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Gap Band, The

The Gap Band was formed by Charlie, Ronnie and Robert Wilson, in Tulsa, Oklahoma in 1967.  They were first known as Greenwood, Archer and Pine Street Band but they shortened it in 1979 to the G.A.P. Street Band which then, due to a mistake, became the Gap band.  The name is derived from a business district of Tulsa.

Their first album Wizard’s Holiday was released, unsuccessfully in 1974, and the group comprised up to 12 members.  Later they reduced it to the three brothers and their producer, Leon Russell.

In 1975 they moved to Los Angeles and after they had been seen by Lonnie Simmons, he arranged a deal for them with the Mercury label.  In 1978 they had success with songs which included “Shake” which became a Top 10 R&B hit. In 1979 they released “I Don’t Believe You Wanna Get Up and Dance (Ooops Upside Your Head)” which shot to No. 6 in the UK.

As it moved into the 1980s they achieved further hits such as “Yearning for Your Love” and “Big Fun” which were both Top 10 hits in the UK as well as being successful Billboard hits.   Four of their albums became platinum.

Although they have continued to record albums and tour, the brothers have also concentrated on their solo careers.  Their hits have been sampled and covered by artists including Shaquille O’Neal, George Michael and Mary J. Blige and the song “Outstanding” was sampled for a liquor advert in the 1990s.

They have also produced and recorded songs for the 1988 movie I’m Gonna Git You Sucka and their song “You Dropped a Bomb on Me” is featured in the videogame Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas.

They have influenced artists that include R.Kelly and Aaron Hall but disbanded in 2010 after the death of Robert Wilson following a heart attack in August of that year.

Charlie Wilson (Lead vocals, keyboards)
Robert Wilson (Vocals, bass)
Ronnie Wilson (Keyboards, trumpet)

Gap Band Recordings
Baby Baba Boogie (Lonnie Simmons/Charlie Wilson)
Party Lights Remix (Charlie Wilson/Lonnie Simmons/Ronnie Wilson/Rudolph Taylor)