3 Minute Update: Catch up with legendary hitmakers Raydio

Share this article

    Photo courtesy of Raydio Facebook Page

    Raydio came out of the box red hot, and continued a chart run for several years with super melodic songs and great vocals to match. Formed by guitarist supreme Ray Parker Jr, the original band included Jerry Knight, Vincent Bonham and Arnell Carmichael.

    Their debut song, the 1978 adult parody of the childhood rhyme “Jack & Jill” shot to the top ten of both the pop and soul charts, the first in a string of major hits. The following year, the equally sing-songy release “You Can’t Change That” replicated that success and moved Raydio to the A-List of R&B acts.

    Raydio came out of the box red hot, and continued a chart run for several years with super melodic songs and great vocals to match. Formed by guitarist supreme Ray Parker Jr, the original band included Jerry Knight, Vincent Bonham and Arnell Carmichael.

    Their debut song, the 1978 adult parody of the childhood rhyme “Jack & Jill” shot to the top ten of both the pop and soul charts, the first in a string of major hits. The following year, the equally sing-songy release “You Can’t Change That” replicated that success and moved Raydio to the A-List of R&B acts.

    By 1980, vocalist Knight had left the group (later becoming part of the “Breakin’” duo Ollie & Jerry) and the band’s name was changed to Ray Parker Jr and Raydio. Parker took a more front-and-center role vocally and continued to drive the songwriting and production. They scored additional big hits with “That Old Song” and “A Woman Needs Love (Just Like You Do),” before Parker split to establish what would become a solid solo career.

    With four gold albums but without Parker at the helm, Raydio essentially became no more. Even the Raydio 70s and 80s hits were ultimately subsumed in Ray Parker, Jr. compilations.

    After decades away, original member Carmichael (guitar and lead vocals) established a new version of Raydio with additional members Giovanni Rogers (lead vocals), Lavon McPherson (bass) and Chris Thomas (drums), and began participating in multi-act R&B and disco shows with groups like Heatwave and AWB, as well as headlining performances in venues around the US. They continue as an active touring group in 2022 and sound good.

    By Chris Rizik

     
    Choice Cut - Brother Reggie - "Love Song"
    Choice Cut - KEA - "Turn It Around"
    Choice Cut - Sargent Tucker - "Don't Blame Love"
    Song of the Month - Acantha Lang - "It's Gonna Be Alright"