Lakeside is a funk band, best known for their 1980 number one R&B hit, “Fantastic Voyage”.
In early 1969, The Nomads met The Montereys, and formed a band and a singing group consisting of lead guitarist and founding member Stephen Shockley, Mark Wood, Tiemeyer McCain, Tony White, and Brian Marbury. The two groups played together in musical revues in the tri-state area of Ohio, Indiana, and Kentucky.
When The Montereys left the Tri-State area later in 1969 to pursue opportunities in New York City, Stephen Shockley and The Nomads remained behind. Mark Wood, the other Nomads, and Stephen Shockley soon added other instrumentalists; the result was The Nomads and The Young Underground. In 1971, The Nomads and The Young Underground took on a new, singular identity: With the addition of Thomas Shelby and sister of Mark Wood’s sister Shirley Wood, they became Ohio Lakeside Express.
In 1971, the group became acquainted with Eddie Thomas of Curtom, a record label owned and operated by Mr. Thomas and his partner, Curtis Mayfield.Eddie Thomas left Curtom to form his own label: “Lakeside”, which he named after the south-side of Chicago. Lakeside, the label, signed Ohio Lakeside Express, the band, with the band soon dropping “Ohio”, and ultimately the “Express” as well, in favor of “Lakeside”. Eddie Thomas had a number of producers expressing interest in producing an album for Lakeside, but nothing materialized at this stage in their career. That would soon change, as Shirley chose not to pursue her singing career – so they added a new singer named Ricky Abernathy.
At “Mavericks Flats”, another of the big-time venues of the day, by now they added another vocalist (Otis Stokes) to replace Ricky Abernathy, and a new percussionist (Fred Lewis). The group was seen by Dick Griffey, a promoter handling successful artists like Stevie Wonder. Impressed by the group, he offered his friendship and advice, and began informally managing Lakeside in early 1974. It was also in 1974 that Lakeside met Frank Wilson and signed a deal with Motown. Things seemed to be looking up for the band. Unfortunately, Motown was promoting/prioritizing other groups, and shelved what they had produced for Lakeside. When Frank Wilson left Motown in 1976 for ABC Dunhill, Lakeside went with him.