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Sounds Of Blackness

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FROM wikipedia

a Grammy Award-winning vocal and instrumental ensemble from Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota who perform music from several genres of African-American music including gospel, R&B, soul, and jazz, and who scored several big hits on the Billboard R&B chart and Billboard Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart in the 1990s. The group has received three Grammy Awards, four Stellar Awards, one Emmy nomination, the International Time for Peace Award, the International Dance Music Award and an NAACP Image Award nomination. The chief lead singer of the group was Ann Nesby until 1995 when Nesby left the group to pursue a solo career.

The group was founded in 1969 by Russell Knight at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota, and the group was called the Macalester College Black Voices. It was in 1971 when current director Gary Hines took leadership over the ensemble, and the group name was officially changed to Sounds of Blackness (SOB). The group had acquired local celebrity status throughout the years though never signed with a record company because of various reasons including the fact that many companies were not comfortable with the group’s name. Some companies even suggested to Hines that the group’s name be changed to “The Sounds of Music.”
Mega-hit producers Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, who are also from the Minneapolis/St. Paul area, had become familiar with the group and used their talent as back-up in a few of their productions in the mid 1980s. It was not until January 1989 when Jam and Lewis finally made their decision to sign the group to their new record label, Perspective Records.

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