January 9, 1982: Brandi Wells, Tom Browne, Central Line, Richard ‘Dimples’ Fields, Daryl Hall & John Oates

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

THE WHISPERS do indeed have a brand new album, ‘Love Is Where You Find It’, due on UK release this week . . . 12in newies due now too are George Benson ‘Never Give Up On A Good Thing’, Slave ‘Wait For Me’ / ‘Just A Touch Of Love’, Earth Wind & Fire ‘I’ve Had Enough’ / ‘Let’s Groove (Remix)’ / ‘Sparkle’, Modern Romance ‘Queen Of The Rapping Scene’ / ‘Can You Move (Everybody Salsa – US rap mix)’, Mike Post ‘Hill Street Blues’, Five Special ‘Just A Feeling’, while albums due next week are Kleeer, Chaka Khan, Sister Sledge, Shalamar . . . Al Jarreau ‘Roof Garden’ will be on single in a fortnight . . . Rush Release have serviced a mystery RCA white label 12in by an unnamed group, ‘Don’t Stop’ being a 128-129bpm chanting electronic pop pounder in the deadpan Depeche Mode style . . . I’m writing this while still holidaying in North Nottinghamshire, where import shops and disco gossip ain’t exactly on the doorstep, so sorry if there’s very little hot to report . . . Baccuus International are currently revamping London Camden Town’s old Music Machine into an “ultra hi-tech discotheque” for re-opening under a new name in a couple of months or so . . . Capital Radio’s ‘Souled Out And Roots Rockers’ programme now runs 9.30-10.30pm on Fridays . . . ‘OTT’ sorta ‘TISWAS’ for kids who stay up late, is very silly and quite likely to keep people in (or at least watching on their videos) on Saturday nights, especially if it sustains such inspired lunacy as The Greatest Show On Legs – three stark naked guys having difficulty in covering their naughty bits with balloons while dancing the cha cha cha! . . . Chris Hill, David Bowie, Shirley Bassey and Elvis Presley were all born on January 8th – mind you, my birthday’s the same day as the Queen’s! . . . Chris Hill now makes a point of mixing solidly for an hour between 11pm and midnight every Saturday at Canvey Goldmine . . . Froggy, who’s punters sing the “R-D-R-D-O” bit from ‘Caveman Boogie’ as “airy-ah-ah-soul”, defends the way he doesn’t do much mixing when at Radio One’s Kid’s disco’s by saying “With 3,000 kids in the venue there will be a thousand standing in front of the stage waiting for a giveaway or a silly and although I do mix a few records together it’s only two at a time as otherwise I’d lose contact with the crowd who basically would not understand what the hell was going on.” (he’s been brooding about that for months, has our Frog!) . . . Mark Southall of Newport’s Flashback Record Shop (where I believe his hero also works) says without doubt that Britain’s best mixing DJ is Dave Bumford who demonstrates the fact every Friday at Scruples in the Kings Head Hotel, Newport (Gwent) – Dave also prints exhaustive BPM lists and peel-off sticky BPM labels . . . I’ve been having fun with two copies of Kool keeping the ‘Get Down On It’ title line repeating ad infinitum, also synching KID over TC Curtis for ages, and taking Lamont Dozier out of Brandi Wells ‘Around’ . . . Europa International Agency has recently restructured itself and started up Bless The Funk Promotions which kicked off over Christmas presenting Froggy, George Power and others at Wood Green Avenida (over the Odeon) with a strict funk/soul but no jazz/reggae policy, this venue evidently being regular – as are the more commercially orientated Europa International’s nights for North London Colleges at Southgate Royalty on Wednesdays . . . Neil Fincham and Colin Cordrey say their funk/soul weekend policy at Edinburgh’s Uptown packs the place by 10.30pm so get there early if you want to get in . . . Lenny says it’s not all electro-funk at Edinburgh’s Nite Club (over the Playhouse Theatre), the video thang is where it’s all happening . . . Theo Loyla after seven and a half years has had to leave his residency at Bridge Country Club (near Canterbury) where his all-time top request was Stephanie Mills ‘If You Can Learn How To Cry‘ (US Tamla 7in) . . . I actually played for a party at my parents on New Year’s Eve, in preparation of which I and my father spent two days just shovelling snow out of the drive so that our guests could arrive, with the consequence that my leg muscles ended up aching in places I didn’t even know I had places! . . . London Capital Radio’s four hour uninterrupted continuously mixed New Year’s Eve ‘Ain’t Nothin’ But A House Party’ show meanwhile went out on tape after I’d put it together before heading North for Christmas, and in the compiling of it I discovered a sensational synch mix through the drum break of Altered Images ‘Happy Birthday’ into – you try it too – Chris Montez ‘Let’s Dance’! . . . Soft Cell ‘Tainted Love’ and ‘Bedsitter’ on 12in are both 145bpm and mix flawlessly, but in synching the 145bpm Human League ‘The Sound Of The Crowd’ through ‘Bedsitter’s’ central tapping bit I could not tell which record was making which noises, they were so perfect (ahh, the luxury quartz locked – fixed speed – decks!) . . . Bruce Springsteen ‘Cadillac Ranch’ synched out of Rod Stewart ‘Maggie May’ is a bit tasty too! . . . POD peculiarities this week include pop jocks finally catching up with Perry Haines, and discovering ‘Fire And Desire’ on the flip of Rick James ‘Super Freak’ at last . . . “D” Train is moving faster than British Rail’s APT, look at that record go! . . . and speaking of trains, I’ve got to get this onto a Red Star to London . . . Next week hopefully there’ll be some news that’s new, but in the meantime – make it anything you like, but MAKE SOME MONEY!


UK NEWIES

BRANDI WELLS: ‘What Goes Around Comes Around’ (WMOT WMOTL 105, via PRT).
Already established as the new Evelyn King, this Dexter Wansel-arranged powerfully lurching 113bpm 12in simple snickety strutter mixes sensationally out of ‘I’m In Love’ and just keeps right on along through some great rolling instrumental passages, while the equally strong ‘Watch Out‘ coupling is a chunkier 117bpm bass rumbled lilter with more vocal emphasis including a rap about the backing band and some superb jazzy scatting. The only two hot cuts off her import album, this is terrific value and not to be missed.

TOM BROWNE: ‘Fungi Mama / Bebopafunkadiscolypso’ (Arista GRP ARIST 12450).
One of the hottest sounds around, this crowing cockerel introed and clucking chickens accompanied madly jaunty bass burped 121-122-123-124bpm 12in driving jitterer has blasts of trumpet and happy fiesta-type chanting, mixing beautifully between “D” Train and EWF or (as discovered over Xmas) chopping sensationally out of Bros Johnson ‘Stomp’ in place of the bass break, the flip’s new 111bpm ‘Funkin’ For Jamaica’ remix being a tiny bit shorter and slightly rearranged with less vocal and different more doodling trumpet at times.

CENTRAL LINE: ‘Don’t Tell Me’ (Mercury MERX 90).
Sneakily infectious subtly powerful steadily tugging 111(intro)-114-113-114bpm 12in clomper with touches of Evelyn King in the beat and backing plus a whole lot of Eddy Grant in the vocal, the somewhat Isleys-style ‘Shake It Up‘ fast funky 129bpm B-side burbler fading in on some “go ‘head” chants.  Continue reading “January 9, 1982: Brandi Wells, Tom Browne, Central Line, Richard ‘Dimples’ Fields, Daryl Hall & John Oates”

January 2, 1982: Hammy’s Awards for 1981, End Of Year Disco Chart 1981

HAMMY’S AWARDS

DOC SEVERINSON strikes up the band, Ed McMahon steps mikeside, there’s a swirl of the candy-striped curtains, and . . . “H-E-E-E-RE’S HAMMY!” After some rapturously greeted, cracks about the audience tonight (WHOA!), It’s time for the matter of the moment — the Hammy Awards for 1981:

HIT OF THE YEAR: Whispers – ‘It’s A Love Thing’ (Solar), a socking nine weeks as number one – and, as half anticipated, there is indeed a new Whispers album due on UK release next week and probably about on import now.

RECORD COMPANY OF THE YEAR: RCA (including RCA, Solar, 20th Century-Fox).

RUNNERS-UP (scored by number and stature of hits): (2) CBS (CBS / Epic / TSOP / GTO / Tappan Zee), (3) Phonogram (Mercury / De-Lite / Ensign / Casablanca), (4) WEA (Elektra / Atlantic / Warner Bros / WEA / Whitfield / Mirage / Cotillion / Carrere), (5) Chrysalis (Chrysalis / Reformation), (6) R&B / Excaliber, (7) Motown, (8) Beggars Banquet, (9) A&M, (10) London / Decca.

LABEL OF THE YEAR: Prelude, the US disco label most consistently worth checking.

IMPORT OF THE YEAR: Bohannon – ‘Let’s Start II Dance Again’ (US Phase II 12in).

12in OF THE YEAR: Abba – Lay All Your Love On Me’ (Epic), more as an historical fact than in recognition of the music.  Continue reading “January 2, 1982: Hammy’s Awards for 1981, End Of Year Disco Chart 1981”

“A Hidden Landscape Once A Week”

Mike Atkinson, one of the administrators of this blog, has written a chapter about James Hamilton (titled “Rhythms Would Skitter, Jiggle, Leap or Lurch“) in a collection of writing about the British music press from the 1960s to the 1980s.

“A Hidden Landscape Once A Week – The Unruly Curiosity of The UK Music Press in the 1960s-80s, in the Words of Those Who Were There” is published by Strange Attractor, edited by Mark Sinker (The Wire, NME, Sight and Sound) and illustrated by Edwin Pouncey (aka Savage Pencil). Other contributors include Valerie Wilmer, Charles Shaar Murray, Richard Williams, Penny Reel, John Ingham, Jon Savage, Cynthia Rose, Paul Morley, David Toop, Bob Stanley, Barney Hoskyns, Jonathon Green, Simon Frith, Paul Gilroy, and many others besides.

You can read more about the book at
http://strangeattractor.co.uk/shoppe/a-hidden-landscape-once-a-week/

December 26, 1981: Beggar & Co, Double Exposure, Tomorrow’s Edition, End Of Year Disco Chart 1981

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

CENTRAL LINE have a new white label 12in presumably for release after the holiday, ‘Don’t Tell Me‘ being a tugging 111(intro)-114-113-114bpm clomper sung less smoothly than before while the 129bpm ‘Shake It Up‘ flip is a fast funky burbler in somewhat Isleys style . . . Lava’s Norwegian jazz-funk import can be ordered by UK dealers via Tony Adler of Polydor’s Import Marketing Services on 01-499 3161 . . . WEA’s Fred Dove recently serviced a US promo 12in off the new Kano album, the rest of which I’ve yet to hear, ‘Can’t Hold Back (Your Loving)‘ being an unhurriedly simple 108bpm disco chugger . . . Soho’s Groove Records shop and Groove Production label held a party over the road in Le Beat Route last week, where Chris Palmer told me he’d placed lots of their product with Prelude in the States . . . Surface Noise’s ‘The Scratch’ still cut through better than anything else played while we were down there — now if only Chris could recapture the magic that had! . . . Chris Brown (whose Sharon is looking ever more gorgeous) warns us to watch out for a scintillating remix of Teena Marie’s ‘Portuguese Love’ in the new year, sez “hello” to Neil Benjamin and welcomes back roving Dave Percy . . . ITV’s World Freestyle Dancin’ Championship actually worked out so the best ones won — the US doubles team were great, but that South African bird — cor! . . . Graham Bond of the Tees Valley Road Show is forming a Cleveland area branch of the DJF (GB) and invites any jocks from the North-East interested in joining to ring him on Middlesbrough 325112 (daytime) . . . West Surrey & Hampshire DJ Assn member DJs hold their annual charity disco on Monday (28) at Guildford Cinderella Rockerfella’s to aid the Cheshire Homes for disabled OAPs — last year they raised £500 for disabled children, and hope that this year’s star raffle prize of a portable telly will help them make even more . . . London’s LODJ association holds a New Year Luncheon on Sunday 10th January with silly hats and party games, all London DJs invited, full details from Ralph Maloney on 01 805 8211 . . . Rob Harknett (Roydon 027979 2329) looks like being so busy next year he’s offering any would-be DJs pub-type work with 100 watt rig and roadie, but not too many records, all supplied (might suit hospital jocks, he thinks) . . . Keith Menezes is praying that a special one-off funky Christmas Eve disco above Barnet’s Red Lion in the High Street will be well attended, as if it is, the pub manager will open the room up regularly — which Keith says will give North London / South Herts a funky alternative to getting slowly blitzed in the boring local pub’s public bar (doesn’t that sound heartfelt?!) . . . Southgate Royalty has a Caister Veterans party with Chris Hill, Jeff Young & Nicky Peck on New Year’s Day — but if you’ve any chance of going you probably know about it already, as only Caister “passport” holders are eligible and passports have to be sent off in advance for tickets (details on 01 866 8141) . . . Phil Jay jazz-funks the Surrey area at various venues these days — Tues/Thursdays at Godalming’s Cobbwebbs Two wine bar, Wed/Fridays at Worplesdon’s Royal Hotel near Guildford, and Sundays at Godalming’s Secrets nightclub in Meadrow . . . Tim Lucas and his partner Jerry do a futurist ‘The Art Of Parties’ night on Thursdays at Staines Jacksons, and sent in a Top 100 for 1981 compiled from requests, which they say would be impossible to make any smaller so if we print it could we include the full hundred — at the foot of which is then a little note saying “The above are not in any particular order”! . . . Larry Foster (Stratford Reflections) and Martin Starr (Bristol Scamps) have both revived Johnny Mathis ‘Begin The Beguine‘ (US Columbia 12in) . . . Christmas this year doesn’t seem the same without a new Whispers album — or have I spoken too soon? . . . Cliff Richard now probably won’t do better than number two, but even so my long range forecast wasn’t bad . . . Noel Wright, who jazz-funks Ware Beckets on Wednesdays when he’s not resident on other nights at Juliets in Watford Baileys, picked up his festive name because — you guessed — he was born on Christmas Day . . . John Douglas (Colchester Andromeda) and his chum, Gary Soul (Ipswich Cinderella’s) sent me not one but two quid with which to have a celebratory drink, so to you guys for the pina colada, thanks — and thanks again to all card senders for your kind wishes . . . Wednesday, January 6th is the deadline for your next charts, so you can relax a while (who am I kidding?!) . . . Paul Major (Gt. Yarmouth Tiffany’s) signs out saying: Keep the wax burning. Keep the vinyl turning. Keep your wheels between the ditches. Keep Smokey off your britches — Jitterbug breaker 10-4 . . . and that’s a big KOOL YULE TO Y’ALL!


UK NEWIES

BEGGAR & CO: ‘Bahia De Palma’ (LP ‘Monument’ RCA RCALP 6024).
Extremely British sounding set (not surprisingly I suppose), including their ‘(Somebody) Help Me Out’ and ‘Mule (Chant No.2)’ hits, the initially warm newies being this pleasantly pattering lightweight jazzy solo filled 115-114-113-115bpm instrumental shuffler which couldn’t exactly be called ballsy and the thinly textured immediately recognisable brassy 118bpm skittering ‘Got To Get Away‘ jitterer which is let down by the vocals but has some nice instrumental touches. Vital they ain’t.

OTHER NEWIES include albums from the DETROIT SPINNERS, T. S. MONK, CHIC, a ‘Best Of’ ODYSSEY off which the ‘Easy Come Easy Go/Hold De Mota Down‘ Latin-flavoured new medley goes nicely out of Grover Washington’s ‘Little Black Samba’, and a ‘Disco-Rough‘ compilation on the Celluloid label brought to you by Rusty Egan via his own Metropolis logo. Full reviews after Christmas. Right, now maybe I’ve just got time to grab an hour and a half’s sleep before doing a very heavy (but well paying) mobile gig! Dontcha just love this time of the year?


IMPORTS

DOUBLE EXPOSURE: ‘After All This Time’ (US Gold Coast 7401).
Appropriately named ‘One Hundred Per Cent Nice’, good cleanly snapping buoyant zappy 123-124bpm 12in bounder, well arranged with hoarsely led soulful vocals that sound strangely Brit-funk in a way, and some tellingly effective brief breaks.

TOMORROW’S EDITION: ‘U Turn Me On’ (US Mel-O MLO-437).
Doodling slow intro becomes a murky bass textured, purposefully pounding jiggly 109-110-111-110bpm 12in tripper with some good soulful vocal harmony interplay, dramatic brassy bits, synth and guitar twiddles in amongst the simple driving momentum (the “instrumental” side has vocal too), worthy of more mention than given it last week.  Continue reading “December 26, 1981: Beggar & Co, Double Exposure, Tomorrow’s Edition, End Of Year Disco Chart 1981”

December 19, 1981: Kool & The Gang, K.I.D, J. Walter Negro, Lamont Dozier, Kryptic Krew

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

BRANDI WELLS ‘What Goes Around Comes Around’ / ‘Watch Out’ are already on PRT-distributed UK 12in promo back-to-back (Brandi incidentally was in Slick of ‘Space Bass’ fame) . . . ‘D’ Train ‘You’re The One For Me’, a dramatic chart riser this week (note it’s the instrumental that’s the hot side), will be out here late next month, but amazingly the Jones Girls’ big-selling import album is unscheduled . . . Richard ‘Dimples’ Fields’ ultra soulful ‘She’s Got Papers On Me’ will be edited for 7in only issue as flip to ‘I’ve Got To Learn To Say No’ on January 8th — surely a full 12in could have been a smash? — while the same date sees a 3-track 12in from Earth Wind & Fire of ‘I’ve Had Enough’ / ‘Sparkle’ / ‘Let’s Groove (Remix)’ . . . Mirage ‘As From Now’ is on 121-125bpm white label 12in at any rate . . . Kraftwerk ‘The Model’ / ‘Computer Love’ (EMI 12in) has been relaunched with a new picture sleeve, which should please Leicester’s HMV Shop at least! . . . Aneka ‘Japanese Boy’ is on remixed US Handshake 12in, Laurie Anderson ‘O Superman’ in the States is on both 33 1/3 rpm 7in and 45 rpm 12in, while Herbie Hancock ‘Magic Number’ has been remixed for US 12in promo . . . US Warner Bros has started a slightly rock orientated Video Club subscription rental scheme for American discos to hire at 60 dollars for 8 months their specially compiled promo-only various artists video tapes, which do include black acts, with 5 second gaps between numbers so the video can run as a complete 30 minute programme or be individually cued . . . Rush Release in fact next month start their own similar video promotion service, which will be kept to a maximum of 100 subscribers . . . CBS entertained a gaggle of DJs last Tuesday lunchtime to launch the ‘Second Suite’ and ‘Ace Of Clubs’ albums, Bournemouth’s Steve Glover and Wigan’s Greg Wilson both arriving late after learning the hard way that it had been snowing in the South-East! . . . Second Image at Mayfair Gullivers last Wednesday were much improved if only really exciting on a rap number and in a call-and-answer audience participation part which ended with the tongue twisting bit from ‘The Lone Ranger’, their encore then culminating as a jam with Heatwave’s Keith Wilder, Imagination’s Errol Kennedy, Carl Douglas, and the cool and soulful Lloyd Charmers . . . Gullivers’ two special parties with dirt cheap drink on recent Mondays were such a success that now every Monday the drinks are 50p . . . Liverpool’s first all-dayer for two years at the Warehouse recently saw Mike Davidson, Frank Cookson, Gary St Clair and Gary Allan spinning solid funk for 12 solid hours to a good attendance with — and this is the story, really — no trouble at all . . . Steve Dennis, undaunted by criticism of the Edgbaston Faces DJ Convention, is planning another for next year with the promise, “And now . . . Something Completely Different” . . . Paul Anthony has moved to Wolverhampton’s new de-luxe Eve’s in Showell Road, where with two lighting engineers he handles the large rooms two dancefloors, while Dave Tee jocks the small room . . . Chris Stewart & Roger Allen hint that Londoners could broaden their soul radio ‘Horizon’ by tuning to 94.4 FM on Sunday evenings after 7pm . . . Roger Squire’s London shop is busy advertising legal CB rigs on Capital Radio . . . Sheffield DJ Jim Kershaw will be presenting his own ‘History Of Reggae’ over six weeks on Radio Hallam in the new year, the first show in the series concentrating on the calypso and mento era with lots of rare oldies . . . Blackburn’s Martin Platts, whose real ambition is eventually to beat the Trans-America running record of 46 days 13 hours, clarifies that on his John O’Groats to Lands End run his accompanying four roadshow DJs will not be there to run as well, but to raise funds while he’s running . . . Nigel Porter of Leicester has a theory that his home town’s discos lack imagination and variety because of the strong live music scene at such major venues as the university, polytechnic, and DeMontfort Hall, as well as at many small clubs and pubs, while Leicester DJs tend to toe a safe management line without establishing any character of their own — it also takes ages for records to catch on there, and old Motown singles still outsell many of today’s lesser hits! . . . James Brown contrary to reports of his age during his recent visit here, was in fact born in May 1928 . . . Anthony Godden (Earls Court) points out the similarity of Kim Wilde’s ‘Cambodia’ to Peter Jacques Band ‘Welcome Back’ . . . Alan Donald (Rothesay) says the Pretenders ‘I Go To Sleep’, Springfield / Warwick sound notwithstanding, was on Cher’s first solo album — admittedly right in the era it still reeks of . . . Alan incidentally has an AMI Continental jukebox for sale, and will put up anyone trekking out to buy it (call 0700-3696 / 4673) . . . Alan Coulthard (Marble Arch Dial 9) will pay full price for two second-hand Technics SL-1500 turntables (the digital vari-speed readout model), call him on 01-485 8744 (room E67) — he also says two copies of Alton Edwards synched two beats apart gives a dynamite effect . . . Gladys Knight’s ‘Reach High’ is sensational out of Mike & Brenda Sutton . . . Sally Marsh (Burgess Hill) sez forget Froggy (she’s actually less polite than that), the best mixer in Britain is Steve West at Basingstoke Martines! . . . John Grant really did retire permanently from jocking in the North-West — he’s now, honestly, the harbour master at Newhaven! . . . Lee Taylor, languishing at Scheveningen’s Kurhaus Club in Holland, sends love to Michelle . . . Weeks & Co. ‘Rock Your World’, belatedly hitting the chart (it’s the one with Beggar & Co rip-off chants), actually works out at 116(intro)-118-116-118-117(break)-118-117-118bpm . . . Blue Rondo A La Turk, still strong in the clubs, had an amazingly short Top 75 life . . . PRT distributed product like Grandmaster Flash can’t be reviewed as I don’t have it . . . Sandy Martin (Swindon Brunel Rooms) is now, oh gawd, learning the bagpipes specially for New Year’s Eve! . . . Liz Bailey (Leicester) was the first to send a Christmas card — to her and all the other subsequent kind senders, very many thanks indeed . . . Davy King (Ballymena Raglan), who presumably knows, says Santa must be Irish because with all the doors and windows about he still comes down the chimney! . . . KEEP KOOL!


ALTON EDWARDS looks set to give Kool & The Gang’s ‘Get Down On It’ a big fight at the top of the disco chart in the coming weeks with his ‘I Just Wanna (Spend Some Time With You)‘. One thing that is consistently said of the Zimbabwe-born soulster is that wherever he does a PA, his record then becomes one of the top requests . . . which may explain why it’s already the number one seller in London.


UK NEWIES

KOOL & THE GANG: ‘Get Down On It’ (De-Lite DEX 5).
Nicely timed to be a Christmas chart topper, this terrific heavily thudding infectious 110-111bpm 12in funk bumper is also in certain circles sung as “Suck My Helmet” (“oh all right then”) and accompanied by a downwards pointing gesture during the title line chorus! A consistently huge request in hip clubs for ages, it’s now flipped by the atmospheric moody slow original studio version of ‘Summer Madness’.

K.I.D.: ‘You Don’t Like My Music’ (Excaliber EXCL 515).
Appalling re-edited 118bpm vocal version of ‘Hupendi Muziki Wangu?!’ replaces the original instrumental’s magic with awful zingy Liquid Gold-type over obvious Wally appeal — however, the 3-track 12in is flipped by the great weirdly introed percussively building madly catchy jauntily bounding 119bpm instrumental original (terrific out of Bohannon), and the mundane chanting 119bpm ‘It’s Hot (Take It To The Top)‘.

J WALTER NEGRO & THE LOOSE JOINTZ: ‘Shoot The Pump’ (Zoo York 12WIP 6765).
All about the dangers of letting off fire hydrants to gush cooling water into New York’s sizzling summer streets, this second cousin to Kid Creole is a great slightly salsa-style semi-rapped 121bpm 12in rattling and thudding jiggler with lotsa dialogue and effects all wrapped up in a gimmicky pictorial sleeve. Right, that’s the import review from three months ago which had such underwhelming effect until this got sent out for free to rave reaction. Bah!  Continue reading “December 19, 1981: Kool & The Gang, K.I.D, J. Walter Negro, Lamont Dozier, Kryptic Krew”

December 12, 1981: Mirage, Diana Ross, Syreeta, Fatback, Purple Flash

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

TOM BROWNE ‘Fungi Mama’ will be on 12in immediately after Christmas, with a remix of ‘Funkin’ For Jamaica’ as flip . . . The Clash’s excellent disco-orientated 123bpm ‘Radio Clash‘ is due on 12in too . . . Ruddy Thomas has been picked up by Creole, and not Phonogram after all . . . J Walter Negro & Loose Jointz ‘Shoot The Pump‘, favourably reviewed on import some months back, is now being distributed here via Rush Release prior to Island release, and all of a sudden seems hot for the majority who ignored it . . . Joe Williams deserves slapped wrists for gee-ing everyone up about this Monday jazz-funks moving to Valentinos and then not telling a soul that in fact they moved right back to Tottenham Eltons after the first week — so Chris Hill and all the other guests mentioned recently in RM (and other papers) had their whereabouts totally misrepresented . . . Blackpool’s Frenchie, ever a mine of useful info, says incipient superstars Mike & Brenda Sutton actually wrote and appeared on Cheryl Lynn’s ‘Shake It Up Tonight’, and adds that their own ‘We’ll Make It’ could be a case of “Play it again, SAM”! . . . David Norton, star of the great ‘An American Werewolf In London’, should be familiar to some — he was the Travolta clone in TV’s ‘Makin’ It’, and had a minor hit with the theme song . . . Al Taylor, of 26 Terence Avenue, Rhyl, Clwyd, North Wales, wonders if anyone can turn him on to a good source for VHS videos of stuff like ‘Soul Train’ or any other soul on video, except live concerts . . . Neil Fincham (Edinburgh Uptown) had the local SDP lot in on the night of the Crosby by-election, and entertained ’em with the likes of ‘Death Of A Clown’ (dedicated to Maggie Thatcher), ‘Help’ (Michael Foot), ‘Let’s Work Together’ — oh well, there goes his knighthood unless a miracle happens! . . . Lenny at Edinburgh’s Nite Club above the Playhouse Theatre seems to spin a lot of electro-funk and more . . . Johnnie North, still at Erith 2001 on Saturdays, now does Croydon Scamps on Wednesdays, Soho’s futuristic Le Kilt on Thursdays, and Mayfair’s Samantha’s just off Regent Street on Fridays . . . Rockafellas, the late nite eaterie right next door to Samantha’s, has finally re-opened after a refit of its fire-damaged kitchen . . . Tom Holland now funks Dartford Flicks every Thursday with a leaning towards choice oldies . . . Martin Starr, Dennis Richards & Superfly’s Saturday lunchtime jazz-funk sessions at Bristol Scamps offer special admission prices for fellow DJs and out of towners — is that higher or lower?! . . . Nigel Halkes says that Bristol’s MHE Records & Tapes in Gloucester Road has current 12in imports at reasonable prices . . . Bristol’s Radio West must certainly be the first UK station to have Brandi Wells on its main playlist (good on yer, Dave!) . . . Chris ‘Anthony Bernards’ Ellis, picking himself up after both the “Wallabys — discotheque disaster” fiasco and writing off his dad’s new car, invites any tribes with contributions for the Easter Caister Staines Phewshun Phew magazine to contact him at 15 Georgian Close, Leacroft, Staines, Middlesex TW18 4NR . . . Gt Yarmouth Tiffany’s custard pie-flinging Paul Major (who’s moving on in the new year) has a DJ-ing brother, Roger Dynamite, who rocks Yarmouth Wheels on Thursdays and is more futuristic on other nights at Crystals, Tiffany’s, and Lowestoft Hedley House — which brings me to my query, how many other families have two or more siblings in the record-spinning biz? . . . CBS-loving Chris Cole (Guildford), look out — following last week’s quote, Loraine Trent says “Right, I’ll have him!” . . . Julio Iglesias’s huge breakthrough with a foreign language hit could hopefully make UK companies realise that the main charm of Continental recordings is that they AREN’T in English . . . I always play the foreign version on the rare occasion we get the choice (even ‘D.I.S.C.O.’ is quite palatable in French!) . . . Vicky D ‘This Beat Is Mine’ should be retitled ‘This Synth Is Evelyn King’s’! . . . EWF’s tricky ‘Let’s Groove’ intro varies down to synch sensationally over Tom Browne’s ‘Fungi Mama’ (my mix), and ‘Godmoma Here’ goes great with ‘Do It Roger’ (Graham Gold’s mix) . . . Groove Weekly’s Catherine Dean evidently would be lost for words without this page — hi, Cathy! . . . Mark Clark (Bracknell) seems so hung up on ‘Brideshead Revisited’ that he’s even incorporated his chart into an accurate pastiche of a typical scenario . . . Christmas may be coming but we’d still appreciate getting as many DJ charts as possible over this busy period: however, please note that if you’ve any disco dates or comparable urgent info, our deadline for anything happening up to January 6th is this coming Tuesday — yes, TUESDAY (15) — and for dates later in January it’s the following Monday (21), after which we won’t be looking at the mail again until the new year . . . KEEP ‘EM COMING!


UK NEWIES

MIRAGE: ‘As From Now’ (Copasetic COP 005, via PRT).
Extremely classy excellent smoothly pushing then choppily jiggly Michael Jackson / Brothers Johnson-ish exciting high-flying 122-123-125bpm backbeat stormer with some yowling guitar, presumably on 12in but reviewed off 7in.

DIANA ROSS: ‘Tenderness’ (Motown TMGT 1248).
Infectiously buoyant bubblingly tugging 119bpm 12in skipper from her Chic session, and a lot stronger than anything on her new album, flipped by a brand new but very disjointed long ‘Medley’ of old Supremes classics.

SYREETA: ‘Quick Slick’ (Motown TMGT 1247).
Delightfully sung bass synth burbled slinky 116bpm bouncy funk bumper suddenly comes alive now it’s on beefed-up 12in, with instrumental flip.  Continue reading “December 12, 1981: Mirage, Diana Ross, Syreeta, Fatback, Purple Flash”

December 5, 1981: Alton Edwards, New York Skyy, Gayle Adams, Daryl Hall & John Oates, Aurra

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

THE KOOL Gang’s ‘Get Down On It’ is proving too hot to hold and now it’s being rushed on sale before Christmas in a fortnight, flipped by the original studio version of ‘Summer Madness’ . . . Central Line’s album is out in the States next week, the UK version in January having an extra bonus track, but as a stop-gap Phonogram are importing US copies for sale here before that — so don’t pay Import prices . . . Angela Bofill’s LP is not actually out here yet, having been put back to the New Year, although Tom Browne’s is now in the shops — and the correct titles for his two hot tracks turn out to be ‘Fungi Mama/Bebopafunkadiscolypso’ and ‘Bye Gones’ (the latter sung by Keith John) . . . Melba Moore’s album is due here next weekend . . . Ernie Watts has evidently discofied Vangelis’s ‘Chariots Of Fire’ film theme for US Qwest 12in, while Michael Henderson ‘(We Are Here To) Geek You Up’ and Sylvers ‘Come Back Lover Come Back’ are reportedly on US 12in too (promotionally at least) . . . Lakeside have two different conflicting new sets on Solar in the States, respectively via WEA and RCA . . . Charmaine Burnette ‘(Am I The) Same Girl’ (PRO 12in), reviewed last week in haste, actually has a better 0-87-88-89bpm B-side dub played by trumpet over a good sparse beat, listed on the label as being Session In Session ‘Direct Response’ (although the tune is still in fact ‘Soulful Strut’) . . . George Benson’s 12in B-side version of ‘Soulful Strut’ is 0-101bpm, and ‘Unchained Melody’ 0-33½bpm . . . Theo Loyla is now disco plugger at MAP (Magnum Associate Promotions), where not surprisingly he already has his old DJ mailing list — incidentally, Theo, the G-Clefs / Freddie & The Dreamers ‘I Understand’ was based on ‘Auld Lang Syne’ . . . Debbie Gopie’s stay at DJM was short lived, her redundancy following hard on Dave McAleer’s resignation, so that now the future of the Champagne label itself must be in serious doubt . . . Thames Valley DJ Assn invite anyone from the disco industry to their Christmas luncheon at Maidenhead’s Riviera Hotel next Sunday (13), tickets for four course menu, speakers, awards and cabaret costing £9.75 from Steve Brandy, TVDJA, PO Box 39, Staines, Middlesex (cheques payable TVDJA) . . . Essex Radio’s programme controller, despite the new ILR station’s situation in one of England’s funkiest counties, has decided there’s no call for a soul show — still, everyone there listens to Dave Brown on BBC Radio Medway, don’t they? . . . Roger Tovell, whose ‘Friday Funkshun’ goes out weekly between 7-10pm on Gloucester’s Severn Sound, alternates with Sean French as the Sunday guest of resident John Rowe at Cheltenham’s new Frenchies in the Charles Hotel (or is that a pub?) . . . Neil Fincham is now resident at Edinburgh’s plush Uptown in South Clark Street, Colin Cordrey helping him at the funkier weekends when (Fri/Sat) they hope to stay as up-front as possible . . . John Mayoh has been joined at Bolton’s Cinderella Rockerfellas by John Barry (ex-Millionaires), this new partnership promising plenty of zany entertainment including a Charles & Di panto over Christmas . . . Kev Hill (Basildon Sweeneys) reckons everyone is waiting for an excuse really to let rip over the extended holiday period this Christmas, which should see some really massive celebrations, sez he . . . Guy Andrews (Bawtry), I hate to shatter any illusions, but I’m not actually all that into Boney M myself! . . . Chris Cole (Guildford) can’t understand ‘Zulu’s’ high chart showing considering its poor floor performance for him, and in general seems less than enchanted by the product mailed out from CBS . . . Jim Kershaw (Sheffield) says several of the current ethnic African releases, like Pablo ‘Bo Mbanda‘ (Island 12in), are doing the business for him on dancefloors around South Yorkshire / North Midlands . . . Chocolate Milk ‘Blue Jeans‘ (US RCA 12in), Kwick ‘You’re The Kind Of Girl I Like‘ (US EMI America LP) and, especially, the Chi-Lites ‘Try My Side (Of Love)‘ (US 20th Century-Fox LP) are in danger of qualifying for the “One That Got Away” category unless someone else realises their floor potential pretty darned quick! . . . 14-year-old Nigel Halkes, who does Under-13 mobiles with a mate, was bitterly disappointed that Froggy left out his mixing at his recent Under-18’s Radio One disco in Bristol — Nigel saying “it’s not just the people old enough to go to clubs who are interested in hearing the best mixing jock in Britain” . . . Imagination ‘Flashback’, mixed during the instrumental bit after the intro and before the main vocal, is a killer synched through the break in George Benson ‘Give Me The Night’, and ‘Burnin’ Up’ surprisingly vari’s down for a blinder out of Chic ‘Good Times’ (LP/US 12in version), while K.I.D. ‘Hupendi Muziki Wangu?!’ is sensational out of Deodato ‘Whistle Bump’ . . . Perry Haines ‘What’s Funk’ is of course, as I’m reminded, virtually a cover of the Rare Gems Odyssey oldie on Casablanca . . . Twennynine by total coincidence are appropriately at 29 in the disco chart this week! . . . I’m sorry there isn’t room to print the POD chart larger, but it still deserves close scrutiny in comparison with the more specialist main soul-orientated disco chart, and should be considered a main chart too (the split seems to be working rather well, don’tcha think?) . . . FILL THAT FLOOR!


Morgan Khan, the shy and retiring 23-year-old whizz kid founding managing director of Excaliber/R&B Records, the incredible hit release ratio of which is well known, has now just signed a brand new deal for all future material (excluding Imagination) to be released via CBS, UK originated product on his own Streetwave label and licensed US product (from sources like Salsoul) on a split Epic/Streetwave logo. It’s no longer got to be about the product — now his new Streetwave slogan is “longevity . . . continuity”. And teenage girls?!


UK NEWIES

ALTON EDWARDS: ‘I Just Wanna’ (Spend Some Time With You)’ (Streetwave STR A13-1897).
Morgan Khan’s new label bows in with an ultra-exciting hot then cool then hot then cool 121bpm 12in smacker which kinda combines ‘It’s A Love Thing’ and ‘Give It To Me Baby’ over a rhythm track that’s so sharp it draws blood (there’s an instrumental flip), the 7in edit actually making it a tighter song.

NEW YORK SKYY: ‘Let’s Celebrate’ (Epic / Streetwave EPC A13-1898).
Smoothly thudding jiggly base and steady beat driven 118-119-120bpm 12in cool groove giving the impression of having less cooing vocal than instrumental, flipped by the extremely Prince-like but excellent pent up jittery jolting 122-123bpm ‘Call Me‘.

GAYLE ADAMS: ‘Love Fever’ (Epic EPC A13-1881).
Great purposefully chugging break-filled 106-107-108-109bpm 12in smacking bumper with catchy synth and an hypnotic tension as it just keeps right on rolling along.  Continue reading “December 5, 1981: Alton Edwards, New York Skyy, Gayle Adams, Daryl Hall & John Oates, Aurra”