The official Solar Records biography
There are few experiences in the music business quite as exciting as the emergence of a new group.
In less than a year Dynasty, comprised of three extremely talented, young individuals, has captured the attention of music lovers coast to coast.
With the release of their debut album on Solar Records titled "Your Piece Of The Rock," the group has proved one of the most unusual disco projects to surface in this rapidly growing field.
The opening/title track, "Your Piece Of The Rock," is a disco hit in its 12" form.
The LP is distinguished by its unique juxtaposition of vocals, instruments and electronics -- a churning blend of lyrics and rhythm set on a hard-driving disco core.
Working at studios in Los Angeles, executive producer Dick Griffey and producer Leon Sylvers created a shifting spectrum of sounds and textures that keep the pieces moving as well as perfectly complimenting the vocal talents of the group.
Whether it be the pulsating funk/disco cut "I Don't Wanna Be A Freak," or the lovely ballad "When You Feel Like Giving Love," the group truly proves to be dynastic and dynamic.
Dynasty is: the ultra-feminine, soft-spoken Nidra Beard, the foxy, outgoing Linda Carriere, and the persuasive Kevin Spencer. As their name suggests, they are indeed a powerful group who will undoubtedly maintain a position of stature for a considerable time.
Individually, each brings to the group diverse backgrounds which collectively form the elements of a strong recording team. Twenty-four year old Kevin, who began singing at three and performed publicly for the first time at five, has devoted perhaps more time developing his career than any other young performer in today's music scene.
Greatly influenced by his mother (a music instructor and piano teacher) and growing up in the fast-paced entertainment capital of the world (Los Angeles), Kevin learned the importance of patience, discipline and dedication at an early age.
According to Kevin, "As long as I can remember, I've always wanted to be an entertainer. A day didn't pass without practicing the violin, playing the piano or merely singing along with the radio. Other than homework and sports, especially basketball, my time has always been devoted to my work.
I'm rarely caught without my cassette player. Either I'm taping my ideas for songs (words and melodies) or listening to works of others." In addition to a wealth of motivation and instruction at home, Kevin has been encouraged by all his teachers and has pursued varied musical paths, thus, further broadening his base.
His studies include all phases of theatre arts; he is an accomplished lyric writer, composer, poet as well as musician/vocalist.
The success of Dynasty is in part due to his never ending drive. Kevin first met writer/producer Leon Sylvers a few years ago when he appeared at the Sylvers' Palos Verdes home, unannounced, to audition as bass player for the popular recording Sylvers clan.
"He did get the job and made a positive impression," says Leon. It was that introduction coupled with Kevin's performance with the Sylvers which lead to Leon introducing Kevin to Dick Griffey, head of Solar Records.
Nidra Beard, the charmer of the group also grew up in Los Angeles-her family having relocated to Southern California from Detroit when Nidra was eight years old. Nidra's multiple talents were first noted at grammar school when she was cast in a school play. She was sensational, a natural born singer and actress.
Particularly fascinated by music and having always wanted to be an entertainer, she devoted equal time to her theatrical/musical and academic pursuits. Throughout her school years, Nidra received recommendations and awards for her outstanding dramatic and musical achievements.
With music as a minor while attending the prestigious Loma Linda University in Riverside, California, Nidra studied violin and piano. Later furthering her studies with private voice and piano lessons.
In addition to being one of Dynasty's lead vocalists, she is a professional model whose credits run the gamut from newspaper advertisements to commercials, including work in France, Finland, Germany, as well as the United States. Prior to the formation of Dynasty, Nidra was a member of the internationally renown group DeBlanc.
Coincidentally, it was via DeBlanc that Nidra and Linda Carriere first met -- which leads us to the third of the threesome comprising Dynasty.
Linda Carriere is originally from New Orleans. Her main interests have always been singing, dancing, and reading. Therefore, her career in music is but a natural flow of events. Like Nidra, Linda chose to mesh her music training with her academic aspirations.
A psychology major at the University of New Orleans, Linda moved to Los Angeles during the Winter of '72 to further her studies. It was shortly after that move when the two girls actually met. Both were frequent visitors to Maverick's Flat, a popular soul/pop nightclub in L.A.
The owner of Maverick's Flat, John Daniels, was in the process of putting together a new group (DeBlanc) and both young ladies became members. For two years, Linda and Nidra toured with the song and dance troupe, DeBlanc, throughout the major cities of Europe, Japan, Canada, and the United States.
When DeBlanc broke up in 1975, some of the original members (including Nidra and Linda) formed a new group called Starfire. For one highly successful year, Starfire performed essentially in the States, with a few key dates in Finland and Iran.
After the tour, the group decided to disband. Linda, who is ever conscious of perfecting her talents, took dance and piano lessons, studied vocals under the tutelage of Guiseppe Balestrieri, and also worked with a Japanese production company.
Additionally, in approximately 1977, Linda starred in a musical play called "The Meat Market," which had an extensive run at the Inner City Cultural Center.
Nidra, very sincere and serious about her career, spent considerable time investigating the musical avenues best suited to her experience and expertise. During this same period, Nidra developed a strong relationship with Leon Sylvers.
She was, at that time, performing with Capitol recording artists, The Sylvers as a fill-in on live dates for the female Sylvers who were minors. This new association proved beneficial to both Nidra and Linda, as Leon introduced each to Dick Griffey, President of Solar Records.
Griffey in less than two years established RCA-distributed Solar Records as a label synonymous with bright and sustaining talent. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that he immediately signed Nidra, Linda and Kevin, thus giving birth to yet another emerging disco/classy funk/pop entity. Dynasty is "Your Piece Of The Rock."