Champaign (band)

Champaign is a 1980s American R&B band best known for their 1981 hit, "How 'Bout Us".

OriginChampaign, Illinois, United States
GenresR&B, soul
Years active19811984, 1990–1991, 2008–present
MembersPauli Carman
Rena Day
Dana Walden
Michael Reed
Rocky Maffit
Howard Reeder
Past membersMichael Day


The septet, who named themselves after their hometown of Champaign, Illinois, included Pauli Carman and Rena Jones (later Day) on vocals; Michael Day and Dana Walden on keyboards; Leon Reeder on guitar; Michael Reed on bass; and Rocky Maffit on percussion/drums. The title track from their 1981 debut album, "How 'Bout Us," was a hit single, reaching #5 in the UK Singles Chart,[1] #4 on the US Billboard R&B chart, and #12 on the Hot 100. Their second album, Modern Heart, was released in 1983 and contained the Top 10 hit "Try Again" (also #23 on the Hot 100). Another follow-up, 1984's Woman in Flames, included the Top 10 song "Off and On Love". Other songs include "Party People" and "Walkin'".

Carman released his first solo album, Dial My Number in 1986, scoring an R&B hit with the title track. His second album, It's Time was released the following year.

In 1990 Champaign (including Carman) reconvened to record, and the Champaign IV album was released the following year. It did herald a brief return to the US R&B chart with the single, "Trials of the Heart".

Former band member Michael Day died of cancer on June 7, 2001.[2]

In 2003, a greatest hits compilation album was released that included most of the group's hits, though several (most notably "Try Again") were absent.

By 2008, Pauli Carman, the original lead singer, continued to represent the group. The Carma album, released in 2008, included original songs along with a remake of The Beatles' "And I Love Her" and the Stevie Wonder track "I Love, I Love". In 2010, Get Back 2 Love was released (included a remaster of "How 'Bout Us"). The title track "Get Back 2 Love" made reference to Champaign's top hits. The same year, the single "Mercy" was released (a remake of the Marvin Gaye hit "Mercy Mercy Me"). This single was to assist those affected by the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. A portion of the proceeds was donated to various agencies assisting with the clean up and restoration in the area.

In November 2010, Carman produced The Pauli Carman Show (a television pilot online show). In 2011, the single "Share"[3] was released. In 2013, the CD album Love Kind[4] was released.

On September 15, 2013, Pauli Carman was presented the National R&B Music Society 'Unsung Hero Award'.[5]

In 2014, the CD album "Eyes Of The Spirit" was released.[6]


Studio albums

  • 1981: How 'Bout Us
  • 1983: Modern Heart
  • 1984: Woman in Flames
  • 1991: Champaign IV
  • 2008: Carma
  • 2010: Get Back 2 Love
  • 2013: Love Kind
  • 2014: Eyes of the Spirit


Year Single US Pop[7] US R&B[7] US AC[7] UK[8] Album
1981 "How 'Bout Us" 12 4 1 5 How 'Bout Us
"Can You Find The Time"
"I'm On Fire"
1983 "Try Again" 23 2 6 Modern Heart
"Let Your Body Rock"
1984 "Off And On Love" 10 76 Woman In Flames
"This Time" 43
"Intimate Strangers"
1990 "Trials Of The Heart" 64 Champaign IV
"All My Love"

Compilation albums

  • 2003: Greatest Hits


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