Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Oran "Juice" Jones - "The Rain"

The Rain - '80s Urban Beats & Grooves

(Debuted September 13, 1986, Peaked #9, 18 Weeks on the Chart)

Oran "Juice" Jones was a newcomer to the music business in 1986. How new, you ask? About six months before recording his debut LP, he was an infantry officer in the U.S. Marine Corps. Being born in Houston and raised in Harlem are things you'd expect to see on an R&B singer's resume, but a trip through the Naval Academy and leader of a company of troops are definitely unique.

The part that stood out for me with "The Rain" when I first heard it was the part at the end. After singing about discovering his lady was stepping out behind his back, he waits for her to come home so he can lay down The Law. However, instead of pulling out a gun and giving her a cold, hard lesson (like he says he might have wanted to), he took back all the gifts he gave her, cut off her money supply and let her walk away. That's an old school attitude: let her live with her mistake and know she did it to herself.

After further hits after "The Rain" failed to materialize, Jones eventually left the music business and took care of his mother as she battled a terminal illness. While that's not what you might expect from the guy you hear in the last couple minutes of "The Rain," it's something that you'd expect from a guy who was a Marine: duty bound and loyal to the end. Today, Jones has two children who are chasing their own musical careers.

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