The Mary Jane Girls were an American soul and funk group in the 1980s. They were protégées of singer Rick James. They are known for their hit songs "In My House", "All Night Long", and "Candy Man". The project was to be a solo project for Joanne "Jojo" McDuffie who was the only member that sang background for Rick on tour and in the studio. All Mary Jane Girl projects were sung by Jojo (lead and background) and the Water Sisters (Maxine/Julia)backgrounds which created the unique sound. Rick took the tracks to Motown but, lied and stated this was the group project he wanted to put together. Rather than lose the deal Rick got who he could to make the group up. No auditions took place which resulted in other members who could not sing at all or were very limited vocally.The group could not perform live and missed opportunities such as the Tonight Show and Saturday Night Live . The band had to sing live for the group on tour with the exception of JoJo. When Rick did use a member other than Jojo in the studio it was on a restricted basis.
The group The Mary Jane Girls, consisted of Joanne "JoJo" McDuffie, Cheryl "Cheri" Bailey aka Cheri Wells, Candice "Candi" Ghant, Kimberly "Maxi" Wuletich, Yvette "Corvette" Marine and the Water Sisters (Maxine/Julia)
The four group members took on distinctive character looks with matching personalities:
Joanne "JoJo" McDuffie - Sexy and streetwise; (Lead Singer and Backgrounds),
Cheryl "Cheri" Bailey - Valley Girl,
Candice "Candi" Ghant - Vamp,
Kimberly "Maxi" Wuletich - Dominatrix,
Yvette "Corvette" Marine (Replaced "Cheri" after the initial album),
The group's self-titled debut album was released in 1983 and yielded their first R&B hits: "Candy Man", "All Night Long" (which was later included in the soundtrack of the 2002 video game Grand Theft Auto: Vice City), and "Boys". The group released their second album Only Four You in 1985. That album's lead single "In My House" became the group's biggest hit, reaching #3 on the R&B chart and then crossing over to the Hot 100 chart, where it reached #7 and spent 12 weeks in the Top 40. It also charted on the Hot Dance Club Play chart, peaking at #1 for two weeks in April 1985. "Wild and Crazy Love" was the second single from this album and it also fared well on the R&B (#10) and dance charts (#3). It barely missed the Top 40 on the Billboard Hot 100, peaking at #42. The last single, "Break It Up", only reached #79 on the R&B chart and did not chart on the Billboard Hot 100. The group covered the Frankie Valli & the Four Seasons hit "Walk Like a Man", which was included on the soundtrack of the 1986 film A Fine Mess, charting at #41 on the Hot 100. The group's next single, "Shadow Lover", was released in the spring of 1986, but problems between Motown and Rick James resulted in little promotion for the single, although it was performed on Soul Train. That same year, the Mary Jane Girls were ready to record their third album titled Conversation.
After Ghant and Wuletich left the group, JoJo McDuffie carried on as a solo artist performing as "Jojo" Original Lead Singer Mary Jane Girls.Jojo has also became an accomplished TV/movie composer placing several songs.Jojo released a solo project titled"Slightly Dangerous" produced by Danny LeMelle who was Rick's producer and former music director. She recorded with Rick James on his 1997 Urban Rhapsody album on the track "Never Say You Love Me", which was originally written for Teena Marie. After leaving the Mary Jane Girls, Cheryl Bailey sang for Morris Day's studio group The DayZs. Yvette Marine went on to appear in Pebbles' Mercedes Boy music video in 1988. In 1991, she sued Virgin Records, claiming that she had shared the lead vocals on the songs "Opposites Attract", "Knocked Out", and "I Need You" on Paula Abdul's debut album Forever Your Girl. In 1993, a jury eventually ruled against Marine. Ghant remains in the entertainment industry and Kim Wuletich has gone on to becoming a chef.
"All Night Long" was recorded by British reggae act La Famille in 1983, released on the Sanity record label; and by British street soul act Jay Mondi and the Livin' Bass. Released in March 1990 on Ten Records, the track was a #63 UK hit. Also Erykah Badu has it as a coversong on her live Album.,
"In My House" was recorded by German singer Sarah Connor on her debut album, Green Eyed Soul. The song also appears on her A Night to Remember: Pop Meets Classic DVD. "In My House" was also recorded by American punk/indie rock band Big Black; the recording appeared on a special five-inch vinyl single included with the group's concert video Pigpile.,
"Hurting on the Inside" was recorded by British reggae act Sammy Levi on the Passion label in 1989.,
The Black Eyed Peas sampled "All Night Long" in their song "Audio Delite at Low Fidelity" from their album Monkey Business.,
Kylie Minogue sampled "Candy Man" in her song "Always Find the Time" from the 1990 album Rhythm of Love.,
Jennifer Lopez sampled "All Night Long" in her Murder Remix for her song "I'm Real from the 2002 remix album J to tha L-O! The Remixes.,
LL Cool J sampled "All Night Long" in his song "Around the Way Girl" from the 1990 album Mama Said Knock You Out.,
DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince sampled the group's song "I Wanna Rock" for the 1993 Code Red album.,
Da Brat sampled their song on the closing track "Give It 2 You" from 1994's Funkdafied.,
Mary J. Blige sampled the group's "All Night Long" for her song "Mary Jane (All Night Long)" on her 1994 album My Life.,
Jay-Z sampled "All Night Long" on a song called "Only A Customer", which appeared on the 1998 soundtrack The Streets Is Watching.,
Big Daddy Kane sampled "All Night Long" on 1989's "Smooth Operator".,
Redman has sampled "All Night Long" three times, on the following songs:
"Tonight's da Night",
"Can't Wait", in whose video they also appeared,
"How to Roll a Blunt",
In the late '90s, rapper Mack 10 featured Wuletich, Ghant, and McDuffie on his single, "On Them Thangs", on Priority Records. The three also appeared in the video for the song.,
Jeru the Damaja (via DJ Premier) sampled the drums of "All Night Long" (which were programmed on an Oberheim DMX on the song "Da Bitchez" from the album The Sun Rises in the East.,
AZ sampled "Musical Love" on "The Essence" (feat. Nas), from his album Aziatic.,
Ice Cube sampled "All Night Long" for the song "You Know How We Do It" on his 1993 album Lethal Injection.,
Onar sampled "All Night Long" for the song "Klubing" on his 2003 album "Wszystko co mogę mieć".
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