II D Extreme
|This article does not cite any references or sources. (July 2008)|
|II D Extreme|
New Jack Swing
Gasoline Alley Music
|Associated acts||Queen Latifah
K-Ci & JoJo
II D Extreme was an American new jack swing/urban R&B group from the early 1990s that included D'Extra Wiley, Randy Gill (Johnny Gill's brother) and Jermaine Mickey. They are known for the songs " Cry No More," "Up On The Roof" and Gap Band's cover of "Outstanding".
II D Extreme, was originally conceived in 1992 when D'Extra Wiley, while conversing with fellow original member and friend, Dawoud Said, had envisioned a group with all the members having the letter "D" in their names, hence, II "D" Extreme. However, not wanting to leave out the great vocals of Randy Gill, who was also already in another band with him and Said, D'Extra invited Randy to complete this new group, which he immediately accepted. After the departure of Said, the group consisted of Randy Gill, Jermaine Mickey (Randy's cousin), and D'Extra Wiley. The trio stood out on its own with a distinct sound and flair unlike any other group emerging from the surge of New Jack R&B artists in the 1990s. Sage Lee was added to the group in 1997, making the trio a quartet temporarily.
II D Extreme converged onto the music scene as an unsigned group with what was later to become a history-making single written by D'Extra Wiley, called "Cry No More." Superjock Paco Lopez played the song, then still an un-mastered demo, on the air on WPGC-FM in the group's hometown of Washington, D.C. The response to the song was epidemic with demand for airplay of the song spreading nationwide while the group was still unsigned. After being signed by power house industry impresario, Randy Phillips (currently CEO of AEG and former manager of Usher, Rod Stewart, Prince), their highly anticipated debut album, "II D Extreme," was released several months after the demo hit the airwaves, and sold enough units to earn "Cry No More" the prestigious status of RIAA-certified Gold.
"Cry No More" also made top 15 crossover, #1 and #3 Radio & Records charts and Billboard charts. It spent 4 weeks at #1 on BET's Video Soul countdown, 7 weeks at #1 for Jet Magazine's top charts, garnered a Soul Train Music Awards nomination, and received an ASCAP award for best urban debut song. Back at home in D.C., II D Extreme received a Wammie award. No other single recorded by a non-labeled artist has enjoyed the unique distinction of achieving such status and acclaim since the early 1950s.
II D Extreme's music is founded in strong gospel-influenced vocals, romantic lyrics and infectious grooves that make their live performances spellbinding. Legendary soul singer, Teddy Pendergrass heard their music and solicited their vocals on a song called, "Slow Ride To Heaven," from his "You & I" CD. They can be heard at the end of the Damon Wayans movie Blankman, performing a dancehall tinged version of The Spinners classic song, "Could It Be I'm Falling in Love," featuring Patra. The group has appeared on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, The Arsenio Hall Show, Soul Train, BET, MTV, and a host of other television and live performances. Behind the scenes, these men are known to be a humble, friendly, and a humorously crazy bunch.
D'Extra Wiley is an Entertainment veteran, producer, artist and screenplay writer, known for being a founder and member of II D Extreme. He has worked with a plethora of talent ranging from newcomer Frank Ocean to old school hitmakers, The Whispers. He is an alumnus of Norfolk State University and holds a Bachelor Of Science degree from FSU. He is a member of Phi Beta Sigma fraternity, and Kappa Kappa Psi band fraternity (Iota Xi chapter). D'Extra started out playing the drums at the age of 4 years old in the COGIC churches. He later formed a gospel group with his cousins and brothers called "Totally Committed." The Philly/D.C. based group included Joel E. Ruffin, bassist; keyboardist, Tim Carmon (Eric Clapton). He also performed in a group called Maniquin which included R&B artist Kenny Lattimore. He was a drummer in the R&B group, Masquerade, which included twin brothers, Art & Scott Powell, Sharif Walters and Keith Martin, the latter signed to Ruffhouse /Columbia records.
All songs recorded by II D Extreme were written, produced and executive produced by D'Extra Wiley, with the exception of the cover tunes "Up on the Roof" and a remake of the Gap Band's "Outstanding," "To Love Someone"from the first album and "Shoulders" on the second album which he co-wrote with group mate, Randy Gill.
After the dissipation of their record label, D'Extra went on to produce a theme song for the ABC network's sitcom "The Hughleys." He worked with Jodeci members, K-Ci & JoJo on their album, "It's Real." He also produced Queen Latifah's Flava Unit R&B female trio F.A.T.E., on the Flava Unit/Warner brother's label. After being signed by Agency West as an actor, D'Extra toured with the Dave Talbert's directed stage play, "A Fool And His Money," and landed small roles on television, such as the drummer in Callie's band on the soap drama The Young and the Restless. As a member of the National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences or NARAS, he helped drafted and implemented the Grammy Award "Best Rap/Sung Collaboration" category. He is currently the COO of Marvin Gaye III Entertainment, is producing an inspirational project with his siblings entitled, "The Wileys." He consults for radio promotions, and is developing television and film content and intellectual properties.
Randy Gill is an R&B singer, songwriter, record producer, and advocate for R&B music. Gill, along with his brothers Bobby, Jeff, and legendary R&B singer Johnny Gill, began his career singing in a family gospel group called "Wings of Faith". He has also written and performed with a variety of artists, including Teddy Pendergrass, Usher, Shai, and his brother Johnny Gill. Gill has appeared on Soul Train, Arsenio Hall, and BET. He and his brother Johnny Gill entertained American troops in Bosnia, Kosovo, and Macedonia with the USO Tour. Currently, Gill is wrapping up a solo recording project, entitled Gillology, as well as a soon-to-be-released CD by the group, II D Extreme.
Jermaine Mickey Jermaine continued to use his gift performing gospel and background vocals on various projects, including on Randy Gill's upcoming solo cd. In October 2008, Jermaine released his debut gospel album, "Testimonies.'
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