by Mike Breen
Cincinnati R&B/ElectroFunk group profiled on cable series Jan. 30
The sixth season of TV One's entertaining and informative Unsung series, showcasing artists who did well but didn't quite reach the heights many expected, kicks off tonight at 10 p.m. with an episode about the late, great Soul star Isaac Hayes. Next week, on Jan. 30, the series focuses on a group that was formed at Kentucky State University and ended up calling Cincinnati its home base — Midnight Star. The R&B/ElectroFunk nine-piece band was a major success in the ’80s, giving the music world massive hits like "Slow Jam," "No Parking on the Dance Floor" and "Freak-a-Zoid." But the band eventually splintered — due to "arguments over money and management," according to the Unsung synopsis — with Reggie Calloway and brother Vincent leaving and eventually forming Calloway (which had success with the smash "I Wanna Be Rich" in 1989). Midnight Star carried on and produced a couple more albums that featured R&B chart hits before taking a break. The "hiatus" ended in 2000 and Midnight Star continues to this day, performing most recently at the Macy's Music Festival last summer. Click here to read up on the band circa 2013.The Unsung series has a loose definition of "unsung" (as the Isaac Hayes episode suggests), but its profiles of various R&B/Soul, Hip Hop, Funk and Gospel artists are always fairly illuminating. The show has dedicated episodes to a wide range of successful artists, from The Ohio Players and Zapp to Kool Mo Dee and Big Daddy Kane to George Clinton, The Spinners and another Cincinnati-affiliated star, Bootsy Collins. Unsung (Documentary) - Bootsy Collins... by GENERATIONDISCOFUNKThe rest of Unsung's season six includes episodes on EPMD, Lou Rawls, Eddie Kendricks, The Whispers, Mint Condition, Johnny Gill and a special two-hour look at the Disco phenomenon. TV One is channel 217 for local Time Warner Cable subscribers (1217 for the HD channel).
by Mike Breen
Mayday's monthly new local music showcase kicks off with Formerly Ghosts
Head to Northside's Mayday tonight to check out the first installment of a new monthly music series showcasing brand new bands from the Greater Cincinnati area. The "Unsung" night will go down the first Wednesday of each month. For tonight's first Unsung, the featured act is Formerly Ghosts. The trio — Sebastien Hue, Pyn Wayne and Jimmy Shivers — says, "Sonic Youth, Gary Busey and John Wayne-Gacy did not have a three-headed love child, but if they did, it would be Formerly Ghosts," which should be more than enough to get you to Mayday around 9 p.m. for the band's free performance. If that's NOT enough, check out (and download for free) some demo tracks from band here. And become Formerly Ghosts' friends on Facebook (and read more info on the threesome) here.