imageXavier were an R&B\funk band from Hartford, Connecticut that consisted of singer\guitarist Ernest “Xavier” Smith, lead singer Ayanna Little, vocalists Emonie Branch & Chuck Hughes, guitarist Jeff Mitchell, percussionist Lyburn Downing, bassist Ralph Hunt and drummer Tim Williams.

Ernest began his music career in the ’60s with a later incarnation of The Coasters and later joined Wilson Pickett’s backing band, Midnight Movers. He also contributed to records by artists such as Isaac Hayes and the Temptations. He moved to Hartford in the late ’70s and joined a band called Shades of Direction (which was later changed to Xavier and LUV [meaning Life’s Universal Vibration]).
imageIn 1982, they released their debut (and only) album “Point of Pleasure” on Liberty Records which peaked at #129 on the Billboard 200 and #16 on Billboard’s R&B Albums chart.
imageTheir first single “Work That Sucker to Death” peaked at #104 on Billboard’s Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles chart and #6 on Billboard’s Hot Soul Singles chart, staying on the chart for 16 weeks. The song featured George Clinton & Bootsy Collins and even reached the U.K. Top 60.
imageThe follow-up single “Do It to the Max” peaked at #59 on Billboard’s Hot Soul Singles chart, staying on the chart for only 9 weeks.

After that, it seems as if Xavier has faded into obscurity. It’s unknown what the members of the band are currently up to these days.

To see a fan-made video for “Work That Sucker to Death,” go to:

To see the music video for “Do it To the Max,” go to:

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