“Delegation” was formed in 1976 by Len Coley, Roddy Harris, and Rick Bailey on lead vocals. The trio was soon discovered by legendary music producer/songwriter, Ken Gold, who also wrote and produced hits like “You to Me Are Everything””, and “Can’t Get By Without You” for The Real Thing. Ken and his writing partner, Micky Denne, also wrote songs for the legendary queen of soul, Aretha Franklin, Jackie Wilson, and Cliff Richard, to name but a few.
In 1976, Delegation released their first single, “The Promise Of Love”, taken from their debut album of the same name, and released on the State Records label.
Unfortunately, this single wasn’t as successful as expected, but it was after the release of their second single, “Where Is The Love We Used To Know” also from the same album, that their fortunes changed for the better. That single charted in February 1977, and gave the group their first hit, and consequently, their first “Top Of The Pops” appearance in the UK, by far the most popular music TV show of its day.
Ray Patterson replaced Roddy Harris later that year and the group released their third single, “You’ve Been Doing Me Wrong”, which became their second hit from the Promise Of Love album.
“Oh Honey”, a smooth ballad (also from the Promise Of Love album), gave the group their first US hit in 1979. This song reached
#5 in the US RnB charts.
Bruce Dunbar was visiting the UK from the US at the same time they were looking for a falsetto singer to replace the recently departed Len Coley. Rick Bailey and Ray Patterson placed an advert in the Melody Maker music magazine and Bruce answered the call. The chemistry was there from the offset, so they decided to include him in the lineup. The timing was right because they had just signed to Ariola Records and they were already in the process of making their second album “Eau De Vie”. This album turned out to be the very successful, with hits like “You And I”, “Put A Little Love On Me”, “Heartache #9,” and “Darling I Think About You”, again, with Ken Gold in the producer’s chair.
Bruce Left the Group 1981 and returned to the states after their third album entitled “Delegation”.
Rick and Ray continued touring and recording extensively as a duo for a number of years after that.
Two more albums were made, “Deuces High” (their fourth), and “Encore”.
Ray Patterson decided to quit in the mid 80’s and Rick made the decision to go it alone.
Delegation is still very much active as a live outfit touring as the “Delegation Band” (with original founder member Rick Bailey, at the helm), playing shows for over thirty years at last count. They are available for bookings worldwide for live concerts and events.
Text by Rick Bailey (Delegation)