October 25, 1975: John Asher, Bing Crosby, Biddu Orchestra, Nat King Cole, Arthur Brown

New Spins

JOHN ASHER: ‘Let’s Twist Again’ (Creole CR 112)
Well!  As a direct result of this page’s speculation about a Twist revival, here’s the star of ATV Birmingham’s Tiswas show doing a perfectly acceptable revival of Chubby Checker’s original smash (which now belongs to Allan Klein’s Abko label in America).  Can a Twist craze really be on the way?  Stay tuned to Record Mirror & Disc!

BING CROSBY: ‘I Love To Dance Like They Used To Dance’ (UA UP 36025)
A gift for MoR DJ’s, this happy lilter has to be the best easy listening dancer since ‘Dance In The Old Fashioned Way’.  Thanx for making life a little easier, Bing!

BIDDU ORCHESTRA: ‘I Could Have Danced All Night’ / ‘Jump For Joy’ (Epic EPC 3708)
Just made for the discos, with solidly thumping beat for kids and famous melody for oldsters – this could be bigger than ’42.  Afro-type rhythms on even more exciting flip, which many will prefer.
★ JH PICK Continue reading “October 25, 1975: John Asher, Bing Crosby, Biddu Orchestra, Nat King Cole, Arthur Brown”

October 18, 1975: The Everly Brothers, The Tornados, The Goons, Harvey Smith, Van McCoy

New Spins

EVERLY BROTHERS: ‘Walk Right Back’ (Warner Bros. K 16613)
The original strutting 1961 smash, in stereo, now comes across as ideal MoR.

TORNADOS: ‘Telstar’ (Decca F 11494)
The original 1962 smash, freaky intro and all. Probably best for older crowds now, but try mixing it with such as ‘Silver Machine’ for effect!

GOONS: ‘Bloodnok’s Rock ‘N Roll Call’ (Decca F 13609)
The ‘Ying Tong Song”s original flip in 1956, this craziness doesn’t sustain its dance beat, but played near the end of a gig can be lots of fun nevertheless.  Goons freaks will even mime to it!

HARVEY SMITH: ‘True Love’ (Handkerchief HANKY 3)
Slush, of obvious interest to horsey crowds, it needs pre-announcing for best effect. A sensation at my last gig, when I followed it with Bing singing ‘Take Me Back To My Boots And Saddle’!

VAN McCOY: ‘Good Night, Baby’ (Avco 6105042)
A natural for the last smooch of the evening, this pretty slowie finds Van in fine voice. Why it isn’t the A-side instead of the awfully ordinary ‘Change With The Times’ I’ll never know.
★ JH PICK Continue reading “October 18, 1975: The Everly Brothers, The Tornados, The Goons, Harvey Smith, Van McCoy”

October 11, 1975: George McCrae, Stretch, Bud Flanagan, Paul Melba, Maxine Nightingale

New Spins

Starting this week, I will be giving a “JH PICK” to the records reviewed that I personally intend to carry on my mobile disco dates. These will be records which seem to me to be useful regardless of their hit potential. Be warned: despite my own taste, the disco is biased MOR / white rather than funky / black.

GEORGE MCCRAE: ‘I Ain’t Lyin’’ / ‘You Treat Me Good’ (Jay Boy BOY 105)
The rhythm section that rules the world does its thing as George soars and cut-price brass battles through the dominating drumkit. So simple, so effective. Cooled-out though still busy beat on the flip.

STRETCH: ‘Why Did You Do It’ (Anchor ANC 1021)
Heartily-compressed drum beats and Doobie-type guitar jiggling back gruff Elmer Cantry on a superbly-produced semi-slow thudder that’s kinda like Bad Company meeting the Ides of March. Sounds like a smash.

BUD FLANAGAN: ‘Who Do You Think You’re Kidding Mr. Hitler?’ (Pye 7N 45530)
I goofed by playing this (the Dad’s Army theme) once at a gig where evidently the German ambassador was a guest! Oh well, the point being that I use it all the time, especially as part of a routine where it leads into Glen Miller’s ‘In The Mood’. Great jolly MOR.

PAUL MELBA: ‘You’re The Cream In My Coffee’ (Pye 7N 45537)
Silliness, ideal for certain MOR gigs, hidden on the flip of an unsuccessful ‘Misty’-fication of ‘Tenderly’.

MAXINE NIGHTINGALE: ‘Right Back Where We Started From’
Here comes Pierre “Fool” Tubbs again, giving Al Matthews’s back-up singer an amazingly infectious clapalong bouncy beat and a dead simple catchy tune. She looks great, too! Continue reading “October 11, 1975: George McCrae, Stretch, Bud Flanagan, Paul Melba, Maxine Nightingale”

October 4, 1975: The Joneses, George Benson, Black Rock, Roxy Music, T. Rex Disco Party

Nice work, if you can get it…

WEDDINGS AND other suchlike parties where there are very mixed age groups tend to provide many mobile DJs with their bread and butter business – they certainly do with me.

As I said some time ago, I have deliberately worked up a range of music and a style of presentation designed with just that sort of mixed age gig in mind.

In case it’s of use to other mobile DJs, here is how I got the dancing going at the big wedding reception I did last Saturday. It worked a treat for me, but obviously it needs to be moulded to each different audience.

(A word of warning: many of these records are going to be hard to find but worth the search.)

Out of the speeches with The Wedding March (Decca), cross-fading into BILLY COTTON: Get Me To The Church On Time (Columbia), at which point bride and groom took to the floor, so cross-fade into The Blue Danube (Parlophone), cutting in just the “Oh how we danced on the night we were wed” line from AL JOLSON: Anniversary Song (Coral).

Cut out of Blue Danube into the waltz section of Gaitie Parisienne (Golden Guinea), cross-fading into GENE KELLY: Singin’ In The Rain (MGM), skipping the intro.

After that play just the first two lines of MAURICE CHEVALIER: Thank Heaven For Little Girls (MGM) before cross-fading into DORIS DAY: Whatever Will Be, Will Be (Philips).

Tight segue Into DANNY KAYE: Wonderful Copenhagen (MCA Coral), then follow with FRANK SINATRA & CELESTE HOLM: Who Wants To Be A Millionaire (Capitol).

At this stage I forget exactly what I did next but pretty soon after it was a segue that was made in heaven, It’s so perfect! BENNY GOODMAN: Don’t Be That Way (US RCA 447-0879), SPARKS: Looks, Looks, Looks (Island), and JOE BOB’S NASHVILLE SOUND COMPANY: In The Mood (US Capitol 4159).

In answer to many queries, I must emphasise that this latter, the Joe Bob, is an import and unavailable in ordinary record shops. It does just happen to be one of the best MoR records ever made, but as yet there’s no sign of its release here.

Another perfect segue using an import is between the GEORGE BAKER SELECTION: Paloma Bianca (Warners) and BUDDY ALAN: Another Saturday Night (US Capitol 4075) – if you get the changeover synchronised, the tempos are identical!

For the rest of the night the mixture was equally zany, with chart hits between the rock’n’roll, Scottish, thirties, soul, Charleston, rock, and smooch etc sequences.

My advice to mobile jocks is to use your imagination and look out for lively oddities with which you can pre-plan tightly edited and carefully rehearsed sets.

My own style revolves around this approach, to the extent that I only use Chart records to bridge from one “party piece” to another!

New Spins

Spudadoo, spudadoo!

JONESES: ‘Sugar Pie Guy’ (Mercury 6167223)
Remixed and re-issued, this goodie by the guys with the amazing “spudadoo spudadoo” bass man now has a disco flip that features an instrumental build-up to the “spudadoo”s and a long wukkawuk passage, broken into by some gruff joviality and repartee with a chick. If it worked before you’d better play it some more!

GEORGE BENSON: ‘Supership’ (CTI CT SP 002)
1975’s jumping bumpy rhythm re-write of ‘Sea Cruise’ (ship’s hooter and all) shows off George more on vocals than guitar, and should be a disco smash with ship’s bells on. Already breaking out as an import, it’s gotta be good.

BLACK ROCK: ‘New York City Bump’ (Seville SEV 1011)
SONNY – the Sound Of New New York strikes again as Sonny Casella follows Jeanne Burton and Dooley Silverspoon with his most ambitious production yet. On the special effects B-side the entire chix-led Temptations-type relaxed bumper is backed by a montage of New York City street sounds as it takes us on a bus ride uptown . . . like ‘Living For The City’ gone mad! Heard in stereo it’s a mind-messer of awesome proportions.  Continue reading “October 4, 1975: The Joneses, George Benson, Black Rock, Roxy Music, T. Rex Disco Party”