December 5 [16:00 EDT] -- The R&B quartet Dru Hill has had a year of ups and downs.
Fortunately, it's been mostly ups. In June, "Billboard" magazine declared the group's song "In My Bed" the top R&B single thus far in 1997. They also set out on their first national tour with Mary J. Blige and others.
But then, as we first reported in July, Dru Hill stepped into the ring with their record label, Island Records, after the group's manger was allegedly beaten with a pool cue by an Island employee.
To confuse the issue, a Polygram executive (Island's parent company) made a racist statement during a deposition about the hiring of African-Americans with criminal records. The exec was demoted, but the case caught the attention of advocate Jesse Jackson who met with Polygram to council them about race relations. Jackson's Rainbow Coalition then purchased stock in five out of the six major record labels, in order to have
a more powerful minority presence in the music industry at the corporate level.
The suit was settled amicably in November and Dru Hill remained with Island and is reportedly looking forward to their future there.
But as the year draws to a close, Dru Hill, has not one, but two songs -- "We're Not Making Love No More" and "5 Steps" -- heating up the airwaves, giving them plenty to look forward to.