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The New Birth

Formed by Tony Churchill and music-industry veteran Harvey Fuqua, New Birth was originally named the Nite-Liters. As the Nite-Liters, they enjoyed chart action with three R&B hits: "K-Jee," "Afro-Strut," and "Pull Together." Of the three, "K-Jee" was the most successful, peaking at number 17 during a 13-week run.

The roots of the band lie with Leslie and Melvin Wilson, who were gospel singers living in Muskegon, MI. After moving on to Detroit in the late '60s, their interest remained centered in gospel. Melvin Wilson eventually met the Nite-Liters, who at the time were backing Motown artists, and expressed the possibility that he and his brother Leslie could perform with them. As fate would have it, the two brothers became acquainted with former Marvelette Anne Bogan, who introduced them to Fuqua. He had three groups under his tutelage: Love Peace & Happiness (of which Leslie and Melvin became members), the Nite-Liters, and New Birth. All but two members of New Birth had left the group around this time, leaving just Londee Loren and Bobby Downs. The three groups toured, backed each other up, and ultimately merged into one, with New Birth the name of the new group.

Leslie, with his feisty vocals, and Melvin, with his more serene appeal, emerged as the primary lead singers. New Birth's first release was the R&B Top Ten single "I Can Understand It." Led by Leslie Wilson's intense vocals and reminiscent of Bobby Womack, the single zoomed up the charts, peaking at number four after only 12 weeks. In January of 1974 they released "It's Been a Long Time," one of their celebrated hits and another Top Ten entry. That single was followed by the classic, soulful ballad "Wildflower." During this time, the group was living in California, which presented problems; from egotism associated with the lights of Tinseltown to group-management problems, the band's best interests began to suffer. Consequently, New Birth terminated its affiliation with their founder and producer Fuqua, manager Jerry Weintraub, and RCA Records. In mid-1975 they signed with Buddah Records and immediately recorded their first and only number R&B one, "Dream Merchant." They recorded just one album for Buddah, however, before signing with Warner Bros. and later Ariola. In 1977, Leslie and Melvin Wilson left the group, and by 1979 the rest of the group had disbanded. However, in 1994, Leslie and Melvin re-formed the group and began performing at venues around the nation. ~ Craig Lytle, Rovi
full bio

Comments

I'll NEVER get enough of these guys. Their style will live with me until I die. I LOVE Leslie Wilson!!! He has so much soul and he adds sexiness to the songs he sings! It's Been A Long Time OH MY GOD!!!!
I LOVE this group I still have a copy of there album cover plastered on my locker at work...got a chance to see the original line up in 76 at Olympia stadium in Detroit they brought the egg and all wit em...MIND BLOWING
I absolutely loved this album as a young child when it first hit the charts...I never understood how a group that talented could break up so soon...Anyho w this album will continue to be cherished by many....
I miss this old school music. Where is the musicians disappear too. We need music and singing like this again
Love this group, saw them perform on soul train, they were awesome, what a beautiful song truly a classic★★★.♥
Youis sodeep
You go
My favorite group back in Jr. High. So very talented and their female vocalist was absolutely awesome!
Can,t get any better

This is music that you can understand and love those were the days
Half-Time Show"74"Apac h e ' s
Life is a Wildflower*9 7 8 * 4 m 1 4 y ~
chezcoco1
Another favorite from the day!
THAT'S MUSIC YA'LL!!
gritty soul style that goes deep into your soul and grows like a wildflower
This is a classic slow jam
Hang on in there baby! Yeah.
Love them! I saw them last month and they were just great.
Great Talent. 3m 14y
Remember this song back in the day, damn..
hill.keith44
Classic song!!!!
The jam!
ispepell
This is my jam....love this song.
One of my favs
Yoursongs is deep
I like the album but what happen to the album Blind Baby ?
New bithyoursong s is hot
afrokimono
a great quite storm radio format staple!
Li fe is too short yo hsbe sorrow
And we movn yall.!!!!
I'm riddn with yall. Lol.
I lovethis song do moresongs
angelwise61
I think It's been such a long time.
One of the best r&b bands of the 70s
can't get enough of their love songs
I grow up listening to this sound. It was awesome then and it is awesome today
LOVE LOVE yeah yeah yeah
I love them
I dont care what any one say wildflower is the best one
Luvvvvvv this side...
Love Love Love this song !!!!!!!!!!!! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! !
This song makd you ?
one of the most talented R and B groups of all time. So much talent. They deserved much more recognition. Where r they now?
This is one of my favorite groups. My daughter born in 1981 is so in love with this group, her favorite song is Wildflower.
My all time favorite... I call myself trying to hit those high notes...
Jamie foxx sampled this song's ending for his first hit, unpredictabl e
my favorite group!!!
always did like them!!
I love this group
Listen to new .make me thInk of the good old days
Luv New Birth. I Luv How long has it been? Yeah boy!
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