December 11, 1982: The Jammers, Michelle Wallace, George Clinton, RJ’s Latest Arrival, I Level

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

GRANDMASTER FLASH & The Furious Five (somehow there were seven guys on stage) failed to get through to me on Sunday at The Venue although it was obvious a lot of other people found them an interesting contemporary phenomenon, at the very least — anyway, tying in with their visit, PRT’s Rowdy Yeats has compiled an intelligent selection of full 12in length Sugarhill rappers into a budget priced double album, ‘Rapped Uptight‘ (Sugarhill SHLD 1001) . . . Morgan Khan’s ‘Street Sounds’ LP/cassette includes a superior quality sweatshirt offer — mine kept me snug as a bug during the recent cold snap! . . . Montana Sextet appears on UK 12in in not two but three different versions . . . Modern Romance ‘Best Years Of Our Lives’ is on promo 12in in a jinglebell accompanied Christmas Mix . . . Prince ‘1999’ replaced Vanity 6 as top US Dance/Disco hit, Marvin Gaye has both top US black single and LP . . . Lyndon (01-863 0850) needs a DJ for a pub residency in Shepherds Bush, Mon/Tues/Wed evenings, Sat/Sun lunchtimes . . . Nic Wakefield (Sidmouth Carinas) says Exeter High Street’s Pitts Records now stocks the top selling imports with DJ/student discounts and the promise of a larger selection if people buy ’em — Nic’s recent Motown night at Exeter Tiffany’s incidentally pulled punters from all over Devon and even Bristol, and despite the obvious range of oldies the most requested records were Bobby Nunn and Willie Hutch . . . Martin ‘Spud’ Richards (Erith Phoenix mobile) however says Willie Hutch is a floor-clearer at mobile gigs, though Messrs Henderson/Clinton/Brunson all work well . . . Pez (Wallasey) similarly sez ‘Sexual Healing’ is a floor-clearer on the Wirral, Jinx Joynson from the same neck of the woods reckons Whodini ‘It’s All In Mr Magic’s Wand’ is the biggest request in the area . . . Frenchie & Pete Haigh report that the clinic on Blackpool’s Whitegate Drive has adopted ‘Sexual Healing’ as its theme tune — maybe that’s an address our agony aunt Susanne Garrett should note? . . . Kev Edwards of Manchester’s influential Spinn Inn record shop says my Soul On Sound preview mixes often include tracks previously missed but then bought as a result, citing in particular Billy Preston’s ‘Don’t Try To Fight It‘ as one which helped shift ten copies of a largely ignored album . . . Hobbs Of Mayfair’s ludicrously rich chocolate truffle cake (£6.60 whole/£1 a slice) should be mentioned for the way it sustains us at Soul On Sound — we eat it with spoons! . . . Michael Jackson’s ‘Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’ is actually probably the killer mix with Central Line ‘Nature Boy’ — I forgot my playing order last week — but ‘Thriller’ works with it too anyway . . . 12in pressings on US Mercury labels now suddenly seem to be at 45rpm . . . Gwen McCrae’s remix doesn’t actually improve on the song’s original unity of structure . . . Central Line and Torso featuring Gail Greer have been getting much DJ praise for their individual recent rounds of club PA’s . . . Stax founder Jim Stewart’s involvement with HCRC — Houston Connection Recording Corporation — must help explain the latter label’s soulfulness . . . Chris Dinnis warns Christmas visitors to the West Country who’d like tickets for Exeter Boxes jazz-soul Xmas Eve party to order ’em now on 0392-59292 . . . Neil Fincham funks Edinburgh Mad Hatters on Sundays now to capitalise on the misfortune of that city’s previous Sunday funker, Tom Wilson, who moved from Oscars after a brewery takeover to the Uptown, which has now burnt to the ground — tough luck, Tom! . . . Big Al, well known at Guildford and Purley Cinderella Rockerfellas, is now resident at Edinburgh Cinderellas . . . Brother To Brother wonder how come Morgan Khan never gets out to Stanmore’s Chevaliers in The Limes, Warren Lane, which they jazz-soul every Thurs/Fri/Saturday, claiming it as probably one of the only clubs outside central London playing the music three nights a week . . . Darrel Fogel & Dave Smith funk Mayfair’s Samantha’s on Monday (£1 cocktails), Wednesday (ladies night), Thursday (all the upfront newies) . . . Bradford’s Time & Place appears to be heavily into electrophonic phunk . . . John Sharples plays general stuff Fri/Saturdays at Preston Snooty’s Nightclub . . . Paul Coates’s gig in the Bentleys part of Stockton on Tees’ Bentleys/Buddy’s has just had a complete revamp . . . Graham Gold, burning up the JFM airwaves Monday lunchtime, had a guy ask him at Mayfair Gullivers for Kandldate’s ‘Never Say Bye‘, only to rave on at the guy about how great the group’s “new” lead singer was, before then playing the request — had he looked at the name studded in silver on the guy’s glasses (actually on the lens), and on his bracelet, medallion, shirt and for all we know jockey shorts, Graham would’ve spotted sooner it was the self-same singer, Viscount Oliver! . . . Glynn Warren, trying to get a gay night going in Plymouth at Snobs on Sundays, tapes most of his mixes at home as the club doesn’t have vari-speed decks . . . Tony Walton, whose mixing cassette from a Continental residency I mentioned a while back, as a result of that mention is now resident at Manchester’s Legend and does a guest night every Thursday at Wigan Pier . . . Theo Loyla reckons that now it’s a pop hit, Incantation (which you may remember me championing on its release) should soon be in our Nightclub chart — surely Theo, as a plugger, you’d agree its appearance there would have been more beneficial actually before it was a hit? . . . Rush Release’s Ian Titchener thinks I should emphasise that I actually buy all my imports and even some of the UK material that’s reviewed, just to correct a false impression evidently given by Theo (who I didn’t hear) at Edgbaston’s Faces French (whose new decor is very bitty and nothing like as nice as it was before) . . . DJs I’ve never heard of suddenly seem to be sending me their reaction reports which should be going instead to a plugging company called Coverpoint, who’ve obviously got some real geniuses on their books . . . in point of fact, if all the DJs who claimed on reaction reports that they send charts to us actually did so, we wouldn’t have to keep asking for more! . . . Christmas deadlines loom frighteningly soon, and in fact if you want any gigs mentioned between now and the 5th January you MUST send info off immediately to reach us by this coming Monday (13), anything after 5th January to reach us by Thursday 23rd December — these being the dates we’d like your charts too, please . . . Nick Ratcliffe (Winkfield) says, apropos our coolest running plugger, “Erskine Thompson, phone home”! . . . HEAVY HEAVY MONSTER VIBES!


RADIO LUXEMBOURG’S whizz-kid mixer Alan Coulthard may have technology at his fingertips but he still does his mixes on a table in his bedroom! The decks he’s using are Technics SL-1500 digital readout vari-speed (no longer available new) while behind him on the bed is a TEAC 4-track open reel recorder. Studying law at University College London, 19-year-old Alan doesn’t have much time to spare for live disco work but would nevertheless like offers of one-off mixing gigs, or maybe one night a week, on 01-648 6411. Meanwhile, hear what he can do with these decks and a razor blade most Fridays at about 10.10pm on 208m MW.


UK NEWIES

THE JAMMERS: ‘Be Mine Tonight’ (LP ‘The Jammers’ Salsoul SA 8556, via RCA).
Dynamite “D” Train-type synth introed then chick sung almost Brass Construction-ish 119bpm groove, now due on 3-track 12in (SALT 101) with the slinkily subdued subtle 0-116½bpm ‘What Have You Got To Lose‘ and one or other mix of the 118½bpm ‘And You Know That‘, leaving just the less than necessary 0-113½bpm ‘Straight Down To The Bone‘ of their current chart titles on the actual LP.

MICHELLE WALLACE: ‘Jazzy Rhythm’ (System SYS/L 101).
Arthur Baker produced (and as good as you’d expect) jiggling steady 116bpm 12in groove, not jazzy despite the title, soulfully wailed over nagging synth and grunting guys, flipped in an odd move by the totally separate BRENDA WATTS: ‘Who Needs A Love Like That‘ a boringly tempoed 0-108-109-110- 111bpm jolting judderer, which will in fact remain the flip — Northend ‘Tee’s Happy’ now only being available here on the ‘Street Sounds’ LP.

GEORGE CLINTON: ‘Atomic Dog’ (LP ‘Computer Games’ Capitol EST 12246).
Amusing good jiggly 107½bpm P’funk chanter with “bow-wow-wow-yippee-yo-yippee-ay” chorus (an interesting synch with Malcolm McLaren), the more straightforwardly P’funky 113bpm ‘Man’s Best Friend‘ seguing straight into the here also 113bpm ‘Loopzilla’, ‘Get Dressed‘ at 108bpm being another with words well worth studying. Continue reading “December 11, 1982: The Jammers, Michelle Wallace, George Clinton, RJ’s Latest Arrival, I Level”

December 4, 1982: Michael Jackson (Thriller), Montana Sextet, Tyrone Brunson, The S.O.S. Band, Central Line

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

IMPORT PRICES must be due for a big increase as dealers’ margins are squeezed by the low dollar exchange rate . . . Cargo ‘Holding On For Love’ is now on EMI Zonophone (12Z 38), Mighty Diamonds ‘The Last Dance’ on KR (KRT 16) . . . CBS join the low cost disco LP race next week with a £2.99 6-tracker of full length Francois Kevorkian mixes from Prelude, ‘Beat The Street‘, including Sharon Redd’s title track instrumental and ‘Never Give You Up (Remix)’, ‘D’ Train ‘Walk On By (Remix)’ / ‘D’ Train Dub’, Striker ‘Contagious (Instrumental)’, Nick Straker Band ‘Straight Ahead’ . . . I stirred up a can of worms with my mentions of Northend ‘Tee’s Happy‘ — Morgan Khan snapped it up for his ‘Street Sounds’ LP, and a panic struck Marvin Howell then confessed he’d never even heard it before and having done so immediately planned putting it on Michelle Wallace’s flip after all, despite already having pressed 5,000 copies coupled by Brenda Watts! . . . ‘Tee’s Happy’, in case you forgot, was the killer vibes ‘n guitar instrumental flip to Michelle Wallace’s earlier ‘Happy Days‘, produced (as is ‘Jazzy Rhythm’) by a certain Arthur Baker — talk about hot! . . . David Grant sent jocks a very nice sweetly reggaefied 0-77bpm 7in promo of ‘Have Yourself A Very Merry Little Christmas‘ which now rightly, following favourable response, will be commercially available on Chrysalis . . . Motown have done a promo-only 12in of Stevie Wonder’s dull 88bpm ‘Front Line‘ in an effort to generate further sales of the ‘Original Musiquarium’ set . . . Phonogram/Decca disco plugger Jeff Young is updating all his DJ mailing lists — send full honest work details to Youngy at Phonogram Limited, 50 New Bond Street, London W1Y 9HA . . . Fred Dove has stopped sending albums to most jocks as so few LP sales result for WEA from the disco play that DJs claim to give the albums they’ve received — I must say it’s very obvious the way that every LP sent out from Fred always seems to have DJs charting just about every track but none of them all on the same track in depth (Bill Wolfer is this week’s example), bearing out Fred’s suspicion that DJs merely list tracks at random to keep him happy instead of actually using the darned thing! . . . Bryan O’Connor (another Orin Cozier/David Grant lookalike!) is now R&B promotion manager at Island — who will have the Peech Boys follow-up, incidentally . . . RCA, despite DJ pressure, especially from the North Midlands, are not releasing ‘A Puppet To You‘ but instead hope to break Alfie Silas here with a ballad in the new year — bah! . . . Diana Ross ‘Muscles’ has been remixed for US 12in (RCA PD-13382), the main difference being an extended fingerpopping “whoa-oh-oh” break two-thirds through . . . ‘E.T. Boogie’ was London’s second biggest disco seller last week — meanwhile Steven Spielberg’s own Quincy Jones scored ‘E.T.’ storybook LP is in trouble in the States, CBS trying to stop the MCA-released set because despite an agreement it has come out before Christmas, and before Michael Jackson’s own LP, MJ being featured narrator and vocalist on the Stevenberger spieler . . . Sunday’s DJ Convention at Edgbaston’s less than breathtakingly redecorated Faces French was a good meeting place as usual but dull in other respects, apart from veteran DJ and now top club owner Pete Stringfellow’s rousing “have a go for yourself” speech in which he recommended DJs to start their own clubs . . . Steve Walsh otherwise dominated the event (mainly because you could actually hear him) with his queue marshalling during his product distribution freebie handouts best was “You’ve got to be gay to get this one” — while Jeff Young rather too late in the day dished the dirt in a promotion man’s eye view of BBC radio DJs, and told disco jocks to be honest in their reaction reports . . . Risan did a great PA, and really deserve radio play so you can see them on TV as the cute little chick could give Sheena Easton a run for her money while her two flanking fellas came on swathed like bandits from the Khyber pass! . . . Ilford’s John Osborne even got the girls at Faces thinking he was Nick Heyward . . . Martin Starr fell over drunk in Spain, knocked all his teeth out and broke his nose, but has been put back together again and is now home in Bristol at Spencers on Tues/Wed/Sat . . . Erskine G has reverted to his real name of Derek ‘The Kid’ Lawrence funking Slough Studio 1 (Fri) and Southall Friends (Sat), but would like offers for other nights on 01-574 2458 (office hours) . . . Paul Major has left Gt Yarmouth to be resident at Lincoln Cinderella Rockerfellas (the Rockerfellas room), Wednesday being the funkiest night . . . Steve Martell, still at Blackpool’s Jenks every weekend, now funks Chester Maxwells on Wednesdays, Wigan Chaplins on Thursdays . . . Dave See presents an oasis of jazz-funk in Bolton’s Slickers disco-pub every Tues/Thur/Fri/Sat/Sun . . . Stuart Hamilton & Roscoe now do Liverpool’s Hollywood Club, under new ownership, Stuart also being at the New Coconut Grove on Tuesdays . . . Nicky Holloway apologizes that the Old Kent Road Astoria is completely closed, but enthuses that his Mondays at Bermondsey’s Swan & Sugarloaf are so good the manager actually wants to go to the next Caister! . . . Frank Clark, 23 Redcliffe Square, London SW10, has two copies of Peter Brown ‘Can’t Be Love — Do It To Me Anyway‘ for sale to the highest bidders (OK, North Wales mob, look sharp!) . . . Kool & The Gang’s current attire is not a cash-in on Kid Creole, its a copy of the way Cab Calloway dressed in the ’30s when he originated the “hi de hi” phrase . . . JFM were breaking up a bit but solidly funky all day last Monday around 94.2/3 FM, London’s FM airwaves being well worth checking these days for soulful sounds at all sorts of odd times — oh, and JFM listeners are packing Mayfair’s Gullivers on Sunday nights too, at the moment . . . Patrick Boothe is not only working on productions with Gregg Parker, they’re both collaborating now with the UK-residing Isaac Hayes! . . . Soul On Sound IX may be slightly late this week, as there was a delay (due to too many parties!) and my preview mix had to be rushed more than I’d have liked: some of the material didn’t blend particularly well in sequence, but it contains Tyrone Davis/Grover Washington ‘More Than Meets The Eye’/Eleanor Grant/Grace Jones ‘My Jamaican Guy’/Sylvester ‘All I Need’/Fearless Four/Malcolm McLaren/George Clinton ‘Atomic Dog’/Kool/Stanley Turrentine ‘Paradise’/Bill Wolfer ‘Nobody Knows’/Grover W ‘Can You Dig It’/Chaka Khan ‘Be Bop Medley’/Margie Joseph/Sandy Kerr/I Level ‘Remix’/Webboes/Toney Lee/Central Line ‘Nature Boy’/Masurrati/Bros Johnson ‘Welcome To The Club’/Rod/Roy Ayers/Syl Johnson ‘Groove Me’ . . . A. Michael (Tooting) — just because a BPM is printed on a record label doesn’t mean it’s right, y’know, whereas I’m doing ’em all the time and am as close to completely correct every time as is possible — so there! . . . ‘Shogun’ is sho’nuff pillowing good, ain’t that the “honto”?! . . . Brian ‘Bazzer’ Mason says, DJs USE THE RHYTHM METHOD!


MORGAN KHAN held a launch party last week for his latest brainchild ‘Street Sounds’. Intended as a monthly £2.99 album/cassette series, Edition 1 will now contain Raw Silk ‘Do It To This Music’, Greg Henderson ‘Dreamin’, Peech Boys ‘Don’t Make Me Wait’, Grandmaster Flash ‘The Message’, Inner Life ‘Moment Of My Life’, Northend ‘Tee’s Happy’, Dunn & Bruce Street ‘Shout For Joy’ and Kadenza ‘Let’s Stay Together’ — not quite as hot a line-up as originally planned, but all in full 12in length and so a snip at the price. On Morgan’s latest label, Streetsounds, via PRT, the set should be in your shops by next weekend (STSND 001 — LP, ZCSTS 001 — cassette).


UK NEWIES

MICHAEL JACKSON: ‘Thriller’ LP (Epic EPC 85930).
Here’s one you’ve been waiting for! An extremely strong set, killer dance cuts being the spooky effects introed and Vincent Price finished 118bpm title track, the ‘Shake Your Body’-ish 122bpm ‘Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin‘ and ‘Rock With You’-ish 109bpm ‘Baby Be Mine‘, while ‘Billie Jean‘ is a Bee Gee-ish 117bpm tapper, ‘P Y T. (Pretty Young Thing)‘ an urgent 127bpm strutter, ‘Human Nature‘ a Marvin-ish 93/46½-0bpm slowie, ‘The Lady In My Life’ a 36bpm smoocher, ‘Beat It’ a fast 0-138bpm whipper with Van Halen rock guitar, all perfectly produced by Quincy Jones. (The flip to his 81bpm Paul McCartney duet single is not in fact included).

MONTANA SEXTET: ‘Heavy Vibes’ (Virgin VS 560-12).
What a week for UK releases — all up against each other and all equally vital! This dynamite sophisticated cool and simple 114bpm 12in jazz-funk instrumental in two versions is already an absolute monster on import and not to be missed.

TYRONE BRUNSON: ‘The Smurf’ (Epic EPC A13-3024).
The biggest and best of all the electrophonic phunkers, an incredible 0-118bpm 12in offbeat jitterer terrific on its own but especially good for mixing with just about everything — ‘E.T. Boogie’ and ‘You’re The One For Me’ go excitingly well. Continue reading “December 4, 1982: Michael Jackson (Thriller), Montana Sextet, Tyrone Brunson, The S.O.S. Band, Central Line”

November 27, 1982: Malcolm McLaren, Nairobi, New York Skyy, Rod, Toney Lee

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

PATRICK COWLEY, gay disco’s synthesizer star, died two Saturdays ago of a nasty form of cancer — just as his marathon remix of Donna Summer’s ‘I Feel Love’ finally saw the light of day here . . . Morgan Khan’s latest project, unveiled at Mayfair’s Gullivers to a big trade party on Tuesday, is an 8-track full 12in length £2.99 collection of current soul hits called ‘Street Sounds — Edition 1‘ on the new Streetsounds label via PRT (CBS couldn’t get it pressed before Christmas on Streetwave), on LP but with most emphasis placed on the cassette version — slogan “C60 packs of the latest dance tracks” — containing Greg Henderson, Raw Silk, Peech Boys, Grandmaster Flash, ‘Message’, and more “heavy” surprises — some value, huh, kids?! . . . Marvin Howell is releasing imminently on System 12in an odd back-to-back coupling of Michelle Wallace ‘Jazzy Rhythm‘ and the less interesting Brenda Watts ‘Who Needs A Love Like That‘ — what a pity he couldn’t have used Northend ‘Tee’s Happy’ instead, as that is now turning into a monster all over again! . . . Record Shack have evidently picked up Scherrie Payne’s current gay chart topper . . . ABC fans if they’re very quick (and really lucky) might just find in a few shops a special DJ-only 12in version of ‘The Look Of Love’, given a brilliant much emptied out 120bpm “scratch” remix full of clever freaky tricks . . . Edgbaston’s Faces French (in Auchinleck Square by the Five Ways roundabout) holds its 3rd annual DJ Convention this Sunday (28) starting at 2pm, £3 admission at the door — see you there! . . . Thames Valley DJ Assn’s big Shownite 83 celebration to mark their 5th anniversary on 17th January at Hounslow’s Red Lion Hotel will feature the Cold Hand Band live, awards and many major label promotions, tickets at £3 but all DJs will have guest invitations from TVDJA, PO Box 39, Staines, Middlesex . . . Planet Patrol appears to be the new name for Soul Sonic Force . . . Steven Spielberg’s action against ‘E.T. Boogie’ (which hasn’t stopped it being one of London’s top disco sellers last week) seems unfair now that so many other inferior ‘E.T.’ records are coming out — or will they all get solicitor’s letters too? . . . ‘Car Wash’ on telly last week probably prompted a revival of the Rose Royce oldie, the LP version being 110-113-115-117-119-123(break)-121-124bpm (Gwen McCrae varies down beautifully out of the break!) . . . Rick James’s disastrous UK visit also included a PA at Charing Cross’s Heaven on his first night in town, but he was greeted by boos when all he did was throw out a few album sleeves and then walk off . . . Marvin Gaye’s LP does indeed feature a frequency which creates an acoustic feedback-type effect over club speakers, and unfortunately every copy of Sonny Charles’s great ‘Can’t Get Enough’ LP track has a groove that jumps (unless using next to no pickup weight) . . . Mike Ward (Sheffield 0742-879882) will happily supply legitimate London area radio and club jocks with 12in copies of various down home US soul singles, none of the ones he’s sent me quite coming up to the production standard that it takes to make a disco hit but all are of interest . . . Pez, busily funking Mondays with Steve Murphy at Birkenhead’s Chelsea Reach (upstairs), is after upfront alldayer work on 051-639 5746 . . . Dobie Gray’s 147bpm ‘Out On The Floor‘ Northern Soul classic has been re-released on Inferno (via Pinnacle) to tie in as the title of an upcoming BBC Play For Today all about a Northern allniter . . . Graham Hunter “The Rapping Funky Scot” (Basingstoke) got a free copy of ‘Kilimanjaro’ from Virgin’s Danny Goodwin . . . Terry Lennaine has belatedly been given (he never bought it of course!) a copy of the Gunchback Boogie Band ‘Funn‘, which he’s now flogging to death on BBC Radio Merseyside . . . Kev Hill (Basildon 0268-702626 daytime) offers money for the full LP length version of Major Harris ‘Love Won’t Let Me Wait’ . . . Colin Harris (Fareham), having trouble buying Wham, recommends Radio Victory’s Saturday evening 6-9pm Funkadelic show . . . Teesvalley Roadshow roadie Alistair Jones’s dad died of a heart attack just before Alistair had to go to a gig, but putting on a brave face he lived up the old showbiz dictum and the show went on . . . Evelyn King’s current 7in is flipped not by ‘Shame’ but by ‘I Can’t Stand It’, which must blow its chances as the most logical follow-up . . . 50p 12in picture discs have now been followed by current singles dumped in the ’30p each/4 for £1′ bin as a route to the charts, I see . . . Wolverhampton’s Eve club has a bad case of paranoia . . . “As the fly hit the windscreen, what went through its mind?” — “Its backside!” . . . PUSH IT!


UK NEWIES

MALCOLM McLAREN & THE WORLD’S FAMOUS SUPREME TEAM: ‘Buffalo Gals’ (Charisma MALC 12).
A pity in a way that it’ll be this somewhat opportunistic single which will make everyone aware of the New York DJs freaky “scratch” gimmick (as on ‘Mt. Airy Groove’), but this compulsively extraordinary clucking and smacking 108½bpm 12in amalgamation of funk, rap and square dance (really!) is a mindblower regardless, with a less dense vocal mix plus a straight 135bpm square dance version (great party fun) on 2-track flip.

NAIROBI: ‘Soul Makossa’ (London LONX 17).
Arthur Baker triumphs again with a brilliant totally electronic and vocodered 118bpm 12in remake of Manu Dibango’s classic, with alternative rap and instrumental versions on 2-track flip.

NEW YORK SKYY: ‘Let Love Shine’ (Epic Streetwave EPC 13-2957).
Morgan Khan in putting this slick emptily soulful 120-121bpm lickety-spit shuffler on the 3-track 12in A-side has hidden the far more impressive sweet then worryingly pent-up 115-116-117bpm ‘Won’t You Be Mine‘ on the flip, along with yet another (claimed as “the ultimate”) 116-117bpm Shep Pettibone remix of ‘Let’s Celebrate’. Continue reading “November 27, 1982: Malcolm McLaren, Nairobi, New York Skyy, Rod, Toney Lee”

November 20, 1982: Shalamar, Whodini, Brenda Taylor, The S.O.S. Band, Roy Ayers

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

RICK JAMES, evidently losing millions every day he was away from his Stateside concerts, managed to visit these shores last week to pose salaciously astride a motorbike for photographers and even reached Birmingham for a problem fraught PA at Edgbaston’s Faces French Club Visage, but then decided he didn’t feel well enough on Saturday for radio interviews with Robbie Vincent and Greg Edwards, or further PAs at London’s Lyceum, Bolts and Dartford Flicks — some terrific promotional trip, huh? . . . Robbie should have slipped him some painkillers! . . . DJs are now refusing ever to play Rick James records again — his current US release incidentally is the last album’s retitled ‘She Blew My Mind (69 Times)‘, but here we have the re-released 131bpm ‘Super Freak’ flop . . . DJs are being invited to put together their own “mixer” segued single using nothing but Imagination material (it’s the jump from 84bpm through 100/103bpm to 112bpm and 128bpm that’s the trick, right?) — send your cassette to Steve Walsh at Red Bus Records, 48 Broadly Terrace, London NW8 — the creator of the best sequence will then recreate it in the studio with Imagination’s producers Tony Swain and Steve Jolley, get a credit on the released version, a special gold disc, and seats at the group’s extra Hammersmith Odeon gigs on December 26/27th . . . Montana Sextet will be on Virgin here in a fortnight . . . Arthur Baker’s electronic 118bpm remake by Nairobi of ‘Soul Makossa’ has been circulated amongst the chosen few on acetate and is for them already a monster, while the imminently released much sought Disconet originated marathon 15:45 long Patrick Cowley remix of Donna Summer’s 126bpm ‘I Feel Love’ is already on promo pressings (only 100 Disconet copies ever reached Britain) and now is so much more excitingly instrumental that it’s perfect again with today’s electrophonic hits . . . Northend ‘Tee’s Happy‘ (US Emergency 12in) is, speaking of monsters, absolutely dynamite again with of course ‘Heavy Vibes’, and even ‘Jazzy Rhythm’ — dig it out! . . . Legacy ‘The Groove Is Here (Mix-x-xtend)’ should not be overlooked, the flute’s a killer . . . CBS issue the Weather Girls gay chart-topper in two weeks, Prince will have a 3-track 12in of ‘1999’ / ‘DMSR’ / ‘How Come U Don’t Call Me Anymore’ to coincide with his UK visit in January . . . Bobby Nunn ‘She’s Just A Groupie‘ is on promo 12in until Motown get sufficient “buzz” to release it — meanwhile of course the buzz will have been and gone . . . First Light’s future product will be on London . . . Edgbaston Faces French’s DJ Convention next Sunday (28) costs £2.50 (£5.50 including a meal) in advance, £3 (no meals available) on the door, 20 per cent off for for five or more people together, plus overnight accommodation is being arranged at the Strathallen Hotel for £19.50 single/£35 double — full advance booking details from Steve Dennis on 021-643 9433 (office hours) . . . Northern Irish DJs going to the DJ Convention are invited to ring Ballymena’s Dave King (0266-43646 evenings) with a view to travelling in a group . . . Earl Klugh is taking copies of the Soul On Sound cassette magazine to sell at his concerts around the world — I wonder what they’ll make of Kev Edward’s Northern club report in Japan? . . . Kelly, along with fellow DJ Neil, has left Brighton Sherrys to operate his own disco, The Academy, in Bournemouth — opening in three weeks, it’ll be an American-style conversion of a large theatre in Boscombe . . . Roger Tovell’s Severn Sound soul show Funktion has become the Junktion, he says, flowing now as it does out of his teens Club 388 pop programme for only 1½ hours from 8pm Fridays . . . Dartford Flicks resident jock Colin Hudd marries leggy Carol Jean next Monday — which does seem to be the day for DJ weddings! . . . Steve Walsh, now handling all PRT disco promotion, says that Nic Wakefield’s query last week, rather than “Ed” John Shearlaw’s Prince Buster suggestion, referred to Parma Dice’s ‘The Trial Of Parma Dice‘ from 1969 and not the differently worded ‘Trial Of Prince Buster . . . Cramond Perry (Edinburgh) wants to identify the electro-disco-ish ‘I’m An Outlaw’ he heard in Ibiza — I rather think it’s by someone on Carrere . . . Brian ‘Burnell’ Mathers (Kirkcaldy Jackie O’s/Glenrothes Follies) reckons Brainstorm ‘Lovin’ Is Really My Game‘ should be re-released to judge from local reaction when he mixes it with Lime ‘Agent 406‘ and Sylvester ‘Do Ya Wanna Funk’ . . . Darryl Payne has been in London to produce Richard Jon Smith . . . Martin Waine, having spent the summer with Radio City’s Roadshow, is now seven nights a week at Colwyn Bay’s Flight Level Zero (“Flo’s” to the regulars) . . . Phil Mitchell, known to Newcastle-upon-Tyne’s HMV shoppers, now souls Sunderland Annabel on Mondays, Newcastle Julies Wed-thru-Sats . . . Nicky Holloway returns under a new manager to the Old Kent Road Astoria on Fridays, also souls Bermondsey’s Swan & Sugarloaf (Mon), Old Kent Road Green Man’s Scotts (Sun/Wed), London Bridge Royal Oak (Tues/Sat) . . . Pete Alex has returned home to Oxford after five years jocking abroad to work at the new Boodles, where he hopes to see old friends . . . Godalming’s fire damaged Secrets hopes to reopen for New Year’s Eve . . . Radio Luxembourg whizz kid Alan Coulthard, who can’t differentiate between Elkie Brooks and Aretha Franklin (tee hee!), enthuses that Kleeer ‘Keep Your Body Working‘ is virtually the same record as, and a killer mix with, Gwen McCrae ‘Keep The Fire Burning‘! . . . I had misgivings about the material available for Soul On Sound 008’s preview mix — great in itself but best for mixing with stuff used already on 007, I thought — except that as it turned out I think you’ll find it all slotted together rather well (most tracks being edited down to reach the permitted length): Bar-Kays ‘Anticipation’/Robert Winters & Fall/Sonny Charles ‘Can’t Get Enough’/Marvin Gaye ‘My Love Is Waiting’ and ‘Turn On Some Music’/Bobby M ‘Let’s Stay Together’/Redding’s ‘Dock Of The Bay’/Dionne Warwick ‘Take The Short Way Home’/Phenomenal/Prince ‘DMSR’/Tony Chambers/Reg Mundy Band/Earl Klugh & Bob James ‘Whiplash’/SOS Band ‘Groovin’/Montana Sextet/Plush/Michelle Wallace/Nairobi/Jammers ‘Be Mine Tonight’/Prince ‘1999’/Vanity 6/Dr Jeckyll/Legacy/Rodney Franklin ‘Sonrise’/Luther Vandross ‘Bad Boy’/Richard ‘Dimples’ Fields ‘Moody’s Mood . . . Graham ‘Funky Scott’ Hunter (Basingstoke) finds Sweet Pea Atkinson ‘Dance Or Die‘ blends imperceptibly for ages out of Sharon Redd ‘Beat The Street’ . . . Jimmie Gray ‘The Kool People‘ has been picking up precious few soul show plays — how come? . . . Rob Harknett (Harlow) sent me a copy of that Saragossa Band medley LP (German Ariola) and I can see why his crowd go crazy for it — very pop, it is extremely exciting and well conceived all the way through, so how about a UK release? . . . Al Taylor (Bodellwydan Poppeys) raves about Loose End’s upcoming ‘Love Isn’t Strong’, previewed off demo tape during the group’s recent PA . . . Patrick Boothe & Greg Parker have produced an answer to ‘ET Boogie’, Ashes & Star ‘Phone Home’ in which ET does finally get through to home amidst lots of telephone noises, but the 130bpm electronic rhythm is unfortunately far from funky . . . I bet Eddy Grant goes well at “divorced & separated” and “hen party” nights, but he’s yet to get any heavyweight disco play in London at least . . . Lenny Henry, in paar-tay mood last Friday, says “Gullivers is still the place, man, you go anywhere else and they play ‘Loopzilla’, but here people really DANCE to it!” — and Streetwave’s Morgan Khan, who checks out all the clubs all the time says Gullivers is the only one playing lots of new hot product . . . Fat Larry’s Band, incidentally, gigged at Gullivers for free last Thursday while trying out a replacement drummer, Larry evidently suffering from the strain of having the group’s first real smash . . . Channel 4 is thankfully repeating that fabulous and very lifelike ‘Going Out’ series on Mondays — any chance to secretly lust after Michelle Winstanley (“Renshaw”) is too good to miss! . . . DJs’ charts of all types, including Boys Town (c’mon gang — what’s happening?), are needed regularly if our three listings are to remain as upfront as possible — so please send your audience-based floor response charts (any length, ideally at least a Top 20) on your own paper to reach us by Wednesday of the week prior to publication, addressed to James Hamilton, RECORD MIRROR, 40 Long Acre, London WC2E 9JT . . . “What was the elephant doing on the motorway?” — “About three miles an hour!” . . . MAKE IT FUNKIER!


UK NEWIES

SHALAMAR: ‘Friends’ (Solar CHUM 1T).
Bubblingly racing through staccato vocals and catchy little licks but underpinned by a 120bpm backbeat, this bright pop hit is on 3-track 12in with the vocodered smacking 117bpm ‘Playing To Win‘ and slow ‘I Just Stopped By Because I Had To’.

WHODINI: ‘Magic’s Wand’ (Jive JIVE T28).
Thomas Dolby-prod/Tee Scott-mixed fantastic electrophonic phunk groove, with a chick declaring “Oh my gawd I think I’m having a rap attack” (that’s rap, not heart, guys!), vocoder and rapping all in different intensities on 3-track 33 1/3rpm 12in, the Special Extended Mix at 113½bpm and the other two at 112bpm.

B.T. (BRENDA TAYLOR): ‘You Can’t Have Your Cake And Eat It Too’ (Excaliber EXCL 526).
Soulfully wailing through a purposefully rolling 111bpm 12in momentum, this jolter’s been around so long I’d forgotten how well put together it is, in 3 versions. With the current climate for similar stuff it could even chart nationally. Continue reading “November 20, 1982: Shalamar, Whodini, Brenda Taylor, The S.O.S. Band, Roy Ayers”

November 13, 1982: Marvin Gaye, Warp 9, Planet Patrol, Montana Sextet, Michelle Wallace

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

STIX HOOPER has reportedly left the Crusaders after 19 years, in a big bust up with the now sole original members, Kelly Marie producers Joe Sample & Wilton Felder . . . Extra T’s ‘E.T. Boogie’ has been withdrawn in the States following ‘E.T.’ film-maker Steven Spielberg’s claim that it infringes his trademark — so, just as it really explodes in London with solid Capital Radio play, you’d better buy it while you can . . . Rockers Revenge follow up with another fiercely revived oldie, Jimmy Cliff’s ‘The Harder They Come‘ (huh?!) . . . Marvin Gaye’s 12in was in full supply last week, when all outstanding orders were belatedly filled, so the initial shortage was possibly a pressing plant problem . . . Marvin, my gut reaction and general observations tell me, ought to be top of this week’s disco chart but the points worked out otherwise (in fact it’s really tight in the whole Top 30 with several hot titles slipping despite increased plays) — still, there’s always next week . . . Billy Griffin sold a bundle last week, and electrophonic phunk was the dominating sound in London at least — but most notable was the virtually total lack of disco play for Eddy Grant’s pop radio smash . . . Imagination incredibly have put ‘Heart ‘N’ Soul‘ on hold and instead follow their miss with a remixed ‘Changes‘, boring! . . . Shalamar’s follow-up is a remixed ‘Friends‘ — just about the only thing left after that must be a 12in remix of the LP’s label . . . Madness’s upcoming ‘Our House’ on 12in copies will start with all their oldies intros cleverly segued together . . . Bobby “O”, now out here, has been remixed (both sides) on Canadian Unidisc 12in . . . London’s latest station in an ever increasing jostle is Gaywaves on 104FM Wednesday evenings — I hear it’s a hoot! . . . Discomart ’82, the Barry’s Disco Centre organised equipment, is this Sunday (14) between noon-5.30pm in the Cambridge Suite at the Gloucester Leisure Centre (they say Stantion Road but that could mean Station), with Simon Bates saying “Hi” at 3pm, a huge Pulsar lighting display, giant screen video demonstrations and several new product launches amongst the special attractions . . . Rush Release’s mailing list up-date has so far shown up an amazing 45 bogus DJs — can you believe it?! . . . Rush Release’s Ian Titchener now reckons this page is “once again essential reading” — er, when wasn’t it, or is that because I keep reviewing in all innocence 7in copies of stuff they’ve sent out on 12in to everyone except me? . . . Torso, the dancers who back Gail Grier on ‘In Heat’, appeared with Diana Dors in the video of Adam Ant’s ‘Prince Charming’ . . . Gap Band’s ‘You Dropped A Bomb On Me’ video is in appallingly bad taste . . . Madonna ‘Everybody’ was last week’s highest new US Dance/Disco chart entry, while US Black hits include Peter Gabriel ‘Shock The Monkey‘, Steve Miller ‘Abracadabara’, Yazoo ‘Situation’ . . . I escorted a girlfriend to the Hammersmith Palais last week as her brother Boris was drumming with some new-fangled beat group there — turned out to be the Thompson Twins! . . . Al Taylor, Bodellwydan Poppeys DJ (0745-36757), organises a circuit of North Wales clubs for PAs and invites any interested London soul outfits to travel up there (expenses paid) with the added inducement of a free video copy to keep of their appearance . . . Ian Turner (Llandudno Speakeasy) sent me a snap of Streetwave plugging “perfect gentleman” Orin Cozier living up to his “Ladies Man” nickname — what’s it worth, O?! . . . Orin’s boss meanwhile is secretly — nah, I promised I wouldn’t, but who could it be?! . . . Eyes & Ears plugging Nicky McKenzie starts jocking at Soho’s La Vie En Rose in the old Windmill, Paul Raymond’s new million pound lazer disco, when it opens this coming Tuesday (16) . . . I wonder which well-known DJ started slagging off Ray Parker Jr’s recent rock hit before anyone could tell him he was actually talking to Ray’s brother, Greg? . . . Jon Williams reckons more Merseyside DJs should aggressively promote their gigs, not just with newspaper ads, but like him with handbills given out to people in pubs and wine bars — his own next promotion is another funky river trip on Tuesday 30th November (fuller details later or ring 647 4439/645 3618 early evenings), the £2 cost including a free trip to catch Greg Wilson at the Wigan Pier afterwards . . . Kevin Springham has started a members-only 14-18 year old’s Tuesday “teen night” at Dartford Flicks, take two passport size photos on your first visit for free membership . . . Cippenham (Slough) Alexandras is now after a complete refit called Libertys, Robbie Collins playing alternative music Thursdays, Chris Ryan & Steve James funking Fri/Sats . . . Phil Mitchell, known to Newcastle-upon-Tyne’s HMV shoppers, now souls Sunderland Annabel’s on Mondays, Newcastle’s Swan & Sugarloaf (Mon), Old Kent Road Green Man’s Scotts (Sun/Wed), London Bridge Royal Oak (Tues/Sat) . . . Worcester Park’s oddly named Tressbonn Trashmore, known around South London for his mobile Dancemore Discotheques’s “select dinner dances” is now regularly at Croydon Cinatra’s . . . Nic ‘Jap-Jazz’ Wakefield (Sidmouth Carina’s) is trying to identify an oldie from the mid-’70s, slightly reggae-ish, starting something like “Barabbas you are brought before this court for . . . and the penalty is fifty lashes” — any ideas? . . . Dave Richards (Brown), jocking seven years with wide experience, is now working at Rayners Lane’s Record & Disco Centre but would welcome more work (01-868 1919 evenings) . . . Falco’s Continental smash ‘Der Kommissar‘ is now on 12in here (A&M AMSX 8254) . . . Kelly Marie’s finished copies of her Crusaders-produced ‘Don’t Take Your Love To Hollywood‘, instead of the promo’s instrumental, have her old import ‘New York At Night‘ as flip . . . Mayfair’s Gullivers was buzzing last weekend, what with our own resident freaky dance troupe, a Central Line PA, and the likes of Jeff Young, Tony Monson, Alan James Jewell, Alan Coulthard, Steve Jerome amongst the many familiar old faces . . . Alan James Jewell (we remember him as Wall) was just back from a year of mixing in Oslo before leaving for Bangkok in the new year, and says that Norway’s Monty Python-ish Prima Vera currently have a hot RCA LP track that translates as ‘Everybody’s Getting Herpes For Christmas‘! . . . Pete Alex, jocking as Diskothek Valentino in Wilhelmshaven, West Germany, sent me a cassette of recent Continental hits . . . Willie Hutch varied up a good bit mixes nicely out of Carol Douglas or Greg Henderson, and into Tyrone Brunson . . . Detroit Spinners ‘I’ll Be Around’ is 110-112bpm, Donny Hathaway ‘The Ghetto’ 0-114/57-113bpm, all you old soulies . . . Britain’s record buyers really are buying black disco records again, aren’t they? . . . KEEP IT FUNKY!


UK NEWIES

MARVIN GAYE: ‘My Love Is Waiting’ (LP ‘Midnight Love’ CBS-85977).
On UK release within days of American and Dutch pressings arriving here, the all electronic return to form for Marvin is still too new for me to have fully studied it, but the immediate standout has been this extremely ‘Sexual Healing’-like 92bpm variation on the same smoochy groove — but, annoyingly, the last track on side two. It’s started by Marvin saying “Thank you ladies and gentlemen, I sure hope you’ve enjoyed our new album here on CBS Records”, before continuing through the music to thank Harvey Fuqua, Larking Arnold and Jesus Christ. Nice out of Richard ‘Dimples’ Fields ‘You Send Me’, the lovely tune also disconcertingly (on Dutch pressing) produces an acoustic feedback-like tone. However, it’s a killer, the other likely one being the buoyant sleek 104bpm ‘Turn On Some Music‘ in his old yowling early seventies style.

WARP 9: ‘Nunk’ (Arista ARIST 12509).
That’s “new wave funk”, or electrophonic phunk, and this tight 115bpm 12in thudder has now exploded as it’s perfect with ‘E.T. Boogie’ and, especially, ‘The Smurf’.

PLANET PATROL: ‘Play At Your Own Risk’ (21 Records POSPX 535).
Rockers Revenge meets Soul Sonic Force with Temptations-ish vocals on great 126bpm 12in, a perfect mix with ‘Planet Rock’ — and the flip’s instrumental version is then followed by a 127bpm reprise of exactly that (but why couldn’t they have actually mixed the two?). Continue reading “November 13, 1982: Marvin Gaye, Warp 9, Planet Patrol, Montana Sextet, Michelle Wallace”

November 6, 1982: Michael Jackson/Paul McCartney, Willie Hutch, Gwen McCrae, Billy Griffin, Central Line

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

MARVIN GAYE has reputedly already been deleted on 94/47bpm 12in, record shops being supplied with far fewer copies than ordered of those that did appear after the long wait — what game are CBS trying to play? . . . Marvin’s 7in is actually a sharper mix than the 12in, so don’t despair if you missed out . . . Wreckin Crew, after my review last week, caught all the importers on the hop and was in short supply too . . . Marvin Gaye is now based in Belgium (two pads, Ostend & Brussels) with many visits to London, and it seems the latest US soul stars on the house hunting trail in England include Isaac Hayes, Jermaine Jackson, Billy Paul . . . Galaxy’s Phil Fearon has co-produced an interestingly successful fusion of funk and, believe it or not, Pakistani instruments in various 128bpm mixes by Risan, ‘Eastern Palace‘ (Saffron), fully available next week . . . Eddy Grant’s brother Alpine appears as Once Bitten on his self-produced funk 105bpm ‘Once Bitten Twice Shy’, which is literally on white label as no deal has been signed yet . . . Klein & MBO will be on TMT next week, when ‘Bad Boy/Having A Party’ will be Luther Vandross’s UK 7in . . . Stix Hooper ‘Gimme Some Space’ will be on UK 12in, George Clinton ‘Loopzilla’ gets ‘Pot Sharing Tots’ as bonus third track on UK 12in . . . Sharon Redd’s ‘In The Name Of Love’ gay smash is now due on US Prelude 12in with a new instrumental version B-side, not on the Canadian pressing . . . K-tel’s ‘Disco Dancer‘ album (NE 1190) has 18 tracks all mixed as smoothly as the material will allow by none other than Alan Coulthard . . . Fred Dove is after DJs doing kids and young teens gigs to plug WEA’s newly affiliated Walt Disney label, Disneyland — send your work details to Fred at WEA, Disney Mailing List, PO Box 59, Alperton Lane, Wembley, Mx HA0 1FJ . . . Ian Levine rejoins Colin Curtis on Sunday 14th November at a Manchester Ritz alldayer, reviving their mid-’70s Blackpool Mecca material — the transitional period that turned away from old Northern Soul to then current disco, Ian (who’s on before Colin from 5 to 7pm) promising lots of Dr Buzzard, Crown Heights Affair and the like plus more recently released remixes of original classic cuts, but all now played in Ian’s present mixing style — which sounds too good to miss and I hope to be there myself! . . . Liverpool’s Chad, on the bill at this Sunday’s Birmingham Snobs alldayer, is organising a coach to the event — see him at Cagneys or call 74-50587 . . . Wallasey’s Pez sez “Let’s hear it for the Wirral”, which shouldn’t be classed with the rest of Merseyside as a funk desert, when he and Steve Murphy mix every Monday at the Chelsea Reach (upstairs), Pez alone funks Fridays at the Golden Guinea (downstairs), Desa funks Tues/Thursdays at Birkenhead’s Sir James, while up-front newies ‘n oldies are mixed Thurs/Fri/Saturdays at Birkenhead’s Ruperto . . . Mike ‘Hippo’ Page, who says that Shifnal Nell Gwyn’s increasingly mirror be-decked dance area is getting like the 1,000 dollar room at the Chicken Ranch, recommends Telford area DJs to get a discount at the TTS record shop in Madley’s High Street . . . Graham Hunter ‘The Funky Scot’ (44 Waltham Rd, Overton, Basingstoke), who recommends Basingstoke’s Our Price for really cheap imports, is desperate to find a copy of Letta Mbulu ‘Kilimanjaro’ . . . Carl Richardson, jocking at Hull’s brand new gay disco the first Saturday of every month (this week is the second held) at Hull’s Bali Ha’i in George Street, is desperate for a copy of Front Page (featuring Sharon Redd) ‘Love Insurance’ . . . Tony de Vit’s gay slanted disco show on Beacon Radio has been moved forward on Tuesday nights to 9-10pm, and now features a 15 minute mix produced by Tony at home on his new Technics SL 1200 Mk. 2 decks . . . Stereo Fun Inc ‘Gotcha Where I Wantcha Babe‘ (US Moby Dick 12in) gets an early warning tip as a future gay number one by Ian Levine . . . Yaz ‘Don’t Go’, still top of the US/Dance chart, is now commercially available in the States, at least on Sire 12in, in a previously promo-only 6 minute remix version . . . Evelyn King, as of last week, was still top US Black single after five weeks, and top Black LP as well . . . Ian (“wot, ‘im again”) Levine at London’s Heaven currently mixes Scherrie Payne through her scream into the rap intro of Gwen McCrae, her bass break into Sharon Redd ‘In The Name Of Love’, her last break under the tempoless intro of Weather Girls . . . Soul On Sound 007’s preview mix is probably the strongest completely danceable medley yet, (Editor’s note: the mix starts at 0:59) anything that didn’t stand up rhythmically being junked (bye bye most of the UK productions!) — bearing in mind that only around 50 seconds of each track is used and many are edited within themselves to reach the mixing point sooner, the sequence should still work well in more stretched out form and is as follows: Grandmaster Flash ‘It’s A Shame’/Once Bitten/Kurtis Blow/Central Line/Wreckin Crew/Detroit Spinners/Strikers/Syl Johnson/Carl Carlton ‘Swing That Sexy Thang’/Carol Douglas (Inst)/Klymaxx 12in/Jimmie Gray (Inst)/Evelyn King ‘Back To Love’/Melba Moore ‘Knack For Me’/Captain Sky ‘Don’t Touch That Dial’/Jammers (Richie Weeks & Shep Pettibone mixes)/Skyy ‘Won’t You Be Mine’/Hurt ‘Em Bad ‘Monday Night Football’/Gwen Guthrie US Remix/Gloria Gaynor/Stone/Puff (Inst)/Donald Byrd 12in/First Light/Gwen McCrae/Debbie Trusty (26 records in 23:29 on the tape!) . . . Rocket ‘I Wanna Know’ out of Raw Silk worked well for me last weekend at Gullivers . . . Raw Silk’s interview in RM really did hold some surprises — so that’s what became of Jessica Cleaves, whose vocals with the Friends Of Distinction and the early Earth Wind & Fire made some of their songs amongst my all-time faves . . . Soul On Sound’s Tony Jenkins guests this Sunday afternoon on Martin Collins’s Chiltern Radio soul show — SOS back issues are now incidentally in such heavy demand amongst completists that new copies are having to be run off! . . . Streetwave’s Morgan Khan since my introducing him to it has now eaten at Watford’s Ponderosa five more times) . . . Horizon FM was rumoured to be doing a breakfast show complete with traffic plane on Mon/Tuesdays, but when I dialled 94.3 this Monday I got JFM (faintly) instead — still, there’s so many of ’em who knows what’s what? . . . Fusion FM sticks strictly to jazz-fusion and soul on 90.4 from 8.30pm Tuesdays in South London/Croydon . . . Radio Alpha’s Jerry Wilson funks Fri/Sat/Sundays pub hours at Colindale’s Surrey Arms, and joins ‘Steve’ Wed/Thurs/Sundays at Hendon Central’s new Melanies night club (opposite the Classic) . . . ‘Fat’ Larry Foster sent me the year’s first Xmas card (and present!), for which I can only help plug a dance he’s promoting on Tuesday 30th November at Epping Forest Country Club with himself plus Steve Day, Robbie Collins, Steve ‘Soul Messiah’ Goddard & Neil Harnett, £2 tickets from the jocks venues . . . Rob Harknett (Harlow) finally got that Saragossa Band ‘Za-Za-Zabadak’ German Ariola LP he’d been after for ages, and luckily it’s now much requested at his MoR gigs . . . Dave Rawlings (Reading Rebeccas) thanks those pluggers who helped replace some of his stolen records . . . I find that, as predicted, there’s just too much product to play at the moment . . . Mark Summers (Hackney Flappers), inspired by George Clinton, has taken to singing in the bathroom “Don’t touch that knob, just dry your nuts”! . . . EDIT! EDIT!


UK NEWIES

MICHAEL JACKSON/PAUL McCARTNEY: ‘The Girl Is Mine’ (Epic EPC A2729).
Gorgeous dreamily tempoed 81bpm 7in duet with even conversational “Michael” and “Paul” dialogue towards the end (in ‘Two Sleepy People’ style!), the underlying feel being soulful, but the overall message being across-the-board, megahit! The hurriedly frantic noisy 126bpm ‘Can’t Get Outta The Rain‘ flip is a further less satisfying taster to Michael’s imminent new Quincy Jones-produced LP.

WILLIE HUTCH: ‘In And Out’ (Motown TMGT 1285).
All the work’s already been done for Motown on this ultra catchy “in and out — up and down — around and around” jiggler, the soulfully sung 111-112bpm 12in having reached the top of our disco chart on import play alone. Not as totally synthesized as Marvin Gaye, the effect though is similarly of electronics played for and by human beings.

GWEN McCRAE: ‘Keep The Fire Burning’ (Atlantic K 789951-7T).
Already a monster after initial LP play, this beautifully unfurling conversationally starting 128bpm 12in unhurried and deadly catchy soul flier has fantastic huskily sexy singing (and a snappy bass break out of which Debbie Trusty is indeed dynamite!), flipped by her equally good older and, earlier this year, much copied sensuous slowly rolling 98-99bpm ‘Funky Sensation‘. Continue reading “November 6, 1982: Michael Jackson/Paul McCartney, Willie Hutch, Gwen McCrae, Billy Griffin, Central Line”

October 30, 1982: Gary’s Gang, Nick Straker Band, Greg Henderson, Wreckin Crew, Madonna, Janet Jackson

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

EVELYN KING ‘Back To Love‘ / ‘Shame’ is the follow-up, due now . . . Lionel Richie is now selling better on less noisily pressed French import, but in fact his album has been banned on import anyway . . . Mighty Diamonds ‘Pass The Kouchie‘ has been re-promoted not surprisingly on 70½bpm 7in (Music Works RT 100), but whether it’s on 12in again is unclear . . . Mark Clark, with friends in high places, got the Liberal Publication Dept to send me David Steel’s ‘I Feel Liberal — Alright!‘ (Scotland Video SV 555), a fairly moronic 94-95bpm 7in pop chanter complete with printed instructions to dance the Steel-Step, of curiosity value solely for the Liberal leader’s superimposed “rap” towards the end! . . . Incantation’s “Andean” 96-122bpm ‘Cacharpaya’ is also on 12in (Beggars Banquet BEG 84T) . . . Freda Payne, Denroy Morgan, Jamaica Girls, Disco Connection are coming from PRT . . . The Jammers ‘And You Know That’ has now appeared in a Shep Pettibone ‘Dub Version’ with his original mix side as flip (US Salsoul SG 337) . . . Yaz(oo) ‘Don’t Go’ now tops the US Dance/Disco chart . . . Barry’s Disco Centre holds another equipment exhibition in Gloucester on Sunday 14th November, in the Gloucester Leisure Centre 12-5.30pm, including large screen video, a huge Pulsar lighting display, and PA by Radio 1’s Simon Bates . . . Edgbaston Faces French now hold the DJ Convention on Sunday 28th November, and it’s co-sponsored by Rush Release/Club Mirror — who are also mounting a national search for the Disc Jockey Of The Year (disco/cabaret club/college/pub jocks eligible) . . . Rush Release Video Ltd has also been launched to supply clubs with up to date video compilations covering three musical categories — Pop/MoR, Soul/Disco, Alternative/Dance — as near to monthly as possible and all for just a £25 registration fee (for one category, £50 for two, £60 for three) per annum, the actual tapes being financed by a sponsor’s adverts which will comprise 2 second flashes between tracks and one full commercial (details 01-675 4916) . . . Disc-Eyes video compilations at £60 per month for one hour of general chart/new release/oldies material look less attractive in comparison now although they’re in line with other prevailing charges (details 01-734 8311) . . . New York based Davemann Enterprises (they control OPEC, the Organisation of Professional Entertainers of Color, a DJ record pool) are rather sketchily asking for UK or European “music coordinators” (ie: DJs) to work in America — don’t only send your details but ask for their full terms and conditions, contacting Diana Bravo, 175 Main Ave, Wheatley Heights, NY 11798, USA (Suite 170) . . . Giles Rankin (ex-Southampton University’s Bootsies) will be assistant manager at the new Our Price record shop in Bournemouth’s Commercial Road, and personally responsible for the import stock giving DJs reasonable rates . . . Peterborough’s ‘Godfather’ Steve Allen sits in for holidaying Robert Jones on Hereward Radio’s Soul Show this Saturday 7-10pm, Greg ‘115bpm’ Wilson should be starting his new mixing spots (three of 15 minutes each) on Mike Shaft’s Piccadilly Radio soul show this Sunday afternoon . . . Harvey Fuqua rang me last week to say that he’ll be working here and in Belgium now, and — considering he gave Marvin Gaye his first gig back in the late ’50s as one of his Moonglows — Harvey’s new production partnership with Marvin is aptly called Full Circle . . . Marvin incidentally is conspicuously absent from Motown’s new two ’16 Big Hits’ LPs (‘The Early ’60s’ / ‘The Late ’60s’), but on the other hand there’s an inordinate amount of Diana Ross & The Supremes included . . . Theo Loyla finally marries Level 42 sleeve-designing Joy Barling this coming Monday, celebrating afterwards at the now thoroughly presentable and flourishing Mayfair Gullivers . . . I did a wedding gig last Saturday in possibly the largest acreage of marquee I’ve ever seen, ending up this time with all the fellas zooming up and down the full length to the ‘Dambusters’! . . . Frank Sinatra’s ‘Night And Day’ suddenly sounds essential, since its brilliant adaptation into an Outdoor Girl cosmetics commercial . . . Gary Oldis (Aycliffe Bee Jays Country Club) compiled his current chart purely from request slips, and still Alfie Silas ‘Puppet‘ came in at number 9 — hurrah! . . . Mark Clark (Bracknell 54799) needs the US 12in disco remake of Andy Williams ‘Love Story’, your price paid . . . Chris Ramrachia (01-422 6338), early week warm-up to Graham Gold at Gullivers, wants mobile or resident work (who doesn’t?) . . . Graham’s hairstyle incidentally, halfway to a new cut last week, temporarily made him look like an economy size Steve Walsh! . . . ouch, that’s my shin! . . . Kev Hill (Brentwood) was puzzled by a request for “the one with the geezer who shouts “horse shit”, until it turned out to be the “push it” bit from Weeks & Co! . . . Colin Cordrey (Edinburgh Mad Hatter’s Speakeasy) had a white drawling US southerner ask after an hour of solid soul mixing, “Don’t you-all ever play any American music?” — turned out the idiot appeared quite unaware of any music outside Country & Western! . . . Larry Foster says he almost saw John Osborne at Ilford’s Room At The Top but before he could get near him, John was fighting off a posse of women who mistook him for Nick Heyward — and he was literally caught with his pants down! . . . The Hudsons have done a great jingle for Soul On Sound, so how come they can’t sing that well on their record?! . . . Frenchie’s latest slow oldie around the North-West is Roberta Flack ‘Qual E Malindrinho‘ (MCA LP) . . . Charly Records have released the Nina Simone ‘My Baby Just Cares For Me’ LP of vintage ’50s cuts (CR 30217) . . . John Dene (Dunstable & Wimbledon Tiffanys) superimposes the first few seconds of ‘E.T. Boogie’ over any instrumental bit of Yaz ‘Situation (Dub Mix)’ . . . ‘Star Wars’ as predicted lost its sense of wonder when seen on the small screen (in fact I went out for a meal!) . . . Chris Hill, future singing star? . . . Paul Anthony (Wolverhampton Eve’s) continues his “do it do it” theme with “DJs do it with Shure microphones, James Hamilton does it with a stopwatch, Steve Walsh does it with curling tongs, Rush Release do it with everybody, Radio One’s Steve Wright won’t do it in Wolverhampton” . . . Paul Anthony does it without kneecaps? . . . KEEP THE FORCE!


AT LAST CBS have released the long awaited 12in version of Marvin Gaye’s superbly sensuous 97/47bpm ‘(Sexual) Healing‘ (CBS A 13-2855), although at 4:50 the ‘Club Mix’ is hardly a marathon — so mixers will still probably combine two copies using the instrumental flip. Unbelievably, all the backing is completely electronic.


UK NEWIES

GARY’S GANG: ‘Knock Me Out’ (Arista ARIST 12499).
Right back with their old ‘Keep On Dancin’ sound, this Eric Matthew-produced cheerfully romping 121½-121bpm 12in crossover smash sounds refreshingly simple and frisky (instrumental flip) and is already hitting radio here.

THE NICK STRAKER BAND: ‘Straight Ahead’ (Firebird/Pinnacle 12 FLAME 33).
Appropriately titled excellent simple 121½bpm 12in driving smacker has high pitched harmonies, honking sax, intensifying rhythm, and two more differently treated instrumental versions on the flip.

GREG HENDERSON: ‘Dreamin’ (Greyhound Record Productions GRPT 101, via IDS).
On UK release just as it’s picked up by SAM in the States, this massive smash jazz-funk flowing 116bpm 12in shuffler may have less commercial appeal than the above two reviews but musically is the one discerning fans will buy. Continue reading “October 30, 1982: Gary’s Gang, Nick Straker Band, Greg Henderson, Wreckin Crew, Madonna, Janet Jackson”