Get the Mary J Blige What’s The 411 T Shirt is the debut album by American R&B singer Mary J. Blige. It was released on July 28, 1992, by Uptown Records and MCA Records. After signing a record contract with Uptown, Blige began working on the album with producer Sean “Puff Daddy” Combs. Other producers and songwriters included DeVante Swing, Tony Dofat, Dave Hall, Mark Morales and Mark “Cory” Rooney. The resulting music covered hip hop soul, contemporary R&B, and new jack swing styles.
Get the Mary J Blige What’s The 411 T Shirt At the age of 17, Blige recorded a cover version of Anita Baker‘s “Caught Up in the Rapture” in a recording booth at a local mall. Her mother’s boyfriend at the time later played the cassette to recording artist and A&R runner for Uptown Records, Jeff Redd. Redd then sent it to the president and chief executive officer of the label, Andre Harrell. Blige met with Harrell in 1990 and performed the song for him. She was signed to Uptown and became the label’s youngest and third female recording artist (after Finesse N’ Synquis).
Get the Mary J Blige What’s The 411 T Shirt After being signed to Uptown Records, Blige began working with record producer Puff Daddy. He became the executive producer and produced a majority of the album. The title, What’s the 411?, derived from Blige’s past occupation as a 4-1-1 operator; it was also an indication by Blige of being the “real deal”. The music was described as “revelatory on a frequent basis”. Blige was noted for having a “tough girl persona and streetwise lyrics”. The album begins with “Leave a Message”, a collection of Blige’s answering machine messages over a drum beat. The following two tracks, “Reminisce” and “You Remind Me“, are melancholy songs that are overlaid with hip hop beats. A cover of Chaka Khan‘s “Sweet Thing” followed.
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