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    February 02, 2008

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2 Much Biography

Rarely does there exist, a group of young men so talented, so spirited, so passionate and so well-versed in their chosen skill of combining hip-hop, R&B, and pop music with unrivaled dance skills. After several years in the trenches, honing their skills to pitch perfection, Chris Cheeks, Myles Cleveland, Milo Stokes, and Marcel Wildy, also known as the dynamic group 2 Much, have arrived with their smashing self-titled album in tow. Bringing forth an unmatched element of contemporary popular music while establishing that they are the future of R&B and hip-hop, 2 Much is truly proving to be just enough. As a young boy studying under the tutelage of Debbie Allen at her renowned California dance academy, 18-year-old Marcel Wildy first met Los Angeles, California native, 17-year-old Milo Stokes through a mutual friend during their adolescent years. As soon as Marcel and Milo connected, the two knew that with Marcel's crooning abilities and Milo's rhyming skills, they had something special. However, both Marcel and Milo, even at such a young age at the time, recognized there was more that could be added to this budding group. "We were putting stuff together but we knew there was more that could be added to the group," Marcel admits. "I was trying to find others that were musically inclined," Milo adds. "That's when Chris came into the picture." Imagine, at this point, these guys are barely in the double digits, yet their manifesting their own destiny in the form of an R&B and hip-hop group. "I had snuck into the roller skating rink," 16-year-old Chris Cheeks recalls of that fateful day. "I saw Marcel and Milo and they said they were building a group and that I should try out. The next thing I knew, I came and met them, free styled, and we were on tour with B2K and Bow Wow." Sounds exciting, enticing and undoubtedly fast-paced for some pre-teens but being on the road for the Scream Tour 2004 was a way of teaching the young upstarts what the entertainment game is really about. While on tour, 2 Much would round out their quartet by inducting their last member. Myles Cleveland, 16, was discovered at the Bridgeport, Connecticut Scream Tour show. "Management approached me about my rapping and dancing and asked me if I could perform and moments later I was in front of Marques Houston and Omarion," Myles recounts the historic impromptu backstage audition. "I can honestly say that we instantly clicked when we all got together and started rehearsing," Myles adds of his 2 Much relationships, which all the guys define as a strong brotherhood. Coming from the east coast and joining a group based out of Los Angeles, Myles has always added the east coast rap flair to the quartet. Meanwhile, Milo and Chris, also rappers, have integrated a west coast feel with a very incomparable upbeat, fresh faced rap style. While Marcel, with the pipes of gold, adds the R&B edge to the act. "We've come such a long way," says Marcel modestly, "but I feel like we're just getting to where we need to be." After experiencing the Scream Tour 2004 from behind the scenes, 2 Much was able to perform during Omarion's set at the Scream Tour 2005. They've also opened for Chris Brown and done showcase performances all around the United States. Now, as an act signed to Interscope Records and managed by Max Gousse, Mathew Knowles of Music World Entertainment, and Monyee Stokes of IAM Entertainment, 2 Much has the most powerful music forces on its side. Mathew Knowles is known for developing top female acts from Destiny's Child, to solo stars Beyonce and Kelly Rowland. Even more notable, 2 Much is the first male act that Mathew has chosen to take under his wing. That reinforcement, coupled with the uninhibited talent, has helped to fuel the group's self-titled album. A combination of R&B infused with hip-hop, 2 Much's album is a hard-hitting, varying tempo, rhythmic masterpiece. 2 Much has gone into the studio with top billing song writers and producers Sean Garrett, Rodney Jenkins and Solange Knowles to create this work of art. In addition, the rappers continuously sharpen their freestyle and rhyming skills by bouncing lyrics and verses off one another in the same manner they practice their dance moves, all while Marcel provides the banging backing vocal track. Songs like the Rodney Jenkins' produced "Holla at Your Boy" best display 2 Much's admirable confidence and bravado. The synthesizer heavy, melodic R&B tune witnesses Marcel's passionate vocals effortlessly moving through a track which professes of an uncanny teenage hubris when it comes to the ladies. The undeniable hit keeps a tempo consistent with the head-nodding percussion guaranteed to get the body moving while the beat is flowing. Meanwhile, "Over the Edge," a slower paced, R&B groove with a sensual "Computer Love" component, features Milo, Chris and Myles rhyming in succession, seducing the girls along the way. In the same vein, "Supa Bio," an ode to the unknown intellectual and experienced prowess of a young guy, carries a contagious chorus with a crunk, shoulder shuffling, heavily syncopated percussion guaranteed to get any hip-hop, R&B, or pop loving music fan on his/her feet all while singing to Marcel's impressive vocals. Together, the four members of 2 Much blend such diverse musical influences as the Jackson 5, Marvin Gaye and Jay-Z. Each member has been singing and dancing from childhood, be it in front of friends, family, classmates or the public. "Performing," says Chris Cheeks, "is the best feeling. It's like a rush, a crazy rush. It's a totally different experience than what people take it for. I'm a different person when I'm up there." In accordance, Marcel says, "for me, it's the ultimate joy. It's like utopia for me." "My favorite part is being on the plane, listening to my iPod knowing that I'm going to perform when I touch down," Myles adds. "Right now," says Milo, "we're having so much fun, we're kind of like kids in a candy store."

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