cover Memory Lane and Back In The Days and was even re-released at some point featuring bonus remixes. Unfortunately  I don't know anything about her but she is not the same artist from the 80s (Janice Andrade) who was mostly known for her freestyle hit Bye Bye and I don't think the management company "StarTrak Entertainment, Inc." is  the same venture as was fronted by Pharrell Williams and Chad Hugo in the early 2000s. 

Many thanks again to Stuart for another great contribution. 


Memory Lane [Radio Mix] 3:55
You're Always On My Mind 4:10
Take Your Time 3:56
Back In The Days 3:58
Memory Lane [Island Mix] 4:08
You Messed Up A Good Thing 3:59
Back In The Days [Street Mix] 3:56
Memory Lane [Who U Wit Mix] 4:02
It Should've Been You 4:00
I Heard You Be Strokin' 3:20
Memory Lane [Southern Cooking Mix] 4:35
Don't Walk Away 4:12
Relax Your Mind 3:50
Back In The Days [Vocal Mix] 3:30

Monday, March 7, 2016

Yoly: Urban Elegance (ION Records, 1997)

Further independent release based out of Huntington Beach, CA and a mixture of reggae, R&B, freestyle, dance and even some rock. The artist got her start as the lead singer of a reggae band before going on to tour with Ike Turner in 1993.1 Her album spawned one single Goldmine 2 and features production from Ex-Rufus drummer and founding member Andre Fischer and LA-based Jamaican musician Shaka Man.3 

Lover Like You 5:35
One Heart 4:28
Warrior Woman 4:01
Good Needle Eye 3:33
Body Music 4:49
Get With This Program 4:29
All My Life 4:19
Hot Like Fire 4:30
Goldmine 3:58
My Baby Needs My Love 3:40
Daddy's Child 4:59
I'll Be Yours Today 4:29

X-Cess: Searching For A Lover/Coming Out Of The Ghetto (Cassette Single) (CM Records, 1995)

Not R&B but a jazzy hip hop duo with soulful vocals. Quite obscure, I don't know anything about them but the label CM Records was based out of Brooklyn, NY in the 90s. Not sure if it was ever issued on CD or not but a promo does exist featuring remixes of the title track...

Searching For A Lover (Club Mix) 4:16
Searching For A Lover (Street Mix) 4:14
Coming Out Of The Ghetto 5:15
Searching For A Lover (Club Inst.) 4:19

NKRU: Seis Nueve/Computer Love (Cassette Single) (Kaper Records, 1993)

Another short-lived girl group from the glory days and signed to a division of RCA Records in 1993. Their name an acronym for "Naughty Kreations R Unified", they were mostly known for their cover of Zap & Roger's 1985 hit Computer Love, which was released as a double-A side with Seis Nueve in 1993. Somebody once described TLC as having bitten off of their swagger but this quartet - also employing the use of a rapper - actually came a year afterwards. Sadly they did not release anything else but a year later their label Kaper Records tried again with another female group Blackgirl. As for RCA Records, they went on to develop a rather annoying pattern of dropping many good R&B artists and groups from their labels...

Seis Nueve (Radio Edit) 3:58
Seis Nueve (Radio Remix) 4:10
Computer Love (Radio Edit) 3:54
Computer Love (Album Version) 4:22

Sunday, March 6, 2016

K-D-Star: Are You Creepin' What's Goin' On (EP) (Grooveathon Jam's, 1997)

Another CD that cannot be found anywhere online. It's not for sale anywhere and certainly nobody has it on You Tube. I know nothing about the artist or the label Grooveathon Jam's but they were based out of Louisville, KY. Containing 2 main tracks with the title track as the b-side, the style is mainly southern R&B with funk and hip hop influences. 

In Love With A Playa 4:12
Da Conversation 4:14
Playa Groove Da Dance (Instr.. 4:17
Are You Creepin Whats Goin On 5:19
Are You Creepin Whats Goin O.. 5:18

Saturday, March 5, 2016

Chastity: I Need To Know (CDM) (Alpha Records, 1998)

Another quite obscure pressing from Alabama in the late 90s. The title track is velvety smooth R&B while the second more upbeat track Don't Waste My Time sounds a little like its remix. The label Alpha Records was responsible for only one other artist that I know about, a southern rap artist named Terry D. According to the back of his own release, which was released a year later, Chastity was to release a further song Longing 4U (featuring Terry D) but I don't know if it was ever actually released or not. These days she goes by her birth name Chastity Crews or nickname Chay Crews and is still quite active in the music biz.You can check out her latest work on Sound Cloud and on You Tube...

Just remember you heard it here first. 

I Need To Know 4:01
I Need To Know (Remix) 3:55
Don't Waste My Time 3:55
Don't Waste My Time (Instrumental) 3:48

Friday, March 4, 2016

En 'Comm'n: All The Way/Big Chill (Cassette Single) (Unique Records, 1995)

Yet another obscure cassette-only release, this time from a smooth trio out of Northern California. The label Unique Records appeared to be a rap/G-Funk label based out of Oakland but I only know of one other artist on their roster Tymatale who released a CD EP in 1998.

All The Way 4:09
Big Chill 4:28

True Obsession: S/T (EP) (Virtue Records, 1991)

A further cassette exclusive from Milwaukee, WI and a unique mixture of freestyle and pop with rock and new wave influences. No information about them anywhere but judging by the sound this was probably recorded at least a few years before the release date, late 80s at least. 

I Want U 5:10
Unfaithful Lover 5:01
Kiss & Tell 3:41
Obsession 5:22
Said & Done 5:06
Good Girl 5:47

IIMAGE: I'll Never Leave You/Can You Feel The Groove (Cassette Single) (Midnight Blue Productions, 1995)

Another cassette-only release from an obscure 90s trio and a blend of New Jack Swing and freestyle on the b-side track. There's very little information on the J card - I am inclined to believe this may be a demonstration - but they hail from Milwaukee, WI.

I'll Never Leave You 4:04
Can You Feel The Groove 4:30

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Soúche: S/T (Chereese Productions, 1995)

Another quite obscure release from an underground 90s group and a mixture of quiet storm, New Jack Swing and Freestyle with soft Janet Jackson-type vocals. I don't know where they are from but the production company Chereese Productions is based out of Inglewood, CA.

Mr Heartbreak 4:36
Star 69 4:36
Are You Down 4:58
Once Again 4:08
Jam 4:48
Mystery Eyes 3:41
One Less Bell 4:08
Baby Love Is Hot 4:37
Soúche 4:04
Remember You 3:55
All Of Me 4:23
Take It From Me 3:37
No Other Love 4:13

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

3 Shades Of Brown: Gonna Have A Party (CDM) (West Mob Inc., 1999)

Yet another single-only release from a trio in the late 90s and based out of Adelphi, Maryland. I don't know if they are the same trio that was signed to Interscope Records in the early 90s but they both have a similar "marvelistic" funky sound...

Radio Mix 3:52
No Money's Playing Our Song Remix 3:51
Instrumental 3:50
Acapella 3:49

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Creme: Let Me Take Over (CDM) (Black Rain Entertainment, 1998)

Produced by Full Force, the one and only single from R&B trio Creme and released on the down low in 1998. It's pure hip hop, before the "new millennium" era of producers came along capable of churning out  pop hits for the likes of Britney Spears, N'Sync and other absolute horrors. The sample is borrowed from Raekwon's 1995 song Ice Cream and the person singing lead is actually Mashonda Tifrere, best known for her solo work in the early 2000s and for her relationship with Swizz Beatz. Sadly I don't know how popular it ever was but the group never released an album.

Album Version 4:00
Foreful Remix (ft. D.J. ACE) 4:35
The Drama & More Mix 4:22
Instrumental 3:56