Tuesday, March 3, 2020

"Fascinated" by Company B

Song#:  3061
Date:  03/21/1987
Debut:  92
Peak:  21
Weeks:  18
Genre:  Dance, Latin Freestyle, Hi-NRG

Pop Bits:  This Miami-based vocal trio was formed by producer Ish Ledesma. Seeing how the Latin freestyle sound was starting to gain popularity through various female vocal groups, Ledesma thought he might give it a whirl. He formed a trio that featured his wife Lori (billed as Lori L.) along with Charlotte McKinnon and Susan Johnson. The group went into the studio and recorded a couple of songs including "Fascinated." It was independently released and quickly spread to various clubs along with local Miami radio stations. Its popularity caught the attention of Atlantic Records who picked it up and got it released nationally. The tune gained steam in the clubs and it rose on the Dance chart until peaking at #1 at the beginning of March. A couple weeks later, the song debuted on the Pop chart. It ended up doing well just missing out on the Top 20. The results prompted Atlantic to ask for an album and Ledesma and the trio (now minus McKinnon, replaced by Lezlee Livrano) supplied a self-titled effort. Three tracks from the album would do well on the Dance chart (two Top 10s, one #12), but none of them reached the Pop chart. The album topped out at a minor #143. Still, the results called for a second album and the trio (now consisting of Lisa L., Donna Huntley, and Julie Marie) pushed out Gotta Dance in 1989. The LP, which leaned more towards house music, couldn't find an audience and it disappeared quickly with no singles charting. The results got them dropped from Atlantic. This song remains their only one to reach the Pop chart.

ReduxReview:  Here we go again. Another Latin freestyle assembled female vocal group. All of a sudden this was the rage and folks were trying to cash in on the sound. It worked for Company B, but their success was short-lived. This track was a pretty good entry into the freestyle race. The chorus is catchy and the lead vocals, although a bit shrill, seemed to showcase someone who could actually sing. The production is on the weak side, but not too bad for an indie recording. It is certainly a product of its era.

ReduxRating:  6/10

Trivia:  Double Shot!  1) While this song gave Ish Ledesma a hit as a songwriter and producer, he was not a stranger to the charts as a performer. In 1976, Ledesma formed the R&B/Disco band Foxy. Their second album, 1978's Get Off featured the #1 R&B/#9 Pop title track. A third album included the #4 R&B/#21 Pop hit "Hot Number." As disco died, so did the band. Next up was a solo album under just his first name Ish, but it didn't do much of anything. After that, Ledesma formed a band called OXO. The new wave-styled group scored a #28 Pop entry with "Whirly Girl" in 1983.  2) The trio's name was taken from an old pop standard. In the tune "Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy," made famous in 1941 by The Andrews Sisters, it says the bugle boy was from Company B. The trio Company B actually did an updated version of "Boogie Woogie Bugle Boy" for their second album Gotta Dance.


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