Dionne Farris


A quarter of a century ago, singer Dionne Farris knew what you were doing, but do you know what she is doing now?

by Christopher Smith

Dionne Farris began her career as a backing singer before joining the group Arrested Development for their 1992 hit “Tennessee”, but not wanting to join the band permanently, she embarked upon a solo career and after being signed to Columbia Records, she delivered her debut and best known song “I Know” in 1994.

It was the first track to be lifted from her debut album “Wild Seed – Wild Flower” released at the end of 1994, and although the album only managed No.57 chart placing in the US, “I Know” was embraced by a much large audience when it reached No.4 in March 1995. It topped the Mainstream Top 40 in America as well as the Canadian singles chart and reached the top ten in New Zealand. Despite widespread radio play, “I Know” stalled at No.41 in the UK.

Three further singles were taken from the album, “Don’t Ever Touch Me Again”, “Passion” and “Food for Thought”, but none made and impact, even in her home country. That same year, Farris recorded her version of Billy Taylor’s 1967 hit “I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel To Be Free” for the film ‘The Promised Land’. She continued this trend by recording Stevie Wonder’s “For Once In My Life” for the film ‘The Truth About Cats and Dogs’ in 1996 and Bill Withers “Heartbreak Road” for ‘The First Wives Club’ soundtrack in 1997.

Her second album for Columbia was “For Truth If Not Love” in 1997 but before the album was completed, Farris left the label. It was released independently ten years later in 2007. She also released the albums “Signs Of Life” in 2011 and “Dionne Get Your Gun” in 2013.

She is embarking on a 25th anniversary tour this year to celebrate the “Wild Seed – Wild Flower” album.

Stay in touch with Dionne through her WEBSITE and her FACEBOOK page

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Written by Christopher Smith

So perhaps you’ve read an article or two that I’ve written and wondered “just who is this character?”! Well I thought maybe it would be time to introduce myself and what I’m all about. Well it’s all about the music! Having been born in the late 1970’s I was heavily influenced by my parent’s love of ‘popular’ music and rock and roll of the 1950’s and 60’s. My Mother always said she should of married Elvis and my father was, and is still, in love with Sandie Shaw! But while my Dad’s tastes stopped in about 1967, my Mum carried on loving music throughout the 70’s, 80’s and beyond. My first memory was playing on the floor whilst my Mother was ironing one day with the radio on, and hearing ABBA’s “Super Trouper” dancing my nappy off to it! Maybe that’s where it all went wrong…?! Having been subjected to all and sundry in my infant years, I finally found my feet in the mid-1980’s and began ‘partying’ to the likes of Culture Club, Stevie Wonder(!), Elkie Brooks and Bananarama to name but a few! The year 1987 would have a profound effect on my listening tastes and from thereon in my life would be dominated with buying and listening to music. Any number of outstanding songs were released and listened to that year, most notably “Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now”, “I Wanna Dance With Somebody” and “La Isla Bonita”. That Summer my mind was completely taken over with music and sounds I’d never heard before and I was totally taken in by it all. My father would say “whaaar rubbish you got on naaaaao?” (I’m from Norfolk!) but I was hooked. And it continued so for the rest of the decade and the next. At the beginning of 1988 I ‘met’ my true love and the singer I’ve worshipped more than any other artist or group. You may know of her. She’s from Australia…! Aside from pop music, my tastes are many and varied and continues to grow and expand as I ‘mature’ in age. I’ve always been heavily interested in films and in particular the mechanics of film making and of course film music, so scores and subsequently orchestral music takes up a lot of my tastes and collection. 90’s dance and club tunes also takes up much of the space in my head and I’m surprised my brain has stopped shaking from the years of abuse it took being dragged to nightclubs, often three times a week in my 20’s! I find with each year that passes I regress back to my youth and of course the 1980’s. 80’s music dominates and the lust to see as many 80’s acts and singers play live now is insatiable. I’m still getting into the groove as much as every breath I take, but I’m never gonna give up listening to my heart and pumping up the volume, simply because I LOVE MUSIC…any kind of music!
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