Thursday, August 16, 2012

Ta Mara and the Seen - "Everybody Dance"

Everybody Dance - Radio Waves of the 80's - Urban Hits

(Debuted October 12, 1985, Peaked #24, 20 Weeks on the Chart)

Ta Mara (whose real name was Margie Cox) was one of several mid-1980s artists to emulate Prince's "Minneapolis Sound" but at least she had a tenuous connection: she was from Minneapolis and her record was produced by one of the scene's progenitors, Jesse Johnson of The Time. Later, she would be part of Prince's New Power Generation as an associate and had a long list of credits with His Royal Badness. She was born in Morocco while her father was a diplomat, and that fact may have helped explain the way she sounded...well, not white.

That said, "Everybody Dance" was a group effort. Ta Mara and the Seen (not "the Scene" as they are sometimes called) featured four other members: Keith Woodson on bass, Gina Fellicetta on the keyboards, Jamie Chez on the drums and Oliver Leiber -- songwriter Mike Leiber's son -- on the guitar. However, having a pretty face on the voice up front probably obscured the rest of the band. In fact, the band's first LP only showed Ta Mara in the picture, so it wasn't hard for fans to see the record as a solo performance.

A Top 40 hit right when Prince was one of the hottest performers around, "Everybody Dance" ended up being the group's only hit. It was a modest pop hit and #3 on the R&B chart. When later singles failed to get much attention and the second LP stiffed, the band split apart in 1989.

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