Thursday, December 5, 2013

Dreamboy - Dreamboy (EP)

Hailing from Oak Park, Michigan, the R&B quartet Dreamboy first hit the airwaves in late 1983. They were signed to Quincy Jones’ Quest record label with distribution by Warner Brothers. The line-up for the band was Jeff Stanton (vocals), Jeff Bass (guitar), Jimi Hunt (keyboards), Pat Stewart (bass) and George “Dewey” Twymon (drums).

Today, we’ll mark the thirtieth anniversary of their self-titled debut extended-play record. Dreamboy peaked at number 168 on the US Billboard Album chart and number 32 on the US Billboard R&B Album chart.

Side one begins with “Let’s Go Out”. The infectious synth and bass lines of this dance track show a definite influence from the Minneapolis sound. It reminds me a bit of Prince's "Delirious" from his 1982 album 1999.

“Don’t Go” was released as the first single; it went to number 17 on the US Billboard R&B chart. The piano opening and the slow drumbeat this ballad brings to mind Prince's "Do Me, Baby" from the 1981 album Controversy. Stanton even adopts a similar yearning falsetto vocal style here with sprinkled in spoken word as he makes a plea to his love to stay.

The high energy music of "Slow Down" counterbalances the lyrical insistence to take things in the relationship at a much slower pace.

Side two starts with “Walk the Streets”. With the added urban sounds of traffic and sirens, this one tells of a frustrated guy who can't understand the things his love does.

"Get Off" is all about a guy trying to convince his ex-girlfriend that she really needs to get back with him.

“I Want to Know Your Name”, the closing sensitive ballad about love at first sight, was also the B-side to the first single.

Dreamboy's debut was one I had not heard until a few months ago. My online buddy Herc, who has his own blog called Herc's Hideaway (click here for that link), had asked me if the album was on my to-do list for 1983 records. When I told him I was unfamiliar with the band, he quickly enlightened me. From my posts, he knew it would be a record I would thoroughly enjoy as soon as I heard it. And he was right - I did!

Dreamboy is chock full of the kind of R&B music I was totally into during my college years. And, if imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, Prince would definitely be blushing. Just like Ready for the World (another Michigan band) in 1985, this record owes a lot to the sounds that His Royal Badness was laying down in the early 80's. It is definitely a welcome new discovery of a rather obscure album from 1983.

1 comment:

HERC said...

You're very welcome, sir. So glad you liked it.