Club Nouveau

A New Beginning

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By the time the 1990s rolled around, much of the urban contemporary world had pretty much given up on Jay King and assumed that his career was over and done with. Club Nouveau had lost too many key members (most notably, Denzil Foster and Thomas McElroy, who were busy working with En Vogue and others), and it seemed doubtful that King's band would make a comeback. But in 1992, King gave it a shot with A New Beginning, which unveiled a new Club Nouveau lineup. The CD didn't do much commercially, and it's hardly in a class with Life, Love & Pain or even Listen to the Message. But A New Beginning does have its moments, including the reassuring "I'll Be There" (not to be confused with the Jackson 5 hit), the troubling "Mary," and a spirited remake of the Edwin Hawkins Singers' gospel favorite "Oh, Happy Day." The album is slightly better than some skeptics might think, although it's definitely the work of someone who was past his prime. Only completists will find A New Beginning to be of interest.

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