In-depth Biography The female vocal quartet En Vogue was conceived and put together by the production team of Denzil Foster and Thomas McElroy, both former members of Club Nouveau. Foster and McElroy wanted a vocal group who could exude sultriness and intelligence in addition to vocal proficiency, and as producers, they wanted material that would fuse R&B and girl group traditions with hip-hop and new jack swing rhythms. The two held auditions and settled on a membership of former Miss Black California Cindy Herron, Maxine Jones, Dawn Robinson, and Terry Ellis. The new group performed two songs on Foster and McElroy's FM2 album, and the producers crafted an image of them as stylish, sophisticated, and sexy. Originally called For You, the women switched to the more elegant Vogue, and then En Vogue after learning of another group with a very similar name.
En Vogue's debut album, Born to Sing, appeared in 1990 and launched the pop crossover smash "Hold On," which peaked at number two and helped the album go platinum. The group attracted comparisons to the Supremes, even though groupmembers shared lead vocals and intentionally designated no particular singer the "star." In between albums, Herron appeared in the film Juice. When En Vogue returned in 1992 with Funky Divas, critical and commercial response was overwhelming. The album's wide array of styles, from pop and R&B to rap, rock, and reggae, were lauded in print; the first three singles -- "My Lovin' (You're Never Gonna Get It)," "Giving Him Something He Can Feel" (both covers of songs written by Curtis Mayfield), and "Free Your Mind" (which borrowed a chorus line from George Clinton) -- reached the Top Ten, and the album went multi-platinum. En Vogue were in the Top Ten again in 1993, backing Salt-N-Pepa on their hit "Whatta Man."
As En Vogue was recording its third album, Dawn Robinson left the group. Before they released the record, "Don't Let Go (Love)," a song the group contributed to the Set It Off soundtrack, became a number two single in early 1997. Six months later, the band released their third album, EV3. The group's first compilation, The Best of En Vogue, was released in the summer of 1999. 2000 saw the release of Masterpiece Theater (originally titled Something New, Something Old, Something Borrowed, Something Cool) but immediately after an interview on BET the group was informed that they were dropped by their label due to slower than expected sales.