Full Clip: K-Ci & JoJo Run Down Jodeci’s Catalogue, MJB And More

Music

K-Ci: “When Jodeci first started it was JoJo and DeVante. I had a gospel group of my own called Little Cedric & The Hailey Singers. I’m a quartet singer and always will be. So I brought that quartet element to the group. JoJo and DeVante already had the harmonies and the melodies. But when I came to the group I brought that soulful David Ruffin, Bobby Womack, Al Green sound. And JoJo would listen to Babyface and the Deele.”

JoJo: “Exactly. That was who I listened to the most.”

K-Ci: “And me and DeVante would listen to Guy and the Gap Band. By the time Dalvin joined the group we just blended it all together and became Jodeci.”

JoJo: “I would describe Jodeci in 1989-1990 as a baby taking his first steps. The difference between coming from North Carolina to New York was crazy. We didn’t know where we were going. This was before we met Heavy D and Puffy (Sean “Diddy” Combs, former A&R and producer at Uptown Records) and got signed. Me, K-Ci, DeVante, and Dalvin had intentions on getting a record deal. But we didn’t know who to talk to so it was kind of scary. We were on the edge and so anxious. We were willing to crawl and go through what was necessary for us to be successful in this music industry.”

K-Ci: “The first record we were featured on was Father MC’s ‘Treat Them Like They Want to Be Treated.’

JoJo: “We look really young in that video [laughs].”

K-Ci: “I don’t know what we were thinking [laughs]. But I remember when they brought us the demo for that Father MC song to our house when we were staying in New Jersey. Me and JoJo were like, ‘We can do this song in one-take.’ And that’s what happened. We did ‘Treat Them Like They Want to Be Treated’ in one take in just an hour. If you ask me, that’s Jodeci’s biggest hit because it was our first feature. When we got into this business, we never thought we were going to be this big and have platinum records. Everybody from Puffy to to Heavy, Mary [J. Blige] and the whole clan that was there at Uptown Records pretty much started off at the same time. Puff wasn’t really a producer back then. He used to throw parties at Howard University. But he understood sound and how to put a look together. He could put together a total package. Puffy was one of those anxious guys that was starving and willing to take that chance on us. Just the energy level that he has and his creativity is very strong. That’s why Puffy’s still around today.”

JoJo: ‘Treat Them…’ ended up introducing people to Jodeci’s soulfulness that would set us apart from everybody. We were in a good position after that song.”


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