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Remembering Teena Marie aka Lady Tee…

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“I still have a passion for the music, which is such a beautiful thing. I still wake up in the middle of the night out of a dream and have a melody in my head, and run to my piano.” Teena Marie ( Lady T)

RIP Teena Marie aka Lady Tee: A fallen leaf reminds us of the ephemeral nature of life...

RIP Teena Marie aka Lady T.... pix via uulyrics

R.I.P. Mary Christine Brockert; Teena Marie aka Lady Tee (March 5, 1956 – December 26, 2010): Today we lost a brilliant singer-songwriter.  Teena Marie will be sorely missed. A gifted R&B singer who performed with some of the greatest  R&B entertainers, Lady Tee, as she was fondly called by those who knew her, touched many lives. Her music touched my life in many ways too; she sang with the best… She sings Fire & Desire with Rick James via the link below. I have added the Lyrics at the end of this post.
Listen to the song here –  FIRE & DESIRE

I’m still reeling from the news that Teena Marie aka Lady Tee passed away today. Such sad, sad news came through the airwaves and internet stunning all who loved her music and had followed her talent for eons. I grew up listening to Teena Marie’s music and followed her career through the years. She was a phenomenal lady and a consummate entertainer on stage. She had a huge heart and lived her life with vim and verve…

The lady had several hit records, played multiple instruments (guitar, bass, piano & percussion), and performed R&B, pop and jazzy tunes… She made quite a number of still danceable tunes and recorded thirteen albums under the Motown, Epic Records, her Sarai, Cash Money Records and Stax/Concord Records labels; Wild and Peaceful (1979), Lady T (1980), Irons in the Fire (1980), It Must Be Magic (1981), Robbery (1983), Starchild (1984), Emerald City (1986), Naked to the World (1988), Ivory (1990), Passion Play (1994), La Doña (2004), Sapphire (2006), and Congo Square (2009) …

Some of her hit records included; I’m Just a Sucker for Your Love, Square Biz, I Need Your Lovin, It Must be Magic, Ooo La La La, LoverGirl, I’m Still In Love, A Rose by Any Other Name, and Can’t Last a Day, but at the end of the day, my favorite is her duet with Rick James – Fire & Desire…

Teena Marie and daughter, Alia, via Hephaestus

In her interview with Lee Tyler of Blues & Soul, she said, “For a long time I took ‘Fire and Desire’ outta my show because it was too hard to sing, but I had to put it back in because it was just so magical to so many people – it’s undeniable. I think God places certain people together to make magic and that’s what the combination of Rick and Teena did.” You have to hear it to understand… She showed her amazing vocal range and strength in that number for sure…

The Brockert Initiative, which was named after Teena when she sued Motown Records to be released from a contract that was no longer viable, made it illegal for a record company to keep an artist under contract without releasing new material for that artist, and gave lots of musicians a way out from an iron clad unproductive musical relationship with any record company. Lady T deserves her kudos…
Apparently, TV One had a series named UNSUNG that included a featured bio of Lady T… Here’s a TV One Online tribute and a few clips from her UNSUNG piece. Hopefully, they will show/share it again.

I can relate to Sherri’s comment on the Live on The View taping, linked below, when she said she played Lady T’s songs over and over again till the tape wore out. Yeah Sherri, me too… I’ve done that for music by other R&B greats too but Teena, you were one special soul sister! RIP. She is survived by her daughter, Alia Rose (Rose Le Beau). My condolences go out to her family…

“You never know where a blessing can come from.” Teena Marie aka Lady Tee

A few places to hear the lady speak and/or sing are linked below.
A Brief Interview
Live at The Velvet Red Cake Studio
Square biz and here
Live on The View
Teena Marie w/ Gerald Levart A Rose By Any Other Name
Portuguese Love Mix
Teena Marie featuring her daughter Rose Le Beau Can’t Last A Day
Deja Vu Live at Indigo2 in the UK – Deja Vu

Rick James and Teena Marie: Lyrics to Fire & Desire FIRE & DESIRE
It’s really good to see you again, baby
And I must admit you’re looking very, very, very nice these days
I guess life must be treating you well
Oh, me
Well, I’ve just been doing the same old thing I’ve always been doing
You know, I’ve got a new lady now
And it’s a little different then it was when I was with you
You know, I think back to when we met
The way I use to be and the cold way I use to act
But more than that, I think of how you changed me with your love and sensitivity
Remember when I used to

Love them and leave them
That’s what I used to do
Use and abuse them
Then I laid eyes on you

It was pain before pleasure
That was my claim to fame
With every measure, baby
Tasted teardrop stains, yeah

I was cold as ice long ago, baby, baby
I wasn’t very, very, very nice, you know
Sugar, sugar, sugar
Then I kissed your lips

And you turned on my fire, baby
And you burned me up within your flame
Took me a little higher
Made me live again

You turned on my fire, baby
Then you showed me what a love could do
Fire and desire, baby
Feel it coming through

And I thank you, baby
Oh, how I thank you, baby
You taught me so much
And you showed me so much and love and insensitivity
That since you’ve been gone I don’t think I’ve ever felt this way before
You know it’s funny how a man can change
So quickly from a cold blooded person
Thinking he’s God gift to women

Remember how I use to do that
I must have been crazy then
Remember when you used to

Love them and leave them
Oh, that’s what I used to do
Use them and abuse them, whoa
Then I laid eyes on you

It was pain before pleasure
Oh, that was my claim to fame
With every measure
Tasted your teardrop stains, yeah

You were cold as ice (Woo…hoo…hoo…hoo…), baby, baby
(I-I wasn’t, I-I wasn’t very nice, I know, woo…)
Sugar, sugar, sugar, sugar
Then I kissed your lips

And you (You turned on) turned (You turned on) on
(You turned on my fire) my fire, baby (Ooh…)
Then you showed me what a love could do (Woo…hoo…)
Fire and desire (Fire and desire)
Feeling good to you (Feeling good to you)

You turned on my fire (Fire, ooh…ooh…), baby (Oh, baby)
And you burned me up within your flame (You burned me, you burned me)
Fire and desire (Fire and desire)
And were both to blame, both to blame (Ooh…ooh…)

You know
I guess I think we both said a little too much today (No, ooh…hoo…hoo…)
After all Tee, you’re kind of with somebody else
I’m kind of living with somebody (Ooh…ooh…ooh…)
But please do me a favor just before you go (What is it, baby)
Just put your arms around me and hold me like you used (I wanna hold you tight)
Tell me “Rick” (Oh…oh…) “Everything is gonna be alright”
(Everything, everything, everything is gonna be alright)
Put your arms around me
Put your arms around me (Ooh…)
Oh, baby (Woo…ooh…ooh…)
Oh, baby (Ooh…ooh…ooh…ooh…ooh…ooh…ooh…)

What memories do you hold of Teena Marie and her music? I’d love to hear from you… Peace. THANK YOU!

Lyrics via Metrolyrics
Quote from Great Quotes
Photo of Fallen Maple Leaf by Raul Touzon via National Geographic
Photo of Teena Marie via UUlyrics as per cover of La Dona Album on Cash Money Records label
Photo of Teena and Alia by Hephaestus via

Until Next Time…
Ask. Believe. Receive.©
Elizabeth Obih-Frank
Mirth and Motivation
Positive Kismet

17 Comments leave one →
  1. 27/12/2010 3:28 am

    Took me right back to the ’80’s. I listened to so much R&B when I was teaching aerobic dance then. She was, I felt, underrated. And I hate to see anyone die so young.
    Nice tribute.

    • 28/12/2010 4:24 pm

      I completely agree with you… so, so sad!

  2. richard permalink
    27/12/2010 4:56 am

    square biz – wow – hadn’t thought about that in years.. sorry to lose her so soon.. we were the same age.. liked her from the start.. she was a pioneer..

    • 28/12/2010 4:25 pm

      I always liked her and her energy… the music was fantastic too and she embraced all!

  3. Bree permalink
    27/12/2010 8:10 am

    She was an artist with so much soul, such depth and complexity to her voice.
    Every time I listened to her sing, I would think about the notes she hit and how she moved through a song.
    She was underrated for her amazing talent and I think because she came to her craft with humility, others didn’t recognize her gifts.
    It is so ironc that there is so much mediocre talent out there today with much rah rah…
    Fire & Desire nailed it. Square Biz and I Need Your Lovin’ kept me dancing.
    What a lovely tribute to one special soul sister. I hear you!

    • 28/12/2010 4:26 pm

      You said it all so well B… She will be missed!

  4. 27/12/2010 1:12 pm

    I could not believe the news! Teena Marie was always one of my favorites. Her voice was amazing. She was one of a kind!

    • 28/12/2010 4:28 pm

      I kept asking my daughters again and again to re-check the facts when they first read it on the internet. I’ve been re-listening to her songs all over again…

  5. 28/12/2010 4:14 am

    Lady T was amazing! Thank you for this great tribute to her! Her voice took us to heights that just touch our souls.

  6. Bree permalink
    28/12/2010 5:30 am

    It is true that she was/will remain an amazing artist.
    All the greats are disappearing and we pray some of those young talent will grow.
    They just need to drop the attitude and bad behavior and work on theri craft.
    Happy holidays to everyone.

  7. 28/12/2010 4:29 pm

    Truly amazing…. I feel for her daughter; so hard to lose a parent at any age but especially when you are so young.

  8. joe ramone permalink
    29/12/2010 5:40 pm

    Keep ’em coming… you all do such a great job at such Concepts… can’t tell you how much I, for one appreciate all you do! Thanks 🙂

  9. 14/01/2011 7:12 am

    a great page about music, compliments!

  10. 28/12/2010 4:23 pm

    Condolences to Alia Rose is greatly needed…


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