Söhne MannheimsView in iTunes
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Despite a lineup that sometimes swelled to as many as 17 members, Von Söhne Mannheims are best known in connection with frontman Xavier Naidoo, widely considered the premier German R&B singer of his generation. An emerging superstar in the wake of his 3P label debut, Nicht von Dieser Welt, Naidoo nevertheless mothballed his solo career in 2000 to cut a record with Von Söhne Mannheims, which he originally founded in 1995 with keyboardist/co-producer Michael Herberger. The original lineup also included keyboardist Florian Sitzmann, guitarists Michael Koschorreck and Andreas Bayless, bassist Robbee Mariano, drummers Ralf Gustke and Bernd Herrman, DJ Billy Davis, and backing vocalists J-Luv, Claus Eisenmann, Rolf Stahlofen, and Tino Oak. Guests like Jah Meek, Patrick Caputulo, Marlon B., and Uwe "Barton" Schäfer also contributed to Von Söhne Mannheims' 2000 debut LP, Zion, which launched the smash single "Geh' Devon Aus," a number two entry on the German pop charts. The project nevertheless went on hiatus as Naidoo resumed his solo career, resurfacing in 2002 with the chart-topping Zwischenspiel/Alles für den Herrn. The second Von Söhne Mannheims release, Noiz, did not hit retail until 2004, but it picked up where its predecessor left off with a pair of Top Ten singles, "Vielleicht" and "Und Wenn Ein Lied." The live Power of the Sound appeared in 2005, followed in 2008 by Wettsingen in Schwetzingen (MTV Unplugged). In 2009, Von Söhne Mannheims returned with IZ ON, while in 2011 they released Barrikaden von Eden. 2013 saw the release of a new single, "One Love." ~ Jason Ankeny