Biography All Music Guide
All Music Guide:
Dionne Farris came to the attention of the music world with her vocal contributions to Arrested Development's breakthrough hit single, "Tennessee," plus other tracks on the group's 1992 debut. Farris started singing in high school, performing in her school's choir in Bordentown, New Jersey and starring in a production of Annie. From there, she sang on Manhattan's club circuit, both solo and with a female vocal group called Onyx, but grew frustrated in her late teens. She moved to Atlanta to live with her father in 1990 and started dating drummer Rasha Don, an early member of Arrested Development. The group was looking for a female singer, and while joining a band didn't fit Farris' plans, she had nothing better to do. Farris was never really an official member of Arrested Development, characterizing herself more as part of its extended family. After "Tennessee" broke, Farris got enough media attention to cause personal conflicts with bandleader Speech, and she split from the group in 1993. Chrysalis, Arrested Development's record company, was willing to offer her a solo deal, but Farris took a gamble and rejected it, hoping for more artistic control than Chrysalis wanted to give her. She contacted David Harris and Milton Davis, former members of funk-rock band Follow for Now, and she and guitarist Harris began to collaborate on material. Her demo made its way to Sony Music, and her solo debut, Wild Seed -- Wild Flower, was released in the summer of 1994, spawning the hit single "I Know."