Starpoint

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Starpoint
OriginCrownsville, Maryland, United States
GenresPop, Funk, Post-disco, New jack swing
Years active1980–present
LabelsChocolate City
Boardwalk Records
Elektra, Warner Bros.
Website[1]
Past membersRenée Diggs ✝
Kayode Adeyemo
George Phillips Jr. ✝
Ernesto McKenzie Phillips ✝
Gregory Phillips
Orlando Phillips[1]

Starpoint was an American R&B and funk band from Maryland that was active from 1980 to 1990 recording 10 albums during that time. It comprised four brothers and two other musicians. The ten albums released did well, some reaching the US R&B Charts.

Biography[edit]

Beginnings[edit]

Brothers George Jr., Ernesto, Lloyd, Orlando, and Gregory Phillips played under the name J.R. and the Royals, later renamed Licyndiana before becoming Starpoint, at which point Kayode Adeyemo and Renée Diggs joined the band.[2]

Ernesto Phillips played lead guitar and trumpet, as well as singing lead and backing vocals; Orlando Phillips played bass guitar, keyboards and saxophone and sang background vocals; Gregory Phillips played drums and percussion and provided background vocals; George Phillips, Jr. played keyboards and sang lead and background vocals. Renee Diggs shared principal lead and background vocal duties.[2]

In 1979 the band secured a national recording deal and released their self-titled debut album Starpoint! in 1980. A single from the album, "I Just Wanna Dance with You," became their first top 20 hit on the R&B chart.[2] They released at least one album every year throughout the first half of the 80s. Elektra Records reissued their sole Boardwalk album, 1983's It's So Delicious.

Success[edit]

The album Restless brought them crossover success onto the Billboard Hot 100 with the single "Object of My Desire."[2] Co-written by band members Kayode Adeyemo and Ernesto Phillips along with R&B musician/producer Keith Diamond, the tune also became Starpoint's first of several R&B top ten hits. The follow-up single "What You've Been Missin'" peaked at No.9 in the R&B top ten.[3] The title track "Restless" was also released as a single.

The band embarked on a lengthy tour in support of the album, partially with Morris Day and later with Luther Vandross, Isley Jasper Isley, and Atlantic Starr. Starpoint's producers have included Lionel Job, Keith Diamond, Bernard Edwards and Teddy Riley as well as members of the band.

In 1990, Renée Diggs recorded a solo album titled Oasis that was released in Europe. Several of the tracks on this album were co-written by Diggs and Starpoint guitarist Ernesto Phillips. She created the Renée Diggs Foundation for Multiple Sclerosis, to help bring attention to the disease. She died on March 18, 2005 due to a heart condition, at the age of 50.[1][4] Oasis was released in the U.S. after her death.

In 2000, Ernesto Phillips began working with singer-songwriter Terry Cole (Sly Boots) and signed him to his label, Longevity Records. The pair would collaborate on many tracks from 2000–2001. He died on March 25, 2004, as the result of a stroke.[1] The Ernesto Phillips Scholarship for Talented Youth was established in his memory and as a tribute to his efforts in helping younger children to realize their ambitions of becoming musicians.

Other band members became involved with songwriting and session work for R&B artists. In 1988, Adeyemo was credited with co-writing Milli Vanilli's hit "Girl You Know It's True". Milli Vanilli's accompanying American album, titled after the hit single, also featured a song composed by Ernesto Phillips, entitled "More Than You'll Ever Know". From 2001 to 2006, Greg Phillips toured with Najee and Angela Bofill simultaneously.

In 2011 the band regrouped with the four remaining members George Phillips, Orlando Phillips, Ky Adeyemo, & Greg Phillips. They did a live show in Leon, France.

Band members[edit]

  • Renée Diggs: Lead vocals (July 23, 1954 – March 18, 2005)
  • Ernesto McKenzie Phillips: Guitars, lead vocals (July 13, 1953 – March 25, 2004)[1]
  • Orlando Phillips: Bass guitar, keyboard bass, vocals, saxophone
  • George Phillips, Jr.: Lead vocals, keyboards (died Feb 3, 2021)[5]
  • Greg Phillips: Drums, vocals, percussion[6]
  • Kayode Adeyemo: 2nd bass guitar, occasional keyboards during live performances

Discography[edit]

Albums[edit]

Year Album Label Peak chart positions
US
[7]
US R&B
[7]
1980 Starpoint Chocolate City 62
1981 Keep on It 138 31
Wanting You
1982 All Night Long 52
1983 It's so Delicious Boardwalk / Elektra 32
1984 It's All Yours Elektra
1985 Restless 60 14
1987 Sensational 95 29
1988 Hot to the Touch 75
1990 Have You Got What It Takes?
"—" denotes releases that did not chart

Singles[edit]

Year Single Peak chart positions Album
US
[3]
US Dance
[3]
US R&B
[3]
US Dance Sales
UK
[8]
1980 "Get Ready, Get Down" Starpoint
"I Just Wanna Dance with You" 26 19
"Gonna Lift You Up"
"You're My Sunny Day"
1981 "Keep on It" 28 Keep on It
"I Just Want to Be Your Lover"
"I Want You Closer" 67
"Wanting You" 66 Wanting You
"Do What You Wanna Do" 56
"Angel" 50
1982 "Get Your Body Up" 76 All Night Long
"Bring Your Sweet Lovin' Back"
"All Night Long" 69
1983 "It's so Delicious" 79 It's so Delicious
"Don't Be so Serious" 46 14
1984 "It's All Yours" 23 17 84 It's All Yours
"Breakout"
"Am I Still the One" 59
1985 "Object of My Desire" 25 12 8 7 96 Restless
"Emotions" (U.K. only)
"What You Been Missin'" 9
1986 "Restless" 46 13 11
"Til the End of Time" 64
1987 "He Wants My Body" 89 40 8 Sensational
"D.Y.B.O." 25
"The More We Love" 30
"Touch of Your Love"
1988 "Say You Will" 18 Hot to the Touch
"Tough Act to Follow" 81
1990 "I Want You - You Want Me" 9 32 Have You Got What It Takes?
"Midnight Love" 45
"Have You Got What It Takes?" 93
"—" denotes releases that did not chart

[9]

Compilations[edit]

  • 2005: Object of My Desire and Other Hits (includes singles released between 1983 and 1987)

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d "Starpoint Page". Soulwalking.co.uk. Retrieved November 12, 2020.
  2. ^ a b c d Kellman, Andy. "Artist Biography". AllMusic. Retrieved November 12, 2020.
  3. ^ a b c d "Starpoint Top Songs / Chart Singles Discography". Music VF. Retrieved November 12, 2020.
  4. ^ "R&B Singer S. Renee Diggs Dies at 50". NPR: Obituaries. March 24, 2005. Retrieved November 12, 2020.
  5. ^ "George M. Phillips Jr., substance abuse counselor and vocalist in '80s pop group Starpoint, dies". Opera News. Retrieved April 21, 2021.
  6. ^ "Band Members - Starpoint Music". Retrieved January 1, 2021.
  7. ^ a b "Starpoint - Awards: Billboard Albums". AllMusic. Archived from the original on June 12, 2013. Retrieved January 1, 2021.
  8. ^ "STARPOINT - full Official Chart History". Official Charts Company. Retrieved January 9, 2012.
  9. ^ "Discography - Starpoint Music". Retrieved January 1, 2021.

External links[edit]