August 2, 1975: Ritchie Family, Hudson Brothers, Calender, Hustler, Billy Ocean

NADJ BASH

DISCO ’75 is the inspired new name for this year’s National Disc Jockey Convention & Exhibition.

Organised by the National Association of Disc Jockeys, the exhibition will be open on Monday and Tuesday, September 8 and 9, 1975, at the Bloomsbury Centre Hotel, London WC1, where the 11,000 square foot London Suite will provide room enough for a bigger and better show than before. “Our first event last year was a great success and attracted over 1,000 Disc Jockeys from all parts of the country,” says NADJ boss Ben Cree, “and this year we are aiming to double or even treble that number.”

Just a few of the many companies who will be exhibiting their wares are disco manufacturers SAI, FAL and Disco Supplies, the Mushroom Disco Centre, Atlantic Records and Aarvak Electronics. “New names are being added almost hourly,” continues Cree, “and I fully expect the show to be a complete sell-out.” Ben Cree can be contacted at PO Box 23, Hitchin, Herts, SG4 9JT (Telephone 0462 50918) for fuller info.


SUPER SAVERS

THREE new items of disco equipment should interest many jocks, especially as each does a job that previously cost a lot of bread.

Roger Squire’s Disco Centre of 176 Junction Road, London N19, has launched a jingle machine that’s almost like the ones used on radio yet sells for a ludicrously low £29 (with a deluxe Auto-Cue model at £35). Adapted from a well-proven 8-track player, as which it can still be used, the Squire machine is designed to take special pre-recorded cartridges containing four jingles, one jingle per track on a 30 second loop of 4-track tape, cued by an illuminated track selector button. If these £2 carts are not personal enough, customised jingles cost £3.50 each.

Martin Blake Lighting and Effects of 14 Rydal Road, London SW16, have developed a carbon dioxide (dry ice) machine for creating that low-lying “Fog” effect popularised by such as “Thank Your Lucky Stars”. Evidently all other Fog Machines are incompatible with disco use, so that not only is this purpose-built unit cheap at £65, it’s also the only one available.

Proops Brothers Ltd of the Hyde Industrial Estate, Edgware Road, Hendon, London NW9 (with demonstrations at 52 Tottenham Court Road, W1), are blowing their trumpet about an effects projector selling for £19.95, which price may or may not include the necessary 12 volt transformer and a liquid wheel also quoted at £6. Less ambiguously worded, the many extras for the basic projector (which it must be emphasised is only 50 watts) include a range of eight picture wheels at £3 each and various image-splitting lenses from £6.50 to £10.


HOT TIP

FROM David Crawt (Chessington, Surrey): “I always play BREAD’s The Guitar Man as the very last record and since it isn’t either slow or fast it gets a great response – especially when I turn the light show off and put on a strobe. A mate of mine does this as well and he enjoys it so much that he gets up and has a dance himself, leaving the decks unmanned.” Oh well, whatever turns you on!


New Spins

FRENCH PHILLY

RITCHIE FAMILY: Brazil (Polydor 2058625)
Hip to the sort of US sound that’s big in Europe, French producer Jacques Morali went to Philadelphia to use arranger Richard Rome and the Family of Philly musicians (hence group name) on this breathless new treatment of the great old tune. The result is the new Hustle and is already ousting El Bimbo in European resorts. Incroyable!

THE HUDSON BROTHERS: Rendezvous (Rocket PIG 18)
Penned by Bruce Johnston with the Hudson boys and prod by Bernie Taupin, it’s totally pure and powerful Pop.

CALENDER: Hypertension, Pts 1 and 2 (All Platinum 6146308)
Picked up from the Pi Kappa label of Jersey City, this purposefully pounding sinister beater has elements of Grapevine with Temptations-type vocals. Mainly instrumental flip. 

HUSTLER: Little People (Firefly / A&M AMS 5002)
Solidly whomping Status Quo-type thump thump thump stuff that don’t quit for nothing.

BILLY OCEAN: Whose Little Girl Are You (GTO GT 36)
Happily bouncy Drifters rip-off by a catchily trilling fella who could easily get the same sort of MoR-Pop action.

KENNY BALL: Stay, Don’t Go (Pye 7N 45500)
Hauntingly lovely slush with distinctive and different raspy vocal from Ken – kinda Sacha Alpselo.

JIM GILSTRAP : Take Your Daddy For A Ride (Chelsea 2005032)
Original, so to speak, of Lulu’s mini-hit.

LULU: Mama’s Little Corner Of The World (Chelsea 2005031)
The B-side, with lotsa sha–la-las and mid-tempo bouncy pertness set to modish synthetic rhythms.

SAMMY DUCK: Duck ‘n’ Roll (Beeb 009).
Madness from France: Donald Duck singing Great Balls Of Fire!

J. J. BARNES: Baby Please Come Home (Contempo CS 2063)
In 1967 this pulsating subtle throbber was two years ahead of Marvin Gaye’s
stylistically similar Grapevine.

DYNAMIC CORVETTES: Funky Music Is The Thing, Pts 1 and 2 (Contempo CS 2059)
Already big at Butlins in Barry, it’s rhythmic if routine, tho’ they sho’ try hard.

JIMMY BREEDLOVE: I Can’t Help Lovin’ You (Pye DDS 110)
Fairly typical but good Northern fodder from a bloke who, unless I’m confused, used to cut demos for Elvis.

JIMMY JUKEBOX: Motor Boat (Monet SON 2057)
Tongue-in-cheek but convincingly done Deco-Rock from Kim Fowley.

VERA LYNN: Land Of Hope And Glory / The White Cliffs Of Dover (EMI 2330).
Good for a laugh!


UK Disco Top 20 – August 2, 1975

01 01 Typically Tropical – Barbados – Gull
02 02 Van McCoy & The Soul City Symphony – The Hustle – Avco
03 04 Hamilton Bohannon – Foot Stompin’ Music – Brunswick
04 12 Linda Carr & The Love Squad – Highwire – Chelsea
05 07 Hamilton Bohannon – Disco Stomp – Brunswick
06 05 Rimshots – 7-6-5-4-3-2-1 Blow Your Whistle – All Platinum
07 10 Linda Lewis – It’s In His Kiss – Arista
08 06 Pete Wingfield – Eighteen With A Bullet – Island
09 03 Bee Gees – Jive Talkin’ – RSO
10 11 Bimbo Jet – El Bimbo – EMI (Import)
11 RE Gary Toms Empire – 7-6-5-4-3-2-1 Blow Your Whistle – Epic
12 08 Chi-Lites – Have You Seen Her – Brunswick
13 NE David Bowie – Fame – RCA
14 NE MFSB – Sexy – Philadelphia International
15 09 Brian Hyland – Sealed With A Kiss – ABC
16 19 Biddu Orchestra – Summer Of ’42 – Epic
17 20 George McCrae – It’s Been So Long – Jay Boy
18 15 Ike & Tina Turner – Baby Get It On – United Artists
19 NE Judge Dread – Je T’aime – Cactus
20 RE (Tie) Crystal Grass – Crystal World – Philips
20 NE (Tie) Bay City Rollers – Give A Little Love – Bell

Breakers:
Stylistics – Can’t Give You Anything (But My Love) – Avco
Syreeta – Harmour Love – Tamla Motown
Gloria Gaynor – All I Need Is Your Sweet Lovin’ – MGM


Hamilton’s Disco Top 10

1 Clive Baldwin – Now It’s Paul McCartney etc. – Mercury
2 Ray Stevens – Misty – Janus
3 Bimbo Jet – El Bimbo – Columbia
4 Lyn Paul – It Oughta Sell A Million – Polydor
5 Van McCoy – Hey Girl, Come And Get It – Avco
6 James Taylor – How Sweet It Is – Warners
7 Pete Wingfield – Eighteen With A Bullet – Island
8 Eagles – One Of These Nights – Asylum
9 Bryan Ferry – You Go To My Head – Island
10 Manhattan Transfer – Gloria – Atlantic

Breakers:
Ritchie Family – Brazil – Polydor
Hudson Brothers – Rendezvous – Rocket
Hustler – Little People – A & M


DJ HOT LINE

. . . Anthony Allan (Speakeasy, Wakefield) is now going bonkers ’bout OSIBISA The Warrior (Bronze) very smart, Theo Loyla (Banana Power Discos, Bridge, Kent) has dug out the original BLUE MINK Get Up (7654321) (EMI) . . . Dave Soul City / Blues and Soul fame launches his new Right On! label via Pye on August 8 with THE CROW Your Autumn Of Tomorrow (RO 101) and THE JELLY BEANS You Don’t Mean Me No Good (RO 102102). JASPER CARROT Magic Roundabout (DJM) tipped for laughs by David Fawkner (Crumpsall, Manchester), who’d better change the name of his disco as another Soundaround is very well established . . . HOBBYHORSE Summertime (Bell) a good jingle for Summer sounds says Gary Sullivan (Romford, Essex ) . . . BENNY HILL Shaving Cream (Vanguard) is silly MoR for Tony Barnfield (Circles, Harrow) and for Bob “Boris” Pickett (Sounds Stereo Discos, Birmingham) . . . Bob also lists SYDNEY THOMPSON Conga (Contour), GLENN MILLER In The Mood (RCA) and trusty SYLVIA Y Viva Espana (Sonet) in his MoR chart . . . RM’s Peter Harvey may not but veteran readers will remember me plugging PETE WINGFIELD since 1969 . . . Jon Taylor (Crockers, Norwich) is first to list AL MATTHEWS Fool (CBS) . . . BOBBY MOORE (Call Me Your) Anything Man (Pye) breaking and MFSB Sexy (Phil Int) top for Brian Westlake (Sheffield) . . . great letter from the legendary Pete Stringfellow whose Sheffield Mojo was my favourite club – he now runs fantastically prosperous twin clubs Cinderella’s-Rockerfella’s in Leeds . . . Stringfellow is one DJ whose feet are worth worshipping at . . . Steve Ingram (Webridge, Surrey) lists HARRY HASTINGS She’s A Great Girl (Bell), although he’s been eclipsed by CLIVE BALDWIN to my mind . . . SAX OF SOUL Sea Cruise (Crystal) and KC & SUNSHINE BAND That’s The Way (Jay Boy) are big for Jeff Bunting (Hull) . . . Alex Henderson (Victoria Bars, Weymouth) tips BANZAII Chinese Kung Fu (Contempo) . . . Les “Godfather” Spaine lists three tracks by Pete Wingfield’s OLYMPIC RUNNERS, two by FATBACK band, as big as the Time Piece in Liverpool . . . please try to get your Charts in by Wednesday.

One thought on “August 2, 1975: Ritchie Family, Hudson Brothers, Calender, Hustler, Billy Ocean”

  1. Great to be finally able to revisit these old charts. The scene really was so unsophisticated and amateurish when compared to the extensive scene of 2018. I cringe at every review of those MOR novelty records reviewed by Hammy and that appear on the chart- they truly were awful at the time! A lot of this dross gained airplay on BBC Radio 1 along with 3rd rate UK remakes of great US original disco/soul/r&b classics. The originals never stood a chance. Even top flight African American artists would struggle for airplay in the 70s- Diana Ross, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, Aretha, EW&F, Commodores, Jackson 5 included! Interesting to see the continued importance placed on “new” northern soul releases- this really was the high point of mainstream appeal. Billy Ocean appears for the first time with a record that got lots of radio action but never translated to sales success- his follow up would of course explode on the charts! Calendar’s terrific “Hypertension” was on Sylvia Robinson’s All Platinum label which was enjoying a number of hits with the Moments, the Rimshots. Chelsea Records was another new label that was riding high and enjoying a brief moment in the limelight, with hits by Jim Gilstrap, Lulu and Linda Carr. The Ritchie Family produced some great early period hits. El Bimbo’s “Bimbo Jet” was one of those records that became the annual summer hit from europe- a craze started the previous year when Sylvia had a massive hit with “Y Viva Espania” made popular by the increasing number of Brits holidaying on the continent and creating demand for records they heard on holiday when the returned to the UK.

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