Nine-piece soul funk band
Formed in Dayton, Ohio, U.S. from the combination of members of two groups - The Montereys and The Nomads. Originally named Ohio Lakeside Express. They met Frank Wilson just before he'd quit Motown and they were signed at ABC Records and they released their debut in 1977 produced by Frank Wilson. In 1978 their manager and friend Dick Griffey founded Solar and signed the group. Norman Whitfield as well had made them an offer for Whitfield Records but Lakeside turned it down. They contributed instead to Willie Hutch' "In Tune" released in Whitfield's label. They also contributed in "Danceland" (from Carrie Lucas' third album in 1979) and produced 7th Wonder's "Stop Before You Break My Heart" (from their third and last album). They would release nine albums at Solar between 1978 - 1990. Their main line up (after several changes) were Otis Stokes (guitar, vocals), Thomas Shelby (lead vocals), Mark Adam Wood, Jr. (lead vocals, keyboards), Stephen Shockley (guitar), Fred Alexander Jr. (drums), Tiemeyer McCain (lead vocals), Marvin Craig (bass), Fred Lewis (2) (percussion), Norman Beavers (keyboards). They became famous for their flamboyant theatrical costumes on their album covers and for the rich, heavy, uplifting funk soul sound. Their biggest legacy remains their 1980 single "Fantastic Voyage" (No.1 in the r'n'b charts, the closest they came to a crossover success - No.55 in the U.S. pop chart) that was included in the soundtrack of 1992's "South Central" and Coolio covered -among other rappers- in 1994. Other big hits are "It's All The Way Live" (No.4 in 1977, R'n'B charts), their cover on The Beatles' "I Want To Hold Your Hand" (1981, No.5, R'n'B charts), "Raid" (1983, No.8 R'n'B charts) and "Outrageous" (1984, No.7 R'n'B charts).
Bernadette Cooper created and formed the All -female funk band, who had huge pop hits with "I Miss You", "I'd Still Say Yes" and "Man Size Love". The group released three albums before their break-out hit album "Meeting In The Ladies Room", where they slimmed down to the six-piece band most remembered by fans.
After their next self-titled album, Bernadette Cooper and Joyce Irby left the band to pursue solo careers, with both producing other artists (Cooper created the Klymaxx-like vocal group Madame X) and releasing solo albums. After Lynn Malsby also left, the remaining members released one more album in 1990 as a trio, "The Maxx Is Back".
The group dissolved soon after, but most of the original members reunited in the mid-90's to record the album "One Day". After breaking up yet again, in 2003 they reunited on, VH1's Bands Reunited, , minus Cheryl Cooley due to disputes over her unauthorized use and attempted trademark the bands name. Bernadette Cooper tours as Klymaxx featuring Bernadette Cooper
The group was formed in Ohio by New Jersey native horn player/songwriter/producer Steve Washington (funk obviously runs in the blood - Washington's uncle was Ralph 'Pee Wee' Middlebrook of the famed Ohio Players). Slave performed edgy funk grooves that rival (or even overwhelm) what is considered 'hard' street music today. By the time the Cotillion/Atlantic album "Stone Jam", originally release in September 1980, came out, Steve Washington had departed the group to form another band, Aurra. Not long afterward, Steve Arrington (drummer and vocalist) also departed to undertake a solo career that produced important funk classics such as "Way Out" and "Nobody Can Be You But You".