Change (band)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Also known asX-Change (1992)
  • Italy
  • United States
Years active1979–1986, 1992, 2010–present
  • Davide Romani
  • Mauro Malavasi
  • Tanya Michelle Smith
Past members

Change is an Italian-American post-disco group formed in Bologna, Italy, in 1979 by businessman and executive producer Jacques Fred Petrus (1948–1987) and Mauro Malavasi (born 1957). They were heavily influenced by the disco band Chic. The current incarnation of the group formed in 2018.



Change was initially formed in early 1979 as a studio band with a revolving stable of musicians, led by businessman and executive producer Jacques Fred Petrus, with the majority of songwriting and production carried out by Mauro Malavasi and Davide Romani.[2]

The band's dual Italian and American identity was a result of a production system in which the music, excepting the vocals, were written and recorded by Italian collaborators in studios such as Fonoprint Studios, Bologna, Italy. These backing tracks were then sent to the USA where vocals were added by American performers, before being mixed into finalised versions in major studios such as the Power Station in New York City.[2]

Immediate success[edit]

The band's debut album, The Glow of Love, was released on Ray Caviano's label, RFC Records (distributed by Warner Bros.) in 1980. It was composed by a small team of writers consisting of Romani, Malavasi, Paolo Gianolio (lead guitarist), Tanyayette Willoughby, Paul Slade, and Wayne Garfield. The first single was the million seller "A Lover's Holiday" featuring the ad lib stylings of Zachary Sanders, known then for his work on Schoolhouse Rock. The follow-up hits from the album, "Searching" and the title song, feature lead vocals by Luther Vandross who had yet to come to prominence. The three songs combined set an all-time record, spending nine weeks at #1 on Billboard's Club Play Singles chart,[3] enough to make it the #1 Disco recording of the year, and a strong seller in the U.S. It also made the Pop Top 40 that summer. The success of "Searching" and "The Glow of Love" exposed Luther's voice to the mainstream, and led to a successful solo career soon afterward.[2]

At the time The Glow of Love was released, the group also drew comparisons to another Disco act at the time, Chic,[4] who were not only Change's labelmates at Atlantic Records in the US, but also shared their backing vocalists as well.[2]

The follow-up album Miracles was released in 1981. It was created by the same collection of writers and producers as had worked on the debut album. Due to contractual differences, Vandross was unable to sing lead vocals on any of the album's tracks, and only performed backing vocals on select songs. After Miracles, Vandross continued to provide backing vocals for the group until 1981, when he left Change to pursue his solo career. Petrus and Malavasi signed up James 'Crab' Robinson to replace Vandross, owing to his ability to perform in a similar vocal style. Robinson shared vocals with Diva Gray for the album.

Miracles was released to a similar level of success as the début, though it did not manage to produce a mainstream crossover hit such as "A Lover’s Holiday." The three singles from the album, "Paradise," "Hold Tight," and "Heaven of My Life" all reached number one on the Billboard Club Play Singles chart in 1981.[5]

Change's 1982 album Sharing Your Love moved the band further away from disco and club music and into genres such as R&B and Funk. The lead single, "The Very Best in You," was one of the foremost examples of the group's take on R&B. The album also marked a new process in the writing of the band's albums. The team behind the first albums contributing less, instead enlisting the efforts of a wide range of other writers. Overall, the album continued a slowly declining trend in the commercial fortunes for the project, though the album sold well, and "The Very Best in You" was popular.

Mixed fortunes[edit]

During the recording of and touring for their fourth album, This Is Your Time (1983), Change's relatively stable line-up of performers, writers, and producers, as well as their commercial success, faltered. The album failed to chart a major hit, with the title track flopping in comparison to previous lead singles. After the album's release Rick Brennan stepped into the Robinson's role, who left to pursue a solo career, while producers Davide Romani and Mauro Malavasi departed for other projects.

Simultaneous to these important departures, Change was bolstered by the contributions of bassist and songwriter Timmy Allen and returning vocalist Deborah Cooper, now promoted to lead, both of whom remained in the band until its demise. After Change, Cooper worked with C+C Music Factory in the 1990s.[2]

The failure of the 1983 album left the future of Change in jeopardy. Petrus wisely hired recently sacked Time members Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis to write and produce what would become Change of Heart in 1984.[2]

The album did well internationally, returning the group to the charts in Europe and the USA. The title track became Change's first top-ten R&B hit in three years. Unlike former Change albums, which employed a large number of songwriters, Change of Heart was written by just three writers; four tracks were by Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis, while the remaining four were the work of Timmy Allen.[2]

Nevertheless, Allen was given the opportunity by Petrus to write and produce the majority of what became Change's final album in 1985, Turn on Your Radio. This album bore little of the polished dance and R&B sound that the group had always emphasised, and was even less successful than This Is Your Time, though Europe remained receptive to the group. The band's final US hit "Let's Go Together" was notable as it was co-written by Petrus with returning collaborators Davide Romani and Paul Slade.

Demise and future[edit]

Turn on Your Radio was Change's commercial low point, but had not been intended as the act's final release. The formal end came after the death of Petrus in 1987.

While the original Change disappeared after Petrus’ death, Davide Romani, Mike Francis (Francesco Puccioni), and Patrick Boothe attempted to revive the project in 1990. This new Change project was planned for a release on BMG North America under the name X-Change in 1992, but due to budgetary issues, the album was left unreleased.

The availability of the X-Change recordings was resolved in 2009 after Romani closed a deal with Italian label Fonte Records to release the album later that year as Change Your Mind.[6] It was produced by Romani and Puccioni, written by Romani, Puccioni and Boothe, with Boothe as the main lead vocalist.

In 2001, American R&B/pop singer Janet Jackson featured a sample of Change's "The Glow of Love" in her number 1 single "All for You."[7]

In 2018, Change returned with original members Davide Romani and Mauro Malavasi, and new vocalist Tanya Michelle Smith. The reformed act also released their first single and video, "Hit or Miss," in June 2018, which is the lead-off track from "Love 4 Love," a nine-song set that was released September 7, 2018.[8]


Change was effectively a studio group composed of session musicians and a core group of collaborators led by Jacques Fred Petrus and Mauro Malavasi.[2] After the release of The Glow of Love and Miracles, Petrus sought to give the group more of an image and put together a group for promotion and live performances. This second lineup was relatively stable, and contributed to the group's subsequent four albums. Since their final album, there have been tours and shows featuring a revolving list of musicians and singers carrying on the Change name.

First lineup (1980 to 1981)
  • Luther Vandross - Lead vocals, background vocals [4]
  • Jocelyn Shaw - Lead vocals[4]
  • Krystal Davis - Duo with Yvonne Lewis on "The Glow of Love" and background vocals, first album
  • Yvonne Lewis - Group vocals on "The Glow of Love"
  • Dennis Collins - Group vocals on "The Glow of Love," "Miracles" and "Sharing Your Love"
  • Zachary Saunders - Group vocals on "The Glow of Love" and "A Lover's Holiday"
  • Diva Gray - Lead vocals
  • James "Crab" Robinson - Lead vocals (1981)[4]
  • David Romani - Bass
  • Paolo Gianolo - Guitar
  • Rudy Trevisi - Saxophone (1981)
  • Doc Powell - Guitar
  • Larry McRae - Bass (1981)
  • Terry Silverlight - Drums
  • Leno Reyes - Drums
  • Onaje Allan Gumbs - Keyboards
  • Andy Schwartz - Keyboards
  • Nathaniel S. Hardy, Jr. - Keyboards
  • Maurizio Biancani - Synthesizer
Second Lineup (1982 to 1985)
  • Deborah Cooper - Lead vocals[4]
  • James "Crab" Robinson - Lead vocals (1982–83)
  • Rick Brennan - Lead vocals, percussion (1983–85)
  • Timmy Allen - Bass, keyboards, synthesizer, background vocals
  • Vincent Henry - Guitar, saxophone
  • Michael Campbell - Guitar
  • Jeff Bova - Keyboards
  • Rob Aries - Piano and synth
  • Toby Johnson - Drums (1983–84)
  • Rudy Trevisi - Saxophone (1983)
  • Bernard Davis - Drums (1983)
  • Carole Sylvan - Background vocals (1982–1983)
  • John Adams - Musical director, keyboards (1982–1983)
  • Mary Seymour - Background vocals (1982–1983)


Change discography
Studio albums8
Compilation albums9

The Change discography includes eight studio albums, nine compilations, and twenty-five singles.


Year Album Peak chart positions Certifications

1980 The Glow of Love 29 10 22
1981 Miracles 46 9
1982 Sharing Your Love
  • Labels: RFC/Atlantic, WEA
66 14
1983 This Is Your Time
  • Labels: RFC/Atlantic, WEA
161 34
1984 Change of Heart
  • Labels: RFC/Atlantic, WEA
102 15 24 34
1985 Turn on Your Radio 208 64 39
2010 Change Your Mind
  • Labels: Fonte Records
2018 Love 4 Love
  • Labels: ODC Records
"—" denotes a recording that did not chart or was not released in that territory.


Year Single Peak chart positions Album


1980 "A Lover's Holiday" 40 4 1 15 24 14 The Glow of Love
"The Glow of Love" 49 2
"Searching" 23 22 11
1981 "Paradise" 80 7 1 47 Miracles
"Hold Tight" 89 40
"Heaven of My Life"
"Stop for Love" (UK only)
1982 "The Very Best in You" 84 16 30 Sharing Your Love
"Oh What a Night"
"Hard Times (It's Gonna Be Alright)" 71
"Sharing Your Love"
"Keep on It" (Italy only)
1983 "This Is Your Time" 33 39 This Is Your Time
"Magical Night" 38
"Don't Wait Another Night" 89
"Got to Get Up"
1984 "Change of Heart" 7 17 21 14 17 17 Change of Heart
"It Burns Me Up" 61
"You Are My Melody" 48
1985 "Say You Love Me Again" 94
"Let's Go Together" 56 33 42 37 Turn on Your Radio
"Examination" (Italy only)
"Oh What a Feeling" 56
"Mutual Attraction" 60
2018 "Hit or Miss" Love 4 Love
2019 "Love 4 Love"
"—" denotes a recording that did not chart or was not released in that territory.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Euro-Disco Music Artists". AllMusic.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g h "Change -".
  3. ^ Whitburn, Joel (2004). Hot Dance/Disco: 1974-2003. Record Research. p. 357.
  4. ^ a b c d e Kellman, Andy. "Artist Biography". AllMusic. Retrieved September 24, 2020.
  5. ^ a b c d e f "US Charts > Change". Billboard. Archived from the original on November 6, 2013. Retrieved December 9, 2009.
  6. ^ "Change Your Mind CD Album". May 4, 2010. Retrieved May 7, 2012.
  7. ^ Reid, Shaheem (April 30, 2001). "Janet reminisces over 'All For You' slots 'Lover' for next single". MTV. Retrieved September 24, 2020.
  8. ^ "Legendary R&B Group Change Returns with New Single "Hit or Miss2 LISTEN!". Urban Music Site. June 29, 2018.
  9. ^ "Gli album più venduti del 1980" (in Italian). Hit Parade Italia. Retrieved March 17, 2021.
  10. ^ a b "NLD Charts > Change". MegaCharts. Archived from the original on April 26, 2015. Retrieved August 8, 2014.
  11. ^ a b "UK Charts > Change". Official Charts Company. Retrieved March 3, 2015.
  12. ^ "US Certifications > Change". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved March 3, 2015.
  13. ^ "IRE Charts Search > Change". Irish Recorded Music Association. Archived from the original on June 2, 2009. Retrieved May 5, 2012.
  14. ^ "Indice per Interprete: C" (in Italian). Hit Parade Italia. Retrieved March 17, 2021.
  15. ^ "NZ Charts > Change". Recording Industry Association of New Zealand. Archived from the original on November 2, 2012. Retrieved May 5, 2012.

External links[edit]