Sing: “D-d-d-d-d-d d-d-d-d-d-d d d d-d-d-d-d-d d d d…I love your smile”!
Yes, you remember it well! “I Love Your Smile” a global chart hit in late 1991-early 1992 from 18 year old singer Shanice (Wilson). It topped the US R’n’B chart and made No.2 on the singles chart there and in the UK and became one of the biggest sellers of the year. Shanice made her debut in TV in seven years earlier in 1984 as a regular in the children’s show Kids Incorporated and having sang lots on the show, she won a recording deal with A&M Records releasing her debut single “(Baby Tell Me) Can You Dance” in 1987. The song reached No.50 on the US singles chart and No.6 on the R’n’B chart and began a chart career that would stretch for the next ten years.
Her debut album “Discovery” wasn’t particularly successful nor were the follow up singles “No.1/2 Steppin'”, “The Way You Love Me” and “I’ll Bet She’s Got A Boyfriend”, although “No.1/2 Steppin'” equalled her debut when it made No.6 on the R’n’B chart. Shanice returned in late 1991 with her second studio album “Inner Child” and the lead single “I Love Your Smile”. Its instantly catchy and pleasing tune soon found a global audience when it reached the higher part of the singles charts in twenty five countries. Hardly surprising perhaps as the song had been co-written and produced by Narada Michael Walden, the man responsible for such classics as “How Will I Know?”, “We Don’t Have To Take Our Clothes Off”, “Who’s Zoomin’ Who?” and many others.
“Inner Child” did better outside America where it peaked at No.83, although it did gain a Gold certification for sales of 500,000 copies. Of the follow up singles “I’m Cryin'” and “Lovin’ You”, only “Silent Prayer”, a duet with Vince Gill, charted, making No.31 in the US. 1992 did produced two big non-album hits with “Don’t Wanna Love You” from the film ‘Bommerang’ (US No.58) and “Saving Forever For You” from the hit TV series Beverly Hills 90210 which made No.4 in the US as well as charting in Australia, Germany and Canada, although it just missed the UK top 40, stalling at No.41.
Shanice returned to the movies in 1994 with the song “It’s For You” from ‘The Meteor Man’ soundtrack and then spent the rest of the year recording for her third studio album. Released in 1994, “21 Ways To Grow” nearly missed the US album chart as did the singles “Somewhere”, “Turn Down The Lights”, “I Like” and “I Wish”. She duetted with Jon “Just Another Day” Secada in 1995 on “If I Never Knew You” for the film ‘Pocahontas’, which reached No.108 on the Billboard singles chart. The films main theme “Colors Of The Wind” had been sung by Vanessa Williams and reached No.4 the same month.
Shanice performed backing vocals on Toni Braxton’s enormous 1996 hit “Unbreak My Heart”, written by Diane Warren and soon after returned to the recording studio herself, releasing her self-titled fourth studio album in 1999. The lead single “When I Close My Eyes” would peak at No.12 on the singles chart and No.4 on the R’n’B chart, her best chart showing Stateside for seven years. The album also fared much better peaking at No.56 and equalling “Inner Child” with a Gold certification for sales of 500,000 copies. Two further singles “Yesterday” and “You Need A Man” were also released.
Shanice has continued to have R’n’B chart success into the twenty first century with “Every Woman Dreams” in 2005, the title track of her fifth studio album, “Take Care Of U” in 2006 and “Tomorrow” in 2009 as well as releasing a number of one-off tracks since then. Just a few days ago (14th June 2019), Shanice released a brand new single “He Won’t”, her first for three years and now aged 45 and looking radiantly stunning, perhaps ready for a big return as so many artists have recently accomplished…!