Men at Large

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Men at Large
Origin Cleveland, Ohio, U.S.
Genres R&B, New Jack Swing
Years active 1992–present
Labels East West
Members David L. Tolliver
Edgar"Gemini" Porter
Past members Jason L. Champion

Men at Large was an American R&B group from Cleveland, Ohio, whose members, David Tolliver and Jason Champion and now, Edgar "Gemini" Porter, frequently self-referenced their obesity. They scored several US hits in the mid-1990s and were discovered by the late soul singer Gerald Levert. In 1992 Men At Large shocked the world with its self-titled debut on the Atlantic Records label. Their first single "Use Me" became an instant radio hit inspiring B.E.T, to use it for a station jingle. They would go on to release 4 more singles from the CD. "You Me", "Umm Umm Good", "Would You Like to Dance", and the RnB Classic "So Alone" which made Billboard Hot 100 list and was radio's #1 song of the year in 1993. Traveling the world with its other 90's cohorts (The Rude Boys, Shai (band), Silk (group), H-Town (band), Levert II, Next (group), etc.) they would leave each city with the reputation of being "Show Stoppers!"

It didn't stop there in 1994 they released "One Size Fits All" gaining less success as the first but still garnering critical acclaim. Releasing 2 singles "Let's Talk About It" and "Holiday" top 10 and 20 respectively they continued to shock the world town by town. Being bred by Eddie and Gerald Levert gave these 2 an obvious advantage. As time moved on the duo would sever ties with the Levert camp empty handed, relinquishing all rights to any future royalties top anything they h had done! they soon learned the next chapters were not going to be as plentiful as the beginning. Still riding off the success of its first 2 records the boys would continue to ride the rails of success as the people just couldn't get enough, but thus brought the separation of Dave and Jason. Growing pains, Dave's desire to go solo and the power of God pulling Jason towards the light ended the boys run together. The group didn't stop Tolliver put his solo aspirations aside and found new member Edgar "Gemeini" Porter from Chicago. The two met at a show Porter was doing security at and Dave invited him to sing. The crowd loved Porter and Tolliver promised if something came up up he would call, well guess what four years later Porter would get his chance! Porter stepped right in and began his run filling the enormous shoes that preceded him. At first it was rough but eventually the two developed a chemistry that has continued to pleasure the masses everywhere. In 1999 and 2007 they released "Love Struggle and Progress" and "Back on Top" doing mediocre numbers but plentiful on an independent level winning best group awards and independent video of the year nominations, only to lose to the great Kenny Rogers. As well as singing the men have kept themselves very busy outside of music. Dave has appeared in over 23 stage plays, 7 movies starring next to most recently Fantasia, RnB Divas Nicci Gilbert, Monifah and a bevy of others. His early career started in radio continuing in that he also is called on to fill in for different radio hosts commercial and internet, sitting on talent panels,hosting events,vocal coaching, and consulting up and coming artists. His solo efforts have produced 2 solo cds :Second Wind" and Blaq Pavarotti. Tolliver recently signed to Monarchy/Spectra Records with new label mates Tony Terry, Glenn Jones, Adina Howard, and Onyx member Freddro Starr. Jason went on to star in plays as well eventually being called by Kirk Franklin to perform with him for a great run. Former manager secured Jason a major deal with EMI Gospel which eaned him a Grammy nod ironically losing to Kirk in their category. Now signed with Warryn Cambell's My Block records Champion is set to release his next selection in a major way. Porter is the King of the Chicago talent circuit providing opportunities to all independent artists when he throws his sets at some of Chi-Towns hottest venues. In the same fashion as Tolliver and Champion he has also starred in several plays and movies. Tolliver and Porter still travel together extensively, although sometimes they ask for the original. Even after 20 years people still crave for the flavor of these pure, raw singing men and they deliver whether traveling as a group, or on their individual endeavors the boys still deliver!!!

Discography[edit]

Year Title Label US R&B Chart[1] US Top 200[1]
1992 Men at Large East West Records 24 122
1994 One Size Fits All 17 151
1999 Love Struggle & Progress Rival Records - -
2007 Back On Top Couzan/Pyramid Media - -

Singles[edit]

Year Title Chart Positions[2]
Billboard Hot 100 US Hot R&B/Hip Hop Singles
1992 "So Alone" 31 5
"Use Me" - 9
"You Me" - 29
1993 "Um Um Good" - 39
"Would You Like to Dance (With Me)" - 87
1994 "Let's Talk About It" - 16
1995 "Holiday" - 62
  1999
  "If He Really Loves You"
  
  2007
  "Ayo"
  "Out Of Town Lover"

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Billboard, Allmusic.com
  2. ^ Billboard Singles. Allmusic.com.