September 13, 1986: Disco Aid, Cameo, Phyllis Hyman, Howard Hewett, Paul Hardcastle

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

PAUL HARDCASTLE has produced the Disco Aid charity single, ‘Give Give Give’, written by Steve MacIntosh of Loose Ends, with lead vocals by Sheila Ferguson, Jean Carne, Jaki Graham, Chris Amoo, Lenny Henry, Kevin Henry, Odyssey and the Cool Notes, Kenny G on sax, and an Edwin Starr-conducted chorus of Boris Gardiner, Aswad, Smiley Culture, Tippa Irie, Phil Fearon & Galaxy, Total Contrast, Real Thing, Sinitta, Derek Green, Direct Drive, Beggar & Co, Mel & Kim, Masquerade, Toyin, Judge Dread, Keith Henry, Dizzi Heights, Press The Flesh – if every DJ buys it the week of release (it won’t of course be promoed), we’ll see the true chart impact of disco power! … London are issuing Steve ‘Silk’ Hurley ‘Jack Your Body’, followed by Marshall Jefferson ‘Move Your Body (The House Music Anthem)’, while in the US J. M. Silk have signed to RCA and Jessie Saunders to Geffen … Chicago’s Trax Records belongs to a pressing plant which merely pays local DJs for their productions to press up in limited quantities purely for the Chicago market alone – a reasonable deal, except now their pressings are even hotter elsewhere and nobody’s under contract … Elite Records here are getting into “house” music now, a stripped down style that should suit Andy Sojka’s production techniques ideally! … Geffen Records are bringing over Jessie Saunders, the Bang Orchestra, and “a top Chicago DJ with unknown house tracks” for club gigs next month, including either/or the Barry Island/Caister soul weekenders … Caister is back on October 17-19, at the Seashore camp, with Lonnie Liston Smith live plus a DJ team including Martin Collins, Graham Gold, Jonathon More, Chris Dinnis, Alex Lowes (details on 01-886 8141) … Radio London’s Soul Night Out returns next Thursday (18) with a beachwear party at Hammersmith Palais … Saturday nights have at last returned to normal on Capital Radio, with Phil Allen back doing the midnight soul show and even Tony Monson running down his sales chart again at about 1.45am (Sunday) … Froggy has already split from his own label Music Of Life Records over musical differences of opinion, leaving it to Simon Harris and fellow directors … Capital’s gospel jock Al Matthews, wearing his actor’s hat, is one of the main stars of ‘Aliens’! … Timex Social Club’s mention of “Tina” seems to have been edited from radio versions of ‘Rumors’ – what, too juicy? … Loose Ends’ ‘Slowdown’ in commercial form will have Nick Martinelli’s mix flipped by Dancin’ Danny D & Godwin Logie’s … Howard Hewett’s LP review mixed up the 95bpm ‘I Commit To Love’, 98bpm ‘Stay’ … Saturday (13) Eon Irving funks Covent Garden’s African Centre – and, back from a holiday visit, reports that black dancers in New York just as in London tend to find “house” tempos too fast … Gwen Guthrie is Al Jarreau’s guest on his return to Wembley Arena next Saturday (20) … Rick Davis, still funking Uxbridge Regals Fridays, souls Horton Queens Mondays, wants more gigs on 01-669 8082 … Preston’s Clouds has reopened as the totally restructured Easy Street … Radio Broadland’s soul presenter Chrissie Jackson joins Dave Brown funking Mondays at Norwich Henrys … Robert Starks is anticipating the rejuvenation of the label by starting a DJ mailing list at Avatar Communications, Unit 5, Imperial Studios, Imperial Road, London SW6 2AG … DMC Records are soon following Tina Charles with Kelly Marie, in a Les Adams re-production – can the Brotherhood Of Man be far behind? … ‘I Can Prove It’ was actually recorded a year ago, originally with lead vocals by and as a potential release for North West Ten, whose voices are still heard behind Phil Fearon … Ken Brudenell (Bracknell Oceans Fri/Sat) reminds us the original ‘I Can’t Let You Go’, even before Haywoode’s 1984 version, was by Talkback in 1982 … Jaki Graham’s media party at Groucho’s last week decamped in more private form to the newly reopened Munkberry’s, now in the same virtually unaltered site at the Swinging Sixties society haunt, Sybilla’s … Luther Vandross is unrecognisable in ads for his upcoming album, he’s got so thin! … Ian Levine has already remixed the next brand new single by Sister Sledge … Gwen Guthrie finally topped US Black 45s, Nu Shooz ‘Point Of No Return‘ Club Play, Stacey Q 12 Inch Sales in Billboard … ‘Hill Street Blues’ fans, prepare for a shock – Joe Coffey gets shot, dead … Spotlight Publications’ new specialist magazine Jocks, launched in October with a free sample copy before monthly publication begins in December, will cover the full range of disco activity with all the extra categories of charts for which there just hasn’t been room in rm – so, if you’re a DJ who, through our current neglect of wider categories of dance music, has been discouraged from sending in regular charts, now is the time for you to start submitting your floor-filler top 20s (or more if you can manage it), the aim being to compile as many different national disco charts as there are types of venue, from broad-based commercial pop, the already well covered funk and Eurobeat, through alternative, oldies, hip hop and any other nit-picking though relevant subdivisions that surface (send charts as usual to James Hamilton/Alan Jones, RM, Spotlight Publications, Greater London House, Hampstead Road, London NW1 7QZ, and please make sure to include your own address) … JACK THE HOUSE!


BEN LIEBRAND is the Dutch whizkid responsible for nearly 150 remixes, most famous here being his recent hit Tavares’ revivals, but currently he is charted as the arranger and producer of M. C. Miker ‘G’ & Deejay Sven’s ‘Holiday Rap’. Despite this, he still jocks as he has done since 1980 at Nijmegen’s The Kaiser Karl and creates regular minimixes for Radio Veronica, in Holland.


DANCIN’ DANNY D (left) and Radio London’s JEFF YOUNG are attempting to turn the next few Wednesdays into “Urban Dance” nights at Camden Town’s Dingwalls, not a venue immediately identified with hot funk, maybe. Their debut last week had Loose Ends as live guests — except, thanks to a cock-up in the sound system, they were unable to sing in truly live style to backing tracks, as they’d planned. This disappointment apart, the gig showed signs of settling into a friendly groove once teething problems are over.


HOT VINYL

CAMEO ‘Word Up!’ LP (US Atlanta Artists 830 265-1 M-1)
A particularly solid set steering clear of any threatened rock, apart maybe from the guitar solo on what is actually emerging as its killer, the jauntily looping 112bpm ‘Back And Forth’ all having floor potential though, the ‘She’s Strange’-style 95½bpm ‘She’s Mine’, mellow jogging 91/45½bpm ‘Don’t Be Lonely’, weaving 101⅔bpm ‘Fast, Fierce & Funny’, jolting 110½bpm ‘Candy’, staccato 113bpm ‘You Can Have The World’, 115¼bpm title track hit (and what a grower that turned out to be!).

PHYLLIS HYMAN ‘Living All Alone’ LP (Philadelphia International PHIL 4001)
Rushed out here, this gem of a sultry set is superb from start to finish. Not surprisingly the most sleazy floorfilling tempos are British in origin, the Junior co-penned swaying 98bpm ‘If You Want Me’ and Loose Ends-penned, Julie Roberts originated 95⅓bpm ‘Ain’t You Had Enough Love’ (produced now as then by Nick Martinelli), while her recently seven inched 118¾bpm ‘Screaming At The Moon’ is sorta ‘Thriller’-meets-Manhattan Transfer. Smoochier are the 0-63¾-0bpm title track, 40/80bpm ‘First Time Together’, 88bpm ‘Slow Dancin’’, 36½bpm ‘You Just Don’t Know’, 82 ½/83bpm ‘What You Won’t Do For Love’, tempoless ‘Old Friend’. Not to be missed!

HOWARD HEWETT ‘I’m For Real’ (Elektra EKR47T)
Finally on 12 inch, the Stanley Clarke co-prod/penned successor to their earlier ‘Heaven Sent You’ collaboration is a soul satisfying subtly swaying (0-)94⅔bpm delight with a little Wilton Felder sax to round it off (edit and rocky 127bpm ‘Eye On You’ flip). Continue reading “September 13, 1986: Disco Aid, Cameo, Phyllis Hyman, Howard Hewett, Paul Hardcastle”

September 6, 1986: Timex Social Club, Club Nouveau, The Vicious Rumor Club, Bobby Jimmy & The Critters, Midnight Star

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

AS VISITORS to the PLASA Light & Sound Show will have discovered, our parent Spotlight Publications is soon launching a new monthly, Jocks magazine, to compliment and expand on these BPM pages (which will remain weekly in rm) – full details later! … Timex Watches have, as it turns out, had to relent and those ‘Rumors’-mongers can continue as Timex Social Club after all – incidentally, Cooltempo’s press officer Clare Smith (01-408 2355) is desperately seeking Susan, or rather some idea of who, if anyone in particular, the “Susan” is that’s mentioned along with the more obvious “Tina” and “Michael” in the lyrics … Chaz Jankel’s featured soloist appears not to be one of the Jones Girls, instead this Brenda Jones is the New York session singer who’s had disco hits of her own in the past … Ralph Tee himself re-edited the new seven inch of Phyllis Hyman ‘You Know How To Love Me’, getting in more of the full length original’s highlights than did the 1979 edit: future reissues in his Arista Masters series will include Chapter 8 featuring Anita Baker, Niteflyte, Bobby Womack, and indeed most of the label’s past black acts … Radio London jazz jock Gilles Peterson is now being retained as Jazz/Latin A&R Consultant by StreetSounds, amongst other projects his upcoming ‘Jazz Juice 3‘ compilation LP includes Eydie Gormé ‘The Coffee Song‘ and Lou Rawls ‘The Girl From Ipanema‘ (just to undermine a few DJs’ collections!) … London’s inevitable reissue of Little Eva ‘The Locomotion’ (LOCOX 1) has been turned into an 130-129¾-130¼bpm remix with the awkward addition of digital delay hiccups – at least the long fade reaches its previously unheard final finish now, though for most the original 1962 seven inch will remain definitive … Gladys Knight & The Pips have moved to MCA Records … Georgie Fame this time really does seem likely to appear, along with Fatback, at Live Wire’s “Bognor Sequel” October 10-12 Barry Island soul weekender (details on 01-364 1212) … Disco Mix Club are promoting a couple of late season Discotheque Holidays at £169 for a week, with full holiday facilities plus nightly disco entertainment hosted by Steve Walsh on Ibiza in San Antonio Sept 28-Oct 5, and by Chad Jackson on Majorca in Magaluf Oct 5-12 … The Hippodrome’s Star Bar has been converted into a members-only music biz club within a club, appropriately called The Biz Bar … Jonathon Moore joins residents Baz fe Jazz and Sylvester as first guest jock this Thursday (4) at the new weekly funk-jazz-latin-R&B Bang Bang in London Euston Road’s Portlands, and then with KJ on Saturday (6) at Clapham Common’s The Alexandria he adds ancient Tamla and Northern to the mixture … Phil Fearon next Thursday (11) PAs at Rhyl Downtown … Fridays are serious funk ‘n’ soul nights at Purley Cinderellas Rockefellas, with Chris Hill regularly joining residents John ‘Nick’ Osbourne and John Mayoh – the latter, incidentally, is booking DJs and PAs for various clubs at the Mecca Agency, despite the closure of Kev ‘Guvnor’ Hill’s actual club division there … Tilly Rutherford and Karen Ashley in addition to Lisson Records are running The London Promotion Company, aiming to plug major labels’ dance product specifically in the disco orientated London market (at retail and radio level, so it’s not DJs they want on 01-724 5826, not yet anyway) … ‘Showing Out’, as in Mel & Kim’s title, is the fresh way to say ‘showing off’, as in attracting the opposite sex … Billy Ocean ‘Love Zone’ topped US Black 45s in Billboard … New York City has a brand new urban-cum-pop station, WQHT (“Hot 103”), which by playing lots of fresh street music is shaking up the other increasingly dull urban stations’ complacency … Freakie Dee funks Sundays 2-5pm on Birmingham’s Radio WM 95.6FM, filling what he calls “a big hole with no soul”! … Iain Bruce has taken over Cardiff’s Red Dragon Radio Saturday 6-8pm disco show, and welcomes relevant information (plus product!) at the station, West Canal Wharf, Cardiff CF1 5XJ … Tony Glass of Rochford’s Disco Mix Roadshow is creating special remixes for broadcast on Disco John Leach’s weekday evening Essex Radio soul show … Millie Scott’s producer Bruce Nazarian played in 8th Day, Brownsville Station and Was (Not Was), his partner Duane Bradley DJed at Detroit’s Studio 54, Todds, and is currently at the Warehouse and on WJLB … JACK THE HOUSE!


ROCKY JONES has graduated from running the Chicago DJs’ record pool to owning the labels DJ International Records, Underground, plus (for rock) Fierce, (pop) Power House, (metal) Metallica, and he distributes Farley Keith’s House Records. In point of fact the reason why, until now, “house” productions have been kept in purposefully limited underground supply is that the strictly local Chicago-based business just couldn’t cope with wider distribution! Now however he is planning to set up a movie about Chicago and its music, based on the true tragic story of a young singer/producer called Jesse Velez, who got caught up with the street gangs and died last year in mysterious circumstances. How’s this for a title, ‘Good To House’?


London’s cuddly DJ Steve Walsh muscled his way into this snap of lovely Porscha from the new somewhat reorganised group ROYALLE DELITE, whose latest UK release is ‘I’ll Come When You Call‘ (Streetwave MKHAN 71), a pleasant if not particularly memorable jiggly 109¼bpm repetitive swayer.


HOT VINYL

TIMEX SOCIAL CLUB ‘Rumors’ (Cooltempo COOLX 133)
This smash-bound hypnotically lurching nagger with intriguing tittle tattle lyrics, a tabloid reader’s delight (and the next Nu Shooz) is here as new more rounded Shep Pettibone 106⅓bpm remix and 106⅚bpm dub versions plus the US hit 105⅚bpm original and 106bpm ‘Vicious Rumors‘. However, read on . . .

CLUB NOUVEAU ‘Jealousy’ (US Tommy Boy/King Jay Records TB 884)
Undaunted by most Timex Social Club members leaving his control, their producer Jay King has rapidly formed his own group and a new label affiliation to make an “official” follow-up answer version to ‘Rumors’, similar even down to the artwork, with a now bassier (0-) 110bpm beat (inst too) and “vicious vocal” longer 110¼bpm ‘Malicious Jealousy‘ flip. And . . .

THE VICIOUS RUMOR CLUB ‘Rumor Rap (Yeah, Yeah That’s It)’ (US Musicworks Records SUN 444)
Actually naming celebrities’ names, rather than leaving you to guess if they mean who you think they mean, this straightforward 108bpm answer version adds scratching too (inst flip). And . . . Continue reading “September 6, 1986: Timex Social Club, Club Nouveau, The Vicious Rumor Club, Bobby Jimmy & The Critters, Midnight Star”

August 30, 1986: Farley ‘Jackmaster’ Funk, George Benson, Carlton, BB & Q, Gil Silverbird

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

STEVE WALSH is organising an all-star single to benefit the November 1 national Disco Aid charity night, and as it’s being recorded this weekend he needs to hear immediately on 01-580 0083/4 from any so far uncontacted dance acts who’d like to join in … PLASA, the equipment exhibition, is evidently open to the public at Hammersmith’s Novotel this Sunday (31) until Wednesday (3), 11am-6pm … Tony Blackburn keeps claiming his weekday morning Radio London show is “the most listened to” in the South-East, and now he’s got official BBC audience survey figures to prove it! … Krystol ‘Passion From A Woman‘ has been shrink-wrapped with a bonus 12 inch that couples the underground classic 106bpm ‘After The Dance Is Through‘ and 110⅔bpm ‘The Things That Men Do‘ (DTA 7203) – but mightn’t Epic have been surprised if they’d merely released that coupling in its own right, all along? … Boiling Point are reissuing a couple of 1983 hits in new Timmy Regisford remixes, the bassier 0-98⅚-99½-99-0bpm Monyaka ‘Go De Yaka’ (POSPX 820) and messily unimproved 121½-121¾bpm Hot Streak ‘Body Work’ (POSPX 821) … Supreme Records’ first birthday party, with Graham Gold jocking, saw Mel & Kim twirling like twin poppets, Princess sneaking in despite leaving the label, Nicky Holloway wearing a bog brush in his barnet, and Chris Hill dancing at Stringfellows – a social night that brought many a DJ and his lady “Up West”, most ending up in Chinatown for an early hours chop suey … RCA in the States are starting a new dance label, AFT Records … Gwen Guthrie finally topped US Club Play, Madonna 12 Inch Sales in Billboard … Young & Co ‘Such A Feeling’ is getting a Timmy Regisford remix now it’s been picked up by US Atlantic … Georgie Fame is recording for Ensign … Island’s go go movie ‘Good To Go’ appears finally to have opened in the States, where go go fans are reportedly disappointed it only features brief snatches of the soundtrack song … Darryl Pandy (who spent a considerable fortune in London at Gucci buying luggage, shoes and presents) has also cut a great soul slowie dedicated to his kid sister, ‘Krystale’ … Farley ‘Jackmaster’ Funk’s new ‘Houseapella‘ instrumental sloppily includes some stray conversation if you listen closely – incidentally, Radio One DJs are already saying what a great singer Farley is! … DJ International Records’ hustling vice-president Lewis Pitzele, ever looking for a deal, intends setting up his own Jackin’ Records, Doo’ Rock and Wicked Pulse labels here … Steve ‘Silk’ Hurley ‘Jack Your Body’ owes a melodic debt to Yazoo ‘Situation‘ … psst! – why does Damon Rochefort call himself Nellie ‘Mixmaster’ Rush, and sing like the Village People? … Marshall Jefferson also records as Virgo … The Incredible Mr Freeze’s rappers are Daddy O and Delight from the group Stetasonic … The Boogie Boys of course are from Harlem, not LA, it was the label that confused me … London’s hipper clubs look like turning The Naturals’ tapping and burbling 106⅙bpm ‘Funky Rasta‘ (Jamaican Sunshine) into the latest big boom revival — always an underground threat since 1981, it’s now being prodded by DJ Tim Westwood (who unearthed supplies in New York), and by Dancin’ Danny Poku (who wishes he hadn’t!) … London’s Metropolitan Police evidently now have a “Warehouse Squad” to close down illegal public parties, but two warehouse style parties that are perfectly legal this Saturday (30) are Wicked Pulse at Camberwell Green’s Dickie Dirts (in the old cinema), and a North meets South allniter at Hackney Central station’s Club Oo! Mankind, where Colin Curtis (if fit), Chris Reid, Edgar & Calvin clash with Jonathan Moore, Andy McConnell and Baz fe Jaz for a soul-funk-jazz throwdown … Wicked Pulse with Soul To Soul is also on Sundays in Covent Garden’s Africa Centre, sweaty, smoky, funky and friendly … Monday (1) Ralph Tee presents “the sisters of soul”, live and on vinyl, at London’s Limelight … Jerry Green got mugged while actually supplying the sound at an LWR gig in New Cross, losing a gold chain from around his neck … Gilles Peterson on Tuesday (2) starts a weekly 10pm-midnight ‘Mad On Jazz’ Radio London show — nice one! … Colin Hudd’s hot mix is Adonis into the old Voyage ‘East To West‘, the “house” tempo bringing other fast oldies back into play … Five Star (I’ve yet to receive their LP) are being sponsored by Cadbury’s Crunchie bar on their upcoming UK tour – not quite in the Pepsi league maybe, but just as sweet for young fans’ teeth! … SORRY, WRONG BEAT!


LE PLAZA in Peckham used to be called Kisses and was one of South London’s funkiest spots until its name change, which coincided with a desire for respectability and an older class of club-goer. The trouble is, older folks don’t go to clubs, so it’s back to funk and plenty of “house” every Saturday there now with the return of KISS-fm’s Gordon Mac (admiring his twin in the mirror) and Steve Jackson. Jack the house!


HOT VINYL

FARLEY ‘JACKMASTER’ FUNK & JESSIE SAUNDERS/VOCALS BY DARRYL PANDY ‘Love Can’t Turn Around (Remix)’ (US House Records FU-11)

Obviously due soon here on London too, as promised this is the storming 122-122⅓-0bpm revamped “house” smash with re-recorded tighter vocals by the this time fully credited Darryl ‘Diva’ Pandy (above), plus excitingly stripped down vocal and instrumental ‘Houseapella’ dub versions. The mighty mouthed opera singer’s voice is apparently proving too rich and meaty for some people’s taste, but that’s probably just the shock of the new.

GEORGE BENSON ‘While The City Sleeps. ..’ LP (Warner Bros WX 55)
Producer Narada Michael Walden thankfully has sensitivity enough to drop his heavy handed pop approach for a potential hits-filled vocal set that’ll keep floors heaving way into 1987. Hottest are probably the familiarly styled 105bpm ‘Shiver’, Maze-ish 111½bpm ‘Teaser‘, Kenny G-saxed 114bpm ‘Did You Hear Thunder‘, but there really ain’t a dud among the 51½/103bpm ‘Love Is Here Tonight‘, 69bpm ‘Too Many Times’, 122bpm ‘Secrets In The Night’, (0-)102⅓bpm title track, 88bpm ‘Kisses In The Moonlight’.

CARLTON ‘Excite Me’ (US Infuture IN-0001)
The biggest import two weekends back, this melodically juddering and tinkling wriggly (0-)109⅚bpm electro nagger surrounds Carlton Smith’s rather effectively UN-excited though pent-up vocal with much Nu Shooz-ish nervy tension (dubby Super Ride Side flip). Continue reading “August 30, 1986: Farley ‘Jackmaster’ Funk, George Benson, Carlton, BB & Q, Gil Silverbird”

August 23, 1986: Chaz Jankel featuring Brenda Jones, Cameo, Bobbi Humphrey, Colonel Abrams, Raww

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

TIMEX WATCHES apparently are cutting up rough over the use of their name so from here on it seems those ‘Rumors’-mongers will be just plain the Social Club … Princess has split from Supreme Records who made her a star and signed instead with Polydor … Phil Fearon has indeed beaten the original Tony Etoria version’s national chart peak of number 21 … Atlantic have reissued Chic’s classic 120-121-120½bpm ‘Le Freak’ (K11209T) from 1978… Mel & Kim, despite as reported being written, recorded, and rushed out to radio on fully printed promo all within a week back in July, ludicrously won’t be out until September 1 – what’s the hold-up? … Meli’sa Morgan’s 12 inch remix starts so abruptly that many jocks still prefer using the original LP version, so can’t something be done? … Farley ‘Jackmaster’ Funk has amongst others remixed the Dazz Band’s US single ‘L.O.V.E./M.I.A.‘ … Shirley Jones topped US Black 45s, Run-DMC Black LPs in Billboard … Cleveland Area DJ Association meets Sunday (24) in Thornaby’s Odd Fellows Arms at 7.30pm … Graham Gold’s DJ partner at Mayfair Gullivers, jocking alone there Mon/Fri, the hot ‘Demon’ Damon is looking for a black girl who can rap and sing to make a duo with him — catch him at the club on 01-499 0760 after 9pm … Radio Thamesmead’s breakfast DJ Jamie Wisdom is after a weeknight disco residency within reach of SE London, on 0322-72208 (afternoons) … DJ Fressh FM claims his Dartford-based scratch/mixing lessons undercut all others in price (details 04747 6381) … Alan Taylor suggests a reissued remix of the Funk Masters ‘It’s Over‘ might be timely – I’ve noticed the original is still filling floors in London, and it’s massive for him in Rhyl, where however at the Downtown the big oldie for Andy Baker is Hi-Gloss ‘You’ll Never Know‘ … Phil Burton has particularly hot oldies at Rhyl’s Mirrors Mon/Tues but now funks St Asaph’s Spooks Fri/Sat too … James Lewis has found that supposedly “commercial” Mondays have ended up as the actual funk nights at Swansea’s free admission Harry’s Dance Bar, well appointed, not large, but steaming until 2am when I visited last week, the only place where you’ll hear hot soul newies … Thursday (21) Andy Bianchi and Adrian Dunbar dare you to wear as little as possible at Poole’s Wharf nightspot … Sunday (24) Millie Scott PA’s with Steve Allen, Jonathon and Nick Graham at Peterborough Rinaldos’ 6pm all-eveninger, then as Bank Holiday Monday dawns at midnight Chris Hill joins Colin Hudd and John Rush hosting Dartford Flicks’ traditional charity allniter … Monday itself sees Pieces Of A Dream playing live at Blackpool Empress Ballroom’s 2pm alldayer, while Loose Ends and the Cool Notes PA at Northampton Cinderellas Rockerfellas’ 4pm alldayer, both with starry DJ rosters … Radio Merseyside soul presenter Kenni James captains another river cruise next Thursday (28), tickets from Hott Waxx and Cheverton Records … Paul French’s upfront weekends at Gillingham’s The Avenue have been attracting as punters Frankie Goes To Hollywood members Ped and Mark O’Toole, who also recently looked in at his Sunday skating rink gig at the Ice Bowl – where Paul got cold feet after kindly lending his socks so Mark’s rented skate boots would fit! … John Mayoh, now at Purley Cinderellas Rockerfellas, is delighted to find a hot new import-stocking shop in Croydon’s Station Road, Mi Price Records … Big Al has taken over mixing the funk (and “house”) on Fridays at Swindon’s Level 3 .. Candido ‘Jingo’ is a perfect mix out of ‘Love Can’t Turn Around’ … Technics’ vari-speed CD player apparently, so Chad Jackson tells me, already includes a gnurled knob which the DJ can manipulate manually to “scratch” the disc – with a laser? … SORRY, WRONG BEAT!


IAN LEVINE (left), the toast of New York’s DJs (who all pronounced his name “Iron”!) at the New Music Seminar, thanks to his forceful personality and impressive list of credits, has rapidly cottoned onto the relationship of Chicago’s “house” music to Hi-NRG. As previously mentioned, he’s produced an ultimate 121½bpm pastiche of all the most obvious house clichés, Midnight Sunrise’s ‘On The House‘ (Crossover CROSS 1), on white label now … but already remixed by the increasingly busy Farley ‘Jackmaster Funk’ Keith, seen with him of the Limelight looking friendlier than they did during a sparring match as seminar panelists! What’s more, Ian is now recording Louise Thomas in the “house” style, too. Who next, Shakin’ Stevens or Rosemary Clooney?


DARRYL PANDY — and that is the right spelling, after all — has his re-recorded vocal version of ‘Love Can’t Turn Around’ released imminently, and has just cut his first starring solo vocal record in London too! Amidst a hectic week of TV and club appearances, including his revivalist meeting-like show at the Limelight (with Farley ‘Jackmaster’ Funk mixing at the decks for hours), he went into the studios with the Light Of The World/Beggar And Co bunch backing him to remake Trussel’s old ‘Love Injection’. Singing in opera and in church for the last 20 years, he keeps his six-and-a-half octave vocal range in shape by only ever drinking water, as anything else coats his vocal cords.


HOT VINYL

CHAZ JANKEL featuring BRENDA JONES ‘You’re My Occupation’ (A&M AMY 344)
Back in a soulful bag, the ‘Ai No Corrida’ writer lets Shirley’s sister Brenda Jones of Girls fame wail and worry a sizzling little 109⅔bpm swaying tripper (dub flip) set to the sort of London tempo these days often dismissed as “Tony Blackburn fodder”. This one’s different!

CAMEO ‘Word Up’ (Club JABX 38)
Recognisably continuing Cameo’s sound but at a starkly whipping 115¾-0bpm fast tempo (in three versions), this’ll probably win most people over in the end although so far its more popular with poppier crowds. Their older slinky 94bpm ‘Urban Warrior‘ is included too.

BOBBI HUMPHREY ‘No Way’ (US Mercury 884-897-1)
The singing flautist’s overdue return on this Leroy Burgess-penned Inner Life oldie has been impatiently awaited, especially as her all-star accompanists include Stevie Wonder on harmonica and producer Ralph MacDonald on percussion (of course), the slightly Patrice Rushen-ish result being an old fashioned jiggly shuffling 0-111½bpm swayer in four versions, the flute tootled instrumental and tougher dub possibly being preferable. Continue reading “August 23, 1986: Chaz Jankel featuring Brenda Jones, Cameo, Bobbi Humphrey, Colonel Abrams, Raww”

August 16, 1986: Human League, Maze, DJ Hollywood, Michael Jonzun, Chip E

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

Daryl Pandy and Farley ‘Jackmaster’ Funk will be in person at a London Records “house” party night this Thursday (14) at the Limelight – where the smart thing to say to one’s companion is, “It isn’t as good as the New York club”, which indeed it isn’t, being a domed square shape instead of new York’s prettily illuminated proper church with floodlit trees showing through the windows (and as for the music, Dr And The Medics???) … Gwen Guthrie is now in a Dancin’ Danny Poku UK remix with Mark Berry’s mixes as flip … Froggy & Simon Harris’s label Music Of Life is finally rushing the original Eighties Ladies ‘Turned On To You’ with a remixed A-side, and Cooltempo is readying Timex Social Club … Cameo is out here next week commercially, UK pressings being 115¾bpm, while George Benson’s 12-inch turns out to be 88½bpm … Michael McDonald ‘Sweet Freedom’, although pressed already, amazingly isn’t out here until September 8 (in two and a half instead of four full mixes, with A and B sides swapped) … Shep Pettibone has given Five Star two much harder 0-118¼ and 118½bpm remixes, without the rocky guitar – and, Madonna fans note, he’s also been remixing ‘True Blue’ … Modern Talking’s slinkily chugging (0-)109bpm ‘Brother Louie’ (RCA PT 40876) is the Eurodisco hit returning holidaymakers are asking for, but it may be rapidly eclipsed by M.C. Miker ‘G’ & DeeJay Sven’s gimmicky 115¼bpm ‘Holiday Rap’ (Debut DEBTX 3008), which sets Dutch-accented raps and pop-hip hoppery to a perfect recreation of Madonna’s ‘Holiday’ backing track, with some amusingly adapted bursts of ‘Summer Holiday’ too … Tina Charles’ original producer Biddu has returned to a much changed disco scene here after several years with his family back home in India writing music for the movies there … (You Cannot Be) Serious Records’ ‘Upfront 2’ compilation double album is moving in for the kill with Princess, Willie Colon, Mondo Kané, Main Ingredient, Willie Collins, Nova Casper, Debby Blackwell, Fatback, Pieces Of A Dream, Cultural Vibe, Real Roxanne, Eric B, MC Boob/Steady B, and Salt-n-Pepa – talk about hot! – while their soul Crossover and hiphop Murder Beat labels (under Ian Dewhirst’s guidance) are releasing as singles Cultural Vibe, Midnight Sunrise ‘On The House’, R T & The Rockmen Unlimited, Salt-n-Pepa, MC Boob/Steady B, DJ Hollywood, and more … Morgan, look out! … Millie Scott visits Bedford Sweetings Friday (15), when Graeme Park of Nottingham’s Garage brings coach parties to support him in London at Projects in Streatham Ziggy’s … Red Nose is much funnier, but Preston’s radio station is of course Red Rose! … Billy Crystal appears to be filming at the same time as the Barry weekender, so no South Wales visit for him! … Billy Ocean topped US Black LPs, Bananarama Club Play too now, in Billboard … Little Richard’s 1957 classic ‘Lucille’ is being 12-inched on US Specialty … Ricky Nelson, killed last Christmas, appears among the backing voices on Lionel Richie’s album … Arthur Baker, ironically considering the Criminal Records name of his label, recently spent the night in jail following a misunderstanding over a traffic violation – over which all charges were subsequently dropped … Colin Hudd at Dartford Flicks synchs Pieces Of A Dream ‘Say La La’ perfectly with the new Alexander O’Neal (who, incidentally, plays Hammersmith Odeon November 20/21) … US copyright experts seem agreed that digital “sampling” of elements from other peoples’ records is as illegal as other older types of copyright theft …  SORRY, WRONG BEAT!


LES ADAMS, the ‘Mix Doctor’ who teaches other DJs how to do it, did it himself in ultra slick style along with fellow guest mixers Chad Jackson and Paul Dakeyne at London’s Limelight last week, when the Disco Mix Club launched their new commercial DMC Records label. With PAs too by the likes of Lulu, Sinitta and the Cool Notes, there was hardly a dull moment in an action-packed and intensely social night. The thinking behind DMC Records is that it should be devoted to productions by disco DJs, each release being simultaneously not one but two separately available 12 inchers (at 33⅓rpm), the second one containing additional different mixes to help DJs create their own versions if they want to. Distributed via Arista, the label has kicked off with Sanny X’s surprisingly good total revamp of TINA CHARLES ‘I Love To Love (12” Teenage Mix)’ (DMC Records DECK 121 and DECKS 121), the decade-old chart-topper still getting middle-aged groovers onto the floor but now with a completely re-produced sleek new backing track (at about 100bpm).


HOT VINYL

HUMAN LEAGUE ‘Human’ (Virgin VS 880-12)
This’ll cause problems for purists, and be a smash! Sounding just like an 101⅙-0bpm Alexander O’Neal track, it’s prod/penned in their own typical style by Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, with no concessions to the Sheffield group – of three versions there is an instrumental, but go for the vocal!

MAZE featuring Frankie Beverly ‘I Wanna Be With You’ (Capitol 12CL 421)
Now much extended (with LP and instrumental versions as flip), this joyfully wriggling 113⅔bpm shuffler should leap into the charts in the current soulful climate, even if it still isn’t exactly a real crossover hit.

D.J. HOLLYWOOD ‘To Whoever It May Concern’ (US Spring SPR12-422)
Extremely jolly 101⅙bpm rap, using something like the Jackson 5’s ‘I Want You Back’ bass line, with ultra-catchy singalong chants to such gibberish as “um tang um tang” and “yummy yum yum” (inst/edit flip), great fun! Continue reading “August 16, 1986: Human League, Maze, DJ Hollywood, Michael Jonzun, Chip E”

August 9, 1986: New Music Seminar scratching competition, Janet Jackson, Mel & Kim, Zuice, Tricky Tee

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

Import albums last week included Gwen Guthrie, Kenny G and Glenn Jones, so check the Disco Chart for BPMs if they hit – incidentally, Kenny G’s single review should have read “more ponderous than the (Jr Walker) original but with obvious nostalgia appeal” … London picked up The Incredible Mr Freeze, which apparently was recorded several years ago (like it sounds) … DJs can now get the percussively exciting old T-Connection ‘Do What You Wanna Do’ (US Sunnyview Classics SUN 33306) on 12 inch again as an import – but how about a UK re-release? … Henry Stone is restarting another TK-type label in Florida with new Canadian partner Paul Kline, called Achievement Records … Timex Social Club, with ‘Rumors’ have started a ‘Roxanne’ sized spate of US answer versions, led by Bobby Jimmy & The Critters ‘Roaches’ (US Macola) … Bananarama ‘Venus’ topped US 12 inch sales, Jean Carne ‘Closer Than Close’ Black 45s in Billboard …. Fatback, who will be headlining live act at October’s Barry Island ‘Bognor’ weekend, have recorded ‘Spanish Harlem’ featuring its originator’s son Ben E. King Jr, due on import soon and in fact looking for a UK deal … Michael McDonald’s seven inch hit ‘I Keep Forgettin’’ now sounds a lot different from its original 1962 version by Chuck Jackson … George Benson’s pleasant enough 88bpm ‘Kisses In The Moonlight’ (Warner Bros W8640) has been delayed on 12 inch here so that an extended ‘Breezin’’ can be added to the oldies flip … Disco Gary Van Den Bussche doubtless joins others wondering where to find the recently mentioned great acappella version of Lulu’s ‘Shout’ remake – it’s on the Jive seven inch only, a three-tracker which I received ahead of the 12 inch and presumed was the same … James Brown’s mysterious track which turned up by mistake on the Beat Freaks’ B-side apparently was the only recorded result of a Compass Point Studio session produced by Sly & Robbie for a mooted Island LP that was never completed – a pity so few are ever likely to find it … Steinski’s newsreel-cutting ‘The Motorcade Sped On’, about JFK’s assassination, has turned up on vinyl at last, but only on ultra-expensive hard to find US Disconet … Kenny Beck, currently in litigation over the authorship of ‘Mine All Mine’, manages Harleqiun Four’s lead singer Barbara Tucker … Jak To Jak is being “restructured” for full commercial release … Les Adams has done an incredibly clever megamix of Sly Fox ‘Let’s Go All The Way’, Queen ‘We Will Rock You’ and Boogie Boys ‘Fly Girl’ which is already out in Europe, although here, because it would be classed as a “compilation” for chart purposes, it seems likely only to be Sly Fox’s next B-side … Robbie Vincent devotes at least half his 9-11pm Radio One soul show this Sunday (10) to a recording of Anita Baker’s London concert – the Sunday one, by which time she was evidently less easily swayed by the audience’s shouted requests into singing all her biggest slowies at the start – after which for three weeks Radio London’s Saturday lunchtime soul man Jeff Young fills Robbie’s chair … South London’s SOLAR Radio is now broadcasting instead in Portugal to the Algarve on 90.5FM, complete with Portuguese commercials between the Bill Mitchells! … I bumped into Red Nose Radio’s soul man Richard Searling in an M6 motorway restaurant on my way to see Zuice in Manchester – he was returning from the Anita Baker show, and we had a good natter … Mike Shaft, his community radio plans in temporary tatters, now presents BBC Radio Manchester’s soul show Saturdays 7.30-midnight … Billy Crystal is filming in London during October – could he be visiting South Wales too? … UK Disco Mixing runner-up Jon Davis starts this Thursday (7) a weekly night at Bideford’s brand new Baileys on the quay … Jay Strongman, Pete Tong, Nicky Holloway, Chris Brown, Jonathon More, Bob Jones, Gilles Peterson & Chris Bangs have another Doo At The Zoo in Regents Park this Saturday (9) … Mayfair’s Gullivers doesn’t close now until November, and business is booming … Benny Wilson, funking Stamford Hill’s Cotton Club Thur/Fri/Sat/Sun, like other London jocks finds his black audience slow to respond to anything faster than 110bpm, thus ruling out any “house” hits — however, Ashley Hooper at Bournemouth’s Shunters and Mr C’s is already having to revive the frantic old Francine McGee ‘Delirium‘ and Slick ‘Space Bass‘ … Stock/Aitken/Waterman have done a House Mix of ‘In The Heat Of A Passionate Moment’ as Princess’s follow-up, and a House Remix of O’chi Brown … Ian Levine, having sussed that “house” is only another form of Hi-NRG, is producing ‘On The House‘ by Midnight Sunrise — it had to happen! … SORRY, WRONG BEAT!


CHAD JACKSON, as can be seen, got up to his usual tricks in the initial heats of the New Music Seminar’s scratching competition. Scratchers (and rappers) battled in pairs, each trading three 30-second sets in which they had to outdo each other. Chad, against the Get Fresh Crew’s DJ Barry B, for his second set cut up the words “Get Fresh Crew” in an answerable attack, and the predominantly black New York crowd went wild! His proudest moment? It was a round-winner, as was Cut Master DC’s scratching with a sneaker, his nose and a basketball, while Jazzy Jeff beat last year’s winner DJ Cheese.

All this was done on Numark MDJS Series decks, which jumped like crazy – unfortunately, as they were the competition’s sponsors. Even when fitted with Stanton 500AL cartridges and D5107A1 styli (established as the scratchers’ faves) the decks worked little better. Come the day of the finals, they had been exchanged quietly for Technics, and ostensibly because of this but mainly then to include aspiring scratcher Tony G, whose dad owns influential Los Angeles radio station KDAY, it was suddenly announced that the initial heats would be re-run. This threw most of the now re-matched winners, off-form Chad being beaten by Jazzy Jeff, Eazy G by an athletically on-form Barry B, Cheese by Tony G, Prince Paul by Cut Master DC. The judges were all stars, Grandmaster Flash, Mantronik and that ilk, including Lady B – who actually said she manages Jazzy Jeff. As all the others seemed scared of offending anyone, they tended to sit on the fence and award everyone the same marks, leaving the way clear for Lady B to hold up a full 10 every time for Jazzy Jeff and considerably less for his competitors. The result was inevitable, and probably deserved, Jeff beating Barry B in the final after they’d respectively seen off Cut Master DC and Tony G in the semi-finals. The rapping likewise was even more discredited, heartfelt boos from the audience greeting the judges’ decision to snub the brilliant extemporised raps of newcomer Robert S in favour of their dull peer T LA Rock, who was then beaten by Grandmaster Kaz. But by then the relevance of the whole competition had been called into permanent doubt.


HOT VINYL

JANET JACKSON ‘When I Think Of You (Dance Remix)’ A&M AMY 337)
Teasingly introed quite radical 115¾- 115⅔bpm Jam & Lewis remix of the zestfully bounding girlish bather everyone always wanted as her single, the original’s delightfully laughing outro now fragmented within dub-like rhythm breaks (inst/beats flip), not necessarily an improvement although obviously at this stage something new was needed.

In fact with strange timing it’s also pitted against a less frenetically retextured and extended 0-103⅚bpm ‘Nasty (Cool Summer Mix)’ (US A&M SP-12196) of her last hit, with Herb Alpert tootling some on the even longer Part II, cool like the title says.

MEL & KIM ‘Showing Out’ (Supreme Records SUPET 107)
Their real names, these two female models were dancing for Alan Whitehead’s agency at the Hippodrome DJ Convention when they accosted Pete Waterman and said “You ought to record us!” This eventual outcome was actually written on Friday, July 18, recorded Monday 21, played off acetate by John Sachs on Capital Radio Tuesday 22, out on fully printed promo copies Friday 25, and all over the airwaves Saturday 26 — how’s that for speed? The tightly chanted “house”-tempoed 0-119¾bpm topside has a catchy “get fresh at the weekend” hookline, with a ‘Set It Off’-ish 109¾bpm instrumental ‘System (House Mix)‘ as AA-side flip. Continue reading “August 9, 1986: New Music Seminar scratching competition, Janet Jackson, Mel & Kim, Zuice, Tricky Tee”

August 2, 1986: “It is amazing how many white English singers want to be Otis Redding and how many black American singers want to be Barry Manilow”

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

Theo Loyla is looking for further positive pledges of support from DJs and club managers for the Disco Aid project on Saturday, November 1, so if you haven’t already, please affirm your support in writing to 6 Tomay Cottages, Hawthorne Corner, Herne Bay, Kent CT6 6TH – you’ll be agreeing to donate a supplementary admission fee plus any other funds raised specially that night to help Band Aid and other British charities … Robert Geldof, KBE, has so far declined to lend his support by stepping into the nearest disco for five minutes on that night … Tony Prince launches his commercial record label, created as a production outlet for DJs, DMC Records, at London’s new Limelight next Wednesday (6) with Chad Jackson, Les Adams and Paul Dakeyne as guest mixers – so already the exodus has begun from the neighbouring Hippodrome just down Charing Cross Road! … South Norwood confusingly has a Limelight as well, where this Friday (1) Froggy joins regulars Chris Stewart and Lyndon T … I looked in on New York’s Stringfellows, bigger seeming and emptier than London’s, where DJs Lynn Condon, Beladee Nayhem and Lisa Lace are lovely girls but not the standard of mixers one expects of the Big Apple … Real Thing have signed with Jive for new material … Pieces Of A Dream ‘Joyride’ LP (Manhattan MTL 1004) is now out here, and their UK 12 inch turns out to include the jagged angry 116-0-117bpm jazz instrumental ‘Outside In’ … Ralph Tee is compiling an Arista Masters oldies series of re-releases, jazz, soul and dance, first due being Phyllis Hyman ‘You Know How To Love Me’ and Breakwater ‘Say You Love Me Girl’, soon … Martin Freeland is now also no longer at EMI … Randy Muller has been extensively remixing Skyy ‘Non-Stop’ … Steve Davis, soul fanatic snooker champ, sits in hosting Essex Radio’s weekday evening soul show all next week – I hope he’s practised his cueing! … Lesley Gore’s ‘It’s My Party’ has been accurately recreated as ‘It’s My Body’ in a milk commercial on US radio … Melba Moore’s US TV sitcom series ‘Melba’ debuted unfortunately the night after the NASA space shuttle disaster, and got such poor ratings it was immediately pulled off air; however the remaining episodes are being shown through August on CBS-TV … ‘EastEnders’ actress Sharon Dee Clarke (‘Mad Lizzie’) has been recorded by Ian Levine for Damon Rochefort’s own production company … Sunday (3) Tony Monson and Jeff Young soul an afternoon 2-6pm Thames boat trip, details on 01-533 0117 … Leicester Square’s Secret Rendezvous being defunct, Simon Goffe starts soulful Fools’ Paradise on Fridays from next week (8) at Soho’s Gossips – he seems to have found another good appropriate current song title for his club’s name … Angela Bofill, Stanley Clarke, Kenny G and Dave Valentin make up a revised Soul-Jazz Explosion ’86 package playing Hammersmith Odeon August 30/31 … Harlem’s legendary Apollo Theatre has brought back its traditional amateur nights on Wednesdays, but as a regular 7.30pm evening show rather than as an extra after the main show has ended – because now there is no main show, the place being used for one-off engagements, whereas in its heyday every week saw a different package playing five shows a day, seven days a week, with a movie and newsreel between each show … Eric Mercury was, as co-writer/producer of the original, interested to hear about all the “activity” surrounding the ‘80s Ladies ‘Turned On To You’ – on our second meeting in New York, I caught him playing piano while Daryl Pandy rehearsed a brand new but timeless classic-style blues that could have been from any decade this century, magical! … Justin Strauss, DJ at the fantastic Area (which changes its elaborate décor theme every month), cleverly combined Gwen Guthrie and Tambi … I’m actually saving further New York news like the New Music Seminar’s mixing competition fiasco to accompany other relevant photos … Hot Licks are expanding their video DJ mailing list on 01-486 8794 … Colin Curtis and Pete Haigh soul-jazz Manchester’s Broosters Mondays … Aaron Lewison-White’s long standing residency at Drayton near Chichester has changed names from Brooksies to the new Thursdays … Ken ‘B’ Brudenell has left Southampton Raffles for the freer musical climes of Bracknell Oceans (Fri/Sat) … Mondo Kané is, like the ‘Mondo Cane’ film title that inspired it, pronounced “Mondo Carnay” … Billboard’s Rhythm & The Blues columnist Nelson George observes, “It is amazing how many white English singers want to be Otis Redding and how many black American singers want to be Barry Manilow” – maybe (while shouting “You tell ‘em Nelson!”) that’s because here we can appreciate at a distance the artistry of soul without having had to live through and personally endure its restrictive heritage … Rob Day, commuting from Fridays at New Cross Harp Club to Saturdays at Manchester Hacienda, wonders whether, if it were released tomorrow on DJ International, ‘Blue Monday’ would be considered as anything other than “house”? … it’s getting difficult to tell what’s “house” and what’s Hi-NRG these days … SORRY, WRONG BEAT!


DARYL PANDY, the lovable man mountain with the mighty mouth and six-and-a-half octave range, is actually the voice heard on producer FARLEY ‘JACKMASTER’ FUNK’s ‘Love Can’t Turn Around’ (London LONX 105), or more accurately its really raving ‘Dub Can’t Turn Around’, which oddly is the main vocal side, at 122bpm the most exciting “house” hit to come from Chicago so far. Daryl and (real name) Farley Keith were snapped above at Arthur Baker’s Shakedown Studio while re-recording the vocal for subsequent repressings, although the original is now out here, where it and other “house” records are being welcomed as at last a faster dance music that’s reasonably credible.

Daryl’s is also the lead vocal on FARM BOY ‘Move’ (US DJ International Records DJ-912), produced by fresh-faced boy Dean Anderson, a skittery 118¼-0bpm bounding “house” stormer with emulator breaks between bursts of imperative beefy singing (later by Etheridge Williams too), the vocally concise Radio Mix possibly being best of its four versions. Daryl is dynamite in person, a star waiting to be discovered, and can’t wait to come here to visit Wales, the land of his surname!


SLEEPING BAG Records held a roof party above their Manhattan office at 67th & Broadway during the New Music Seminar, and the DJ up on the roof was none other than an unheralded MANTRONIK, caught here cueing up some hot “house” on the Trax label!


HOT VINYL

MICHAEL McDONALD ‘Sweet Freedom’ (US MCA Records MCA-23641)
Written, arranged and co-produced by Rod Temperton for the Gregory Hines/Billy Crystal movie ‘Running Scared’, and far hotter than Michael’s current Warner Bros seven inch, this exotically lurching 114¼bpm loper (in four marathon mixes) has hints of ‘All Night Long (All Night)’ but mainly is another ‘Yah Mo B There’!

DAVIS/PINCKNEY PROJECT ‘You Can Dance (If You Want To)’ (US Studio Records STU-911)
Fascinatingly arranged 103⅓bpm gradually fleshing out while drily husky singer Lorenzo Queen carries the swing, which is considerable (inst flip). Subtle, downbeat, dynamite!

SHIRLEY JONES ‘Do You Get Enough Love?’ (Philadelphia International 12PIR 2, via EMI)
The solo Jones Girl’s US smash is a Bunny Sigler-created tremendous gospelish 67bpm slow roller with pent-up piano and confidential rap which, despite the whole side one of her also UK-issued LP ‘Always In The Mood’ (PHIL 4000) being other stunning slowies, remains the standout track in our chart. Make it a hit here, too. Continue reading “August 2, 1986: “It is amazing how many white English singers want to be Otis Redding and how many black American singers want to be Barry Manilow””

July 26, 1986: “I am the guy that got thrown out of Paradise Garage”

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

I am the guy that got thrown out of Paradise Garage, for having the temerity to suggest that after all the publicity I have given to both the New York club (which doesn’t close until next year now) and its DJ Larry Levan they might like to let me in for free – so there goes any further mention of “garage” music! … ‘House’ is in any case the correct term for what we’ve been calling ‘garage’, a real producers’ music form to the extent that it’s the producers rather than the artistes who get the main label credit: thus Farley ‘Jackmaster’ Funk & Jessie Saunders have taken precedence over the actual singer of ‘Love Can’t Turn Around’, the incredible six and a half octave ranged Darryl Pandy, who sounds like Little Richard, looks like Fats Domino, with a satchel mouth like Louis Armstrong, a true star waiting to be discovered! … I had the pleasure at Arthur Baker’s Shakedown Studio of watching Farley Keith re-record (rather than remix) Darryl’s ‘Love Can’t Turn Around’ vocals for a future alternative release (photos next week if they come out) … Arthur’s own 122½bpm ‘I Want To Go To Chicago’ by RT & The Rockmen Unlimited has reached acetate stage, but the big news is that together with DJ International Records owner Rocky Jones he has produced a Chicago/New York All Stars session featuring such as Chip E, Farley Keith, Darryl Pandy, Afrika Bambaataa, Melle Mel, Will (Wally Jump Junior) Downing, Hubert (‘D’ Train) Eaves, André Booth, Bruce Forest and more, the results being split between his own Criminal Records and DJ International for release … Frankie Knuckles was the DJ at Chicago’s Warehouse, which actually closed three years ago, playing such obscure New York records only ever heard there that they came to be called “House” – he cites among many Master Jay ‘TSOB’, Liquid Liquid ‘Cavern’, MFSB ‘Love Is The Message’, and various Gino Soccio titles … Chip E’s singer Jack In House explains that “jack” is another word for dancing, “when the music is loud and pumping like a jackhammer”! … Chicago’s broadminded black mayor Harold Washington is so clued up on the impact of house music that he seems likely to be promoting it himself internationally! … New York’s New Music Seminar as usual had a scratching and rapping contest, but the results were discredited by political manoeuvrings which will be detailed in full next week: suffice to say that UK champ Chad Jackson did magnificently in the initial heats, beating the Get Fresh Crew’s Barry B on applause after cutting up the words “Get Fresh Crew” in real blood-letting battle, but then these initial heats were run again to accommodate someone whose dad owns a radio station, the finals eventually (and deservedly, despite unfair scoring by his manager on the judging panel) won by Jazzy Jeff, while Grandmaster Kaz won the rapping … New York’s urban contemporary radio now isn’t even as upfront as Tony Blackburn on Radio London – make of that what you will! … Timex Social Club now tops US Black 45s, Club Play, and 12 Inch Sales in Billboard! … Livewire, the people who encourage the unwary to ring up huge ‘phone bills, from this week start a new funky service hosted by Radio London DJ Dave Pearce which includes the RM Dance Line, spotlighting several fast new risers on our Disco chart – the service is in London only at the moment, on 0066-66012 costing a maximum 35p for one and a half minutes at peak times, 12p off-peak … Steve Walsh has dubbed his own singalong lyrics over the top of Fatback ‘I Found Lovin’’ for imminent release, and picked up Hanson & Davis for his Total Control label … Club have Wally Jump Junior, and Janet Jackson’s ‘When I Think Of You’ album “sleeper” is finally due next week … Dancin’ Danny Poku has concocted a promo-only re-edited 0-98½-92-101-98½-0bpm ‘Real Roxanne Meets Pee Wee Herman And Howie’s Teed Off’, with scratching by Hardrock Soul Movement, while commercially The Real Roxanne ‘Bang Zoom’ is also out in an instrumentally started 98⅚-99-0bpm The Fresh New Beat Remix (incidentally, on watching ‘Back To The Future’ again in mid-Atlantic, it suddenly became obvious that “bang zoom” was a catchphrase from the vintage Jackie Gleason TV show) … Princess ‘Tell Me Tomorrow’ has reverted to 10-inch size for yet another different 104⅔bpm Saturday DJ Edit mix, while O’chi Brown ‘100% Pure Pain’ is on a Special DJ Copy “white label” as a much altered tighter 113¾bpm US Extended Remix, and finished commercial copies of Phil Fearon have as flip the self-penned accomplished 140-147½-150-151-0bpm jazz instrumental ‘Il Gurnata’ … Epic have released the rock-guitared (0-)101-0bpm ‘House Rocker’ (TA 6952) as Lovebug Starski’s follow-up … Billy Crystal’s smarmy 0-112½-0bpm ‘You Look Marvellous’ (US A&M) is taking off again thanks to its video, as before mainly in the Thames Estuary area so far … London group Zuice, whose 110¼bpm ‘Everyone A Winner’ (a juddery title line looking for a song) isn’t out on Club for a fortnight, are being launched like Total Contrast last year at special DJ parties, in Manchester at Richfields next Monday (28), Glasgow at The Cotton Club Tuesday (29) – see you there? … Nick Graham revives three decades of Pressure Cookin’ black dance music this Thursday (24) at Bromley South’s Dr Crippens … New York saw Chad Jackson diving mouth first into all the exotic frozen cocktails, Damon Rochefort give a taxi driver $100 instead of $1 (notes are the same size!), Steve Walsh chatting to a girl who turned out to be a fellah, being pickpocketed, and escaping from a head-on taxi crash, while Simon Bates seemed not to want people to know he’d been to the New Music Seminar (it might ruin the credibility of Radio One DJs!) … SORRY, WRONG BEAT!


Roger Troutman, during Zapp’s London visit, finally revealed how he creates his distinctive “vocoder” vocal sound. Through a plastic tube he breathes into his mouth helium, a gas that makes his voice go squeaky, the sound of which is taken by microphone into an amplifier and then fed through a synthesizer, the keyboard of which Roger plays to coincide with the words that by being fed through it have now become the sound signal he’s manipulating into “music”, bending and stretching them. This takes practice!


HOT VINYL

Stock Aitken Waterman present MONDO KANÉ featuring Dee Lewis & Coral Gordon, guest star GEORGIE FAME ‘New York Afternoon’ (Lisson Records DOLEQ 2, via PRT)
With the overall concept’s name now phonetically respelt to prevent confusion with a Dutch group called Mondo Cane, production team Stock Aitken Waterman’s debut as “artistes” stars the inimitable nasal tones of the ‘Yeh Yeh’ man crooning Richie Cole’s gloriously breezy 102⅔bpm samba as if it had been written for him. Edited 103⅚-103⅔bpm Little Samba and Fame-less 0-104bpm Nip On mixes join the flip’s oddly wowing (0-)106⅔bpm similarly samba instrumental ‘Manhattan Morning’. Not many know it, but DJ Chris Hill was behind this whole idea.

DEBBY BLACKWELL ‘Once You Got Me Going’ (10 Records TENT 151)
Squalling shrill Debby virtually duets with a mellow soulful backing fellah on this Leroy Burgess co-penned fast frantic 117½bpm jittery flier, sort Aurra and Skipworth & Turner gone Hi-NRG (in four versions).

JAK TO JAK ‘Take It Easy’ (Boiling Point POSPX 806)
The S and M of DSM, Birmingham DJs scratching Shaun Williams and Mambo now join huskily talking rapper Gilly (a guy) who rides the rhythm of a not surprisingly DSM-like mellow ticking 110⅓bpm shuffle groove (jazzier and harder more ‘Twilight’-ish dub flip).

CA$HFLOW ‘Can’t Let Love Pass Us By’ (Club JABX 33)
An unlikely A-side, this intensely chugging tight 115⅓bpm whipper does become quite nagging on a monotonous level, as do the flip’s already charted rambling jiggly 94⅔bpm ‘Spending Money’ and pent-up wriggly 112⅔bpm ‘I Need Your Love’, all having a cumulative soulfulness rather than being strong songs. Continue reading “July 26, 1986: “I am the guy that got thrown out of Paradise Garage””

July 19, 1986: Jeffrey Osborne, Phil Fearon, Timex Social Club, Jeffree, Lionel Richie

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

UK FRESH ’86, for which Hashim has cut a theme tune on Streetwave, actually lacks the leading US rap acts, Run-DMC, LL Cool J and Whodini – who, with the Beastie Boys, will be at Hammersmith Odeon on September 12/13, and in Nottingham and Manchester as well! … New York this week at the New Music Seminar was due to see various parties, Profile’s on Tuesday starring Run-DMC, who’ve now sold 1,350,000 LPs in just eight weeks (‘Walk This Way’ is their follow-up single with a great video featuring its originators Aerosmith), while the same night Jellybean was presenting such of his acts as Jocelyn Brown at Anthony And The Camp at Area, and Luther Vandross and Ashford & Simpson were hosting a benefit night at the Felt Forum … Wednesday was due to be “garage” night at Better Days with Bruce Forest and guest DJ Frankie Knuckles presenting Farley ‘Jackmaster’ Funk, Chip E, Steve ‘Silk’ Hurley, Farmboy, Fingers Inc – I hope I was there! … Damon Rochefort, making his first trip Stateside to report for rm, got his passport only the evening before he was due to fly out, and then had to queue at dawn for a visa the day he went! … Ian Dewhirst is quitting EMI to run Serious Records’ singles label, and Orin Cozier has already departed from RCA … Froggy and mixing partner Simon Harris have teamed up with Streetwave to launch their own label, now called Music Of Life – and it is this label that has signed LaToya Jackson, and will debut next month with a remixed Cerrone ‘Supernature’ … Disco Mix Club’s new album of ‘International’ mixes (the monthly DJs-only subscription service provides 3 LPs now; details on 06386-67276) is pulling in such Continental star remixers as Ben Liebrand and Rutger ‘Rutti’ Kroese … Tony Prince in addition is launching an actual commercial label, DMC Records through Arista, committed as an outlet for disco DJs to become producers – the first release will be a total remix by Sanny X of Tina Charles’ old ‘I Love To Love’ (just what the world needed, right?), each release being on standard 12 inch plus a multi-track “remix pack” 12 inch with all the bits that jocks need to create their own versions … Timex Social Club topped US 12 inch Sales, Peter Gabriel Club Play, El DeBarge Black 45s in Billboard … Pillar Promotions are compiling an exhaustive listing of all the country’s top clubs and DJs, to be called DJU and sold to pluggers and suchlike for £200, so they want to hear from anyone who thinks they should be included: call Philip Williams on 01-735 8171 … Steve Walsh stoutly insists that although his Rolls Royce is indeed second hand, it’s a late Seventies, one-owner-only model, a snip at £15,500 … Sinitta ‘So Macho’, still selling strongly up North, is turning into a holiday hit in Spain, so may yet smash nationally … SORRY, WRONG BEAT!


HOT VINYL

JEFFREY OSBORNE ‘Soweto’ (A&M AMY 334)
Really rushed out here hard on the heels of the 115½bpm topical protest song cheekily pinches a riff from Miami Sound Machine’s ‘Dr Beat’, especially on the dub version, and here is coupled also with Larry Levan’s 0-112bpm “special US remix” of the seminal ‘Plane Love’. The best thing on his album, now even better, and destined to be huge.

PHIL FEARON ‘I Can Prove It’ (Ensign 604, via Chrysalis)
I suggested following the Real Thing revival that Tony Etoria’s 1977 hit could be worth digging up, and here comes Phil, sticking almost too close to the (108bpm) original for comfort, in a breezily swinging bubbly 110bpm remake which adds some scat and breaks but otherwise even copies the Welshman’s distinctive enunciation (inst flip), with of course a more spacious modern recording quality. Tony peaked nationally at 21, can this top it?

TIMEX SOCIAL CLUB ‘Rumors’ (US Jay Records JAY 001)
Imagine a male Nu Shooz doing ‘Louie Louie’ with the punks (in the original Sixties garage band meaning) chanting wicked, sometimes scabrous, lyrics to a mind numbing 107½bpm hypnotic beat – ‘Vicious Rumors’ is the longer B-side version – and you’ve got the hottest 12 inch seller in the States right now! Continue reading “July 19, 1986: Jeffrey Osborne, Phil Fearon, Timex Social Club, Jeffree, Lionel Richie”

July 12, 1986: Run-DMC, Gwen Guthrie, The Main Ingredient, Lou Rawls, Shirley Jones

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

COMMUNITY RADIO plans, rather as suspected after so long a delay, have been shelved for the moment while the government evaluates the recommendations of the Peacock Committee’s report on broadcasting m general; however Tory party chairman Norman Tebbit (once head of the Department of Trade and Industry and keen for radio deregulation himself) insists that the delay will be only temporary (whatever length that means) … London Records have snapped up Chicago’s DJ International Records and associated labels House Records and Underground for the UK, with their own logo here, meaning that Cooltempo no longer have Farley ‘Jackmaster’ Funk & Jessie Saunders here – incidentally the label’s founder Rocky Jones confirms and clarifies: “Garage Music is stuff like Dhar Braxton and Gwen Guthrie from New York, Chicago music is called House Music after the Warehouse Club in Chicago – know the difference!” … New York based Arthur Baker, originally from Boston himself, has produced an anthem for the music actually called ‘Chicago‘ and plans a massive promotion that should boost the sound even further and pull the rug out from under the Chicagoans? … EMI’s disco plugger Ian Dewhirst reports from New York that Cultural Vibe ‘Ma-Foom-Bey‘ is the garage crazed city’s hottest hit, which doubtless all the Brits about to descend on the Big Apple for the New Music Seminar will discover for themselves … ‘Krush Groove’ is showing at London Kings Cross Scala cinema this Thursday-Sunday (10-13) … Midnight Star ‘Headlines’ has been remixed by the Wrecking Crew … Stock Aitken Waterman present Mondo Cane featuring Dee Lewis & Coral Gordon with guest star Georgie Fame is the cumbersome label billing on their 103⅔bpm bossa nova cover version of Richie Cole’s ‘New York Afternoon’, due on Lisson Records soon and already burning up the airwaves … Roger Troutman, who really Zapp-ed London with a tightly disciplined all happening stage show which owed much to past soul heroes, went straight on up to Scotland to produce eccentric P’funker Jesse Rae — I myself was at the far north-western tip of Sutherland two Mondays ago with Spud Murphy watching the sun set at 10.34pm, and the sky stay red all night long! … BBC Radio London’s live link with New York’s WBLS on July the Fourth was, for its Hammersmith Palais section, to all intents and purposes the Steve Walsh show, as the large one shouted “I Am Steve Walsh!” no less than 18 times in an hour … Masquerade’s presentation of ‘The Solution (To The Problem)’, with its “we can work it out” chant of optimism, was ironic considering it coincided with a guy brandishing a knife at the bouncers … Brian D Mason (Cricklewood Ashton), driving a Porsche 911SC Sport Tarca with personalised plate 557 BDM, reckons he’s one up on Steve Walsh’s very second hand personalised Rolls Royce! … Morgan Khan, still unable to discover a British Michael Jackson, enthuses that Streetwave have at least signed LaToya Jackson, doing a duet with Cerrone … Lulu’s original may yet be remarketed, but in the meantime she’s re-recorded a faithful (though lukewarm when compared with her energy 22 years ago) 0-138¼-126½-138-0bpm version of the party classic ‘Shout’ (Jive LULU T1), which surprisingly has competition from the deliberately (and not so incisively) rearranged brand new 148½-0-148½-0-126-147-152-0bpm treatment by Buddy Curtess And The Grasshoppers (Mercury BUD 112) … . . Tania Maria at Euston’s Shaw Theatre on Sunday July 27 coincides with Anita Baker at Hammersmith Odeon – where this Saturday (12) David Sanborn is in concert, while Willie Colon burns up Hammersmith Palais Monday (14) … Thomas & Taylor have left Cooltempo … Technics have already launched a vari-speed compact disc player, giving plus minus eight per cent just like their record decks! … Man Parrish appears at Bolts sometime during Bournemouth’s Gay Pride Festival fortnight 11-27 July … Russell Harries, having moved to Scotland from Bournemouth, boasts he plays real club music at Stirling’s Le Clique where he welcomes funky PAs and coach parties (call 0786-814714 evenings) … Johnny S, looking for other mixing gigs on 01-521 1871, cuts up Stoke Newington’s Nine-Eleven club Saturdays with Elvis and Val Haywood … Steve Aspey, at Kensington’s The Park Fridays now, is joined at Oxford’s Parkers next Tuesday (15) by Bob Masters … Paul M and Fleck start funking specialist Wednesdays at Oldham’s Royton Scandalls next week (16) … Teena Marie on her ‘Emerald City’ LP sleeve says she’s trying to sound “green” – rather than black or white — to break away from our confining preconceptions … SORRY, WRONG BEAT!


LONDON RECORDS now release here the kings of rap ‘n scratch, RUN-DMC, whose 95bpm ‘My Adidas’ (LONX 101) is so concerned with footwear it’s the B Boys’ Blue Suede Shoes’, while (with their instrumentals too) the 105⅙bpm ‘Peter Piper’ coupling is fast catching up in popularity, having harder cutting and nursery rhyme chants. Also on UK release is their massively selling US LP ‘Raising Hell’ (LONLP 21), hottest tracks on the floor so far being the percussive 96⅔bpm ‘Is It Live‘, violently scratching 0- 97bpm ‘Hit It Run‘ and jaunty (0-)127⅔-0bpm ‘You Be Illin’‘. It’s all much more stark and demanding than the Full Force type of productions, so may not take every dancehall by storm … but it’s certainly def.


HOT VINYL

GWEN GUTHRIE ‘Ain’t Nothin’ Goin’ On But The Rent’ (Boiling Point POSPX 807)
Beware, creative marketing at work! Initial UK pressings of this grittily nagging subdued 107¼bpm jiggly roller only feature Larry Levan’s two mixes (plus the 74bpm ‘Passion Eyes’), and cost around £3, whereas the far better value £5 import also includes the widely considered superior two Mark Berry remixes to make a five tracker. Obviously Berry’s mixes will be made available here too eventually, by which time you’ll have spent £6 if buying domestic vinyl to get them all. Anyway, the song’s turning out to be quite sneaky and huge at soul venues, but I remain doubtful about its crossover appeal.

THE MAIN INGREDIENT ‘Do Me Right’ (Cooltempo COOLX 126)
The veterans return on an excellent Kenny Beck-penned very wriggly 108½bpm imploring soul nagger with its distinctive near hysterical semi-falsetto vocal choppily stabbing the bubbly beat (inst flip). Continue reading “July 12, 1986: Run-DMC, Gwen Guthrie, The Main Ingredient, Lou Rawls, Shirley Jones”