A slick '80s post-disco act more popular in clubs than on airwaves, the B.B. & Q. Band came together accidentally on purpose when guitarist Doc Powell turned bassist Paris "Pee Wee" Ford on to producer Jacques Fred Petrus, who had already started the groups Change and High Fashion with session musicians and vocalists. Petrus asked Ford to get some musicians together and record some tracks he'd written. After the tracks were finished, Petrus shopped for a deal, got one with Capitol, and officially named the group in reference to the three New York City boroughs of which the members were natives (Brooklyn, the Bronx, and Queens).
The original lineup included bassist Ford, keyboardist Kevin Nance, guitarist Paolo Gianolio, drummer Terry Silverlight, and lead singer Ike Floyd. They debuted with The Brooklyn, Bronx & Queens Band, produced by Petrus and Mauro Malavasi. It spawned the wallflower remover "On the Beat," a number three club hit and number eight R&B hit in the fall of 1981. Acclaimed by disco freaks, the song featured background vocals from Luther Vandross. A second LP, All Night Long, dropped in 1982. Floyd was gone, replaced by Kevin Robinson, while Tawatha Agee (Mtume) and Timmy Allen (Change) handled backup. It featured the number 21 R&B hit "Imagination" and a smooth rendition of Thom Bell and Linda Creed's "Children of the Night."
After the less successful 1983 album Six Million Times, the group signed with Elektra, and in 1985 released Genie, featuring singer Curtis Hairston on the singles "Genie" and "Dreamer," both written and produced by Breakwater's Kae Williams. The group ceased recording following the 1987 murder of Petrus, but eventually reconvened for performances well into the 2000s. ~ Andrew Hamilton