Monday, December 22, 2008


The theme for my most recent posts seem to be flop acts. This next group is a CD I've seen in used cd stores for years and never got around to buying. Finally the last time I saw it I said what hell and plucked down a $1 for it. The name of group was Ricca and they released their self-titled debut on Epic Records in 1994. I honestly don't remember this group being around, which is shocking because I was all about girl groups back in the day. It would make sense because by the mid 90s the wave of popularity many girl groups enjoyed only a few years before was pretty much over. Unlike the majority of Latina girl groups that came before them (Sweet Sensation, The Cover Girls, etc.) their album was heavily R&B and not dance/pop like one would expect (not to say they weren't some dancier tracks included but they tend to lean more towards new jack swing). The album pretty much came and went, not charting on any Billboard charts. Two singles were released and from what info I could find they didn't chart as well. They included Any Love and Such A Rush. Like I said the album is very mid 90s R&B sounding with some tracks even leaning towards New Jack Swing. It's a shame as the album was good, with catchy hooks and slick production.

(L-R: Ricca CD; Such a Rush 12"; Any Love CD single)

The group was comprised of Natalie Soltren, Elisa Soltren and Teresa Rodrigues. While searching on info as to what happened to the ladies of Ricca, I pretty much came empty handed. That is until I was able to find some info on member Teresa. Teresa if the voice of BabyBaby, a website that creates custom lullabies. According to her bio after Ricca disbanded she went on to sing backup for the likes of DLG and Joe McIntyre. She currently is a member of the Connecticut based band Pandemonium. You can check out their myspace page or their official website. As for the remaining 2 ladies, whom I am guessing are sisters, not much is known about them. So if any of you know what's become of the gals of Ricca please let us know!

Def Dames

To make up for lack of posts lately I'm trying to do several today. Up next is another group I didn't discover until recently. The neon pink and green of Def Dames's album cover 2-4 The Bass literally screamed at me while I was at a music store not too long ago (they are a dying breed so I try and support them when I can). The cheap price and the even cheaper cover was all it took to purchase the album. The release is from 1989 on the indie label Sedona Recording Company. Def Dames (not to be confused with 90s Euro dance act Def Dames Dope) were Kandy Kane and Special T (which by today's standards sound like either stripper or porn star names...actually they probably sounded this way in 1989). From what little I could find (mostly via the album peaked at #76 on the R&B Album Chart. It also spawned two singles that charted on the Hot Rap Singles Chart. 976-Boom peaked at #19 while Set It Off (wonder if Peaches was a fan?) peaked at #20. The album is über cheesy bass/electro rap which was never really taken that seriously back in the day, but it's cheesiness lives on. Of note the song Work It even pokes fun of Salt N Pepa and L'Trimm (which is quite ironic since this album doesn't sound that far off from L'Trimm at times).

(L-R; 2 4 The Bass CD; Set It Off 12"; 2 Large CD; The King Of Romance 12")

They followed up their debut with 2 Large. This album failed to chart but yielded at least two singles The King of Romance (which peaked at #20 on the Hot Rap Singles Chart) and Whip It, which you can guess samples Devo's hit heavily. After this album came and went it seems like the ladies of Def Dames pretty much disappeared. What little info I was able to find was via this myspace page which seems to be run by their old producer/discoverer DJ Sparkle. Not much is said about the two ladies that made up the duo, but apparently two new ladies (Tish 'n' Playette) are now part of Def Dames and have a new album coming out soon. That's all fine and dandy, but what about Kandy Kane and Special T? Faithful readers I'm hoping someone can help us out or even give more insight into the group. In the meantime I was able to find the following videos on youtbe. God bless the internet.

First up is Whip It:

Next up, The King Of Romance:

Friday, December 19, 2008

Three Shades Brown

First off sorry for the lack of updates. To say I've been neglecting this blog is an understatement. But I know there are peeps out there that actually care about this kinda stuff so I must comply :) Without further a do I present the following.

Now this next group I know absolutely NOTHING about. They are called Three Shades Brown and they seem to have released but one album in 1992 on Interscope Records. I found their cd at a used cd store for a $1 and could not pass it up. They had me at the early 90s fasions. Their sole album was entitled Stronger Than Strong and was produced by The Funky Mercenaries (better known as Jesse Johnson of the Time). It peaked at #98 on the Billboard R&B album charts. Let me tell you this is album is an early 90s R&B dream come true!! Very New Jack Swing (so you know I love it). The group itself was comprised of former Jesse Johnson backup vocalist Kim Cage on lead vocals, Christi Thornton was the lead rapper and Leah Johnson was the backup vocalist. From what little info I was able to find it seems they released one single entitled Nasty Bass. From searching Billboard's datebase it did not chart...but if someone knows otherwise please tell! I tried searching on the members to see what they're up to now and came up w/ nothing. So I am hoping some of my faithful readers can help me out.

(L-R: Strong Than Strong CD; Nasty Bass 12")

I could not find any video footage either, just this fan made clip. At least you can hear what they sound like...

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