Before I started to write about music for Weekly Music Commentary, I really did not attend a lot of live musical performances. That did not start until after I started to date and marry my wife. Most of the concerts we attended were artists that we either mutually liked, or those who were her favorites. One of those concerts that we attended was a performance by our featured artist this week, Chanté Moore. Still fresh in my mind, we traveled a little more that an hour’s drive back in the fall of 1999 to see Moore in an intimate setting. Moore did not disappoint the audience while delivering music from her recent album at the time, This Moment is Mine. That was not the beginning of Chanté Moore’s career, and eighteen years later she is still recording and performing. However, in speaking of her new project Moore stated, “This album reflects where I am now in my life. I am perfecting myself.” What does that mean?
In order to understand Chanté Moore’s statement, we must look back at her career from start until now. Born to Christian Evangelist parents February 17, 1967, she grew up singing in the church and was heavily influenced by the music of George Duke and Lee Ritenour. She was a beauty pageant contestant and model when, at age twenty-two, she was discovered by MCA Records executive Louil Silas. On September 29, 1992, Silas Records and MCA Records released Moore’s début album, “Precious”. The first single, “Love’s Taken Over” peaked at number eighty-six and number thirteen on the Billboard Hot 100 and R&B Singles charts respectively. The album’s second single, It’s Alright failed to make impact on the Billboard Hot 100, however peaked at number thirteen on the R&B charts. More singles from Precious was released in 1993, “As If We Never Met” and “Who Do I Turn To?”. The album was certified gold by the RIAA on November 14, 1994.
At the time my wife and I attended Chanté Moore’s concert here in Florida, she had released her third solo album This Moment Is Mine which was led by her biggest single to date, “Chanté’s Got a Man”. It peaked at number ten on the Billboard Hot 100 chart and number two on the R&B chart and was certified gold. The song had special inspiration written for then-husband Kadeem Hardison, the actor who portrayed the character Dwayne Wayne on the sitcom A Different World. Their marriage only lasted three years, but she and Hardison had a daughter Sophia now twenty-one years old.
One thing that I always tell other music fans and friends is that musicians are people too. They may sing for large audiences and record music that millions buy, but the problems of life affect them like anyone else. Chanté Moore is no different with all that she has experienced in her private life. The problem is that in most cases that private life plays out in public. Especially in this day and age of social media. That night at the concert my wife and I attended, we both noticed that the songs she sang were personal, and she displayed her emotions by crying during certain songs. Even with the happiness of her marriage to Hardison at the time, she had past experiences that fueled her songwriting and performance.
Following her divorce from Hardison, Chanté Moore married singer Kenny Lattimore on New Year’s Day in 2002 at a private ceremony in Jamaica. This time marriage did more than inspire one hit song, it helped to create an act. A year after marrying R&B singer Kenny Lattimore, the two signed as a duet act to Arista Records and released a duet cover album entitled Things That Lovers Do in 2003. The album was promoted with a stage play named after the album and a music video for the single “You Don’t Have to Cry” which shows a prominently pregnant Moore on-screen with Lattimore. In fall 2006, Moore issued a follow-up to the success of Things That Lovers Do, another album of duets with her husband Kenny Lattimore. The duo beat the previous effort with a double-CD of gospel and R&B love songs entitled Uncovered/Covered. The set was led off by dual singles, the Bryan Michael Cox-produced “Figure It Out,” and “Make Me Like the Moon,” a gospel ballad co-written by Lattimore and Moore and produced by Fred Hammond.
Since her divorce from Lattimore Chanté Moore has been very busy. She is featured on the reality show “R&B Divas L.A.”, and had a limited run in Vegas in the Bally’s Las Vegas legendary show Jubilee! She also released her self-help book “Will I Marry Me?” in August 2014. She released her sixth studio solo album Moore Is More on July 30, 2013, and will soon release studio album number seven The Rise of the Phoenix.
‘With all that Chanté Moore has accomplished in the music industry, she still feels that she’s perfecting herself. That might seem strange considering the fifty year old singer has been quite successful and can still deliver hit music. The single “Real One” was released on February 3, 2017. “Real One” debuted at number twenty 29 on the Adult R&B Songs chart on April 1, 2017. In the songs sixteenth week the song peaked at number thirteen. In its twenty-first week the song peaked at number 10. Moore continued to speak about her new album in an interview in singersroom.com. “I continue to learn how to burn away the old mindset, the negativity that weighed me down so I can become the best me. I am the Phoenix rising, and I’m living my life again!” “The Phoenix is a powerful mythological symbol of renewal. It lives a long life, burns to ashes, but reemerges more beautiful and more powerful than ever. I relate to that.”
What’s next for Chanté Moore? It doesn’t seem like she is facing the end of her career. Not at all! In fact, it seems that Moore has reinvented herself and is ready for a lot more music. Like most of her fans, I am looking forward to The Rise of The Phoenix, and more.