The Ladies of SKYY, Denise, Dolores and Bonné Dunning, are the original female vocalists of the hit R&B/Funk band SKYY. With a musical career that spans more than 40 years, the sisters are more vibrant than ever. Continuing the legacy of SKYY’s music with their dynamic and engaging live performances, they national and international audiences alike.
Born and raised in Bedford Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, New York, the three sisters’ interest in singing flourished while attending FDR High School. Their vocal training was crafted as members of various choral groups at the school. As “The Sounds of Soul,” the sisters performed in numerous talent and variety shows. Their unique stage presence and tight harmonies combined the influences from the male and female groups they listened to in the 60’s and 70’s. Their fashion style was influenced by the The Supremes and The Shirelles, but they patterned their smooth routines after their love for The Temptations and The Four Tops.
Ladies Of Skyy
After a 13-year association with SKYY and a three-year hiatus, the Dunning sisters reemerged as The Ladies of SKYY. The sisters have performed consistently since 1996, most notably at the Salsoul Reunion Concert in New York City, La Grande Nuit De La Funk in Lyon, France, The Corporate Elite Gala in Lagos, Nigeria, the City Parks Foundation Summerstage concerts in New York City, and the Honda Center in Anaheim, California.
The Ladies of SKYY have the distinction of being one of the dwindling number of female singing groups with all original members still intact. With a musical career that now spans four decades, The Ladies of SKYY have earned their rightful place as one of the founding females of funk, R&B, dance, disco and hip-hop music.
In 1974, the sisters opened for Patti Labelle and the Blue Bells at the Miss Black America New York State Pageant. It was there that they met Randy Muller, producer and writer for Brooklyn-based band Brass Construction. Quickly recognizing their amazing vocal talents, the sisters became the opening act for Brass Construction, performing under the name “DiLaRae.” During their association with Muller, they sang background vocals on the albums of Brass Construction, Rafael Cameron, Mark Radice and Charles Earland.
In 1976, the sisters met Solomon Roberts, Jr., Anibal Boochie Sierra and Gerald LeBon, and officially formed the band SKYY. Between recorded ten albums, four of which charted on Billboard’s top 20 album charts. In the 1980’s SKYY toured with major artists like Rick James, Parliament Funkadelic and a year-long tour with Kool & the Gang. SKYY’s popularity as a performing act continued in the 1990’s touring with New Edition, Grand Master Flash and the Furious Five, and the Sugar Hill Gang.