Beverlei BrownView in iTunes
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Beverlei Brown gleaned her singing skills from her mother, who sang in her church's choir in Birmingham, England. When she was old enough, Brown sang with the choir and eventually became the leader. She performed a solo with the Clark Sisters at the gospel wailers' U.K. concert and caught a sweet break with the Fine Young Cannibals, who needed some gospel singers for an album project; with Brown onboard, the sessions were good enough to land FYC a record deal and Brown a gig on their worldwide promotional tour. She returned to Birmingham after the expedition, finished school, and worked as a receptionist for a law office before accepting a touring gig with Ruby Turner that lasted two years. Her reputation grew quickly and Brown found work with Simply Red, Snap, Joe Cocker, the Brand New Heavies, Babyface, Chaka Khan, and others. The chance to cut a record came in 1996 via a Gary Benson/Livingston Brown song and production called "On and On," which was a U.K. club jam; a recorded album went unreleased when the record company went under. Dome Records representatives approached her two years later with a deal that resulted in relocation to London and hours of studio work. The talented singer co-wrote six of Next to You's tracks; the selections include a duet, "Could It Be You," cut in New Jersey with labelmate Dennis Taylor. The CD was a hot item in Japan; the U.K. version has three additional tracks. ~ Andrew Hamilton