Odds ‘N Bods
Greg Davies’s Disco Forum has yet to happen as this was written, but panelist Fred Dove has already gone on record saying that WEA’s disco promotion is no less successful since he cut his list from 360 DJ’s to just the elite few whose audiences are open to new material . . . Chris Hill was chuffed to find a 25 cent copy of the Rhythm Makers’ (early GQ) ‘Zone’ 12in at LA’s Record Depot . . . Sean French neither snored nor nodded to sleep, but the good buddy could be heard to mutter “breaker breaker one nine”! . . . Dartford Flicks holds a dance contest on Fridays through March for ordinary kids into their own funky steps and not the choreographed acrobatics that so often get called disco dancing – although Colin Hudd will have the appalling Ian Moore on hand to show how the pros don’t do it! . . . Motown are rightly re-promoting Smokey Robinson ‘Cruising’, currently huge in the US pop chart . . . Chris Britton has encouraged High Wycombe’s Venus Records shop in the Octagon to stock imports selected from his Tuesday playlist, with immediate results, while Mark Clark infos that every Wednesday at Abingdon Charters the Newbury Disco Centre sells all the latest jazz-funk from a record bar . . . UK limited 12in editions so rarely find their way to specialist stockists that it’s little wonder imports are now so important to the real disco market, which record companies mistakenly suppose is to be found in chart return record shops . . . Dave Middleton reports that Bletchley’s Bear Jazz bunch are finding venues hard to come by, which may explain their coach trip to Slough this Friday (22), details for funk fans from Scott Evenden on 0908-72982 (day) / 75391 (night) . . . Erik Jack’s Life Entertainment Services (0243-863840) successfully placed Stuart Barton as the DJ on the QE2 for Caribbean and world cruises, and could have some summer season work for others in the near future (so note the number) . . . Teesvalley Roadshow (Redcar 475854) say the street strike is hitting discos hard in the North-East, but they themselves tour Germany at Whitsun and need a few more dates . . . Scott Wilson is back at Tony’s Cellar Bar Euro-disco in Edinburgh on Fri/Saturdays . . . Big Phil and the mob at Whitehaven’s Whitehouse are pleading with A&M to release Gato Barbieri’s original ‘Theme From Firepower’ . . . Steve Wiggins (Barry Rugby Club), despairing of ever getting on Sally Ormsby’s DJ list after seventeen reply-less letters, wants at least to see a pic of the lady in Cheesecake Corner – how about it then, Sal? . . . Adrian Webb of the Wonderful World of Webb’s Wonder Tours won a thousand bucks during a quick detour to Las Vegas from LA, and last year discovered a similar bundle of “hot” money stuffed under a chair in his New York hotel room – anyone would think he didn’t make enough owning Southgate Royalty! . . . Capital Radio’s Roger Scott, the world’s biggest Beach Boys fan, had the shock of his life when reclusive Brian Wilson stepped out of a lift right in front of him just over the road from our hotel! . . . Los Angeles is so behind musically that expatriate Dick Sheppard of the Towards 2000 mobile disco and store actually reads about US releases in Record Mirror before he hears them in LA – where so many oldies get played that you could almost believe that disco is dead.
It never rains in Southern California, but it pours, it really pours! Pan Am 121 landed at LAX, we were whisked away in a 9-door hatchback to the Avenue Of The Stars, and awoke next day (last Monday) to sweltering sunshine and the temperature in the 70s. Bright colourful flowers blanketed the ground, palm trees spouted everywhere and nearly everything was in leaf. February in Los Angeles. Wednesday was the day that the rains came down. And Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday too. Not that it was continuous on every day, for in fact we were able to do Disneyland half dry half wet and Knotts Berry Farm completely dry. As I drove our air-conditioned and completely power assisted Chevrolet Caprice down Sunset Strip on Saturday night, firemen were clearing the mud slides from the road that had tumbled off the overhanging escarpment of the Hollywood Hills, and on Sunday when we turned up the coast from Santa Monica the roads to Malibu were blocked. Even the unreal environment of the ridiculously pretty Beverly Hills was marred by burst embankments and ruptured fences. It had been wet, certainly, but to us it hadn’t seemed THAT wet. However in Southern California, the weather is good enough for long enough to encourage reckless architecture, and similarly hot enough to create cracks in concrete which then cannot contain water when it comes. If this was a disaster area, or even just the worst that the weather can do, then it’s no bad place to spend a week in winter. Continue reading “February 23, 1980: “Disco in Los Angeles is awful””