For this week’s Second Listen Sunday, I decided to visit the Buckeye State and pay homage to The Rude Boys. The Cleveland-based quartet consisted of Larry Marcus, Melvin Sephus, Edward Lee “Buddy” Banks, and Joe Little III. Initially breaking onto the scene in 1990 with the hits “Written All Over Your Face” and “Are You Lonely For Me” from their debut, they wasted no time returning to the studio.
Slow Jam Saturday : Force MD’S, Here I Go Again
The world of R&B kicked off 2022 with a somber tone when GOD called Jesse Daniels, of the Force MDs, home. While the group is primarily known for their 1985 hit “Tender Love”, over thirty-plus years the group continued to stay active by touring, releasing singles, and of course, entertaining guests on the Staten Island Ferry with their trademark vocal stylings.
Last year I had the chance to interview founding group member Stevie D. Lundy on my podcast, and I also featured the group’s third album, Touch and Go, as a Flashback Friday album review. In honor of Mr. Daniels, I wanted to take it back to the group’s second album Chillin‘ and showcase the ballad “Here I Go Again”.
Serving as the second single from the album, “Here I Go Again” was produced by Robin Halpin, who co-wrote the song with group member Antoine Lundy. Following the success of “Tender Love,” another ballad was a no-brainer. Opening with a lovely intro that anyone who has gone through the motions of a relationship can relate to.
The moment Antoine croons,
“You and I
On that we can agree
But the thing
That really hangs me up
Is your touch
Still sets me free.”
We know that we were in for a ballad that recalls the slow drag popularized in the late seventies. While Antoine leads the song, Jessie comes in on the bridge to mesh eloquently with his nephew’s signature falsetto. Daniels was a true talent who never got his just due as a lead singer in a genuinely “unsung” group.
While “Tender Love” may be the signature tune for the Force MDs, the group has numerous fine slow jams, which deserve a spot on your playlist, with “Here I Go Again” serving as one of those songs.
Final Grade: A-
“Here I Go Again” from Chillin is available on all streaming platforms
For more on the Force MD’s, please check out their website: theforcemds.com
In addition to the 2020 interview I did with Stevie D, click on https://anchor.fm/reviewsanddunn/episodes/Staten-Soul-With-Stevie-D-of-The-Force-MDs-egg316/a-a2lfmgv
More reviews to explorer
Valentine’s Day 2024 may have come and gone, but I still plan to use highlight songs with the V-word for February’s Slow Jam Saturday. The artist I chose is a southern gentleman by the name of Lloyd. Initially breaking onto the scene as a member of the preteen-boy band N-Toon, Lloyd’s solo career kicked off in 2004 with the hit “Southside.”
As we continue to celebrate the month of love, I chose “Valentine by Ryan Leslie as the second song with the word valentine for February’s Slow Jam Saturday. Leslie broke into the music industry in 2003, writing hits for Beyoncé and New Edition. Leslie released the singles “The Way That U Move Girl” and “Used 2 Be” featuring Fabolous. However, his debut album was never officially released due to creative differences with his record label. In late 2007, Leslie finally broke through with the bop “Diamond Girl,” and his self-titled album would finally hit record stores on February 10, 2009. Leslie also succeeded with the follow-up singles “Addiction” and “How It Was Supposed to Be.” Surprisingly, though, Leslie didn’t drop “Valentine” as the fourth single, which would have timed perfectly with the album release date.