Mary Jane Girls

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Mary Jane Girls
Origin Los Angeles, United States
Genres Soul, funk
Years active 1979 - 1987
Labels Gordy
Associated acts Rick James
Past members Joanne "JoJo" McDuffie
Cheryl Ann "Cheri" Bailey
Candice "Candi" Ghant
Kimberly "Maxi" Wuletich
Yvette "Corvette" Marine

The Mary Jane Girls were an American soul and funk group in the 1980s. They were protégées of singer Rick James. They are known for their hit songs "In My House", "All Night Long", and "Candy Man". The project was to be a solo project for Joanne "Jojo" McDuffie who sang background for Rick on tour and in the studio. Jojo was the only member of the Mary Jane Girls that sang for Rick prior to the group being formed.The project like all the Mary Jane Projects were sung by Jojo (lead and background) and the Water Sisters.When Rick presented the project to Motown he lied and said this was a group and not Jojo's solo project.Rick the had to get who he could with no auditions. This resulted in the other members not being able to sing at all or being extremely limited vocally. The band had to sing for the group live with the exception of Jojo. This caused the group not be able to appear on several television shows ie. Saturday Night Live. The Tonight Show etc.. . Rick was only able to use the other members on a very limited basis.

Formation[edit]

The group The Mary Jane Girls, consisted of Joanne "JoJo" McDuffie , Cheryl "Cheri" Bailey aka Cheri Wells, Candice "Candi" Ghant, Kimberly "Maxi" Wuletich, Yvette "Corvette" Marine and the Water Sisters (Maxine/Julia)

The origin of the group's name is commonly believed to be an homage to James's affinity for marijuana, which is sometimes called "Mary Jane." The four group members took on distinctive character looks with matching personalities:

  • Joanne "JoJo" McDuffie – Sexy and streetwise; (Lead Singer and Backgrounds)
  • Cheryl "Cheri" Bailey - Valley Girl
  • Candice "Candi" Ghant - Vamp
  • Kimberly "Maxi" Wuletich – Dominatrix
  • Yvette "Corvette" Marine


Even though The Mary Jane Girls spent a relatively short time in the limelight, they paved the way for many new aspiring artists. Life after The Mary Jane Girls . . .

Cheri left the group shortly before the release of their second album, Only Four You, in 1985 and a few years later was chosen to be a singer for Morris Days' all girl band, The DayZs; the group was signed to Warner Bros./Reprise.

Cheri was replaced by Yvette "Corvette" Marine; she is the daughter of[disco]singer Pattie Brooks. Today, Yvette also continues to perform, having recently toured as a background singer for The Jacksons, and is also a devoted wife and mother.

After the demise of the group Candi reignited old passions: songwriting and vocal session work, but her family has always been her top priority.

Today, Maxi, has traded in her whips and chains for an apron and spatula, and is serving up original recipes for cookies that are to die for! When she's not baking, or wearing her motherhood hat.

JoJo continues to perform as "Jojo" Original Lead Singer Mary Jane Girls. She has also become a song writer/composer and has placed several tracks on network shows and movies.She has independently released a solo projects entitled "Slightly Dangerous" and recently "Shameless Hussy" . She has traveled the world performing for troops and other fans singing their favorite Mary Jane Girls songs as they heard them originally

Diehard fans continue to cheer on their favorite Mary Jane Girl, no one can deny the magic that was created by Rick James,Jojo, The Water Sisters and the group known as The Mary Jane Girls; they will forever be a Motown family favorite!

Career[edit]

The group's self-titled debut album was released in 1983 and yielded their first R&B hits: "Candy Man", "All Night Long" (which was later included in the soundtrack of the 2002 video game Grand Theft Auto: Vice City), and "Boys". The group released their second album Only Four You in 1985. That album's lead single "In My House" became the group's biggest hit, reaching #3 on the R&B chart and then crossing over to the Hot 100 chart, where it reached #7 and spent 12 weeks in the Top 40. It also charted on the Hot Dance Club Play chart, peaking at #1 for two weeks in April 1985. "Wild and Crazy Love" was the second single from this album and it also fared well on the R&B (#10) and dance charts (#3). It barely missed the Top 40 on the Billboard Hot 100, peaking at #42. The last single, "Break It Up", only reached #79 on the R&B chart and did not chart on the Billboard Hot 100. The group covered the Frankie Valli & the Four Seasons hit "Walk Like a Man", which was included on the soundtrack of the 1986 film A Fine Mess, charting at #41 on the Hot 100. The group's next single, "Shadow Lover", was released in the spring of 1986, but problems between Motown and Rick James resulted in little promotion for the single, although it was performed on Soul Train. That same year, the Mary Jane Girls were ready to record their third album titled Conversation. Personal and legal problems for James meant the album was never released and the group officially broke up in 1987. "In My House" was the group's only Top 40 pop hit.

After Ghant and Wuletich left the group, JoJo McDuffie carried on as a solo artist. She also recorded with Rick James on his 1997 Urban Rhapsody album on the track "Never Say You Love Me", which was originally written for Teena Marie. After leaving the Mary Jane Girls, Cheryl Bailey sang lead for Morris Day's studio group The DayZs. Yvette Marine went on to appear in Pebbles' Mercedes Boy music video in 1988. In 1991, she sued Virgin Records, claiming that she had shared the lead vocals on the songs "Opposites Attract", "Knocked Out", and "I Need You" on Paula Abdul's debut album Forever Your Girl.[1] In 1993, a jury eventually ruled against Marine.[2]

In 1995, McDuffie, Ghant, and Wuletich, under the name "MJG," appeared on the daytime talk show Jenny Jones as the show's first musical guest. By 1997 Ghant and Wuletich left the group once again.

Current[edit]

Bailey continues to perform and is living in Portland, Oregon. McDuffie continues to perform as "JoJo" Original Lead Singer Mary Jane Girls. She is also a television/movie composer. JoJo has released a solo project entitled "Slightly Dangerous", produced by Danny LeMelle. In the hourly intros to the 2009 VH1 special 100 Greatest One Hit Wonders of the 80s, McDuffie says she is proud to be a one-hit wonder. Ghant is still in the music business. Marine is a married mother of two, and is the host of In The Mix with Yvette, a celebrity profile show. Wuletich is a successful celebrity chef who just published a cookbook and is developing a TV cooking show. The group appeared on VH1's Where Are They Now? in 2003. Bailey, Wuletich, Ghant, and Marine appeared in a separate segment from McDuffie, who had just returned from Europe touring with Barry White. JoJo was featured on 100 Greatest One Hit Wonders of the 80s discussing her new project "Slightly Dangerous" and showing a clip from a concert performance in 2009.

Cover versions[edit]

  • "All Night Long" was recorded by British reggae act La Famille in 1983, released on the Sanity record label; and by British street soul act Jay Mondi and the Livin' Bass. Released in March 1990 on Ten Records, the track was a #63 UK hit. Also Erykah Badu has it as a coversong on her live Album.
  • "In My House" was recorded by German singer Sarah Connor on her debut album, Green Eyed Soul. The song also appears on her A Night to Remember: Pop Meets Classic DVD. "In My House" was also recorded by American punk/indie rock band Big Black; the recording appeared on a special five-inch vinyl single included with the group's concert video Pigpile.
  • "Hurting on the Inside" was recorded by British reggae act Sammy Levi on the Passion label in 1989.

Sampling[edit]

Discography[edit]

Studio albums[edit]

Year Title Peak chart positions Certifications
(sales thresholds)
Record label
US
[4]
US
R&B

[4]
CAN
[5]
NZ
[6]
UK
[7]
1983 Mary Jane Girls 56 6 51 Gordy
1985 Only Four You 18 5 67 28
"—" denotes a recording that did not chart or was not released in that territory.

Compilation albums[edit]

  • In My House: The Very Best of the Mary Jane Girls (1994, Motown)
  • 20th Century Masters - The Millennium Collection: The Best of the Mary Jane Girls (2001, Motown)

Singles[edit]

Year Title Peak chart positions Album
US
[4]
US
R&B

[4]
US
Dan

[4]
AUS
[9]
BEL
[10]
CAN
[5]
IRE
[11]
NLD
[12]
NZ
[6]
UK
[7]
1983 "Candy Man" 101 23 8 60 Mary Jane Girls
"All Night Long" 101 11 18 13
"Boys" 102 29 74
1984 "Jealousy" 106 84
1985 "In My House" 7 3 1 19 8 6 6 6 77 Only Four You
"Wild and Crazy Love" 42 10 3 26
"Break It Up" 79 33
1986 "Walk Like a Man" 41 91 26 97 48 A Fine Mess
1995 "All Night Long (The Hustlers Convention Remixes)" 51 Non-album single
"—" denotes a recording that did not chart or was not released in that territory.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Singer Says Part of Voice on Hit Is Hers. New York Times, 1991-04-10. Accessed 2008-06-04.
  2. ^ Paula Abdul did lead on 'Forever Your Girl': jury. Jet, 1993-08-30. Accessed 2013-10-09.
  3. ^ "The-Breaks.com". Retrieved 2008-12-25. 
  4. ^ a b c d e "US Charts > Mary Jane Girls". Billboard. Retrieved 2012-09-28. 
  5. ^ a b "CAN Charts > Mary Jane Girls". RPM. Retrieved 2012-09-28. 
  6. ^ a b "NZ Charts > Rose Royce". Recording Industry Association of New Zealand. Retrieved 2012-09-28. 
  7. ^ a b "UK Charts > Mary Jane Girls". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 2012-09-28. 
  8. ^ a b "US Certifications > Mary Jane Girls". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved 2012-09-28. 
  9. ^ David Kent (1993). Australian Charts Book 1970—1992. Australian Chart Book Pty Ltd, Turramurra, N.S.W. ISBN 0-646-11917-6. 
  10. ^ "BEL Charts > Mary Jane Girls". VRT Top 30. Retrieved 2012-09-28. 
  11. ^ "IRE Charts Search > Mary Jane Girls". Irish Recorded Music Association. Retrieved 2012-09-28. 
  12. ^ "NLD Charts > Mary Jane Girls". MegaCharts. Retrieved 2012-09-28. 

External links[edit]