Filed under: Purple Snow
Built around a Supremes model by Revolution ex-patriot Andre Cymone, the Girls rendered a product that most closely resembles the Sound that most associate with Minneapolis. Produced, arranged, composed, and performed by Cymone, the Girls were a brash counterpoint to Prince’s lingerie’d trios of Vanity 6 and Appollonia 6. To A-B test the two factions is to host some musical version of Top Chef wherein two visionaries take the same ingredients and each make something uniquely amazing with them. Contestant, your three ingredients are: drums machines, polyphonic synthesizer, and sexuality.
The girls themselves—Germain Brooks, Shelia Rankin, and Doris Rhodes—lie on the fault line of much tectonic movement within the Golden Era of the Minneapolis Sound. Brooks had been a member of the Lewis Connection, and Rankin a singer with Quad Cities transplants, the Stylle Band. Brooks joined Rankin atop Stylle in 1982, then entertaining Ladies Night patrons at the Taste Show Lounge. Brooks and Rankin’s abilities were brought to the attention of Andre Cymone, who was working on his first solo album, grooming Doris Rhodes as a potential solo artist as well. The four quickly began recording at American Artists for the Girls’ Columbia Records debut. “We didn’t really do any demo,” recalled Brooks of the tireless tracking sessions. “We knew we were recording for an album and that it was coming out.”
When that album did come out in the Summer of 1984, “I Got My Eyes On You” was omitted. You can listen to a snippet above. This Winter, it will find a home amongst the bright moments featured on Purple Snow: Forecasting the Minneapolis Sound.
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