After 7

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After 7
OriginIndianapolis, Indiana, U.S.
Genres
Years active1987–1997; 2006–present
LabelsVirgin, E1 Music
MembersKevon Edmonds
Keith Mitchell
Danny McClain
Past membersMelvin Edmonds (deceased)
Jason Edmonds
Websitehttps://after7music.com/

After 7 is an American R&B group founded in 1987 by brothers Melvin and Kevon Edmonds, and their friend Keith Mitchell. The Edmonds brothers are the older siblings of pop/R&B singer-songwriter and record producer Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds, who named the group and helped them get a record deal with Virgin Records in 1988. After 7 released their platinum-selling[3] self-titled debut album in 1989, which spawned three singles "Heat of the Moment", "Ready or Not" and "Can't Stop". "Ready or Not" and "Can't Stop" were No. 1 R&B hits and top 10 hits on the Billboard Hot 100. Their second album Takin' My Time, released in 1992, also went platinum and contained the R&B hit medley "Baby, I'm for Real/Natural High". After 7's Gold-selling 1995 album Reflections was their last album before the group disbanded in 1997. The album included the R&B hit "'Til You Do Me Right. Years later the group resumed touring with Jason Edmonds, son of Melvin Edmonds, replacing his father.[4] Melvin rejoined the group for their successful 2016 comeback album Timeless, which featured 3 adult R&B top 10 hits "Runnin' Out", "I Want You" and "Let Me Know".[4][3]

Melvin Edmonds died on May 18, 2019, at the age of 65.[5][6][4] Jason left the group shortly thereafter and Danny McClain was added.

History[edit]

Early beginnings and formation[edit]

Marvin Edmonds Sr. and Barbara Edmonds of Indianapolis, Indiana had six sons: Marvin Jr., Melvin, Michael, Kevon, Kenneth and Derek.[4] According to Babyface, Melvin and Kevon were the two best singers in the musical family. The roots of After 7 trace to when Kevon met Keith Mitchell at Indiana University Bloomington in the late 1970s, where they were members of the Indiana University Soul Revue.[4] Kevon and Keith decided to form a group as a hobby and add Melvin. For years Kevon worked at Eli Lilly and Co., Mitchell worked at John Hancock in Chicago and Melvin worked at Chrysler Corp. in Indianapolis.[4] They would occasionally come together to perform in Indianapolis. Mitchell was long thought to be the cousin of Babyface's then-songwriting/production partner Antonio "L.A." Reid; however, this was set up as a marketing tool for the group and was incorrect.[7]

By the late 1980s, the Edmonds' younger brother Babyface had built a successful career singing, writing and producing. He invited Melvin, Kevon and Keith out to Los Angeles, named them After 7, and got them a record deal with Virgin Records.

Career success[edit]

After 7 released their self-titled debut album in August 1989. The album was mostly written and produced by Babyface and L.A. Reid. The album was certified platinum and produced three singles "Heat of the Moment", "Ready or Not" and "Can't Stop" and two other charting songs "One Night" and "My Only Woman". "Ready or Not" and "Can't Stop" were both No. 1 R&B hits and reached No. 7 and No. 6 respectively on the Billboard Hot 100.[8] "Can't Stop" was also nominated for a Grammy in the category of best R&B performance by a duo or group.[4] After 7 toured with MC Hammer in the summer of 1990, and they won an NAACP Image Award for best new male artist or group that year.[4] In 1991, they released the top 10 R&B hit "Nights Like This" for The Five Heartbeats movie soundtrack.

After 7's second album Takin' My Time was released in August 1992. The album is notable for being their only album without any songs produced by Babyface and L.A. Reid, who were focused on developing other artists. Instead, they contribute as writers, with Reid co-writing the songs "Can He Love U Like This" and "G.S.T.", and Babyface writing "Truly Something Special" and "Love by Day/Love by Night". The production was handed over to Daryl Simmons & Kayo, who co-produced and co-wrote many of the songs on their debut album.[1]

Other songs on the album were produced by Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis associate Randy Ran and producer Dallas Austin. As a result, this gave Takin' My Time a decidedly "new jack swing" sound and feel. Three singles were released from the album; the first was "Kickin' It", followed by a medley of The Originals' song "Baby I'm for Real" and Bloodstone's "Natural High". The third single was "Can He Love U Like This". The album was certified platinum by the RIAA.[9]

Reflections is the third and last studio album by After 7 before the group split. The album reunites them with producer Babyface and L.A. Reid. They also enlist the production talents of Babyface proteges Jon B. and Keith Andes as well as newcomers The Boom Brothers. Reflections is the first album where the members of the group have credits as songwriters as well as executive producers. The album included the R&B top 5 hit "'Til You Do Me Right.[8] Melvin exited the group after the release of Reflections and the group officially disbanded in 1997. After 7's last release on Virgin Records was the compilation album The Very Best of After 7 in March 1997. It included unreleased material, including a cover version of "Sara Smile". Also in 1997, Melvin and Kevon joined their brother Babyface to form the quintet Milestone along with K-Ci & JoJo. The group only released one single, "I Care 'Bout You", for the Soul Food movie soundtrack.

Comeback[edit]

Kevon Edmonds released the solo album 24/7 in October 1999. He invited his nephew Jason Edmonds, son of Melvin, to tour with him as a background singer for years. By the late 2000s, After 7 resumed touring with Jason replacing his father. However, the group decided not to record again without the participation of Melvin. Melvin battled health issues, including a stroke in 2011.[3] Melvin was able to reunite with the group on the 2015 single "I Want You", which reached the top 10 of Billboard's adult R&B songs chart. The group also recorded a version of the song with Babyface. The album Timeless was released in October 2016. It featured the group as a quartet (Melvin, Kevon, Keith and Jason) and included "I Want You" and other top 10 adult R&B hits "Runnin' Out" and "Let Me Know".

Melvin Edmonds died on May 18, 2019, at the age of 65.[3] Jason left the group shortly thereafter and Danny McClain was added. After 7 released their fifth album Unfinished Business in August 2021.

Discography[edit]

Studio albums[edit]

Year Album details Peak chart positions Certifications
US
[8]
US
R&B

[8]
AUS
[10]
NZ
[11]
1989 After 7
  • Release date: August 22, 1989
  • Label: Virgin
35 3 16 35
1992 Takin' My Time
  • Release date: August 25, 1992
  • Label: Virgin
76 8 39
1995 Reflections
  • Release date: July 18, 1995
  • Label: Virgin
40 7 83
2016 Timeless 7
2021 Unfinished Business
  • Release date: August 20, 2021
  • Label: The SoNo Recording Group
"—" denotes releases that did not chart or were not released in that territory.

Compilation albums[edit]

Year Album details Peak positions
US
[8]
US
R&B

[8]
1997 The Very Best of After 7
  • Release date: March 11, 1997
  • Label: Virgin
97 24
2003 The Best of After 7
  • Release date: December 30, 2003
  • Label: EMI
"—" denotes releases that did not chart.

Singles[edit]

Year Single Peak chart positions Certifications Album
US
[8]
US
R&B

[8]
AUS
[10]
NZ
[11]
UK
[13]
1989 "Heat of the Moment" 19 5 28 87 After 7
"Don't Cha' Think" 25
1990 "Ready or Not" B 7 1
"Can't Stop" B 6 1 80 9 54
"My Only Woman" 36
1991 "Nights Like This" B 24 7 The Five Heartbeats
1992 "Kickin' It" 45 6 29 Takin' My Time
"Baby, I'm for Real/Natural High" (medley) 55 5
1993 "Can He Love U Like This" 22
"Truly Something Special" 49
1994 "Gonna Love You Right" 87 15 Sugar Hill
"Not Enough Hours in the Night" 56 Beverly Hills 90210: The College Years
1995 "'Til You Do Me Right" 31 5 16 11 Reflections
"Damn Thing Called Love" 33 38
1996 "How Do You Tell the One" 60
"I Like It Like That" 46
1997 "Sara Smile" [A] 31 99 130 The Very Best of After 7
2015 "I Want You" [C] 6 Timeless
2016 "Let Me Know" [C] 6
2017 "Runnin' Out" [C] 3
"Too Late" [C] 8
2018 "If I"[C] 8
2021 "Bittersweet" 8 Unfinished Business
"No Place Like You" 11
"Tomorrow Can Wait"
"—" denotes releases that did not chart or were not released in that territory.
Notes

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Kellman, Andy (n.d.). "After 7: Biography & History". AllMusic. Retrieved January 26, 2021.
  2. ^ Himes, Geoffrey (May 16, 1990). "Records". The Washington Post. Retrieved January 26, 2021.
  3. ^ a b c d Melas, Chloe (May 20, 2019). "After 7 vocalist and North Central alum Melvin Edmonds dies at 65". CNN. Retrieved July 28, 2022.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h Lindquist, David (May 19, 2019). "After 7 vocalist and North Central alum Melvin Edmonds dies at 65". The Indianapolis Star. Retrieved July 28, 2022.
  5. ^ "WE REMEMBER: After 7's Melvin Edmonds Passes Away". Eurweb.com. May 19, 2019. Retrieved May 19, 2019.
  6. ^ Muhammad, Latifah (May 21, 2019). "After 7 Speaks Out After Death of Group Member Melvin Edmonds". Vibe. Retrieved February 5, 2022.
  7. ^ "Keith Mitchell: After 7's Untold Story". R&B Haven. 2009. Archived from the original on February 3, 2009. Retrieved February 1, 2009.
  8. ^ a b c d e f g h "US Charts > After 7". AllMusic. Archived from the original on April 5, 2013. Retrieved September 1, 2012.
  9. ^ Hogan, Ed. "Kevon Edmonds Biography". AllMusic. Retrieved September 11, 2012.
  10. ^ a b Australian (ARIA) chart peaks:
  11. ^ a b "NZ Charts > After 7". Recording Industry Association of New Zealand. Retrieved September 1, 2013.
  12. ^ a b c d e "US Certifications > After 7". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved September 1, 2013.
  13. ^ UK chart peaks:
  14. ^ "The ARIA Australian Top 100 Singles 1996". Imgur.com (original document published by ARIA). Archived from the original on November 2, 2015. Retrieved June 24, 2017.

External links[edit]