Archive for December, 2010
A native of Norfolk, Virginia, Lenis Guess had music in his blood from the very start - putting on shows for his family from age five. At 17, he cut his first record with a group called the Blue Beards after repeatedly winning local talent shows, but his parents decided he should put education over music, and he had to quit the group. He couldn't leave music alone, though - he continued to write songs for other artists, and ultimately got pulled back into the studio when he co-wrote and recorded the classic "Working for my baby" with studio and label owner Frank Guida - which became a local hit and got national notice after getting played on American Bandstand. Interestingly, it was the b-side of a later pressing of "Working for my baby" that became better-known over time - the relentlessly pounding "Just ask me" which became a major spin on the UK's northern soul scene. Over time, Lenis gradually became synonymous with the Norfolk scene - Guida eventually quit the business, and Lenis opened his own studio, working with and recording all manner of artists local and otherwise, like Lee Fields, Barbara Stant, Sir Guy, and Oliver Christian. He also recorded a number of other great records himself, like the blazing R&B tune "For all you've been" on DPG. Lenis eventually moved to Manhattan about 25 years ago, set up his own studio once again, and has continued to record actively since then. However, he has done only one other live performance in his hometown in over 20 years (Dig Deeper, 2009). It's been a long wait - we think NYC is well overdue for a blast of Virginia soul straight from the source. Special guest DJ - Virginia soul and funk from the Scorpio Brothers! BUY TICKETS HERE!