The hit-making, pioneering quartet known as Jodeci is back with a new CD The Past The Present and The Future and maybe some of their old habits. Only three of four of them showed up for their interview with the Tom Joyner Morning Show but the group admitted that DeVante, the group’s main producer in their 90’s heyday is simply afraid to fly and had wanted to get started on a brand new project.
Hopefully, he can get past that for what should be an upcoming tour.
As most of their diehard fans know, the group is composed of two sets of brothers Dalvin and DeVante DeGrate and K-Ci and JoJo Hailey. Although they never officially broke up, Jodeci went their separate ways after their 1995 album The Past The Present and The Future. JoJo and K-Ci remained a duet, scoring a huge hit with 1997’s All My Life and releasing five solo albums during Jodeci’s hiatus. The two also showed up on several reality shows, confronting K-Ci’s alleged alcoholism and fractured relationships with his children while JoJo emerged on VH1’s Couples Therapy.
Now, they’re back, working with Timbaland who ironically enough is one of the people that Devante, in one of the music industry’s most infamous bootcamps (Devante took a group of musicians to upstate New York years ago to work on their craft) helped develop.
“We really didn’t leave, we just stopped putting out records,” says Dalvin. “We still had #1 singles on the radio and you know music had started going through a transitional period. Hip-hop became really, really dominant in the music business so it kind of pushed R&B music to the back. And we didn’t want to fall by the wayside as many groups did trying to push ballads on the radio in the mainstream when it was dominated by hip-hop. There’s a perception Jodeci broke up but we never broke up.”
Dalvin says that after 18 years, the time was ripe for a comeback.
“Great artists were falling but people started wanting that great R&B real songs that you could make love to instead of just bouncing in the club to,” says Dalvin. “We just stuck to the same formula and didn’t follow trends because Jodeci has always set trends.”
K-Ci says that during their solo success, they were still recording Jodeci tracks so it getting back to the group was seamless.
“When me and our brother had our solo career, we were recording and then go crosstown and do Jodeci. We stayed around each other, we used to live around the corner from each other. We believe that a family that prays together, stays together,” says K-Ci.
On Throwback Thursday, Jodeci’s music is the perfect groove as the songs sound like they barely went away for a year or two, much less 18. Could it be that so many of today’s hip-hop laced R&B stars have just copied their sound – but are not always up to the same quality?
Jodeci includes some social consciousness this time around with “Nobody Wins” a song about domestic violence featuring B.o.B, and gets their familiar freak on with “Body Parts.” Timbaland comes onto collaborate on the production with “Those Things and “Incredible” which manages to update their sound without taking them too far from what their fans know and love them for.
“I just want to thank everyone for hanging in there with us all these years,” says K-Ci. “I want to thank you for your prayers. We’re not the best, but we’re trying.”
Jodeci The, Past The Present And The Future Tracklisting:
- “Too Hot”
- “Sho Out”
- “Checkin For You”
- “Those Things” (co-prod. Timbaland)
- “Every Moment”
- “Nobody Wins” f. B.o.B.
- “Incredible” (co-prod. Timbaland)
- “Body Parts”
- “Stress Reliever”
- “Sho Out” f. Liana Banks