Tuesday, September 11, 2012

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Surface

Song:The First Time
Album:The First Time: The Best Of Surface

The smooth R & B group Surface had some success mostly on the R & B charts in the late 80s-early 90s. The First Time was their biggest hit. It topped the pop charts in 1990. Unlike a lot of vocal groups of the era, Surface were all veteran musicians capable of writing and producing their own music. Guitarist David Townsend was the son of veteran singer songwriter Ed Townsend, best known for writing the Marvin Gaye classic Let's Get It On. David Townsend was a guitarist with The Isley Brothers. He met bassist David Conley when both were in the 70s band Port Authority. After a stint with Mandrill, Conley reconnected with Townsend. Meanwhile, singer Bernard Jackson moved from his home in Stamford, CT to New York to get into the music business. He was put in touch with Townsend and the three guys started working together. Surface recorded a couple of singles for Salsoul Records but they knew they would have to get a deal with a major label to be successful. They moved to Los Angeles and signed a songwriting deal with EMI. They wrote Let's Be Friends for New Edition. Music exec Larkin Arnold had left EMI for Columbia and heard a demo for the Surface song Let's Try Again. He signed them and Surface had a string of R & B hits including three number one hits. Then in 1989, they crossed over to pop when Shower Me With Your Love reached #5 on the Billboard Hot 100. And then The First Time topped the Billboard Hot 100 in 1990. Jackson wrote the song with his friend Brian Simpson. The album 3 Deep was their final album. Surface split up in 1994. They reformed in 1999 and recorded the CD Love Zone. A planned tour was cancelled when David Townsend was found dead in his home. Bernard Jackson has recorded four solo albums. David Conley is a manager and A & R man. You can all their hits on this budget comp. Surface also produced music for Jermaine Jackson and Rebbie Jackson. Here's the video for The first Time by Surface.

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