Back before Danity Kane became Bad Boy's standout girl group, there were three women, Kima, Keisha and Pam—better known as Total—that Sean "Diddy" Combs chose to represent his label.
In the '90s when female R&B cliques SWV, TLC, and En Vogue were dominating with sultry vibes, Total was the hypnotic hip-hop and slick soul antidote that catered to the bad girls. Offering a blend of bubbly champagne melodies and 40-ounce rap production, Total stood out for their sleek vocals, somewhat racy lyrics and edgy style.
Gaining their break after an audition for Puff Daddy in the elevator at New York's Hit Factory recording studios, the future Bad Girls of Bad Boy were determined to blow. Even before Total began working on their own material, they spent much time with their label mates, producers and songwriters before being asked to lace backgrounds on Notorious B.I.G.'s "Juicy." The trio went on to produce two albums, a self-titled debut in 1996 and by the release of their 1998 sophomore set Kima, Keisha and Pam, Total had amassed a platinum project, four gold certified singles and several high-profile guest spots on hit songs by Missy Elliott, LL Cool J and Gang Starr.
The New Jersey-based soul sista group, saw success with their singles "Kissin' You," "Can't You See," and "Sittin Home," which peaked at RIAA’s certified platinum status, before parting ways in the early 2000s. In their last official appearance together, they were thanked in the credits for their collaboration with Da Beatminerz and Talib Kweli’s Anti Love Movement in 2001.
Total as an experience may have been relatively short lived, but considering the stretch for girl group quotas, their imprint on Bad Boy, as well as '90s R&B charts, stands the test of time.
One B.I.G. Moment: Released in 1995 as their debut single, "Can't You See" was featured on New Jersey Drive soundtrack and also later appeared on their debut album, Total. The track was written and arranged by Terri Robinson, produced entirely by Sean "Puffy" Combs and featured a rap verse from Notorious B.I.G. The record reached No.13 on Billboard's Hot 100 and also peaked at No. 43 on the UK Singles Chart, where it charted for two weeks.