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A New Beginning

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Album Review

By the time the 1990s rolled around, much of the urban contemporary world had pretty much given up on Jay King and assumed that his career was over and done with. Club Nouveau had lost too many key members (most notably, Denzil Foster and Thomas McElroy, who were busy working with En Vogue and others), and it seemed doubtful that King's band would make a comeback. But in 1992, King gave it a shot with A New Beginning, which unveiled a new Club Nouveau lineup. The CD didn't do much commercially, and it's hardly in a class with Life, Love & Pain or even Listen to the Message. But A New Beginning does have its moments, including the reassuring "I'll Be There" (not to be confused with the Jackson 5 hit), the troubling "Mary," and a spirited remake of the Edwin Hawkins Singers' gospel favorite "Oh, Happy Day." The album is slightly better than some skeptics might think, although it's definitely the work of someone who was past his prime. Only completists will find A New Beginning to be of interest.


Formed: 1986 in Sacramento, CA

Genre: R&B/Soul

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s, '10s

Club Nouveau formed in Sacramento in 1986, including Jay King, Denzil Foster, Thomas McElroy, Samuelle Pratter, and Valerie Watson. King was the creative force behind the hit "Rumours" by the Timex Social Club in 1986, and formed King Jay Records for Club Nouveau. They made some good disco-flavored and funk tunes, and had four consecutive hits in 1986 and 1987: "Jealousy," "Situation #9," a cover of Bill Withers' "Lean on Me," and "Why You Treat Me So Bad." The last two both reached the number-two...
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A New Beginning, Club Nouveau
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