The Ritchie Family Returns to Billboard's Dance Club Chart After 40 Years!
Music history has been made as The Ritchie Family (RTF), one of the most popular girl-groups of 70s disco and the Philadelphia Sound, returns to the Billboard national Dance Club Chart Top 40 with their new hit single "ICE".
Forty years ago during the disco explosion, Cassandra Wooten, Cheryl Mason-Dorman (formerly Mason-Jacks) and Gwendolyn Wesley (formerly Oliver) became the voices and faces of The Ritchie Family. Brilliantly teaming with the creators of the Grammy-nominated disco hit "Brazil" Richie Rome, Jacques Morali and Henri Belolo (the latter two gentlemen were also the creators of Village People) the ladies helped ignite one of the biggest and most explosive dance #1 hits of 1976, "The Best Disco In Town". The song was a Top 20 pop smash in the US and quickly regarded as an all-time disco classic. By the end of the disco boom, the reign of the original group line-up came to an end. Cassandra and Cheryl went on to provide background vocals on John Lennon and Yoko Ono's immortal 1980 album, Double Fantasy. The ladies then put their music careers on hold for a number of years, pursuing other interests and family life.
After years of hearing and seeing others perform their hits, Cassandra and Cheryl eventually decided it was time to regroup. With the introduction of singer, songwriter and choreographer Renée Guillory-Wearing, who took the place of Gwendolyn Wesley, The Ritchie Family was ready to reinvent their sound and bring their energy to the world of contemporary pop and dance music. In 2016, the trio released the single "ICE", a rousing, heart-stopping musical journey that shows their still commanding vocal presence in a most unique, decidedly hip and deliciously unexpected way. Produced by legendary vocalist Martha Wash's boutique label Purple Rose Records (the powerful team that recently brought the group First Ladies of Disco to the Top 10 of Billboard's dance chart with "Show Some Love"), "ICE" by The Ritchie Family immediately caught the ear of high-profile DJs worldwide.
As a result, "ICE" vaulted onto the Billboard Dance Club Chart at #40, returning The Ritchie Family to the elite circle of the current dance music hitmakers. The song has been gaining even more fans thanks to high-energy remixes by Chris Cox and Moto Blanco. The Ritchie Family is proving that "ICE" is, indeed, very cool! The Ritchie Family are profiled and interviewed in the best-selling book First Ladies of Disco by James Arena, which reached #1 on Amazon in the dance music category.
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