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    1TGK [2006]


    When something's good, it's hard to keep it a secret. That's especially true with good music. Most of us know the next big thing when we hear it and see it and once we find it, we can't wait to tell everyone about it!
    Gina, Ivette, David and James, the 2 girls and 2 boys of TGK, are the latest new music sensation and the latest new talk of the town. Everyone is talking about TGK. They're talking about two fierce young Latino sisters paired with a blond pop vocalist and tall dark crooner, all able to move effortlessly between pop ballads and urban flavored rhythms.

    Have you seen them? Are they pop? Are they urban? Are they soul?
    The answer is (d). TGK are all of the above.

    Good looks are always a prerequisite for success in today's music market and TGK are the complete package, with not only good looks, but real talent, ability and originality. TGK, pride themselves on their uniqueness. How many two girl-two guy groups have you seen? But the sex of its members is not the only thing that sets TGK apart from other groups; it's the magic in their voices and the electricity of their performances. "It's not enough to have a good voice anymore," shares David. "You have to be able to move the crowd and show them a good time."

    And that's exactly what TGK has done—in the United States and abroad. Many headlining groups have trouble selling out venues, but TGK has done that in several markets. In Milwaukee, TGK entertained 70,000 fans with their latest single, "Fire," a bouncy track with a thumping hip-hop feel brought home with the group's booming vocals and the addition of featured rap artist Quise.

    At first glance, TGK may look like just another pop group, but when they open their mouths to sing, it's a different story. "I love it when people think we're going to sound like NSYNC," says James. "People say 'we see you on the cover of your CD and then when we hear your tracks and you sound completely different then we thought.'" In other words, most people don't expect two half-Cuban sisters, a boy from Wisconsin and a boy Tampa/St. Pete to sound so soulful. But when you grow up listening to groups like Chicago and Earth, Wind and Fire as James did or Aretha Franklin and Sade as Gina did, it's not hard to mix some soul into your vocals. David is especially pleased that their music is "not just pop." "It has a hip-hop/R&B-edge to it. It's not the same thing that's out there, that you hear all the time," he explains.

    Adding to their unique sound are the wide and diverse musical influences of all of the group members. David is a big fan of the Beatles and Ivette loves Seal. Gina is so moved by Sting that "when I hear his music, tears come to my eyes," she shares. "I don't know why he has such an impact on me musically, but he moves me." In addition, Gina and Ivette credit their father's Cuban roots and his experience as a drummer as a big part of their musical style. James also comes from a musical family. Taught by his mother he began vocal lessons at an early age and also developed a passion for classical music listening to his brother who trained professionally in the genre.

    Despite their young ages David, James, Gina and Ivette's resumes are already very long. David, (21) who was raised in the Tampa/St. Petersburg area of Florida, was formerly in boy band signed to Sony in Germany. And James, a 20 -year-old native of Madison, Wisconsin, spent a lot of time in Los Angeles working as an actor and has appeared in several films including The Frightening. Orlando- natives and sisters Gina and Ivette, have been singing since they can remember and have both been members of music group's, but never together.

    When it came to forming TGK, group mastermind Steve Ruff proposed that Gina and Ivette join forces. With Gina and Ivette in place, the other two members had to be found. Since "the girls" and David were already friends, that part was easy. James' addition to the group, however, is a longer story.

    James, the only member of the group with no Florida roots, met David in LA on the set of a film in which he had a supporting role. David, a Sony artist, was contributing to the film's soundtrack. The two hit it off right away. "As soon as I heard him sing with us," recalls David, "I was like 'man, this group's got something.' The first time we did an a cappella it sounded almost perfect right away. It just clicked." "It's so hard to find a group that just fits and everyone gets along. "says Ivette. "I've been in previous groups and it's one of the hardest things to find."

    Another thing that works well is the group's wholesome image and sound. Because their vocals are great, and their music is well produced with songs that are upbeat and danceable, you don't even realize that the risqué edge found in most of today's music is absent. David notes proudly that "we have a good time without feeling like we have to be R-rated." For Ivette, who is just 16, it's simple: "We're all really good kids, so it's second nature to us."

    TGK is all about good music, high energy performances and stage shows. Whether they're getting hyped up with the upbeat first single, "Fire" or slowing it down with the sentimental pop ballad "Missing You," TGK prides itself on making music that makes you feel something and gets you up and moving. Sometimes the songs have extra meaning for the young singers, like James' lyrics on the ballad "Missing You" - "It wasn't too long ago when you were here by my side/I try to let you go but I miss you all the time." The words are special to him since being in Orlando is a long way from his home and friends in Wisconsin and even further from his second home in LA.

    And who hasn't had a fantastic new love that puts you on "cloud nine" like the one Ivette sings of on the pop ballad "It's You." TGK warn that sometimes you have to "let it go," on the bouncy soulful track "Let It Go," and praise the beauty of love in "A Love," where TGK get deep and show their range with a soulful and epic ballad. Meanwhile "Some Guys" is a fun updated remake of the 80s hit song by Rod Stewart, and at the other end of the spectrum, the harder hitting "Wanna Be Down" shows us the hip-hop/pop side of TGK. "Shake It," finds Ivette and Gina singing in both English and Spanish showing off their Latino roots, complete with Latino-inspired strings and piano riffs.

    TGK, which stands for Talent, Guts and Khaos (with a 'K'to underscore "all of the craziness about to happen") works, Gina (19) says because each of the members have distinctly different personalities. Younger sister Ivette, she says, is "the spicy one who sings with power and lots of attitude, and James is the fun, friendly and approachable one. He'll joke with you and do everything he can to make you feel as comfortable as he can." And David, the eldest of the group, "is the practical and sensible one."

    The secret is out and one thing that grows more evident each day is that TGK has got that special something that will take them a long way in the music world. With their unique blend of soul, pop and R&B, Gina, Ivette, David and James are on the right track and although they are just starting out as a group, with their collective experience, they are well prepared for the long and exciting ride ahead.

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