Thursday, April 11, 2013

What Happened? Babyface

Babyface

Kenneth Edmonds was born on April 10, 1959, in Indianapolis, Indiana, to Marvin and Barbara Edmonds. Barbara was a pharmaceutical plant manager. Edmonds, who is the fifth of six brothers (including After 7 band members Melvin and Kevon Edmonds, the latter of whom went on to have a modestly successful solo career), attended North Central High School in Indianapolis, Indiana, and as a shy youth, wrote songs to express his emotions. When he was in eighth grade, Edmonds's father died of lung cancer, leaving his mother to raise her sons alone. At this stage, Edmonds became determined to have a career in music.

Edmonds later played with funk performer Bootsy Collins, who tagged him "Babyface" because of his cute face while he was still a teen. He also played in the groups Manchild (which had a 1976 hit "Especially for You" with band member Daryl Simmons), as he was a guitarist for the band.

 
 
The Deele was formed in 1981. The Deele recorded three albums during the 1980s, and scored several hit singles. The sextet released their debut album, Street Beat in 1983, and the following year, a single from this album, "Body Talk" became their first hit, reaching #3 on the R&B chart and #77 on the Billboard Hot 100 pop chart. Guitarist/keyboardist Stanley "Stick" Burke left the band prior to the recording of a follow-up album. Recorded as a quintet, Material Thangz was released in 1985. It was not as successful as their debut album.
Then, as a keyboardist in the light-funk and R&B group The Deele (which also included drummer Antonio "L.A." Reid, with whom he would later form a successful writing and producing partnership). One of his first major credits as a songwriter for outside artists came when he wrote the tune "Slow-Jam" for the R&B band Midnight Star in 1983. The tune was on Midnight Star's double-platinum No Parking on the Dance Floor album, and while it never hit the charts, the song  is still played on quiet storm shows.
 In 1986 Babyface released his first solo project on Solar records calLed Lovers. The was didn't meet expectations. 

The Deele reached the apex of their career in 1987 with the release of their third album, Eyes of a Stranger, which produced two top-10 R&B singles, "Shoot 'Em Up Movies" and perhaps their best-known song, "Two Occasions". The latter track reached #4 on the R&B charts and cracked the top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100. Music videos were made for both songs. The video for the "Shoot 'Em Up Movies" track was directed by Martin Pitts and produced by Mickey Shapiro.
In the late 1980s, he contributed to the creation of new jack swing, writing and producing music for the likes of Bobby Brown, Karyn White, Pebbles, Paula Abdul and '80s icon Sheena Easton.
Babyface remained in The Deele until 1988, when both he and Reid left the group. It was during this time that L.A. Reid and Babyface Edmonds began crafting their talents as songwriters for other artists. They wrote and produced "Girlfriend" (which featured backing vocals from Deele members and became a top ten hit) for Reid's girlfriend, and eventual wife Pebbles. During this period, they also wrote and produced The Whispers' "Rock Steady".
 In 1988, both Babyface and Reid left the group and founded LaFace Records in 1989.
In 1989 Babyface released his second album Tender Lover. The first song released from the album “No Crime” was a dance hit. He followed it with the title cut "Tender Lover" and then the massive “Whip Appeal
In 1989, Edmonds co-founded LaFace Records with Reid.
1989 "Don't Be Cruel" by Bobby Brown penned by Babyface was nominated for a Grammy for Best Rhythm & Blues Song.
1990 "Every Little Step" by Bobby Brown penned by Babyface was Nominated for a Grammy for Best Rhythm & Blue Song Babyface also nominated a Grammy for "Superwoman" a song he wrote for Karyn White. "It's No Crime" Best R&B Instrumental Performance Nominated in the same year.
After success of Tender Lover, Solar released the album Second Look in 1991. The album combined hits of Lovers and Tender Lover and a live version of The Deele song “Two Occasion” which Babyface was the lead.
In 1991 Babbyface was nominated for a Grammy for"Whip Appeal" Best R&B Vocal Performance Male. He was also nominated for writing "My, My, My" performed Johnny Gill Best Rhythm & Blue Song.
In 1992 TLC released their first album Ooooh On The Cool Tip on LaFace Records.
The Boomerang Soundtrack was released on LaFace Records. The soundtrack will go triple platinum over its life span.
In 1993, Greene and Bristol reunited again as The Deele (without Reid, Edmonds, or Roberson) to record the album, An Invitation to Love. This album found the group adopting a more new jack swing-based sound and incorporating rap into many of their songs. Failing to make a dent in the charts, the group called it quits later that same year.
In 1993 Babyface signed to Arista released For the Cool in You. The album would enjoy two hits from the alumd; the title cut and "Never Keeping Secerts"
I
n 1993 Toni Braxton released her self-entitled album on LaFace Records.The album was in response to her stellar performance on the Boomerang soundtrack.The songs written by LA Reid and Babyface that were intended for Anita Baker.
In 1993 Babyface won his first Grammy for writing "End of the Road" for Boyz II Men in the Best Rhythm & Blues Song category.
Babyface won his second Grammy for Producer of the Year (Non-Classical)
In 1994, he appeared and performed on an episode of Beverly Hills, 90210 entitled "Mr. Walsh Goes to Washington (Part 2)".
1994 The Bodyguard: Original Soundtrack Album Babyface won another Grammy (as a Producer) Album of the Year. He was also nominated "For the Cool in You" Best R&B Vocal Performance, Male and he was also nominated for writing "Can We Talk" for Tevin Campbell in Best Rhythm & Blues Song category.
Edmonds works with many successful performers in contemporary music. “I’m Your Baby Tonight,” produced for Whitney Houston, was his first #1 Top 40 hit in the US. He also wrote and produced Boyz II Men's "End of the Road" and "I'll Make Love to You," both of which established records for the longest stay at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart. He co-wrote, co-produced, and provided backing vocals on Madonna's 1994 Bedtime Stories, which featured the 7-week #1 hit "Take a Bow," and shared billing with Eric Clapton on the chart-topping Grammy winner "Change the World" from the Phenomenon soundtrack.
In 1995 Babyface won his fourth Grammy for "When Can I See You" Best Male R&B Vocal Performance it was his first for as recording artist. He was also nominated for Best Rhythm & Blue Song for “when Can I See You”. He won another Grammy for writing "I'll Make Love to You" for Boyz II Men. He also scored another nomination for writing "You Mean the World to Me" for Toni Braxton for her self-entitled debut album.
Babyface produced and wrote all the songs except “My Funny Valentine” for the Soundtrack to “Waiting To Exhale”. The soundtrack featured all female R & B artist. The album sells over 7 million copies.
In 1996 Babyface returned to the studio to record The Day
Babyface helped form the popular R&B group Az Yet. In 1996 the group released their self-entitled album on LaFace Records.
1996 Grammys nominations rolled in Babyface winning for Producer of the Year and being nominated for "Someone to Love" (with Jon B.) Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals and writing "Red Light Special" for TLC in the Best Rhythm & Blues Song category along with "You Can't Run"
Babyface also worked with David Foster to compose "The Power of the Dream," the official song of the 1996 Summer Olympics, performed by superstar Céline Dion. Linda Thompson provided the lyrics. The official soundtrack for the 1996 Summer Olympics was released on the Laface Record label.
Additionally, Edmonds has produced and written music for many artists including Carole King, Patti LaBelle, Chaka Khan, Aretha Franklin, Madonna, Janet Jackson, Faith Evans, Al Green, Beyoncé, Diana Ross, Sheena Easton, Toni Braxton, Michael Jackson, Michael Bolton, Paula Abdul, Pebbles, Tevin Campbell, Bobby Brown, Whitney Houston, Brandy, Mary J. Blige, Tamia, Shola Ama, 3T, Sisqó, Dru Hill, Fall Out Boy, Céline Dion, Katharine McPhee, Mariah Carey, Vanessa L. Williams, Chanté Moore, En Vogue, Eric Clapton, Kenny G, Lil Wayne, P!nk, Marc Nelson, TLC, and Phil Collins among others. He received three consecutive Grammy Awards for Producer of the Year in 1995–1997.
In 1997 at the height of his career Babyface performed on MTV Unplugged. The show also included Stevie Wonder, Shanice, K-Ci & Jojo. Babyface released an album and Dvd of this project.
In 1997 Babyface won several Grammys one for "Change The World" (as a Producer) Record of the Year, "Exhale (Shoop Shoop)" by Whitney Houston for writing in the Best Rhythm & Blues Song category and Producer of the Year. He was also nominated for best song for the year for “Exhale (Shoop Shoop),"Sittin' up in My Room" written for Brandy and "You're Makin' Me High" written for Toni Braxton in the Best Rhythm & Blues Song category.
In the mid-1990s, Edmonds and his wife Tracey Edmonds expanded into the business of motion pictures, setting up Edmonds Entertainment Group and producing films such as Soul Food in 1997.

In 1998 Babyface released his first holiday album Christmas with Babyface.
 
1998 was another stellar year for Babyface his album The Day was nominated for Album of the Year and Best R&B Album. His songs "Every Time I Close My Eyes" was nominated for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance and "Silver Springs" (feat. Stevie Wonder) Best Pop Collaboration with Vocals. "How Come, How Long" (feat. Stevie Wonder) was nominated for Best Short Form Music Video and he won Producer of the Year, Non-Classical
 
In 1999 Babyface appeared on the “Martin” show episode “Life is a Beach” singing “You Are So Beautiful” at Matin and Gina’s wedding.
Face 2 Face (2001)
Edmonds Entertainment Group released it second feature movie Josie and the Pussycats in (2001), and also the soundtrack for the film The Prince of Egypt, which included contributions from numerous artists, including Mariah Carey and Whitney Houston single.
They are the current executive producers of the hit BET reality series College Hill.
Babyface releases Grown & Sexy (2005)
Babyface also participated as a duet partner on the Fox reality show Celebrity Duets.
 Babyface was in the studio for about two years with Ashanti to produce her album The Declaration.
On August 30, 2006, Babyface was honored as a BMI Icon at the 6th annual BMI Urban Awards. Throughout his career, Babyface has won the BMI Pop Songwriter of the Year trophy seven times and a total of 51 BMI Awards.
As of 2007, Dee, Satin, Kayo & Burke have officially reformed the band with new member fifth member Qui . Their new MySpace page currently includes a new Christmas song released by the band, as well as a recent interview with the three original members (although Kayo was very reserved) at a Dallas radio station, during which Dee discusses, among other things, how The Deele were the first band signed to Solar Records solely based on their music (the representatives hadn't actually seen them perform). Now a part of Dallas Based Eieg/D-Town Records.
Babyface and L.A. Reid are the only two original members not participating in the current project. His album Playlist consists of eight cover songs and two original works. It was released on September 18, 2007. It was the first album on the newly re-launched Mercury Records label.
He worked on the Lil Wayne album Tha Carter III, on the Kanye West-produced "Comfortable." He also worked with R&B singer Monica for her album Still Standing.
Babyface has written and produced over 26 #1 R&B hits throughout his career.
 He is currently in studio working on his tenth studio album.
 Kenneth “Babyface” Edmonds divorces his wife Tracy after 12 years of Marriage.
 Babyface is nominated for a Grammy in 2013 "Pray For Me" Best R&B Song.
 

1 comment:

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