November 27, 1976: Brass Construction vs. Mass Production

The battle is on and confusion reigns as Brass Construction’s new ‘Brass Construction II’ album (UA UAS 30016) is rivalled in DJs’ affections by the similar sounding (and looking!) hot new import album by hitherto unknown Mass Production, ‘Welcome To Our World’ (US Cotillion SD 9910).

Already many funky jocks have come out in favour of the latter, saying that it’s more the way that they thought the new Brass Construction set would sound. As BC are out here now and MP won’t be available until January, the situation will have to simmer for a while.

But what do the albums offer? Unlike their rivals, BC this time have nothing over six minutes long, and of the eight tracks only two are dancers that maintain their intensity: ‘Ha Cha Cha’ – the ‘Movin’’ of the set – and ‘Sambo’ (the ‘Changin’’?). MP also do eight tunes, with more vocal emphasis and several slowies but come up with three strong dancers all on Side 1: ‘Welcome To Our World (Of Merry Music)’ – their ‘Movin’’! – and ‘Wine Flow Disco’, which segues beautifully on the record into ‘I Like To Dance’.

We’ll have to wait and see who are the ultimate winners, while meanwhile it’s safe to say that both are equally good and funky!

New Spins

RAWTENSTALL CONCERTINA BAND: ‘The Dam Busters March’ (Virgin VS 164)
Possibly this year’s big party looner, it’s a great lively rave-along rumpty-tumpty reading of the old war movie march, a must for MoR jocks!

ROLAND ALPHONSO: ‘Phoenix City’ / SKATALITES: ‘Guns Of Navarone’ / BABA BROOKS: ‘Guns Fever’ (from EP ‘Maxi City’, Maxi Trojan TRM 8007)
Three of THE classic ska dancers from the mid 60s, chica chooca chica chooca!

JACKIE MOORE: ‘Disco Body’ (RCA 2759)
Jittery funk beat TK ticker with obvious appeal.

MARILYN MCCOO & BILLY DAVIS JR.: ‘You Don’t Have To Be A Star’ (ABC 4147)
Lovely catchy semi-slowie, very pretty.

RUTHIE LANE: ‘The Nearness Of You’ (SRT SRTS 76380)
Exquisite strings and sophisticated phrasing (by a 16-year-old!) on a truly classy hustler.

RONNIE MCNEIR: ‘Goodbye After Sunday’ (from LP ‘Love’s Comin’ Down’, Motown STML 12041)
This happy swinger holds the exact same tempo as ‘Isn’t She Lovely’, and there are other Stevie Wonder-ful sounds too!

LOVE ON LOVE: ‘Makin’ Love On The Phone’ (Power Exchange PX 235)
Cooing chix and mellow sax on a sensuous groin-grinder.

ARTISTICS: ‘I’m Gonna Miss You’ (Brunswick BR 39)
Classic sweet soul slowie from ’66, c/w GENE CHANDLER’s fast 1968 version of James Brown’s ‘There Was A Time’.

RICHIE HAVENS: ‘I’m Not In Love’ (A&M AMS 7266)
Nice new treatment of 10cc’s huge groper.

VINCE HILL: ‘When I Fall In Love’ (CBS 4781)
Classy MoR smoocher.

JOHNNY BRISTOL: ‘Do It To My Mind’ (Polydor 2058814)
Lou Rawls-ish chinka-chinka semi-slowie, noisy but effective.

L.T.D.: ‘Get Your It Together’ (from LP ‘Love To The World’, A&M AMLH 64589)
Useful funky pounder in the BT Express bag.

FAY BENNETT: ‘Big Cockey Wally’ (Island WIP 6352)
Cockey Wally like wreck me pum pum, y’know?  Suggestive reggae!

VICKI SUE ROBINSON: ‘Daylight’ (RCA 2756) (mentioned in Billboard column 8/28/76, Billboard chart debut 9/25/76)
Bobby Womack’s lovely slinker now hustles nicely.

MARYANN FARRA & SATIN SOUL: ‘Never Gonna Leave You’ LP (Brunswick BRLS 3022) (LP mentioned in Billboard column 6/12/76, Billboard chart debut 8/28/76)
Muddily recorded but fine for roller rinks etc, the New York hustle rhythm dominates all three long tracks on Side 1.

KING SPORTY: ‘Reggae Rock Road’ (Miami MIA 408)
‘Disco Music Part 2’, especially the instrumental flip!

TED TAYLOR: ‘Stick By Me’ (Contempo CS 2098)
Solidly thumping Tyrone Davis-type B-side bouncer.

THE DAMNED: ‘New Rose’ (Stiff BUY 6)
Frantic Punk-Rock, not so much a dancer as an event.


Imports

ROSE ROYCE: ‘Car Wash’ (US MCA 40615) (Billboard chart debut 10/2/76)
Hailed by many as the ‘Funky Street’ of its age and already in our UK Disco Top 20 although an import, this funky fave is as big as it is thanks to its catchy clap rhythm pattern.  It should be out here soon on an album.

SALSOUL ORCHESTRA: ‘Salsoul 3001’ (US Salsoul 12D-2011) (mentioned in Billboard column 8/7/76, Billboard chart debut 9/18/76)
Flipped by ‘Nice ‘N Naasty’, this 12-incher starts and ends with rumbling freakiness and does for the ‘2001’ theme what Schifrin did for ‘Jaws’.

FUNKADELIC: ‘Comin’ Round The Mountain’ (from LP ‘Hardcore Jollies’, US Warner Bros. BS 2973)
Fairly typical Parliafunkadelicment thang, but with a long yowling rock-style guitar break.

EL COCO: ‘Let’s Get It Together’ (US AVI AVIS 115) (Billboard chart debut 7/31/76)
A casually lolloping instrumental reminiscent of ‘Rock Steady’ with its lovely brass and synthesizer tones.

PRATT & MCCLAIN: ‘Whatchersign’ (US Reprise PRO 674) (Billboard chart debut 10/23/76)
Promotional 12-incher of a 5:50 album cut that’s surprisingly soulful and cool like Boz Scaggs’s ‘Lowdown’.


UK Disco Top 20 – November 27, 1976

01 01 Tavares – Don’t Take Away The Music – Capitol
02 03 Leo Sayer – You Make Me Feel Like Dancing – Chrysalis
03 02 Wild Cherry – Play That Funky Music – Epic
04 04 Chicago – If You Leave Me Now – CBS
05 06 Stevie Wonder – Isn’t She Lovely – Motown
06 05 Paul Nicholas – Dancing With The Captain – RSO
07 07 Detroit Spinners – Rubberband Man – Atlantic
08 NE Showaddywaddy – Under The Moon Of Love – Bell
09 08 Lalo Schifrin – Jaws – CTI
10 15 Billy Ocean – Stop Me – GTO
11 13 Boz Scaggs – Lowdown – CBS
12 10 Ritchie Family – Best Disco In Town – Polydor
13 12 Steve Miller Band – Rock ‘N Me – Mercury
14 19 Barry White – Don’t Make Me Wait Too Long – 20th Century
15 18 James Brown – Get Up Offa That Thing – Polydor
16 11 Rick Dees – Disco Duck – RSO
17 16 Barbara Pennington – 24 Hours A Day – UA
18 RE Jimmy Bo Horne – Gimme Some – RCA
19 NE Rod Stewart – Get Back – Riva
20 NE The Who – Substitute – Polydor
NE = new entry; RE = re-entry

Appeared in Billboard:
#1 (mentioned in Billboard column 6/5/76, Billboard chart debut 6/19/76)
#2 (Billboard chart debut 12/18/76)
#3 (Billboard chart debut 9/4/76)
#5 (Billboard chart debut 10/30/76)
#7 (Billboard chart debut 8/7/76)
#9 (mentioned in Billboard column 6/12/76, Billboard chart debut 7/17/76)
#11 (mentioned in Billboard column 4/3/76, Billboard chart debut 5/29/76)
#12 (Billboard chart debut 7/10/76)
#14 (Billboard chart debut 11/13/76)
#15 (Billboard chart debut 9/4/76)
#16 (Billboard chart debut 9/11/76)
#17 (Billboard chart debut 1/15/77)
#18 (Billboard chart debut 7/12/75)


Songs mentioned in “DJ Hotline”:

BRENDON: ‘Gimme Some’ (UK)
ULTRAFUNK: ‘Gotham City Boogie’ (Contempo) (Billboard chart debut 1/22/77)
DR. BUZZARD’S ORIGINAL SAVANNAH BAND: ‘I’ll Play The Fool’ (RCA) (Billboard chart debut 6/26/76)
CHRIS HILL: ‘Bionic Santa’ (Philips)
JIMMY JAMES: ‘Do The Funky Conga’ (Pye)
GREGORY ISAACS: ‘Black Kill A Black’ (Morpheus)
GENTLEMAN AND THEIR LADY: ‘Like Her’ (Pye) (Billboard chart debut 8/21/76)
SYLVERS: ‘Hot Line’ (Capitol)
D.C. LARUE: ‘Ca-The-Drals’ (Pye) (Billboard chart debut 5/8/76)
ORIGINALS: ‘Down To Love Town’ (Motown) (Billboard chart debut 9/4/76)
AL GREEN: ‘Keep Me Crying’ (London)
GIORGIO: ‘Knights In White Satin’ (GTO) (Billboard chart debut 7/31/76)

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