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Me & You

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Biography

Me and You were a vocal duo featuring the talents of a brother and sister team, Norman McLean (b. 1959, Jamaica, West Indies) and Sonia McLean (b. 1963, Jamaica, West Indies, d. 1995). They came from a musical family and were aware of the pitfalls in the industry through their sister Shirley’s earlier experiences in the Jamaican music scene. The duo began their recording career in 1979 with DEB music, one of the more successful independent labels, which evolved from the Morpheus group initiated by Castro Brown. (It was wrongly assumed that there was a family connection when Castro formed a partnership with Dennis Emanuel Brown, whose initials inspired the label’s name.) The duo’s debut, ‘This Love’, was a Top 10 hit in the reggae charts, maintaining a healthy position throughout the spring season. They were then taken to the studio by Dennis and Castro Brown, who produced a version of the Philly hit ‘You Never Know What You Got’, featuring Jamaican session players the Professionals, later known as the We The People Band, and including Lloyd Parks and Sly Dunbar. The single topped the reggae chart and crossed over into the mainstream, staying in the chart for nine weeks and peaking at number 31 in the UK Top 40. The song was licensed to the Lazer group who had promoted ‘Money In My Pocket’ for Dennis Brown, repeating the accomplishment with the duo’s major label debut. During the summer months the group toured as part of a DEB music showcase featuring Black Harmony, 15-16-17, Destiny and George Burrell, pipped from the top slot by Black Harmony. In spite of this phenomenal rise to stardom Norman and Sonia maintained a cautious approach to their success. Their decision to be wary was proved correct when ‘In The Future’, released on DEB, was unable to match the fortunes of its predecessor. In 1980 the previous year’s efforts were rewarded when they were voted among the best newcomers in the Black Echoes Awards. They continued to record a number of hits, including ‘Railway Station’, alongside their 1982 self-production of ‘Casual Affair’, with a sublime version of Jackie Edwards’ ‘Who Told You So’. The duo had carved a respectable position in the history of UK reggae and the industry suffered a great loss when Sonia died in 1995.

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