Classics: Kym Mazelle – Useless (I Don’t Need You Know) (Syncopate)
‘Useless (I Don’t Need You Now)’… As many words most definitely speakin’ for themselves, I suppose. And if ever some of you have any doubts, there’s also “I don’t want you now”. No matter what, life’s not always a fairy tale. With pain standing as the flipside of joy. A point where Kym Mazelle was pretty much at by the time she recorded ‘Useless’. Which producer Marshall Jefferson brilliantly recaptured at the time. Thus makin’ of this song a standard for the feminist point of view.
‘Useless’ is one of the most emotional statements ever released. And also by that a rare moment of symbiosis between a performer and a producer. Speakin’ of ‘Useless’, Mazelle eventually confirmed she was just pissed off when comin’ to record it. ‘Useless’ appearing as an “unrequited love” kind of reaction. Although it didn’t mean she was angry at all the men, but just some.
As a result, no wonder how ‘Useless’ stands among the greatest classics of the Chicago early House era. How, despite released more than 30 years ago, it remains so timeless in its overall concept. And how Kym Mazelle proudly stands as the first lady of House Music…
A native of Gary, IN, Kym Mazelle happened to live in the same street as the Jackson family. By 1981, she attended, she attended Mundelein College in Chicago, IL. And, the year after, she transferred to Columbia College Chicago. There, she graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Arts and Entertainment Media Management in 1986. Eventually working part-time as an intern and secretary at Lyric Opera of Chicago during that period.
Soon after graduating, Kym released her first single – ‘Taste My Love’ – along with House To House. In other words, one of the various guises of Marshall Jefferson. This on Byron Stingily‘s ‘Police’ transient label. From then, the cut got sent to London where she eventually relocated a bit later. A few months on, and Kym Mazelle would come to international recognition. This with the Marshall Jefferson produced ‘Useless’ which stands as one of the biggest classics of Chicago early House. Meanwhile, she would make extra waves. This while sharing the bill with Dr Robert of The Blow Monkeys fame on the boiling hot ‘Wait’ with remixing work courtesy of Juan Atkins. Then when joining Soul II Soul, thus takin’ the lead on the memorable ‘Missing You’ before touring with the band soon after.
Other notable collabs of her at the time seeing her teaming up with Jocelyn Brown, Rapination…
Kym Mazelle‘s debut album – ‘Crazy’ – hit the streets back in 1989. A massive package, as a matter of fact, including an impressive series of bangers. From her cover version of Jean Carn‘s ‘Was That All It Was’ to ‘Don’t Scandalize My Name’ with remix courtesy of Steve ‘Silk’ Hurley. Not to mention the swingin’ (‘Love Strain’) and ‘Got To Get You Back’ which Blaze eventually came to rework.
She made extra noise in the mid 90’s. This with her cover version of Candi Staton‘s ‘Young Hearts Run Free’ as a part of the ‘Romeo + Juliet’ OST. Meanwhile 1999 saw her venturing into drum & bass territories along with Junglist Peshay on the firing Truly’. And, more recently (in 2015), she joined David Morales and The Face on the memorable ‘Lovin”