Ready For The World is well known to fans of their 80’s hits “Oh Sheila” and “Love You Down.” Their new single “Tattoo,” is out now. The six member group from Flint, Michigan was originally comprised of Melvin Riley, Gordon Strozier, Gregory Potts, Willie Triplett, John Eaton and Gerald Valentine. The group was initially comprised of two rival groups who merged.
“We came together competing against each other in talent shows,” says Riley. “I was singing originals, actually. I would come home from football practice and write my own songs. I did my own song in the talent show and they tried to clap me off the stage. Then I stood up and pulled my hair back and the crowd went crazy. I won the talent show.”
Ready for the World still performs around the country. Their new project, which includes 90’s hitmaker Jon B. (“They Don’t Know”) means they will be making new music to the delight of their fans. There is also a possible Unsung profile, though that’s not been confirmed yet.
And like Prince, who brought the issue to the forefront some years, ago, the group is hoping to soon retain their original masters. It takes about 30-32 years for the master recordings to revert back to the group, they say. Although they get their publishing, until their masters come back to them, they share it with the label.
One of the other things that folks remember is the group’s love of Jheri curl hairstyles. Riley, in particular had a curl leading the group to be dubbed as Ready For The Curl by the era’s comedians.
“That was just good hair, I kept trying to tell everybody,” says Riley. “Look, Indian.” The group says Triplett had the best curl in the group, maybe because his mother did the group’s hair. He says a curl endorsement was in the works, but never happened.
Ready For The World On Starting The Group, New Single, ‘Tattoo’ was originally published on blackamericaweb.com