This post is sort of inspired by the tragic death of former Kris Kross member Chris Kelly earlier this month. It got me thinking about other “one-hit-wonders” from the 1990’s, and what happened to them. James DeShannon Davis, under the name M.C. Brains (which he claimed stood for “Bringing Raps And Instrumentals Non-Stop) released the rap song “Oochie Coochie” in Dec. 1991. For those who don’t remember this lyrical masterpiece, I don’t think any description I write could do it justice, so just watch the video for yourself:
Hey, you can’t deny that beat is slammin’!
This single went on to sell over a million copies by itself. This was followed by a full-length album, Lover’s Lane (pictured above), released in March 1992 on MOTOWN RECORDS, which went Gold, selling over a half a million copies. There was a second-single released from this album, titled “EVERYBODY’S TALKING ABOUT M.C. BRAINS” which didn’t do as well as the first single. And then M.C. Brains seemed to just disappear.
In April 1996, under the name M.C. Brainz, he released a 2nd album on the independent label Ichiban Records, called “Brainwashed“, which did not make much of an impact (I’d never even heard of it until I was looking up the rapper today), although that album can be found on iTunes today.
So, looking him up to see what happened to him, I found this article WHAT BECOMES OF THE BROKEN HEARTED? from April 2003, by Jimi Izreal. It it, Davis gives his side of the story, where he claims that his former manager, Michael Bivens, mis-managed his career. It’s an interesting read. Near the end of the article, it says that “He has slated his comeback effort for an early 2003 release on a major label he refuses to reveal.” Well, I looked, and couldn’t find any info about any new album release in 2003 or later. I did find another interview, from early 2009: Then 2 Now: Brainz Davis (formally MC Brains), where he is now using the name Brainz Davis and he again goes over the problems he had with Bivens. He also mentions that he has a new album planned for Summer 2009, and “a major role in a film” (called TUNE UP).
As of today, May 28 2013, no new album has been released since 1996, nor any info about that movie. But Brainz is still be active. That last interview linked to a Myspace page, which is still up. I tried listening to the 6 songs he has on it, and 3 of them (I Got That Feeling, Will You Still Be There, and Butt Neck) aren’t bad. I looked around some more, and found him on Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, and Reverbnation, as well as his own website, which says:
Now its 2013 and Brainz Davis is his name. His new series of CDs is his hottest release yet. Brainz has a tremendous amount of talent and heart; not only making this release justified; but just the beginning of the Brainz Davis legacy. Brainz was a ghost for more than ten years in the major market and now he is ready to let the world hear his story and his music. So get ready…cause Brainz is bringin the cool back and bringing adults rap music they can love again.
And his Facebook and Twitter profiles have pics of him performing. Last month he tweeted that his new album will be out Summer 2013. Will he make it this time? I mean, the man is 39 years old. His last major success was 21 years ago. And yet he’s still trying to make it back in the rap game. He’s either delusional or determined, I can’t tell which. But I will say that I’m rootin’ for him. I love underdogs, and a good comeback story. Especially if what he says about how Michael Bivens messed up his career is true, it would be great if Brainz could succeed again, against all odds. So I’ll be keeping my eye on him. If he releases a new album this summer, or whenever, I will definitely buy it, and review it on this blog.
Good luck, Brainz!