I remember when this group hit the music scene. Their sound was phenomenal. They hailed from London and their music was a mixture of dance, R&B, disco, reggae, and hip-hop. Originally attracting attention as a sound system, playing records at house and street parties, Soul II Soul went on to win two Grammy’s. The musical collective originally, featuring producer/vocalist/songwriter/DJ Jazzie B., producer/arranger Nellee Hooper, and instrumentalist Philip “Daddae” Harvey, came together in the late ’80s. Two of their singles, “Fairplay” and “Feel Free,” began to attract attention both in clubs and in the press. For their third single, “Keep on Movin’,” they featured the vocals of Caron Wheeler. This song put them on the Top Ten in the U.K. and in major rotation in the U.S. In the summer of 1989 they released “Back to Life” which also featured Wheeler and created for themselves another Top Ten hit. Soul II Soul released their debut album, Club Classics, Vol. One, shortly afterward.
Wheeler left the group before the recording of the group’s second album, Vol. 2: 1990: A New Decade. The album debuted at number one in the U.K., yet it caught the group in a holding pattern. Hooper soon left the group, leaving Jazzie B. to soldier on alone. Hooper went on to work with several of the most influential and popular acts of the early ’90s, including Massive Attack, Bjork, Madonna and U2.