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Gwen Guthrie

Gwen Guthrie is best known for her number one R&B single "Ain't Nothin' Goin' on But the Rent," a popular self-written bouncer. A prolific songwriter and a good pianist, she also penned "Supernatural Thing" for Ben E. King and "This Time I'll Be Sweeter" for Martha Reeves, which was later popularized by Angela Bofill and Issac Hayes. In all, Guthrie logged approximately 50 compositions, and many thought Guthrie and songwriting partner Patrick Grant had the potential to become another Ashford & Simpson.

Born in Newark, New Jersey, in 1950, Guthrie started singing in high school with a female quartet called the Ebonettes. (Another one of its members, Brenda White King, pursued music like Guthrie and became an in-demand session singer.) Guthrie sang lead for a group (East Coast) formed by Larry Blackmon (later of Cameo) in New York, but got her big break when she was asked to do a background session for Aretha Franklin, the number one R&B hit "I'm in Love," from 1974. Six months later, Guthrie signed as a staff writer with Bert de Coteaux Productions and co-wrote "Love Don't Go Through No Changes," the first hit for Sister Sledge, and many others with Grant. The collaboration didn't last long, however.

Guthrie continued to write with a variety of partners, and supplied backing vocals to many recording sessions. Working with Peter Tosh in the late '70s, Guthrie befriended reggae stars Sly Dunbar and Robbie Shakespeare, who invited her to Nassau to record vocals for an album they were producing. Hearing her unique voice in the studio, Island Records founder Chris Blackwell inked her to a contract, and the Dunbar/Shakespeare project, assisted by David Conley of Surface, became her first solo release, a self-titled LP. She did score a dancefloor hit with the album's "It Should Have Been You." Her second LP, Portrait, released in 1983, followed a similar formula. Album number three, Good to Go Lover, dropped in 1986, and spawned her chart-topper "Ain't Nothin' Goin' on but the Rent," plus the torching ballad "You Touched My Life." On Lifeline (1988), Guthrie was more involved in the writing and production. Hot Times was Guthrie's final LP release, hitting the streets in 1990. Like the previous LP, she wrote nearly everything, except for a moving remake of Stephanie Mills' "Never Knew Love Like This Before." GuthrieGuthrie died on February 3, 1999, of uterine cancer in Orange, New Jersey. ~ Andrew Hamilton
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: The Ultimate Collection

1. Ain't Nothin' Goin' On But The Rent

2. Padlock (Larry Levan Mix)

3. Outside In The Rain (Remix)

4. Peanut Butter

5. It Should Have Been You (Larry Levan Mix)

6. Oh What A Life

7. (They Long To Be) Close To You

8. Seventh Heaven (Remix)

9. Oh Donny No

10. Is This Love?

11. Younger Than Me

12. God Don't Like Ugly

13. Peek A Boo (Extended Version)

14. Ain't Nothin' Goin' On But The Rent (Dub Mix)

x

Track List: Hot Times

1. Is There A Spark?

2. Miss My Love

3. Say It Isn't So

4. Sweet Bitter Love

5. I'll Give My Best To You

6. Feel Good

7. Hot Time In Harlem

8. Our Love

9. Same Ole Thang

10. Never Knew Love Like This

x

Track List: Lifeline

1. Destiny

2. Bye Bye Lover

3. Rockin' Chair

4. What Would I Do Without You

5. Can't Love You Tonight

6. Send Me Somebody (Why Don't Cha)

7. Once More With Feeling

8. Don't Take Your Love From Me

9. Too Many Fish In The Sea

10. Can't Love You Tonight (The Surgeon General's Funky 4/4 Mix) (Feat. Gangster-B)

x

Track List: Good To Go Lover

1. (They Long To Be) Close To You

2. Outside In The Rain

3. Good To Go Lover

4. You Touched My Life

5. Ain't Nothin' Goin' On But The Rent

6. I Still Want You

7. Stop Holding Back

8. Passion Eyes

9. Ain't Nothin' Goin' On But The Rent (Extended Club Mix)

10. Outside In The Rain (Single Version)

11. Save Your Love For Me (Feat. Surface)

12. (They Long To Be) Close To You (Single Version)

x

Track List: Just For You

1. Put Love In Control

2. Love In Moderation

3. Just For You

4. I Gotta Have You

5. I Can't Feel It No More

6. Oh Donny No

7. Joy Riders

8. Thrill Me

x

Track List: Portrait

1. Peanut Butter

2. Seventh Heaven

3. You're The One

4. Family Affair

5. Hopscotch

6. Younger Than Me

7. Padlock

8. Oh What A Life

9. Peanut Butter (Larry Levan Mix / Bonus Track)

10. Hopscotch (Larry Levan Instrumental Mix / Bonus Track)

11. Padlock (Larry Levan Mix / Bonus Track)

x

Track List: Gwen Guthrie

1. Peek-A-Boo

2. Getting Hot

3. Your Turn To Burn

4. Dance Fever

5. For You (With A Melody Too)

6. It Should Have Been You

7. Is This Love?

8. God Don't Like Ugly

9. It Should Have Been You (Larry Levan Mix)

10. Peek A Boo (Extended Version)

Comments

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'Cause life is too serious, love's too mysterious
Report as inappropriate
One of my faves by her. They don't make music like this anymore. To me Gwen Guthrie was underrated. Miss the 80s.
Report as inappropriate
For really bring something to my table
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This music bring me back to the old days back at Paradise garage
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zenobiareeds
Love love love this song
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marty.8230
This is true have to have a JOB
Report as inappropriate
From the silver shadow to Bentleys to latin quarter nuff said
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We use to PARTY
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Love this song
Report as inappropriate
I remember seeing her in the "Paradise Garage"singi n g this with her back up dancers dressed like Angles (boys were so fine) and we partied like the world was about to end !!!
Report as inappropriate
R.I.P.
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sean_moo_re
this is the most cold-blooded , song on this subject. STEP YOUR GAME UP!!!

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