Color Me Badd's Kevin Thornton

Today is the 29th birthday of Kevin Thornton, one of four vocalists in

Color Me Badd, a New York-based soul/dance group that was formed at the

onset of the '90s in Oklahoma City, where all its members were born.

Color Me Badd, who sing harmony-based R&B songs with a touch of rap,

were discovered by Kool & the Gang's Robert Bell and, with his help,

were signed to Irving Azoff's Giant Records. The group's danceable,

uptempo songs and tender ballads immediately made them teen favorites.

In 1991, Color Me Badd released their debut single, "I Wanna Sex You

Up," which was featured on the soundtrack of the urban drama "New Jack

City." The song hit #1 in the U.K. and #2 in the United States, where it

eventually sold 2 million copies. The band's debut album, C.M.B.,

also charted on both sides of the Atlantic, reaching

the top 5 in both cases. "I Adore Mi Amor," also from the album, became

Color Me Badd's first U.S. #1 and was a minor hit in the U.K. The group

enjoyed another gold single in the United States -- and a top 5 hit in

the U.K. -- with "All 4 Love." They scored a few more hits from the

album, which remained on the U.S. album chart for 77 weeks. In 1992, at

the peak of their popularity, Color Me Badd played themselves on the hit

TV show "Beverly Hills 90210."

The group's second album, Time and Chance (1993), co-produced by

Jimmy Jam, Terry Lewis and Ice Cube collaborator DJ Pooh,

peaked at only #56 in the United States, far short of their

multi-platinum debut. Still, the title track and "Choose" were minor

hits in the United States and the U.K.

The group took a breather before releasing a follow-up, Now and

Forever (1996). Though the first single, "The Earth, the Sun, the

Rain," was a fast-riser, the album sold only moderately and quickly fell

off the charts.

Other birthdays: Barry Manilow, 52.