Tag: Rick James

Tuesday 2/1/22 10am ET: Feature Artist: Rick James

James Ambrose Johnson Jr. (February 1, 1948 – August 6, 2004), better known by his stage name Rick James, was an American singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and record producer. Born and raised in Buffalo, New York, James began his musical career in his teen years. He was in various bands before entering the U.S. Navy Reserve to avoid being drafted into the army. In 1964, James deserted to Toronto, Canada, where he formed the rock band the Mynah Birds, who eventually signed a recording deal with Motown Records in 1966. James’ career with the group halted after military authorities discovered his whereabouts and eventually convicted and sentenced James to a one-year prison term related to the desertion charges. After being released, James moved to California, where he started a variety of rock and funk groups in the late 1960s and early 1970s.

After forming the locally popular Stone City Band in his hometown of Buffalo in 1977, James finally found success as a recording artist after signing with Motown’s Gordy Records, releasing the album Come Get It! in 1978 which produced the hits “You & I” and “Mary Jane”. In 1981, James released his most successful album, Street Songs, which included career-defining hits such as “Give It to Me Baby” and “Super Freak”, the latter song becoming his biggest crossover single, mixing elements of funk, disco, rock and new wave. James was also known for his soulful ballads such as “Fire & Desire” and “Ebony Eyes”. In addition, James also had a successful career as a songwriter and producer for other artists including Teena Marie, the Mary Jane Girls, the Temptations, Eddie Murphy and Smokey Robinson.

James’ mainstream success had peaked by the release of his album Glow in 1985 and his appearance on the popular TV show, The A-Team. His subsequent album releases failed to sell as well as their predecessors. Rapper MC Hammer sampled James’ “Super Freak” for his 1990 hit, “U Can’t Touch This” which won Best R&B Song at the 1991 Grammy Awards. James received his only Grammy for composing the song. By the early 1990s, James’ career was hampered by his drug addiction and he was embroiled with legal issues. In 1993, James was convicted for two separate instances of kidnapping and assaulting two different women while under the influence of crack cocaine, resulting in a three-year sentence at Folsom State Prison. James was released on parole in 1996 and released the album Urban Rapsody in 1997. James’ health problems halted his career again after he had a mild stroke during a concert in 1998, and he announced a semi-retirement.

In 2004, James’ career returned to mainstream pop culture after he appeared in an episode of Chappelle’s Show. The segment involved a Charlie Murphy True Hollywood Stories–style skit that satirized James’ wild lifestyle in the 1980s. This resulted in renewed interest in his music and that year he returned to perform on the road. James died later that year from heart failure at age 56.

In November 2020, James’ estate confirmed the sale of a 50% stake in his publishing and masters catalog to the Hipgnosis Songs Fund, founded by Canadian American music industry executive and entrepreneur Merck Mercuriadis.

Great Soul Performances 2: The 80s with Bobby Jay

bobbyjayrmWanna hear some fantabulous songs from the decade of the 80s? Then check me out this evening on RadioMaxMusic.Com, when I host “Great Soul Performances 2: The 80’s,” where I’ve selected music for your listening pleasure from artists such as: Anita Baker, Rick James & Teena Marie, the Commodores, Frankie Beverly & Maze, Luther Vandross, the Beastie Boys ( with the voice of a sampled Jimmy Castor), Robert Winters & Fall, Rodney Franklin, the Bar-Kays, Tom Browne and a bunch of other great artists. I’ll be here looking for you at 7PM ET, 6PM CT, 5PM MT & 4PM PT. So you see, you’re welcome, stop on by. Check you later, ‘gator. It’s “Great Soul Performances 2: The 80’s,” all over the universe.

Great Soul Performances with Bobby Jay 7pm ET

DiscoOn “Great Soul Performances” this evening, we go back to the “Disco.” The disco ball is shining, the dance floor is polished, and we’re gonna dance the night away with music by: Gloria Gaynor, the Village People, Donna Summer, the Trammps, Manu DiBango, the Joneses, Alicia Bridges, Tavares, the Bee Gees, Sister Sledge, Rick James and many many more. The party begins at 7PM ET, 6PM CT, 5PM MT and 4PM PT following an encore of this past Sunday’s “Great Soul Performances 2: The 80’s” at 5PM eastern time. So put on your finest dancing shoes and meet me at the “Disco” this evening on RadioMaxMusic.com.

Great Soul Performances 2: The 80s with Bobby Jay 5pm ET

BobbyJayIt looks like it’s going to be a beautiful Sunday for most of us around the country and I’m looking forward to presenting to you “Great Soul Performances 2: The 80’s” to this afternoon. On the playlist will be: Rick James, Teena Marie, the Impressions, Alicia Myers, the Four Tops, Al B. Sure!, the O’Jays, Ambrosia, Quincy Jones & Patti Austin, Jimmy Castor and a bunch of other great soul songs. It begins at 5PM Eastern Daylight Time, 4PM CT, 3PM MT & 2PM PT. Following at 7PM EDT, will be an encore of last evening’s salute to “Disco” on “Great Soul Performances.” Can’t wait to see you for an afternoon of “Sweet Soul Music” here on RadioMaxMusic.com.

Great Soul Performances with Bobby Jay 7pm ET

DiscoHopefully the bitter winter season is finally going to be behind us, and that makes me wanna dance. I was a fan of “Disco.” So, starting today, and going forward throughout the rest of the year on “Great Soul Performances,” we’ll take some time out to salute that era that people either loved or hated.

I’m sure that all over the country many cities had their favorite discos, but for me, being a Native New Yorker, I’ll never forget hanging out and dancing in places like “Xenon” on West 43rd Street, the “Cheetah” on 52nd Street, the “Electric Circus” on St. Mark’s Place in the East Village, “Trude Heller’s” aka “Trude Heller’s Trick” at 418 6th Avenue at 9th Street, “Fantasy East” in the Wakefield section of the Bronx, “Two Different Worlds” in Woodside Queens and of course the “disco of discos,” “Studio 54” on 54th Street between Broadway and 8th Avenue.

Cynthia and I went there often and we were there the night Frankie Crocker rode in on a white stallion. Memories none of us will ever forget. So you see where I’m going here. I’ve polished up the old Disco Ball, put on my platform shoes and my bell bottom pants and we are going to get down. All your favorite disco artists will be on board like: Donna Summer, the Village People, Chic, Amii Stewart, the Bee Gees, Thelma Houston, the Trammps, Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes, Rick James and all the rest.

Our disco opens at 7PM ET, 6PM CT, 5PM MT and 4PM PT. Naturally, we kick it off after the encore of this past Sunday’s “Great Soul Performances 2: The 80’s” at 5PM eastern time. It’s gonna be a “Disco Inferno” this evening on “Great Soul Performances” on RadioMaxMusic.com. BTW, don’t forget to move your clocks ahead one hour at 2AM eastern as we usher in what we used to call “Daylight Savings Time” as hope springs eternal. Pun intended. See Ya Later ‘Gator!

Great Soul Performances 2: The 80s with Bobby Jay 5pm ET #gsp

GSP2This afternoon on “Great Soul Performances 2:The 80’s,” on the playlist are songs by: Anita Baker, Run D.M.C., the Whispers, Richard “Dimples” Fields, Rick James, the Temptations, Regina Belle, Lionel Richie, the Beastie Boys, Patti LaBelle and a whole lot more. I begins at 5PM ET, 4PM CT, 3PM MT & 2PM PT. I think it’s a good way to spend a Sunday afternoon. You, me and the music on “Great Soul Performances 2: The 80’s” right here on RadioMaxMusic.com.

Artist Countdown: Teena Marie Top 25 Hits 6pm ET

TMarieMary Christine Brockert (March 5, 1956 – December 26, 2010), better known by her stage name Teena Marie, was an American singer, songwriter and producer. She was known as Tina before taking the stage name Teena Marie, then she later acquired the nickname of Lady Tee (sometimes spelled Lady T), given to her by collaborator and friend, Rick James.

She was known for her distinctive soulful vocals which initially caused many listeners to believe she was African-American. Her success in R&B and soul and loyalty to these genres would earn her the title Ivory Queen of Soul. She played rhythm guitar, keyboards and congas. She also wrote, produced, sang, and arranged virtually all of her songs since her 1980 release, Irons in the Fire, which she later said was her favorite album.

 

1 I Need Your Lovin’
2 Lovergirl
3 Behind the Groove
4 Square Biz
5 I’m a Sucker for Your Love
6 Ooo La La La
7 It Must Be Magic
8 Fix It
9 Still in Love
10 Jammin’
11 A Rose by Any Other Name (with Gerald Levert)
12 Ooh Wee
13 If I Were a Bell
14 Work It
15 Lips to Find You
16 Midnight Magnet
17 Young Love
18 Can’t Last a Day (with Faith Evans)
19 Just Us Two
20 Portuguese Love
21 Out on a Limb
22 Can It Be Love
23 Since Day One
24 Love Me Down Easy
25 Dear Lover