Reflections: Long Delays Not Justified

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    It is always puzzling when a well-known recording artist takes an inordinately long time to release a new album. It would seem that their creative nature would make not making new music frustrating, that the recording studio would beckon.

    But the reasons for the long delays notwithstanding, the passing years give the artists plenty of time to come up with something really fresh — and different.

    Four of the industry’s top artists each took a very long time — about ten years! — to put new product in the marketplace, and in each case the product, when it finally came out, was less than outstanding.

    The great artists we refer to are Sade (“Solder of Love”), Maxwell (“BLACKsummer’snight”), Stevie Wonder (“A Time to Love”) and Anita Baker (“My Everything”).

    Furthermore, there was only 36 minutes of music on Maxwell’s CD.

    Sure, the albums were big sellers and they didn’t lack quality, it’s just that they were “nice” when most of the public was expecting much more.

    DRAKE is probably the hottest rapper out there today, and his latest album, “Thank Me Later,” was certified Platinum in less than a week. It was a real surprise to find out that the half Black/half Jewish artist’s uncle is Larry Graham.

    Looks like Chris Brown is over the hump now, back on course with his life and career following the bad behavior and scandal that followed. He paid the price, so he has a right to move on, just as the victim, Rihanna, has clearly done. He can smile again.

    Brown’s last album, “Graffiti,” was very good and “Deuces” (featuring Kevin McCall and Tyga) is the No. 1 R&B single in the United States.

    The Internet is a great thing (I love it!), but one downside is that it is badly hurting bookstores, video rental stores and record stores. They are closing everywhere you look.

    WE RECEIVED correspondence recently from Bobby Green,  an original member of Enchantment who is now, among other things, a dance instructor, salon owner and aerobics instructor.

    He reports that “Bobby Green Presents Whirl of Dance 3” will take place on Saturday, Oct. 16, at the Paul Robeson Theater, located inside the Northwest Activities Center. He says those who attend the showcase will see many kinds of dance, including ballroom, hip-hop, Latin hustle, jazz and bop.

    If you want more information, call (313) 530-2933 or write to him at

    Green was in Enchantment during the group’s peak years, when they were in the national Top 10 with “Gloria,” “It’s You That I Need” (a No. 1 hit) and “Sunshine.”

    JOHN F. KENNEDY JR., the late attorney and magazine publisher, loved and deeply admired his father, President John F. Kenney, but his biggest hero was Muhammad Ali.

    The younger Kennedy’s  best friend, William Noonan, said the admiration was based “especially on how he faced racism, refused to fight in Vietnam, and stuck to the ideals of his religion.”

    Ali was visibly moved when he was informed of this admiration.

    Wow, it was a surprise to discover that the great dancer Judith Jamison, also very well known from being artistic director of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, now has a bald head. But she’s not the only one.

    Songstress Dee Dee Bridgewater also has the bald look, and we can’t forget singer Jean Pace (who worked so often with husband Oscar Brown Jr.) who went hairless way back in the early 1970s.Oh, and then there was the bald model on the cover of all those Ohio Players albums.

    Time really does fly. Alexander O’Neal is 57!

    BETCHA DIDN’T KNOW…that Paula Abdul used to go with Jackie Jackson, and that his full name is Sigmund Esco Jackson.

    MEMORIES: “Can You Stand the Rain?” (New Edition), “Too Busy Thinking About My Baby” (Marvin Gaye), “The Cisco Kid” (War), “Turn the Beat Around” (Vickie Sue Robinson), “It’s Been a Long Time” (the New Birth), “Someone Else Is Steppin’ In” (Z.Z. Hill), “Can You Rock It Like This?” (Run-D.M.C.), “Forget Me Nots” (Patrice Rushen), “There’s Gonna Be a Showdown” (Archie Bell & the Drells), “I Wanna Get Next to You” (Rose Royce).
    BLESSINGS to Evelyn Browne, Shirleen Fort, Gloria Nicholson, Dwayne Paige, Renaye Coles, Antoine Foster, Larry Buford, Robert Brown, Sylvia Quarles, Andrew Strong, Esther Gordy Edwards, “Fast Freddy” Anderson and William Milhouse.

    WORDS OF THE WEEK: “Be yourself no matter what. Honesty sets you free.”

    Let the music play!

    (Steve Holsey can be reached at and PO Box 02843, Detroit, MI 48202.)

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