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Articles Home » 1983 Articles » Henderson, Finis - 1983 Finis
Henderson, Finis - 1983 Finis

ARTIST: Henderson, Finis
ALBUM: Finis
LABEL: Tamla Motown
YEAR: 1983
CD REISSUE: 2013, Motown (Japan), UICY 75821


LINEUP: Finis Henderson - lead vocals * Al McKay, Gregory Doty, Michael Landau, Paul Jackson Jr., Steve Lukather - guitars * Abraham Laboriel, Nathan East, Neil Stubenhaus - bass * Frank Hamilton, Michael Boddicker - moog bass * Erich Bulling, Frank Hamilton, Michael Boddicker, Randy Kerber, Tom Keene - keyboards * Michael Boddicker, Randy Kerber, Tom Keene - synthesizers * Steve Porcaro - synthesizer programming * Paulinho DaCosta, Philip Bailey, Ralph Johnson - percussion * Carlos Vega, Jeff Porcaro, John Robinson - drums * George Bohanon - baritone sax * Steve Tavaglione - sax solo * Gary Grant, Jerry Hey - flugelhorn * Bill Reichenbach, Charles Findey - trombone * Adonis Hampton, Frank Hamilton - vocal assistance * Adonis Hampton, Arleen Parks, Bill Champlin, Carmen Twillie, Gary Glenn, Richard Page, Steve George - backing vocals

TRACK LISTING: 01 Skip To My Lou * 02 Making Love * 03 Lovers * 04 You Owe It All To Love * 05 Blame It On The Night * 06 Call Me * 07 Vina Del Mar * 08 Crush On You * 09 I'd Rather Be Gone * 10 School Girl


He's better known as a musical impressionist, but back in 1983, this bloke released a pretty special west coast/soul LP for Motown, and all these years later, we still remember.. To be honest, if you're not a fan of the west coast genre, then Finis (pronounced Fie Nis) Henderson will not be that familiar to you. Finis certainly has musical pedigree on his side. His father was a vice president of Sammy Davis Jnr Enterprises, While Finis himself was schooled at the Chicago School of the Arts. Moving to El-Lay in the early 80's, his name first appeared on the Bill Wolfer LP 'Wolf' (reviewed here), but it was his association with Earth Wind And Fire guitarist Al McKay which saw Finis release his one and only LP for Motown Records.

The Songs
I'm hoping I don't get the same sort of flak I got after reviewing DeBarge's 'Rhythm Of The Night' click here.., because there's a heap of studio talent on show here, but the main guy is Al McKay, who produces the album and organises the talent accordingly. If anything, Henderson comes off like Al Jarreau, and that's a big wrap, because Jarreau is a major talent (and we will get to some of his albums here at GDM soon). Finis's big songs include the bouncy 'Skip To My Lou', the rather awesome 'Blame It On The Night', the pop-tastic 'Making Love' and the very tasty 'I'd Rather Be Gone'. 'School Girl' is a funky affair, while the other tunes take a broad sweep at soul oriented ballads.

In Summary
Just the one album from this bloke thus far, and there were two versions of the album. However without a follow-up, Henderson ended up being an extreme waste of talent. Motown Records Executives were obviously high on something back in 1983, but it certainly wasn't common sense. Though the music was pitched at west coast, and even AOR, it only made moderate indentations in the soul charts and nowhere else! Finis continues to lead a busy musical life, still doing impressions, and is a popular draw on the casino circuit. For a case of what might have been, check out 'Finis', and hope someone reissues this pronto, rather than the three most recent CD versions from Japan; the latest coming out in 2013. [word count 428]

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#1 | gdazegod on January 05 2016 10:33:30
Alternate album cover..

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#2 | Aluko on January 07 2016 01:01:28
Keep reviewing these diverse hidden gems!
#3 | code4 on January 08 2016 14:05:33
Had this one on cd for several years but let it go a couple of years back. Certainly worth a listen though and might even be a keeper depending on your tastes. 'I'd rather be Gone' (probably more westcoast-ish than motown-ish, complete with some Lukather guitar work if i am not mistaken), the instantly catchy 'Blame it On he Night' and ballad 'You Owe It All To Love' are the songs that most stick in my memory. To be honest the horrendous domestic (usa) album cover could have gave me that last little nudge i needed to part with this one though. Even if the alternative japanese cover (as you show at the end of the review) is printed on the reverse side of the front booklet, the back cover I seem to recall is a similar awful looking photo of finis dancing around a mic in the same bizarre outfit as seen on the standard front cover. Don't get me wrong, i'd never dump an album over it's cover but just saying it likely didn't help when i made the decision to part with this cd. On which note, some of the other tunes are certainly decent too like the 'Making Love' track that you mentioned and perhaps the Stevie Wonder cover 'Crush On You'. Actually, the only song i recall not being able to much stand was 'Schoolgirl' with tacky programmed sounding drums and cringey lyrics. All in all worth checking out at the very least.
#4 | swazi on January 08 2016 18:04:57
I certainly look forward to your forthcoming Al Jarreau reviews, George! Love that guy's music! Thumbs Up
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