Wednesday, January 5, 2022

Force MDs Jessie D Dead at 57

Photo Credit @jessieleedaniels Instagram
Jessie Lee Daniels, a founding member of the Force MDs, has passed away at the age of 57.

The death of Daniels, aka Jessie D, was announced late Tuesday on the pioneering hip-hop and R&B group’s official Facebook page.

“He ate, sleep [sic] and breathe music everyday,” the post read.

“Please put a heart up for him. He was loved!!!!!!!!!! To the family, friends and fans today we lost a real talent. Our condolences goes out to his siblings, kids and the Force MDs."

Formed in Staten Island, New York, the family group rose to fame in the early 1980s propelled by their unique combination of doo-wop and acapella sung over hip-hop beats that became the foundation of the New Jack Swing movement.

Originally named the Fantastic L.D.s, before switching to Force MCs and eventually settling on Force MDs, which stood for musical diversity, the group was comprised of brothers Stevie D., Antoine “T.C.D.” Lundy, and Rodney “Khalil” Lundy, along with their uncle Daniels. In later years their friends Trisco Pearson and Charles “Mercury” Nelson from the Mariners Harbor projects on Staten Island joined the group.

The Force MDs were best known for their hits “Love is a House,” “Itchin’ For a Scratch” and “Tender Love.” Daniels sang lead vocals for the Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis-penned “Tender Love” which reached No. 10 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and was featured on the soundtrack of the groundbreaking hip-hop movie “Krush Groove” in 1985.

The group which released six studio albums together, the last being “The Reunion” in 2000, has had its music live on in part because of heavy sampling by other artists.

"Tender Love" was sampled in the 1996 Bone Thugs-n-Harmony hit "Days of Our Livez", and Alicia Keys, The Backstreet Boys, Kelly Rowland, Marques Houston and Marsha Ambrosius are among those who have made covers of the song.

The group also lent its vocals to several tracks on Ghostface Killah’s iconic solo debut ‘Ironman" in 1996.

Daniels is the fifth member of the group, which former President Barack Obama revealed was on his Air Force One iPod playlist in a 2009 interview, to pass.

Charles “Mercury” Nelson died from a heart attack in 1995. Antoine “T.C.D.” Lundy died of Lou Gehrig’s disease in 1998, and Trisco Pearson died of cancer in 2016. DJ Dr. Rock, one of the group's former DJs, passed away in 1996 from natural causes.

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