Since 2016 the five members of R&B girl group June’s Diary worked hard to put their imprint into the music business. Originally contestants of BET’s talent competition and docu-series Chasing Destiny where a list of 600 girls from different places around the US eventually was narrowed down to a quintet: Shyann Roberts, Gabrielle “Gabby” Carreiro, Kristal Smith, Brienna DeVlugt and Ashly Williams. After wrapping up the series, the chosen winners right away impressed with smooth harmonies – especially noticeable at their tribute performance for 90s girl group Xscape – and is also one of the rare cases where literally every member both has an equal contribution and individual recognition.
Signing with record executive L.A. Reid’s Epic Records, the group first released a buzz-single “All of Us” before they even had a group name after the series, then followed-up with rhythmic mid-tempo “L.A.N.C.E.” with their June’s Diary imprint as official first single in 2016. A mixtape named “Male Edition” followed a year later in 2017 via SoundCloud where the girls switched around with cover versions of male artists, like “Hey Jude” by The Beatles or “Stay” by Jodeci. However, a label drop during that time seemed like a dead-end for the still newly-established girl group. But with the help of a sponsoring deal with Spirit Airlines, their common vision, and the continuous support of director and choreographer Frank Gatson Jr. (who was one of the creators of Chasing Destiny), the girls continued to follow through, performed in big venues like the Essence Festival, and released EP’s “All of Us” (2018) and “Take Your Time” (2019) while still getting praise for singles like “I Ain’t With It” from the latter EP, and released a music video for the song in early 2020.
Their 6-track EP “All of Us” from 2018 is one of their most recognizable releases, and one track in particular – “Take Me” – managed to climb in their own Spotify list out of the EP. The summer-vibe with tropical influences sticks out of their music collection, as little dancehall sounds are mixed with R&B beats and therefore brings in Caribbean feels. Brienna, who has Caribbean roots herself from Trinidad, introduces the listener with raw vocals in the first verse: “Take me to the love island, ‘cause something in the water drew me to you.” Shyann then passes through with euphoric high notes in the second verse (“I got so many options but I choose you”) while the song impresses with wavy island-vibes and clever lines (“Never usually this stupid, so I blame it on cupid”).
As the “All of Us” album – including single “Take Me” – is their first independent release, the group still held tight despite setbacks, and without a major label behind them still managed to reach the number 1 spot of the iTunes charts. An indie group since then, the five girls often pool together their individual resources, and “Take Me” was a result of member Shyann’s connections. Produced by Pro2Jay, also known as P2J, and written by Ari PenSmith, the song was recorded in Atlanta, Georgia, and pulled fans like a magnet since its official release. When their fanbase constantly requested the song to DJ Dion Summers, they accomplished a selection for iHeartRadio’s November 2018 Digital Artist Integration Program and as a result was played on urban radio stations in over 25 cities across the US. On top of that, “Take Me” was then featured on an episode of FOX’s Empire during season 6 of the hit TV series. A fan-favorite from the EP and the entire June’s Diary catalogue, “Take Me” then started their own movement with multiple dancers creating their own choreographed routines to the song, and still brings heat every summer while also gaining success in streaming platforms.
You can listen to “Take Me” here:
Also, their music video for “I Ain’t With It” – where the quintet drives through the country in a jeep and performs with colorful oriental parasols – was released in late January of 2020 via Vevo. You can check out the video below:
You can follow June’s Diary on: