Thursday, December 24, 2009
The Mary Jane Girls
The origin of their name is commonly believed to be an homage to Rick's affinity for marijuana (or "Mary Jane") and the girls took on distinctive character looks with matching personalities: JoJo was described as sexy & streetwise; a female version of Rick James, Cheri was the Valley girl, Candi was the vamp and Maxi was the dominatrix.
The project was originally supposed to be a solo debut for JoJo, who sung background vocals for Rick on tours and recordings. Rick developed tracks with JoJo and session vocalists the Water Sisters creating the sound of the Mary Jane Girls.
Motown Records offered Rick a record contract for what they believed was the girl group he wanted to produce and not wanting to lose the deal, he lied and told Motown that the Mary Jane Girls were a group & not JoJo's solo project.
Rick got who he could to take photos with the Water Sisters for all the Mary Jane Girls recordings. The other members of the group couldn't sing and had limited vocal talent. The band had to sing for them with JoJo on tour.
With the exception of JoJo, the vocal inability of the other group members prevented them from achieving their full potential & television shows such as "Saturday Night Live" and "The Tonight Show" couldn't have the group perform because of it.
The song has been sampled by artists such as Big Daddy Kane, LL Cool J, Mary J. Blige, and Redman.
The last single from the album "Jealousy" peaked at #106 on Billboard's Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles chart and #84 on Billboard's Black Singles chart, staying on the chart for 3 weeks.
"Candy Man," "All Night Long" and "Boys" all peaked at #8 on Billboard's Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart.
Before the release of their next album, Cheri left the group and was replaced by Yvette "Corvette" Marine (who is the daughter of disco singer Pattie Brooks) and took over the valley girl role in the group.
In the spring of that same year, the group's next single "Shadow Lover" was released, but problems between Motown Records and Rick James resulted in little promotion for the single even though the group performed it on "Soul Train."
The Mary Jane Girls were preparing to record their third album entitled "Conversation," but the album was never released and they officially disbanded in 1987.
After Candice and Kimberly left the group, JoJo carried on a solo artist.
Yvette appeared in Pebbles' music video for her single "Mercedes Boy." In 1991, she sued Virgin Records, claiming that she shared the lead vocals on Paula Abdul's 1988 album "Forever Your Girl" on the tracks "Opposites Attract," "Knocked Out" and "I Need You," but a jury ruled against her in 1993.
In My House: The Very Best Of The Mary Jane Girls."
During that same year, JoJo, Candice and Kimberly appeared on the daytime talk show "Jenny Jones" under the name "MJG" as the show's first musical guest, but by 1997, Kimberly and Candice left the group again. In 2003, the group appeared on the VH1 network show "Where Are They Now?"
These days, Cheri resides in Portland, Oregon and continues to perform. JoJo continues to perform and released a solo project called "Slightly Dangerous."
Yvette (now Yvette Barlowe) is married with two children, continues to sing and the host of her own celebrity profile show entitled "In the Mix with Yvette."
Kimberly works as a successful celebrity chief, published a cookbook and is developing a TV cooking show. Candice continues to be active in the music business.
To see JoJo's official website, go to:
To see Yvette's official website, go to:
To see the music video for "Candy Man," go to:
To see a fan-made video for "All Night Long," go to:
To see the music video for "Boys," go to:
To see a fan-made video for "Jealousy," go to:
To see the music video for "In My House," go to:
To see a fan-made video for "Wild And Crazy Love," go to:
To see the music video for "Walk Like a Man," go to:
To see a fan-made video for "Shadow Lover," go to:
[updated on 06/12/13]