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Marvin Sease


  Marvin Sease, one of the best soul singers in recent times, died of pneumonia in Vicksburg, Mississippi, on February 8, 2011.  Although Marvin is best remembered by his club hit, Candy Licker, many of us admire his numerous smooth and beautiful ballads - sometimes melancholy, but always very soulful.  He was a prolific songwriter and a lively and popular performer.

  I talked to Marvin for the first time for an in-depth interview in 1996, when we touched such topics as his childhood, his first singing steps both in gospel groups (the Five Gospel Singers, the Gospel Knights and the Mighty Gospel Crowns), and on the secular side (the Sease Brothers and the Soul Keys).  He also talks about his first record in the mid-60s and two singles in the 70s and reveals, how Candy Licker came about.  You can read the in-depth interview with Marvin Sease here.

  That interview covers Marvin’s first seven albums.  His 8th one titled The Bitch Git It All was released on Jive in 1997 and it was one of the cream sets that year.  Besides the funky title track, there are many easily floating mid-pacers and three quality ballads.  On Hold On he even reaches for gospel heights.

  His follow-up two years later is constructed in a similar way, and you can read Marvin Sease's own comments on Hoochie Momma here.  On A Woman Would Rather Be Licked (Jive; 2001) Marvin wants us to get up and dance more this time around, but he still includes four fine ballads on this set.  On I Got Beat Out (Jive; 2002) only drums and percussion are programmed, which enables us to enjoy real horns, guitars, keyboards plus background vocals.  Among funky items and uptempo dancers, there are again four quality ballads and again the closing song, More Will Be Said Than Done, is almost like a church serenade.

  Marvin Sease explains his move to Malaco here and also comments on his first CD, Playa Haters ('04), on the new imprint.  It was followed by Live With The Candy Licker, which is also available as a very recommended DVD, and my review of his final CD, Who's Got The Power, is available at

Marvin released altogether fourteen fresh albums, and each one is a keeper.  I’m convinced that in the course of time his immense talent will be more and more recognized.  His public memorial service is held on February 16 in Word and Worship Church in Jackson, Mississippi.


Heikki Suosalo

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