Brian McKnight - As an artist who needs no introduction, Brian McKnight has earned himself a spot in contemporary music history. He has released 14 albums to date, 7 of them have gone platinum,...Expand
Brian McKnight - As an artist who needs no introduction, Brian McKnight has earned himself a spot in contemporary music history. He has released 14 albums to date, 7 of them have gone platinum, with several going 2 and 3x platinum, and he has sold over 20 million albums worldwide. McKnight is also a multiinstrumentalist who plays nine instruments including piano, guitar, bass, drums, percussions, trombone, tuba, flugelhorn and trumpet. In an industry known for a constantly revolving door of artists, McKnight has easily established himself with an enviable record of chart consistency, has toured successfully for over a decade, and has collaborated with performers across every genre including Quincy Jones, Justin Timberlake, Mariah Carey, Diddy, Christina Aguilera, Rascal Flatts, Nelly, Vanessa Williams, Willie Nelson and Kenny G.
Born in Buffalo, New York, Brian’s musical career began in childhood when he became a member of his church, NY choir and a bandleader for his high school, Sweet Home High School. By the
age of 19, he signed his first recording deal with Mercury Records subsidiary, Wing Records. In 1992, his self-titled album “Brian McKnight” was released followed by “I Remember You” (1995) and “Anytime” (1997). Anytime sold over two million copies and was nominated for a Grammy. In 1999, McKnight released Back at One on Motown Records, which sold over three million copies.
Johnny Gill -Johnny Gill was born in Washington D.C. to Annie and Johnny Gill, Sr. He also has three brothers named Randy, Bobby, and Jeff. Johnny started out singing in a family music group called Wings of Faith at the age of five. Together, the group sang in his father's church. Wings of Faith mostly sang Gospel songs because, as Johnny once said, "My dad was a minister, so R&B wasn't allowed. But we soaked in the sounds anyway. The sounds were in the air..." Johnny's solo career began in 1983 when his childhood friend, Stacy Lattisaw, convinced him to record a demo. The demo he recorded fell into the hands of the president of Stacy's record label, and his self-titled debut album was released on Atlantic Records...
Johnny had known New Edition since they released "Candy Girl" in 1983, and New Edition would joke that if he could hit a dance step right, he could be in the group. When Bobby left the group to pursue a successful solo career, they asked Johnny to join the group. Johnny had already signed a contract with Motown Records, but he joined New Edition on MCA records with the understanding that he would be a solo artist on Motown.
New Edition released the "Heart Break" album in 1988. Johnny gave the group the more mature and complete sound they were looking for. On the album, he sang solos on songs such as "Can You Stand The Rain," "N.E. Heart Break," and "Boys To Men."
Jagged Edge - Rough-but-smooth male vocal quartet Jagged Edge formed in Atlanta, Georgia, consisting of identical twin brothers Brandon "Case Dinero" Casey and Brian "Brasco" Casey, who had moved from their native Hartford, Connecticut; Kyle Norman (aka "Quick"), whom they'd met through church activities; and Richard Wingo (aka "Wingo Dollar"), a late addition to the group suggested by Xscape's Kandi Burruss, who took their demo to superproducer Jermaine Dupri. Jagged Edge signed to Dupri's Columbia-distributed So So Def label and in the summer of 1997 released their debut single, "The Way That You Talk," featuring appearances by Dupri and Da Brat; it reached the Top 40 of the R&B chart and was also a pop chart entry. Early in 1998, Jagged Edge released their first album, A Jagged Era, which went gold and spawned the Top 20 R&B, Top 40 pop hit "Gotta Be." Their next single, "He Can't Love U," appeared in the fall of 1998 and reached the Top Five of the R&B chart and the Top 20 of the pop chart, going gold in the process. It prefaced the group's second album, J.E. Heartbreak, which topped the R&B chart and hit the Top Ten of the pop chart, selling over 2,000,000 copies and spawning the number one R&B hits "Let's Get Married" (also Top 20 pop) and "Promise" (also Top Ten pop). By the time of the release of Jagged Edge's third album, Jagged Little Thrill, in late June 2001, its leadoff single, "Where the Party At" (featuring Nelly), was nearing the R&B Top Ten and was in the pop Top 40.Hard and Jagged Edge followed, respectively, in 2003 and 2006. For 2007's The Baby Makin' Project, the group switched to Island, but Dupri had since taken up the post of president at the label's urban division, making the transition from Columbia a welcomed and natural one. The album debuted at number eight on the Billboard 200. Jagged Edge then moved to Slip-N-Slide, where they released The Remedy in 2011.
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