The enduring success of Incognito is one of the great stories of U.K. music during the last 30 years. Look at the recent history of soulful U.K. artists and you will find any number of short-lived acts that have achieved pop success. Narrow the list to those that have created a uniquely British sound and that have endured as a global phenomenon on their own terms, and the list becomes short. Immense credit goes then to Jean-Paul "Bluey" Maunick and Incognito, formed in 1979 and currently celebrating over 30 years of positive vibes and undiluted jazz funk.
Bluey formed Incognito along with Paul "Tubbs" Williams, and the band's debut release, Jazz Funk (1981), was an instrumental tour de force. However, after a brief foray into pop with the track "North London Boy" (1981), most of the band's members went separate ways, and the band didn't release another album until 1991's Inside Life. After that release, however, Incognito took the club scene and the charts by storm, quickly becoming a smooth jazz icon in the U.S. with releases like Tribes, Vibes & Scribes (1992), which featured the hit "L'Arc en Ciel de Miles;" Positivity (1994), which sold almost a million copies worldwide and spawned hits like "Still a Friend of Mine," "Givin' It Up," and "Deep Waters;" and 100 Degrees and Rising (1995).
Incognito has continued to maintain an active recording and performance schedule since that '90s heyday, with performances at festivals and prominent venues around the world and releases including Life Stranger Than Fiction (2001), Eleven (2006), and Tales from the Beach (2008). The band also recently celebrated its 30th anniversary by dropping two albums in 2010: Live in London: The 30th Anniversary Concert and Transatlantic R.P.M. Over 30 years into a historic career, the Bluey and Incognito story remains a uniquely Great British adventure. From Top 10 hits to producing and arranging for Chaka Khan, Anastacia, Lulu, Philip Bailey, and George Benson, Bluey can safely take his place among the greats of global soul.
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