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The Brand New Heavies are an acid jazz and funk group formed in 1985 in Ealing in west London. Centered around songwriters/multi-instrumentalists Simon Bartholomew and Andrew Levy, the core members of the group since its founding, Brand New Heavies are best known for a string of successful singles in the early 1990s featuring N'Dea Davenport as lead vocalist.

The Brand New Heavies
The Brand New Heavies - Leverkusener Jazztage 2016-AL6795.jpg
The Brand New Heavies live at Leverkusener Jazztage in 2016
Background information
OriginEaling, London, England
Years active1985–present
MembersSimon Bartholomew
Andrew Levy
Sulene Fleming
Past membersJan Kincaid
N'Dea Davenport
Siedah Garrett
Carleen Anderson
Jay Ella Ruth
Ceri Evans
Nicole Russo
Sy Smith
Dawn Joseph



1980s & 1990sEdit

The Brand New Heavies began in the 1980s as an instrumental acid jazz group called Brothers International.[1]

The group came up with the Heavies name after signing their first record contract, borrowing from a liner note on a James Brown single declaring the artist "Minister of New Super Heavy Funk".[2] As The Brand New Heavies they gained a cult following in the London club scene and soon signed to Cooltempo as acid jazz replaced rare groove in clubs. The band issued a debut recording for Eddie Piller's Acid Jazz label in 1990 with Jay Ella Ruth as lead singer.[3]

A single, "Got to Give", came out on Cooltempo before the Brand New Heavies signed to Acid Jazz Records and released Brand New Heavies to critical acclaim. The band signed to a division of Chrysalis Records in the UK,[1] and American distribution was picked up by influential label Delicious Vinyl, and N'Dea Davenport (who had signed an artist development deal with Delicious Vinyl) joined the group. A revamped version of the first album with vocals by N'Dea Davenport was then released, and the singles "Dream Come True", "Never Stop" and "Stay This Way", all with Davenport on lead vocals, became hits on both sides of the Atlantic, with the latter becoming a music video directed by Douglas Gayeton that saw heavy rotation on MTV.

The group's appearance with MC Serch (formerly of 3rd Bass) and Q-Tip (of A Tribe Called Quest) at a performance in New York City, inspired the group to incorporate elements of hip hop music. Their next album was the critically acclaimed Heavy Rhyme Experience, Vol. 1, which included collaborations with Guru of Gang Starr and The Pharcyde, among others, but lacked any female vocals.

The Brand New Heavies released Brother Sister in 1994 which was the last album for a while with N'Dea Davenport, who had left to complete her solo album (which she had put on hold to join the Heavies). The album spawned more singles, though one of them, a cover of Maria Muldaur's "Midnight at the Oasis", was popular only in the UK because it was not included in the US version of the album.

Siedah Garrett joined the group for their next album, Shelter (1997). It contained the minor hit, the Carole King-penned song "You've Got a Friend" that was originally made famous by James Taylor. Again, though, this song did not appear on the US version of the album. The album also contained the hit "Sometimes". The remix of "Sometimes" included the rap vocals of Q-Tip.


The Brand New Heavies then released their greatest hits album, Trunk Funk – The Best of The Brand New Heavies (2000) with Carleen Anderson on vocals for some newly recorded songs, followed by the Japan only album We Won't Stop (2003) featuring a variety of vocalists and Allaboutthefunk (2005) co-written and co-produced by Nicole Russo (as detailed on the album sleeve) who also featured as Lead vocalist.

For We Won't Stop album, The Brand New Heavies relied on singer/songwriter Sy Smith for the bulk of the female vocals.[4] Original member Jan Kincaid takes the lead on three of the tracks, and Los Angeles-based poet Gina Loring[5][6] makes several appearances on the album.[7] Where the Heavies typical sound had typically been more 1970s funk-styled and acoustically driven, We Won't Stop sees the band experimenting with more electronic elements and contemporary R&B.[8]

The album marked the first commercial release of "What Do You Take Me For", the band's lone track featuring former flagship lead vocalist N'Dea Davenport.[9] The track would be later re-recorded in a more modern configuration with Nicole Russo on lead for the Allabouthefunk album.[10] The sound and musical arrangement heard on these first releases of "Music", "Love Is...", and the title track "We Won't Stop" were re-recorded with new leads on N'Dea Davenport's 2006 return to the band for the comeback album Get Used to It.[11]

In April 2006, the Brand New Heavies reunited with N'Dea Davenport and former label Delicious Vinyl. A new album, Get Used to It was released on 27 June 2006 via Starbucks and more traditional music retail outlets. The album was recorded in New York and London; and the lead single "I Don't Know Why (I Love You)" was issued in early May. The single was notable for being one of very few late releases to feature the trademarked A Tom Moulton Mix, as he had been asked to contribute remixes. Later that year, their Heavy Rhyme Experience, Vol. 1 album track "Jump 'n' Move" featuring Jamal-ski was featured on the soundtrack for the 2006 computer animated feature film Happy Feet and the in-game soundtrack for 2004's NBA Live 2005 and 2009's NBA 2k10. The band toured at the end of 2006.

The Heavies recorded a cover of "C'est Magnifique" (originally from Cole Porter's 1953 musical Can-Can) for an early 2009 TV ad by Lancôme. The song also appeared in an early track listing of the Heavies' 2009 live album, but wasn't eventually included. The 2-CD Live in London was released in October 2009. The studio version of "C'est Magnifique" was released as a download and also included on a couple of various artists compilations.

The Brand New Heavies released a download instrumental album called Dunk Your Trunk in November 2011.[12] The album, recorded in only four days and described as 'funky library music' is directed at 'TV and Movie people to add to their programmes and films'. The 5-track Dunk Your Trunk Remixed E.P. was released on download on 1 May 2013.

Dawn Joseph was lead vocalist for The Brand New Heavies from 2013 to 2015.

The Brand New Heavies eighth studio album Forward was released on 6 May 2013. Lead vocal duties on the album are divided evenly between N'Dea Davenport, who features on the first single "Sunlight", Jan Kincaid and Simon Bartholomew, making his debut as lead vocalist on this album, and new UK vocalist Dawn Joseph.[13] While the album was produced by the Heavies themselves, as all their previous albums, there are also new collaborators, including songwriters Johan Jones Wetterberg, Marc Jackson Burrows, Rita Campbell and Tim Laws and mixing engineer Toni Economides.

On 10 October 2013, The Brand New Heavies announced via their website that Dawn Joseph had officially joined the band as full-time lead vocalist and that the band were working on a new studio album slated for release in early 2014.[14]

On 21 February 2014, The Brand New Heavies played at Buxton Opera House with support from British acoustic blues singer songwriter Matt Woosey. The Brand New Heavies ninth studio album Sweet Freaks, with Dawn Joseph on vocals, was released on 24 October 2014.[15]

Jan Kincaid and Dawn Joseph both left The Brand New Heavies in late 2015. In July 2016, the band began touring extensively in Europe and Japan with Sulene Fleming on vocals. She stayed until 2018. In November 2018 the band started touring with Angela Ricci on vocals.

The Brand New Heavies premiered their new single "Getaway" with N'Dea Davenport on vocals in April 2019. A new studio album, TBNH, is expected in August 2019 and will feature Davenport, Siedah Garrett, Angie Stone, Beverley Knight, Mark Ronson, Angela Ricci and others.



Studio albumsEdit

Title Album details Peak chart positions Certifications

The Brand New Heavies 25 17
Heavy Rhyme Experience, Vol. 1
  • Released: 3 August 1992
  • Label: FFRR (#8283352)
  • Formats: CD, digital download
38 139 49
Brother Sister
  • Released: 4 April 1994
  • Label: FFRR (#8284902)
  • Formats: CD, digital download
4 20 86 67 33 31 23 95 26
  • Released: 21 April 1997
  • Label: FFRR (#8288872)
  • Formats: CD, digital download
5 20 39 55 41 23 38 118 29
We Won't Stop
  • Released: 2003
  • Label: Canyon (#PCCY-01628)
  • Formats: CD, digital download
  • Released: 18 October 2004
  • Label: TBNH (#TBNHCD002P)
  • Formats: CD, digital download
122 138 81
Get Used to It
  • Released: 27 June 2006
  • Label: Delicious Vinyl (#70070-2)
  • Formats: CD, digital download
Dunk Your Trunk
  • Released: 23 April 2011
  • Label: Pedigree Cuts (#PED F043)
  • Format: Digital download
  • Released: 6 May 2013
  • Label: HeavyTone (#BNHVYCD1)
  • Formats: CD, digital download
Sweet Freaks
  • Released: 24 October 2014
  • Label: earMUSIC (#0209873ERE)
  • Formats: CD, digital download
"—" denotes items that did not chart or were not released in that territory.

Compilation albumsEdit

Title Album details Peak chart positions Certifications

Original Flava
  • Released: 1994
  • Label: Acid Jazz (#JAZID114)
  • Formats: LP, CS, CD
Trunk Funk – The Best of
The Brand New Heavies
  • Released: 13 September 1999
  • Label: FFRR (#3984291642)
  • Formats: CS, CD
13 2 95 24 6
The Best of 20 Years
  • Released: 4 November 2011
  • Label: Rhino
  • Format: CD
"—" denotes items that did not chart or were not released in that territory.

Live albumsEdit

Title Album details
Shibuya 357
  • Released: 2 May 1997 (Japan)
  • Label: Pony Canyon (#PCCY-01094)
  • Format: CD
Live in London
  • Released: October 2009
  • Label: Live Here Now (#LHN 48)
  • Format: CD

Remix albumsEdit

Title Album details Peak

Remixes & Rare Grooves
  • Released: 1995
  • Label: Delicious Vinyl (#7243 8 35535)
  • Formats: LP, CD
The Funk + House Remixes
  • Released: 2007
  • Label: Funky Chemist (#TR 1800)
  • Format: CD
Get Used to It -
The Tom Moulton mixes
  • Released: 2008
  • Label: Delicious Vinyl (#70070-2)
  • Format: CD
The Funk + House Remixes 2
  • Released: 2009
  • Label: Funky Chemist (#TR 1900)
  • Format: CD
"—" denotes items that did not chart or were not released in that territory.


Title Year Peak chart positions Certifications Album


"Got to Give" 1988 Non-album singles
"People Get Ready" 1989
"Dream Come True" 1990 63 The Brand New Heavies
"Never Stop" 1991 43 54 3
"Stay This Way" 40 88 19
"Dream Come True" (re-issue) 1992 24 42
"Don't Let It Go to Your Head" 24
"Bonafide Funk" (featuring Main Source) Heavy Rhyme Experience, Vol. 1
"Dream On Dreamer" 1994 15 47 56 19 51 19 Brother Sister
"Back to Love" 23 41
"Midnight at the Oasis" 13 68 48 11
"Brother Sister"
"Spend Some Time" 26 8 82 18
"Close to You" 1995 38 5 75 40 Pret-A-Porter
"Mind Trips" Excursions: Remixes, and Rare Grooves
"Sometimes" 1997 11 3 71 83 16 88 20 Shelter
"You Are the Universe" 21 4 73 28
"You've Got a Friend" 9 77 79 13
"You Can Do It"
"Shelter" 1998 31 27
"Saturday Nite" 1999 35 5 41 Trunk Funk – The Best of The Brand New Heavies
"Apparently Nothing" 32 4 45
"What Do You Take Me For?" 2003 We Won't Stop
"Boogie" 2004 66 15 Allabouthefunk
"Surrender" 2005 78 91
"I Don't Know Why (I Love You)" 2007 188 12 Get Used To It
"Let's Do It Again"
"Sunlight" 2013 73 Forward
"Sweet Freeek" 2014 97 Sweet Freaks
"Getaway" 2019 TBNH
"—" denotes items that did not chart or were not released in that territory.

"Never Stop" and "Stay This Way" peaked at number 19 on the UK Singles Chart, on 25.04.1992, as part of the Ultimate Trunk Funk EP with Never Stop being the lead track. The other track on the EP was "Mr. Tanaka". [36] "Stay This Way" didn't chart on its own, in the UK, in 1991, the song was released on its own, after its inclusion on the "Ultimate Trunk Funk EP" in December 1992, peaking at number 40 on 26.12.92. [37]

Songs featured on soundtracksEdit


  1. ^ a b Hammer, Steve. "Interview: Simon Bartholomew". Archived from the original on 10 December 2006.
  2. ^ Interview with Jon Scragg, Jazz FM 102.2 (London), 22 October 2004.
  3. ^ "N'Dea Davenport Interview". SoulTalk. Archived from the original on 11 February 2009. Retrieved 25 April 2014.
  4. ^ "Sy Smith: The Syberspace Social". Retrieved 25 September 2012.
  5. ^ "Cal Poly MultiCultural Center to Host Poet Gina Loring on Jan. 7". Cal Polytechnic State University. 11 December 2008. Retrieved 25 September 2012.
  6. ^ Sean Wardwell (8 March 2009). "Poet Gina Loring to perform at Texas State". San Marcos Mercury. Retrieved 25 September 2012.
  7. ^ "The Brand New Heavies - Biography". Pony Canyon. Retrieved 25 September 2012.
  8. ^ "Brand New Heavies, concert in Korea for the first time in four years". MK (Korean). 20 October 2007. Retrieved 25 September 2012.
  9. ^ Dan Grunebaum. "The Brand New Heavies". Metropolis Japan. Retrieved 25 September 2012.
  10. ^ "We Won't Stop - The Brand New Heavies". Retrieved 25 September 2012.
  11. ^ "The Brand New Heavies - Get Used To It". FOK. 1 November 2007. Retrieved 25 September 2012.
  12. ^ "PEDF043 – The Brand New Heavies – Dunk Your Trunk | Pedigree CutsPedigree Cuts". Archived from the original on 26 April 2014. Retrieved 25 April 2014.
  13. ^ "The Brand New Heavies: Call In The Heavies". Retrieved 25 April 2014.
  14. ^ "Dawn Joseph announced as full-time lead vocalist". 10 October 2013. Archived from the original on 11 October 2014. Retrieved 25 April 2014.
  15. ^
  16. ^ a b c Peaks in the UK:
  17. ^ "Australian chart peaks". Hung Medien. Retrieved 1 November 2016.
  18. ^ "French chart peaks". Hung Medien. Retrieved 1 November 2016.
  19. ^ German studio albums:
  20. ^ a b c "Dutch chart peaks". Hung Medien. Retrieved 1 November 2016.
  21. ^ a b "New Zealand chart peaks". Hung Medien. Retrieved 1 November 2016.
  22. ^ a b "Swedish chart peaks". Hung Medien. Retrieved 1 November 2016.
  23. ^ "Swiss chart peaks". Hung Medien. Retrieved 1 November 2016.
  24. ^ "US album chart peaks". Billboard. Retrieved 1 November 2016.
  25. ^ a b "US R&B album chart peaks". Billboard. Retrieved 1 November 2016.
  26. ^ a b c d e "BPI Certification". British Phonographic Industry. Archived from the original on 24 January 2013. Retrieved 1 November 2016.
  27. ^ UK R&B albums
  28. ^ Scottish compilation albums "Trunk Funk – The Best of The Brand New Heavies". Official Charts Company. Retrieved 1 November 2016.
  29. ^ UK R&B singles
  30. ^ Canadian singles:
  31. ^ German singles:
  32. ^ "Japanese singles". Billboard. Retrieved 1 November 2016.
  33. ^ Scottish singles
  34. ^ "US Hot 100 Singles". Billboard. Retrieved 1 November 2016.
  35. ^ "US R&B Singles". Billboard. Retrieved 1 November 2016.
  36. ^
  37. ^

External linksEdit