To say that Johnny Kemp(RIP)was apart of a late 80’s musical anthem might actually be an understatement. The reason I make that declaration is that in viewing Johnny Kemp’s positioning as an early and important crest in the wave of the universe of Teddy Riley and New Jack Swing. Johnny was not only a part of a memorable anthem but a forerunner of things to come in the following decade.

“Just Got Paid” instantly resonated with this new breed of listeners and dancers who were quickly favoring the sight and sound of music that reflected their reality as opposed to the more slickly produced show business look and sound that dominated mid-late 80’s R&B. The music was new, the crowd was younger, the language had changed to one of hype and dope and that unmistakable “Just Got Paid” intro replete with orchestra hits was a clarion call to the dancefloor.

I know that it’s not available to everyone because of life circumstances but part of the appeal of youth is the carefree nature that marks that period of time in one’s life. Sure there’s always worry but I believe this music was a powerful agent in helping many to forget about the troubles for at least a few minutes. Feel good, good time music no more no less. Smiles everyone, smiles like we’re on Fantasy Island. One of the aspects of ’88 that if you don’t have it you should look into definitely bringing back: fun.

It’s almost Friday folks, so go ahead get ready by pressing play and doing a little dance and have yourself a good time like a good #Grown should.

Ivan Orr is a multi-instrumentalist, composer, performer, and writer. A native of Charlottesville, Virginia Ivan was involved with the forming and nascent days of The Music Resource Center as its first Program Director. A graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University’s Department of Music, Ivan currently resides in Richmond, VA where he maintains an active performance and production schedule while serving as the Music Editor for Grown Folks Music, a position he has held since 2010.