Támar Davis
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Támar Davis

Houston, Texas, United States | INDIE

Houston, Texas, United States | INDIE
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"Ta'mar: An Act With Amazing Backup"

Most everyone knew going in that Prince's appearance at Nation on Monday night was a showcase for his latest protégé, Ta'mar, and that the Artist himself, on guitar and background vocals, would eschew center stage. But, not unlike dating someone just to get next to an attractive roommate, attendance seemed based on the hope that the hotter commodity might be coaxed into a quick romp.
Although Prince was the draw, Ta'mar -- she of the "Black Sweat" B-side "Beautiful Loved & Blessed" -- impressed with choreographed calisthenics and luscious vocals. She powered through countless covers, among them "I Never Loved a Man (The Way I Love You)," during which her voice and Prince's licks merged into one mesmerizing, pulsating mush. Most beguiling of the original material, presumably from Ta'mar's future debut, was a playful little soul fizz that seemed to be titled "Milk and Honey."
A superb wingman, Prince mostly stuck stage right, surrounded by the newest New Power Generation band, grinning and pointing to his "favorite singer." He offered nothing from his upcoming album "3121," but did hijack a small portion of the 90-minute show. He shredded through the psych-funky guitar solo on "Anotherloverholenyohead" from "Parade," and got so caught up in "Batman" soundtrack burner "Partyman" that he had to stop and compose himself, saying, "Y'all gonna make me shake my do loose."
The set commenced, as all Prince-affiliated concerts should, with a dance party -- this one driven by a medley built around the roller-disco soul of Barry White's "It's Ecstasy When You Lay Down Next to Me." Prince sang the original lyrics while a singing-dancing duo known as "The Twins" (think Wendy & Lisa sans instruments) alternated with lyrics from "Hollaback Girl."
Despite the expectation of a solo encore, when Prince left the stage, repeating the sign-off "It ain't over," unfortunately, at least for the night, it was. - Washington Post


"Couples Therapy, For Better of Worse"

...he new play, Mr. Perry’s 10th, is about evenly divided between men and women exchanging lowdown verbal artillery and lectures about staying on the true path by heeding the healing word of God. Mr. Perry’s plays are less standard stage works than odd admixtures of gospel-pop concert, comedy show and church service. If the various elements are hardly integrated smoothly, each moment appears to satisfy on its own terms.

Tamar Davis gives the most nuanced performance — in the only remotely nuanced role — as the title character, Judith, whose marriage to the hard-working accountant Roger (Anthony Grant, known as Tony) has hit a bumpy and boring patch. At the home they all share, Roger’s father, Floyd (Palmer E. Williams Jr. of the series “Tyler Perry’s House of Payne”), keeps himself in trim by spraying insults at Judith’s mother, T. T. (Alltrinna Grayson) while hatching an “economic stimulus plan” to improve the family finances by growing weed in the backyard. Mr. Williams’s jazzy, showboating comic style is a real delight, even when his zingers are feeble. (One of the lesser: “I liked you in ‘Star Wars..." - NY Times


"Tamar Reactivating Her Career"

inger/songwriter Tamar survived a wild ride on the music industry roller coaster last year. Reintroduced to early mentor Prince in 2005 following her graduation from the University of Southern California, the music major signed on as a vocalist in his band.

After Prince secured a one-album deal with Universal Republic in late 2005, Tamar began working double time contributing backing vocals on Prince's 2006 album "3121" and recording her own Universal Republic debut, which was never released.

The ride didn't end there, however. As 2006 wound down, Tamar learned her duet with Prince, "Beautiful, Love and Blessed," had earned a Grammy nod for best R&B performance by a duo or group with vocals. The song, which Tamar co-wrote with Prince, lost its bid to "Family Affair" featuring John Legend and Joss Stone with Van Hunt.

"It's an interesting thing to be nominated and yet be an unsigned artist looking for a home," Tamar tells Billboard. As to why the album wasn't released or whether Prince's mercurial nature might have played a role in the situation, Tamar declined to comment. "I don't have anything negative to say and I don't feel defeated," she declares. "I'm pushing forward."

Of late, the artist has been flying back and forth between New York and former home base Los Angeles to record another album. Collaborating producers include Kwame and Somethin' for the People members Ro (aka Rochad Holiday) and Sauce (Curtis Wilson).

Tamar owns the songs from her aborted Universal Republic set. Some of these are being pitched for TV projects and may also appear on her new album. This time around she's gunning for a more R&B-driven approach. "The last album was all live and I didn't get the DJ Scratch feel on some of the songs I wanted to," Tamar explains. "This album is more R&B/hip-hop/funky with a Tina Turner vibe. But it's still very melodic."

Whether Prince will appear on the album remains a question mark. "He will probably be on here somewhere. It's a good mystery that I'm keeping," Tamar says.

Although the former backup singer and Prince still talk, Tamar says they saw each other for the first time in six months at the Grammys. While the connection is still there, Tamar knows it's her time now. "It does hurt that I don't get to perform as much with him," she says. "But if I stay under his wing, I can't fly. And I'm ready to fly." - Billboard Magazine


"Prince Supporting Role Doesn't Disappoint"

It was only last month that the owners of Houston’s newest downtown nightspot, Warehouse Live, finished building the place. Little did they now that one of their first bookings, Friday’s sold-out concert featuring Prince and his young protégé Ta’mar would be trying to raids the roof right back off the joint.
Prince fans were cautioned that he would simply be playing a sideman role. He and Ta’mar are introducing the classic soul and R&B song Beautiful, Loved & Blessed (due March 21) to select cities. Houston was among the lucky ones, most likely because it’s Ta’mar’s hometown.
True to his promise, there was no late jam and no huge outpouring of past hits or even selection from his upcoming 3121 (also due March 21). This was, however, a chance to see Prince at his most relaxed.
Ta’mar’s band consisted of a beat-savvy percussion duo and a keyboard player. She has an authoritative voice hat commands attention, such as Aretha Franklin’s or Annie Lennor’s. And she can wrap her notes in emotion and make the glide like a torch singer. Her first song (I’m guessing at son titles non but the title track have been revealed), Heart of Gold, featured her bantering like Neneh Cherry before breaking it down with a feminine, yet tough rap reminiscent of Lauryn Hill.
We’re Going to Have a Party was a nice piece of Motown nostalgia – uprooted by Prince’s B.B. King-style blues improvisation. Having the opportunity to hear him play, without the borders of his catalog, was ecstasy and the reason this show should stand apart for Prince fans.
After Prince and Ta’mar sang their duet single of Beautiful, Loved & Blessed, they brought the audience members on stage to dance to a cover of Play That Funky Music White Boy.
Then Prince came back. First, with a rockin’ rendition of the obscure Partyman from the Batman soundtrack, and finally with a brief, heartfelt version of Purple Rain. By not completely keeping his promise, he sent the crowd home on air.
- Houston Chronicle


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Bio

In an age of gimmicks and over processed sounds, the nostalgic idea of authentic vocals and magnetic stage presence seems un-imaginable. But there’s power in experiencing Grammy-nominated artist Tamar Davis: reminiscent of funk, soul, rock and R & B. She evinces passion meeting entertainment through her authentic, high-energy performances that makes her “Prince’s favorite singer” ~ Washington Post.

Unlike the vast majority of post-Whitney/ Mariah Carey soul singers, Tamar Davis is a true entertainer with a fully developed stage presence. She’s sassy and sexy but also able to laugh at herself, a trait solely missing from a genre filled with dour, overly serious women ~ Pioneer Press

This GRAMMY- NOMINATED songbird discovered her gift at age three. By nine, the Houston native was a lead vocalist in a group of six singing, dancing, rapping preteens called Girls Tyme. After losing on Star Search, the budding stars continued on separate paths. Tamar opted to pursue a solo career. (Three of her former girl friends--Beyonce’ Knowles, Kelly Rowland and Latavia Robertson—would eventually form powerhouse Destiny’s Child.) A few years later, Tamar’s demo caught the attention of music royalty: Prince. Tamar was invited to his Paisley Park studio and offered a production contract. Though she didn’t get to meet his royal badness and a deal wasn’t sealed, a seed was planted.

Tamar cultivated her talent at Houston’s Fame equivalent—The High School for the Performing and Visual Arts—and was among 20 honorees selected from a field of 8000 international applicants for the Presidential Scholar for the Arts award. Intent on furthering her career and her education, Tamar headed to Los Angeles to study music at the University of Southern California. She graduated not only with classical training and a Bachelor of Music degree, but also with the ability to sing in French, Italian, German, and Swahili.

Tamar returned to the Star Search stage in 2004 for the “Battle of Champions.” Despite praise from judges like Naomi Judd—“ You have an amazing voice”--and show host Arsenio Hall—“It’s so unique. It has a Stephanie Mills/Whitney Houston vibe...”— she didn’t prevail in the competition. She also auditioned for the fourth season of American Idol; but didn’t make it in front of the three charismatic judges. A producer’s critique: Tamar was too polished. She advanced to working with Joe Sample, Lee Ritenour, and Tamia.

In 2005, Tamar was re-introduced to Prince by famed choreographer Fatima Robinson. Tamar not only joined his band but also performed at his renowned house parties, joined him on stage for a solo at the NAACP Image Awards, and contributed background vocals on Prince’s 3121 album. By the end of the year, the student and teacher were both signed to Universal Republic Records. Now, Prince was ready to introduce his “favorite singer” to the world.

In 2006, the dynamic duo set off on a cross-country, 11-city tour. At the electrifying, sold-out shows reminiscent of old soul revues, the leading lady’s performances were the talk of the town. Commanding the stage, Tamar won over legions of Prince fans across the world and gave music critics something to talk about. A veritable knockout with voluminous hair, desirable curves and feisty moves, Tamar was by Prince’s side on "Saturday Night Live," "Good Morning America," and both the 2006 BET and Brit Awards. And yes, that’s Tamar working it in his Fury video. With the introduction made, new fans yearned for more. Yet, the world wouldn’t get to know Tamar as quickly as planned; Universal decided not to release her album due to a departed relationship with her mentor and the record company. But you can’t keep good music down. One of the many songs Tamar and Prince co-wrote and recorded, the forcefully inspirational duet “Beautiful, Loved and Blessed” was recently nominated for a GRAMMY.

Remarkably, she is now one of the first unsigned R&B artists to have been nominated for music’s highest honor and was just named Houston’s Rising Star 2007 (Ensemble Theatre). Honoring her rising star, Tamar Davis continues to climb both onstage and in the studio, currently cast in Tyler Perry’s new stage-play “Madea’s Big Happy Family,” completing his short-run tour of “Laugh to Keep from Crying” and previously showcased as the nuanced lead in Perry’s hit stage play “The Marriage Counselor” (New York Times). Finding favor with the television/movie mogul, Tamar then showcased a tear jerking “To Dream the Impossible Dream” for the grand opening of Tyler Perry Studios. The question of the evening became “who was that singer?”

The answer can be found on her second studio, yet first released self-titled album “My Name is Tamar…” (2010) It displays her distinctive sound, a result of a steady diet of artists as varied as Ella Fitzgerald, Sarah Vaughn, Sting, Aretha Franklin, Whitney Houston, Yolanda Adams, Barbara Streisand, Janet Jackson, Prince, Chaka Khan and AC/DC. It i