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Shalamar is an American R&B and soul music vocal group based in New-York and active in the mid-1970s and throughout the 1980s and beyond. Originally a disco-driven vehicle created by Soul Train booking agent Dick Griffey and show creator and producer Don Cornelius, the band went on to be an influential dance trio masterminded by Cornelius. The book entitled British Hit Singles & Albums notes that the band members were regarded as fashion icons and trendsetters, and helped to introduce "body-popping" to the United Kingdom. The name, "Shalamar", was picked by Griffey.
Shalamar's first single, the 1977 Motown medley "Uptown Festival," featured a bevy of faceless studio musicians; once it became a hit, Griffey decided to form a performing group under the name Shalamar. Through Soul Train, Griffey found Jody Watley, Jeffrey Daniel, and Gerald Brown, the three vocalists that became Shalamar; Brown was quickly replaced by Howard Hewitt in 1978.
Shalamar's string of poppy dance-soul hits began in 1979 with "Take That to the Bank"; later that year, "The Second Time Around" hit the Top Ten. Throughout the early '80s the group were favorites on the U.S. R&B scene, as well as scoring a number of British hit singles (the two biggest being "A Night To Remember" and "There It Is" in 1982). Watley and Daniel left the group in 1982 and were replaced by Delisa Davis and Micki Free in 1984; Watley went on to stardom as a solo act. Daniel released an album "Skinny Boy in 1990 and choreographed Michael Jackson's Bad and Smooth Criminal videos. He is also credited with teaching Michael the Moonwalk.
The following year Shalamar won a Grammy award for "Don't Get Stopped in Beverly Hills," which was featured in Beverly Hills Cop. Hewitt left for a solo career in 1986, signaling the end of the band's career as hit-makers. Sidney Justin replaced Hewitt and the group recorded 1987's Circumstantial Evidence, which was a commercial disappointment. The group faded away soon after the release of 1990's Wake Up.
Jeffrey, Howard Hewett and Carolyn Griffey (Solar Records Dick Griffeys daughter) reformed Shalamar in the late nineties and played two UK Arena tours in 1999 and 2003. In 2005 Shalamar appeared on the primetime TV show Hit Me Baby One More Time and have been touring globally ever since.
In October 2009, the reconstituted Shalamar of Hewett, Daniel, and Griffey, performed as a part of "The Ultimate Boogie Nights Disco Concert Series", at IndigO2, within the O2 Arena Entertainment Avenue in London. This prompted their return to the UK in April 2010 for a tour. Shalamar returned to IndigO2 in October 2011, December 2012, December 2013 and December 2014. Shalamar performed a series of eight UK tour dates in April 2015 and another tour of four UK dates in July 2015.
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