May 12, 1979: McFadden & Whitehead, Light Of The World, Ashford & Simpson, Edwin Starr, ABBA

Disco News

Donna Summer is on red vinyl 12in this week, while also on 12in now are Herbie Hancock (really!), Cher and evidently Barry White ‘Sha La La’ . . . Leif Garrett is on US 12in at 5:39 . . . The Force is, amazingly, not scheduled for UK release – the CBS thinking being that if people want it they can always buy it on import . . . Joe Thomas will be out here though, as will LP’s by B. Baker Chocolate Co, John Tropea, Hubert Laws – but unscheduled are Billy Paul, Jones Girls, Splendor, Tyrone Davis . . . May 18th release includes Gary’s Gang ‘Showtime’ 12in, Brainstorm ‘Hot For You’ 12in, Skyy ‘First Time Around’ 7in; May 25th includes the badly delayed Carrie Lucas ‘Dance With You’ 12in, Michael Jackson ‘You Can’t Win’ picture-disc 12in, Patti LaBelle ‘Music Is My Way Of Life’ 12in, Anita Ward ‘Ring My Bell’ 12in, Slick ‘Space Bass’ 12in (not actually available anywhere although hot on promo already); June 1st includes Joe Thomas ‘Make Your Move’ 12in, Jackie McLean ‘Dr Jackyll & Mr Funk’ remix 12in, Teena Marie ‘I’m A Sucker For Your Love’ 12in, Manhattans ‘Here Comes The Hurt’ 7in . . . ELO ‘Shine A Little Love’ (Jet), currently out but unreceived by press time, combines their usual sound with a positive disco beat rather effectively . . . Fred Dove’s disco dept is now at WEA Records, PO Box 59, Alperton Lane, Wembley, Middx HAO 1FJ (01-998 8844) – which may be alright for West London jocks but I for one will miss my weekly Southern Comfort! . . . Martin Starr and other Bristol jocks are forming a DJF-affiliated Bristol Disco Pool aiming its membership towards the more adventurous DJ’s who can break records without radio play (this policy being the Pool’s priority), so Avon hipsters should contact Bristol Disco Pool, c/o Smiths, Prince Street, Bristol 1 . . . Southgate Royalty start a special Teenage Soul Boogie night next Wednesday (16) with Froggy funking the 14-18 age range from 7:30-10:30pm weekly, soft drinks only – Froggy by the way, so taken by my BPM stopwatch, tried drilling holes in his so that he could hang it round his neck, and it hasn’t worked since! . . . Wally Webb (real name Walter) has had to change his Tuesday Heavy Rock night at Norwich Scamps over to his normal disco format due to a total swing in even the Heavy fans’ taste . . . Terry Hooper is now joined by Steve Price at Ilford’s Room At The Top, with Curia Sorrell in the Penthouse Suite, the funk oldies currently being featured every night . . . Polystar’s “Boogie Bus” Dancers cavort this week at Manchester Civic Hall (Thursday), Liverpool Hollywood (Friday), Southport Tiffanys (Saturday) . . . Dave Rawlings (Basingstoke Maxwells) is plagued every Saturday Funk Night by a Record Mirror-reading regular called Robbie Vincent (real name – with birth certificate to prove it) who insists every week on “helping” with the club’s lighting: Dave politely wonders if he could go and bother some other jock on a Saturday night! Dave also wonders how many other namesakes of Robbie Vincent, Greg Edwards, Chris Hill or even James Hamilton (gee, thanx!) there are in discos throughout the country – the mind boggles!


UK Newies

MCFADDEN & WHITEHEAD: ‘Ain’t No Stoppin’ Us Now’ (Philadelphia Int’l PIR 13-7365) (BNDA debut 4/7/79)
Well, here on unlimited £1.99 10:45 12in it is, the irresistible happily swinging and swaying 113-116bpm singalong smash which snuck up on everyone to become the biggest import that our UK Disco chart has ever seen!

LIGHT OF THE WORLD: ‘Midnight Grooving’ (from LP ‘Light Of The World’, Ensign ENVY 133)
Sexy soft “don’t stop – keep on” intro soon hits a rapidly jiggling 133bpm 6:17 groove that keeps the same simple lyric idea and is so similar to ‘Swingin’’ that it chop mixes in and out perfectly – as witness the antics of all the lucky funk jocks who’ve had this on promo for weeks!

ASHFORD & SIMPSON: ‘Flashback’ (Warner Bros. K 17345T)
Solidly thudding but lightweight 114-120bpm comes-and-goes hustler with Bee Gees/AWB-like squeaky harmony sound (almost!), flipped by the funkier lurching sparse 124bpm ‘Get Up And Do Something’ on limited colour-sleeved 12in. 

EDWIN STARR: ‘H.A.P.P.Y. Radio’ (20th Century TCD 2408) (BNDA debut 6/9/79)
First 20th Century release through RCA, this rather empty fast 140-134-136bpm stomper on 6:30 red vinyl 12in wastes a lot of time on fairly uninteresting rhythm breaks and sounds like ‘Headline News’ whenever he does sing – but, then maybe this is the one he intended to be for his Northern fans? Interestingly re-released on 7in back-to-back are ‘Headline News’ / ‘Stop Her On Sight’ (Motown TMG 905), both at 141bpm yet less fast seeming.

ABBA: ‘Voulez-Vous’ LP (Epic EPC 86086)
As well as their stomping 135bpm ‘Does Your Mother Know’ hit, this obviously ultra pop-orientated LP actually contains some pretty good sorta disco tracks (for the Bee Gees end of the market), namely the 126bpm title track and 104bpm ‘If It Wasn’t For The Nights’.

MATCH: ‘Boogie Man’ (Flamingo 12-FM 2)
Bunch of Buckinghamshire boys with a watered-down 129bpm Heatwave-type “boogie” wailer drawn out to 7:58 on blood red eye-cued 12in with jittering thud beat and some tougher rattling breaks.

APOLLO: ‘Astro Disco’ (Motown 12 TMG 1141)
Zingily leaping 126bpm pounder on 9:40 eye-cued 12in featuring young Kerry Gordy (Berry’s son) . . . so you know that Motown employees want it to hit!

ROY AYERS: ‘Fever’ (Polydor POSPX 53)
Little Willie John/Peggy Lee/Elvis Presley classic moody torch song becomes an attractive but blandly thumping 128bpm hustler on 5:45 12in, not funky at all.

PHIL HURTT: ‘Boogie City’ / ‘P.H. Factor Boogie’ (Fantasy 12 FTC 174) (BNDA debut 8/18/79)
Long 1:49 monotonous bass-backed 133bpm rhythm intro doesn’t really liven up even when the wailing vocals begin, but the limited 5:15 12in (not yet out in America) is flipped by a more interesting though again monotonous and largely instrumental snappy 116bpm P-funk chugger.

SUPERCHARGE: ‘I Can See Right Thru You’ (Virgin VS 24312)
Wild and woolly 128bpm UK disco effort thunders about with exaggerated squeaky voices and bumping bass on completely transparent 3:31 12in, with a rattling then electronic 6:33 Part Two.

HIGH INERGY: ‘Shoulda Gone Dancin’’ (Motown 12 TMG 1142) (BNDA debut 4/28/79)
Incongruous slow Diana Ross-ish start to a shrill staccato speedy 136bpm girlie group flier on 9:44 12in.

PHIL CORDELL: ‘Heart On Fire’ (Virgin VS 24612)
Fairly mundane 108bpm Bee Gees-type pop disco, but packaged breathtakingly on white vinyl 12in with red heart-shaped label and matching die-cut “scorched” sleeve hole.


Imports

BILLY PAUL: ‘Bring The Family Back’ (US Philadelphia Int’l 2Z8 3678)
Billy’s prettily lilting and typically husky mellow swayer with girlie group support has hidden power as a languidly clapping delayed backbeat and deceptively strong rolling 110bpm jiggly thump rhythm build up a McFadden & Whitehead-type tension on 5:53 12in, which should work well in front of them!

TEENA MARIE: ‘I’m A Sucker For Your Love’ (from LP ‘Wild And Peaceful’, US Gordy G7-986R1)
Rick James-penned/produced great raunchily rolling, thumping and bumping 5:54 funk burbler full of chugging 116bpm rhythm, muddled vocals (mainly by Rick himself with chix support), syndrum flurries and brassy blasts, due on 12in here in June. Equally hot, however, and also 116bpm (though harder driving) is a gloriously happy strutting and stamping 7:34 revival of Smokey Robinson’s ‘Don’t Look Back’, which thumps through a staccato funky chant into some wailing jazzy sax.

STEPHANIE MILLS: ‘What Cha Gonna Do With My Lovin’’ LP (US 20th Century Fox T-583) (BNDA debut 6/2/79)
Original Broadway star of ‘The Wiz’, a now grown-up Stephanie sounds seductively sultry on the gorgeous lushly pulsating 103bpm semi-slow 4:05 title-track swayer. Also hot, the similarly 4:05 ‘Put Your Body In It’ starts with a beefy 116bpm bass and clap thing that keeps bumping through the sparse 118bpm funk stamper and is later echoed in the wailing fast 131bpm ‘Don’t Stop Dancin’’ strutter, while a dead-slow 19bpm souling of Peabo Bryson’s oft-recorded ‘Feel The Fire’ and the 45bpm ‘Starlight’ are among several nice smoochers.

TYRONE DAVIS: ‘In The Mood’ LP (US Columbia JC 35723)
The beautiful 4:09 romantic 35bpm title-track soul smoother joins the also hot ‘You Know What To Do’, an easily strutting 116bpm sparsely orchestrated 5:48 thudder with synthesized vocal bits and reminiscent of a quieter Teddy Pendergrass ‘Only You’. Added value are the 3:37 ‘Keep On Dancin’’, a useful but almost over-obvious 122bpm disco jiggler with emphasis on simple “dancin’” lyrics, and the 3:52 ‘I Can’t Wait’ yearning 30/60bpm smoocher, while at 126bpm the 3:40 ‘All The Love I Need’ is most like his old soul rompers.

LINDA CLIFFORD: ‘Don’t Give It Up’ (from LP ‘Let Me Be Your Woman’, US RSO RS-2-3902) (BNDA debut 3/31/79)
Still evidently not out here, it’s worth noting that until her UK 12in broke pop this marathon 9:26 Millie Jackson-like haranguing rap was equally big for funk jocks. An amazing track, it’s a talk-sung 102-104-106bpm warning to “all you girls” that “you gotta look out for men” (rather like a rewrite of Louis Jordan’s ancient ‘Beware’!), her controversial advice being to “keep what you got while you’re hot” . . . and literally only give it up for money and worldly wealth! Wow!

SPLENDOR: ‘All Night Long’ (US Columbia 23-10946)
Jaggedly racing 131 bpm stamper on 5:55 12in with stabbing brass and male harmony chanting, not necessarily like it in sound but structurally similar to Hemlock’s ‘Disco Break’, happening more around Manchester than London so far and well worth checking.

THE JONES GIRLS: ‘You Gonna Make Me Love Somebody Else’ (US Philadelphia Int’l 2Z8 3682) (BNDA debut 5/12/79)
Gamble/Huff-prod/penned steadily chugging 106-107bpm slow shrill strutter doesn’t introduce much variety on 8:06 12in but builds up a somewhat Norman Whitfield-like clapping backbeat that takes over during the quieter ricky-ticky rhythm break about two-thirds through.

AL HUDSON & THE PARTNERS: ‘You Can Do It’ (from LP ‘Happy Feet’, US ABC AA-1136) (BNDA debut 6/16/79)
Warm in the North-West, this 3:31 short ‘n simple little jaunty 116bpm jiggler features a wailing chick now joining the repetitively chanting guys in the group, while the 5:13 title track is a hustling 121bpm bumper with continuously booming bass drum giving a syndrum effect.

DEE DEE BRIDGEWATER: ‘Bad For Me’ (US Elektra AS-11409) (BNDA debut 5/5/79)
George Duke-produced urgent fast 131bpm stamper with walling sax, a distinct change for the better so far as Britain is concerned, on 8:29 12in . . . though the shorter LP version is tempting as her luscious cover photo is yum-yum!

UNCLE LOUIE: ‘Full Tilt Boogie’ (from LP ‘Uncle Louie’s Here’, US Marlin 2228)
Out for ages on LP without doing much, this short 3:55 simple basic lurchingly tripping 109bpm funk chanter, quite catchy, is now evidently on 7in too and getting hotter.

NYTRO: ‘High On Disco’ (from LP ‘Return To Nytropolis’, US Whitfield WHK 3275)
As well as the 12:48 ‘Nytro Express / Return To Nytropolis’ hit, this Norman Whitfield-produced gradually building 5:01 ‘Car Wash’-type 104bpm dated funker should grab ‘em in the North-West!

SHOTGUN: ‘Skate’ (from LP ‘III’, US ABC AA-1118)
Joining their ‘Don’t You Wanna Make Love’ 12in as a now equally-warm LP track, this 5:10 monotonously churning 115bpm thudding funk chanter with busy bass and thwacking backbeat, big for Northern funksters.


Mix Master

Geoff Hayward, mobile with his Geoff’s Roadshow from Wimborne 885361, minimixes Eugene Record ‘Magnetism’ (Warner Bros. 12in) synching the instrumental second half into the middle bit of Mantus ‘(Dance It) Freestyle Rhythm’ (Atlantic 12in), synching that into the phased break of Joe Thomas ‘Make Your Move’ (US LRC LP). Also, Geoff says the first 2 minutes of Beach Boys ‘Here Comes The Night’ (Caribou 12in) synchs over the middle bit of Paradise Express ‘Dance’ (Fantasy 12in).


Hot Vinyl

Johnnie Walker (Farnborough Gallaghers/Fleet Boogies/Slough Blues) import tips:
DIRECT CURRENT: ‘Everybody Here Must Party’ (US TEC 12”) (BNDA debut 4/7/79)
CUBA GOODING: ‘Disco Royale’ (US Motown LP)
TERRY CALLER: ‘Sign Of The Times’ / ‘Do It Again’ (US Elektra LP)
SPLENDOR: ‘All Night Long’ (US Columbia 12”)
TEENA MARIE: ‘I’m A Sucker For Your Love’ / ‘Don’t Look Back’ (US Gordy LP)
MARTIN CIRCUS: ‘Disco Circus’ (US Prelude LP) (BNDA debut 5/26/79)
LLOYD WILLIAMS: ‘Shout’ (US MCA LP)
BECK FAMILY: ‘Can’t Shake The Feeling’ (US Le Joint 12”)
SWEET THUNDER: ‘Slam Dunk’ / ‘Rock’ (US Fantasy LP)
NITEFLYTE: ‘If You Want It’ (US Ariola 12”)
RONNIE FOSTER: ‘Midnight Plane’ (US Columbia 12”)
KEITH BARROW: ‘Physical Attraction’ (US Columbia 12”)
TAKA BOOM: ‘Night Dancin’’ (US Ariola 12”)
PRINCE PHILLIP MITCHELL: ‘Let’s Get Wet’ (US Atlantic 12”)
TYRONE DAVIS: ‘In The Mood’ (US Columbia LP)
LAX: ‘Dancin’ At The Disco’ (US Prelude LP) (BNDA debut 6/2/79)
Enough? Enough!


UK Disco Top 30 – May 12, 1979

(The following chart was printed in the May 19 issue, with this explanation.)
Last week’s UK disco chart was unable to be printed due to holiday deadlines, but in fact a Top 30 was compiled for broadcast by Radio Luxembourg on Wednesday night. To keep year-end chart freaks happy, here it is!

01 01 The Jacksons – Shake Your Body Down To The Ground – Epic 12″
02 02 Sister Sledge – He’s The Greatest Dancer / We Are Family – Atlantic 12″/LP/US Cotillion 12″
03 04 Gino Soccio – Dancer / Dance To Dance – Warner Bros. 12″
04 06 Gonzalez – Haven’t Stopped Dancin’ Yet – Sidewalk 12″
05 05 McFadden & Whitehead – Ain’t No Stoppin’ Us Now – US Philadelphia Int’l 12″
06 03 Players Association – Turn The Music Up – Vanguard 12″
07 07 Gibson Brothers – Cuba – Island 12″
08 14 Three Degrees – The Runner – Ariola 12″
09 11 George Benson – Love Ballad – Warner Bros. 7″/12″
10 08 Light Of The World – Swingin’ – Ensign 7″/12″
11 10 GQ – Disco Nights (Rock Freak) / Boogie Oogie Oogie – Arista 12″
12 19 Real Thing – Can You Feel The Force – Pye 12″/US Epic 12″
13 28 M – Pop Muzik – MCA 12″
14 23 Amii Stewart – Knock On Wood – Atlantic 12″
15 15 Gary’s Gang – Keep On Dancin’ / Do It At The Disco – CBS 12″
16 09 Village People – In The Navy – Mercury 7″/12″
17 26 Melba Moore – Pick Me Up, I’ll Dance – Epic 12″
18 13 Chic – I Want Your Love / Chic Cheer – Atlantic 12″
19 16 Kleeer – Keep Your Body Workin’ – Atlantic 12″
20 18 Gloria Gaynor – I Will Survive – Polydor 7″/12″
21 17 Bunny Sigler – By The Way You Dance / I’m Funking You Tonite – Salsoul 12″
22 27 T-Connection – Saturday Night – TK 12″
23 24 Herbie Hancock – Tell Everybody / Ready Or Not / Trust Me – CBS 7″/LP/US 12″
24 12 Crown Heights Affair – Dance Lady Dance – Mercury 12″
25 22 Philly Cream – Jammin’ At The Disco – Fantasy 12″
26 20 Narada Michael Walden – I Don’t Want Nobody Else – Atlantic 12″
27 21 Bell & James – Livin’ It Up (Friday Night) – A&M 12″
28 48 Bombers – (Everybody) Get Dancin’ – Flamingo 12″
29 25 Force – Rock Your Baby – US Philadelphia Int’l 12″
30 34 Joe Thomas – Make Your Move / Sugar Smack – TK 12″/US LRC LP
NE = new entry; RE = re-entry

Appeared in Billboard:
#1 (BNDA debut 1/6/79) / #2 (BNDA debut 2/10/79) / #3 (BNDA debut 2/24/79)
#4 (BNDA debut 12/23/78) / #5 (BNDA debut 4/7/79) / #6 (BNDA debut 4/7/79)
#7 (BNDA debut 4/7/79) / #8 (BNDA debut 5/26/79) / #11 (BNDA debut 2/24/79)
#13 (BNDA debut 9/8/79) / #14 (BNDA debut 2/3/79) / #15 (BNDA debut 1/6/79)
#16 (BNDA debut 4/7/79) / #17 (BNDA debut 4/7/79) / #18 (BNDA debut 12/16/78)
#19 (BNDA debut 4/7/79) / #20 (BNDA debut 11/11/78) / #21 (BNDA debut 3/10/79)
#23 (BNDA debut 7/14/79) / #25 (BNDA debut 4/14/79) / #26 (BNDA debut 4/14/79)
#28 (BNDA debut 2/10/79)

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