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Stereo MCs are an English electronic dance group, which formed in Clapham, London, in 1985. They are best known worldwide for their 1992 transatlantic Top 20 hit single, "Connected". The book Guinness Rockopedia described them as "the big boys of British rap".
Vocalist Rob Birch, and DJ/producer Nick Hallam, founded their Gee Street recording studio and record label, with money they were given to leave their London flat and dispensing with using a backing band, travelled to early gigs on public transport.
When Gee Street attracted the attention of 4th & Broadway, they recorded the debut Stereo MCs' album 33-45-78 (1989) on a shoestring budget with DJ Cesare, drummer Owen If and backing vocalist and Cath Coffey. In 1990, "Elevate My Mind" by the Stereos was the first British hip hop single to reach the US R&B chart. Having supported the Happy Mondays on a US tour, in the emerging UK indie dance scene, it took an alliance with the Jungle Brothers, to ensure chart success for Supernatural (1990). Remix work for U2, PM Dawn, Queen Latifah, Disposable Heroes of Hiphoprisy, Monie Love and Electronic all followed.
They are still sought after producers, with most of their remixes being done under the name Ultimatum.
One of their most notable remixes was a remix for Madonna's hit single "Frozen". Madonna went on to use it on her 2001 "Drowned World Tour"
Their live band included singers Andrea Bedassie and Verona Davis, and they were one of the few hip hop outfits to play rock music festivals at the time. 1992's mainstream breakthrough Connected, a UK Albums Chart # 2, contained the hit singles "Connected", "Step It Up", "Creation", and "Ground Level" and won them BRIT Awards for Best Group and Best Album. Hallam and Birch then created the music publishing firm, Spirit Songs, which signed Finley Quaye.
However the follow-up to Connected did not appear for almost a decade. Further remix duties for Madonna ("Frozen"), and the Jungle Brothers ("Jungle Brother") in 1998, kept the Stereo MCs name in the limelight.
In 2000, they released a DJ mix for Studio !K7's DJ-Kicks series and remixed another song for Madonna, ("Music"). The following year saw the release of Deep Down & Dirty, followed by a tour, including slots opening for the recently re-united Jane's Addiction.
Their sixth studio album, Double Bubble, was released in July 2008, followed by their seventh, Emperor's Nightingale in August 2011. In December 2008, they supported Madness at the O2 Arena in London.
† This EP was written, produced and composed by the Stereo MCs and released on Island Records. The songs would later appear on their first album. The tracklisting is as follows:
Deep, Down and Dirty was featured on the first season of HBO's Six Feet Under and can be found on the show's first soundtrack release of 2002.
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