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The Rise and Fall of The DeBarge Family

Michael A. Gonzales, Vibe, October 2007

The DeBarge family – El, Marty, Randy, Bunny and James, not to mention Thomas, Bobby, and baby brother Chico – were supposed to be Motown's follow-up to the Jacksons. But after a trail of dazzling '80s hits, behind-the-scenes drama threatened to bring the family down. From dating Latoya and Janet Jackson to allegations of sexual abuse and drug addiction – the DeBarge family has dealt with everything from prison time to AIDS. But even now, their music is still sampled by the likes of Diddy and Polow Da Don, and some of the DeBarges are trying resurrect their careers. Is it too late, though, to pick up the pieces?

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