One of the classic Washington, D.C. go-go acts, Rare Essence carried the torch from the boisterous style's early-'80s heyday well into the next three decades. Founded in 1976, the band began as the Young Dynamos. After a change of name and a lineup expansion, Rare Essence made their recorded debut in 1981 with "Body Moves," co-produced by scene godfather Chuck Brown. The single had a brief stay on Billboard's Soul Singles chart, and the band quickly emerged alongside Trouble Funk, E.U., and other popular go-go bands. Despite countless membership changes, including the 1994 murder of founding member Quentin "Footz" Davidson, Rare Essence continued to record and tour regularly well into the late 2010s, as documented through dozens of studio and live releases issued on their Rare One label. Led by lone original member Andre Johnson, the band entered its fifth decade of existence with Turn It Up!, released in 2016. ~ Jason Ankeny
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