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Jodeci - a Legendary Music Group Based Charlotte, North Carolina

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Jodeci is a legendary music group based out of Charlotte, North Carolina the group consist of four men two of which are brothers, DeVante Swing, Mr. Dalvin, K-Ci, and JoJo. The grouped was formed in 1989 all four of the guys were raised in a church and had a lot of gospel experience and religious background. At that time, they were only teenagers and but they had released three independent gospel albums. K-Ci and JoJo were lead vocalist while DeVante Swing was an extremely talented producer, his ear for music was amazing. At only 16 Devante Swing went to Minneapolis with hopes of meeting Prince and getting him to sign Swing to his label. When swing was at Paisley Park the secretary denied him entrance after a few more failed attempts Swing soon return to North Carolina and begin working harder with the other three members of Jodeci, they ended up recording a few demo tapes and they drove all the way from Charlotte to New York in hopes of getting a deal with Uptown Records. The group was extremely determined about getting their tape to someone, just like the Paisley Park situation they got denied at the door but still kept trying then a music executive Andre Corell agreed to listen to their demo tape Andre liked what he heard so he had the group perform a few songs written by Al B Sure which would later become their number one singles, in front of a few people of the label as well as Heavy D. Andre took the boys out to dinner and presented them a record of that night to Uptown Records. After getting presented the record deal Andre assign the group to a young intern by the name of Puff Daddy who was responsible for creating their image at that time Puff Daddy new that she had to make the group stand out because of all the other competitions such as Boyz II Men, Milli Vanilli, H-Town and others. Even though the group was an R&B group Puff Daddy challenge the stereotype and give them a bad boy image with the baggy clothes and a street appearance. In 1991 they were hard at work on their first album Forever My Lady this album really challenged DeVante Swings unique ear for music in writing skills, it didn’t take long for the album come out it was finished in two weeks then released and it immediately had three number one singles on it Stay, Talk to Me, Forever My Lady. Uptown records knew they had real talent on their hands the album went to sell 3 million copies. In 1993 the group had tension to this with uptown records they were unhappy with Puff Daddy and his aggressive work ethic and wanted to leave Uptown and go with Death Row Records, which added it to the fuel to the then current East Coast versus West Coast feud. They went on to release their second album Diary of a Mad Band where Devante Swing had recruited the talent of newly found Timberland and Missy Elliot to help out, this album is critically acclaimed to be their best album to date and this album launched the group into super stardom. Many artists were reaching out to Swing in particular to work with him even Prince, who once rejected him when he was 16 as mentioned before. The group showed no signs of letting up and continued to release hits after hits, in 1995 they released their



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