Friday, June 28, 2013

AccuRadio Song Of The Day-Frederick

Artist:Frederick f/Janice Dowlen
Song:Gentle (Calling My Name)
Album:WDAS 105.3FM: Classic Soul Hits Vol. 10

Here's a classic 80s slow jam that I am sure many have heard but they don't know who does it. That's because Gentle was the only chart hit for Frederick in 1985. Supposedly this was the most popular R & B record to be recorded in Cleveland until The Dazz Band and Gerald Levert came along. Remember The O'Jays were from Cleveland but they didn't record in Cleveland. Frederick Davis was born Apr. 7, 1957 in Cleveland. He led a band when he was in high school. It split up when Davis joined the US Navy. It seems he was a good boxer. Davis competed in the 1975 Golden Gloves tournament in Cleveland and trained with the Navy Boxing Team. But he returned to music after his discharge and was looking for a break. He was introduced to Time Traxx Productions owner Le Ray Ruffin. When Cleveland DJ Jeffery Charles played Davis' demo of Gentle on his WZAK For Lovers Only radio show, the phone lines went crazy. Ruffin signed Davis and got distribution from the small Akron based label Heat Records. Gentle reached #40 on the Billboard Hot 100. It should have been much bigger. The female singer Janice Dowlen who appears on the record was under contract to Heat. Frederick was under contract to Time Traxx. While the two record company owners were bickering, Heat couldn't keep up with the demand and should have farmed the record out to a national distributor. There was demand for the record but stores couldn't get it. Then when Frederick went on tour, Heat owner James McCants wouldn't allow Janice to tour with him. The whole thing was bungled. Frederick recorded an album but left Time Traxx and started his own label. Janice Dowlen died in 1991 but Frederick still performs and worked at Veterans Hospital in Cleveland for many years. You can get Gentle on this Collectables various artists comp. here's a video for Gentle (Calling My Name) by Frederick featuring Janice Dowlen.

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