Midnight Star - Operator HQ Video
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Uploaded on Sep 12, 2008
The group was formed in 1976 at Kentucky State University by the Calloway brothers - trumpeter Reginald and trombone player Vincent, vocalist Belinda Lipscomb, guitarist Melvin Gentry, bassist Kenneth Gant, multi-instrumentalist Bill Simmons, keyboard player Bo Watson and guitarist/keyboardist Jeff Cooper, as a self-contained group. Signing to RCA Records, they released their debut album The Beginning  with a host of studio musicians. In 1981 their second album, released on Solar Records, Standing Together, reached position #54 on the Top R&B chart. In 1982 they released a third album, Victory.
Owing to Reggie Calloway's production skills, it didn't take long for Midnight Star to hit the R&B charts with early singles like "Hot Spot" and "I've Been Watching You." Drummer Bobby Lovelace joined the group in late 1982, freeing Gentry to sing and play guitar exclusively. Their fourth album, No Parking on the Dance Floor, was released in 1983, and it took them to the top of the charts with the first single, "Freak-A-Zoid," which went to number two. Other singles from the album included the title track, "Wet My Whistle," and "Electricity." These singles, along with the hit album track "Slow Jam" (co-written by Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds) propelled the album to platinum status. Their next album, Planetary Invasion, was almost as big, selling platinum again and making the pop Top 20 and the number one spot on the R&B chart with its first single "Operator." This song remains the band's only Billboard Top 40 hit to date.In 1986 they released their fifth album, Headlines, which was their third album to sell at least gold. It was to be their last, as the Calloways departed in 1988 after irreconcilable differences with the other members. They achieved their biggest success in the UK with "Midas Touch", which made #8, and later with "Headlines", a #16 hit the same year. Without the Calloways (who would go on to form the group Calloway and release an album that spawned the hit single "I Wanna Be Rich" in 1989), Midnight Star recorded two more albums, the self-titled Midnight Star and Work It Out. After these albums proved relatively unsuccessful, the group went on a long hiatus, though they never officially broke up.
The group reunited in 2000 with many of the original members (but not the Calloway brothers) and released the album 15th Avenue two years later. Since then, the group has toured sporadically, most recently with a lineup that includes Belinda Lipscomb, Kenneth Gant, Melvin Gentry, Bo Watson, and Bobby Lovelace, with Bill Simmons sometimes joining as well.
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