Wednesday, May 10, 2023

"Serious Kinda Girl" by Christopher Max

Song#:  4121
Date:  12/02/1989
Debut:  97
Peak:  75
Weeks:  8
Genre:  R&B, Electro-Funk

Pop Bits:  Exposed to music and the business at a young age via his father (see below), Christopher McDaniels initially became proficient in drumming, but then expanded out to guitar and vocal work. After a stint at Boston's Berklee College of Music alongside his brother London, the pair moved to L.A. and formed the band Carerra. They would end up getting signed by Warner Bros. and issue out a self-titled debut album in '83. The LP didn't get anywhere, but the band would get a second chance when picked up by the Capitol Records off shoot label Manhattan. They would have a name change to World Sitizenz and push out a self-titled debut album in '85. Again, the work failed to gain any attention and the band would split. Then a chance run-in with producer Nile Rodgers led to a solo deal with EMI. McDaniels would then become Christopher Max and a debut album titled More Than Physical would be recorded with Rodgers. The title track would serve as the LP's first single and it would get to #24 R&B. A second single, "I Burn for You," would only reach #71 R&B. Then this third single came along. This time around, the song failed to reach the R&B chart, but it would spend a couple of months in the bottom quarter of the Pop chart. In turn, the album came and went as did Max's major label days.

ReduxReview:  This funky tune has a bit of the ol' Minneapolis feel to it mixed with a little new jack. The tune was nicely crafted and the production solid for the time period. However, it wasn't a tune that stuck with me. I liked it while listening, but then later I couldn't recall a note of it. The album's title track was the same way. Fun to hear, but then it left my brain soon after. The talent seemed to be there. It was just that Max wasn't able to come up with that surefire breakthrough hit.

ReduxRating:  5/10

Trivia:  Christopher McDaniel's father had some chart success in the early 60s. Gene McDaniels started out as a singer fronting a few jazz bands before getting a chance for a solo career. In '61 and '62, he would end up scoring three Pop Top 10s with "A Hundred Pounds of Clay" (#3 Pop/#11 R&B), "Tower of Strength" (#5 Pop/#5 R&B), and "Chip Chip" (#10 Pop). A couple of other Pop Top 40 entries would follow, but the hits would quickly halt for McDaniels. He would turn mainly to songwriting with his tunes getting picked up by several artist including Roberta Flack, who would turn one of McDaniels' songs into a major hit. "Feel Like Makin' Love" would be an across the board smash in 1974 getting to #1 at Pop, AC, and R&B. It would be nominated for three Grammys including Record and Song of the Year.


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