March 29, 1980: Mass Production, Heath Brothers, Roberta Flack & Donny Hathaway, Jermaine Jackson, Community People

Odds ‘N Bods

Blondie ‘Atomic’ hits the Disco Top 30 this week – if that many jocks are on it presumably even DOR is “disco”! – while the ‘Call Me’-featuring ‘American Gigolo’ LP is no longer delayed . . . Mystic Merlin ‘Just Can’t Give You Up’, Dr Hook ‘Sexy Eyes’ / ‘When You’re In Love With A Beautiful Woman’ and Hiroshima ‘Lion Dance’ are due now on UK 12in, but Pressure is NOT on 12in . . . Mass Production ‘Shante’, Chico Hamilton ‘Strut’, Roberta Flack ‘Back Together Again’, Twennynine ‘Peanut Butter’, Deodato ‘Whistle Bump’ (remix) / ‘Knights Of Fantasy’ / ‘Space Dust’, El Coco ‘Let’s Get It Together’ (remix) and Shalamar ‘Right In The Socket (remix) / ‘The Second Time Around’ are all coming on 12in, Shalamar in blue vinyl . . . Atlantic’s set of 10 four-track 7in soul classics (advertised last week) will be followed next month by Island issuing six 6-track 10in EPs – yes, 10in! – on their revived Sue label featuring soul classics originally on ¡t, the first being ‘Harlem Shuffle’ . . . Sharon Paige’s UK 12in has an instrumental flip and is faster by 2bpm than last week’s review . . . Delegation on 12in is 114bpm, and thanks to a gift from Fatman I can now reveal that Herbie Hancock’s direct-cut remake of ‘I Thought It Was You’ is 125-123-124-125-122-121-pause-125-123-124(vocoder break)-123-122-0bpm – the last part being dynamite! . . . DJ Federation (GB) have reduced their public liability insurance for members to £11 ea and are again accepting individual memberships at £10 ea from people in areas uncovered by affiliated associations (details from 01-348 3269) . . . Rush Release need another 70 jocks for their mailing list and also specialist reggae DJs for a different list – write ‘em at 8 Morton Gardens, Wallington, Surrey (01-669 0327/659 2701), and remember that when on a list you shouldn’t send us a chart full of free material unless it’s really happening for you (hyping doesn’t help anyone) . . . Southampton University’s Bootsie hold a student soul festival on Friday 2nd May and, while well supported already, want as many other universities, colleges and polys as possible to be represented to show the strength of soul among students nationally – cost is only 60p, free accommodation is available, so send cheque/PO (payable SUSU Events Dept) with SAE and quoting NUS number of similar, to Events Dept, Students Union, University of Southampton . . . Frenchie, Pete Haigh & Peter Paige go fancy dress on Monday (31) at their Caton (Lancaster) Scharthwaite Hotel jazz-funk night, coach party reservations on Morecambe 420796, Lancaster 61744, Cleveleys 824156 . . . Camberley Frenchies jazz-funks Thursdays from next week (3) with Johnnie Walker, Robin Nash and mafia guests . . . Chris Hill and myself are not partners nor co-owners of Canvey’s Goldmine, as mis-stated in Billboard’s belated Disco Forum report which of course ignored our main point that gay dominance is what killed US Disco – Billboard’s Hot 100 pop chart merely shows those records which frighten US radio programmers the least . . . Soho’s Groove Records has bought up all remaining stocks of the Leo’s Sunshipp LP (but then Groove found it originally) while owner Chris Palmer confirms that the gays who come into his shop rarely know the names of the records they’ve heard at their discos and have to hum the hooks! . . . Slim Tom Holland wants no more buns – he’s lost 1½ stone . . . GQ-like Liverpudlian 5-piece Natural High were an excellent disco dance band at Gullivers last week . . . Finchley Roads Les Elites has had a lavish and good-looking refit . . . Stone City Band ‘Little Runaway’ into Funkadelic ‘One Nation’ into Narada ‘Tonight’, clapping break into ditto of Chicago ‘Street Player’ into Mass Production ‘Shante’ is one of my current fave mixes – Stone City is an unjustly ignored monster! . . . Arbie (Retford MAYC) writes “Disco is NOT dead, only wally ‘dance music’ is – as the sales chart shows. How long since Boney M, Amii Stewart and Co had big hits?” Maybe so Arbie, but Liquid Gold are doing their best to keep the ‘Seaside Special’ tradition alive . . . MAKE IT FUNKY!

No UK Newies this week.


MASS PRODUCTION: ‘Shante’ (from LP ‘Massterpiece’, US Cotillion SD 5218)
Last week’s lead review as should have been (the lack was not of my doing) has indeed leapt straight into the chart and is an amazingly War-like jazzy instrumental that builds with shifting solos in ‘Ghetto’ style from an expectant quiet 124bpm intro through 126-124-127-128bpm. The Whitehaven Whitehouse kids actually applauded when Chris Hill played it there on Sunday.

THE HEATH BROTHERS: ‘For The Public’ (from LP ‘Live At The Public Theater’, US Columbia FC 36374)
Madly catchy superb easily jogging relaxed saxy 91-90-91bpm instrumental jazz swayer with slight Alpert influence and useful applause intro/outro, this week’s lead review. Motoring back from Cumbria on Monday I heard BBC Radio Merseyside’s Terry Lennaine quote last week’s Liquid Gold comment from this page – he hates ‘em! – and an unidentified Piccadilly soul DJ doing some nice mixes.

ROBERTA FLACK: ‘Back Together Again’ (from LP ‘Featuring Donny Hathaway’, US Atlantic S 15013) (BNDA debut 4/5/80)
Terrific long languidly smacking 110(intro)-112bpm “rock” jogger largely sung by Donny piles on the tension as it progresses through simple repetition and will obviously be huge. 

JERMAINE JACKSON: ‘Let’s Get Serious’ (from LP ‘Let’s Get Serious’, US Motown M7-928R1) (BNDA debut 4/5/80)
Stevie Wonder arranged, accompanied, produced, co-wrote and part sang this exciting jittery pent-up burbling 110bpm smacker that’s everything his own album wasn’t, while of equal quality are the even more Walden-like powerful 119bpm ‘Burnin’ Hot’ smacker, attractively tripping 105bpm ‘Where Are You Now’ jogger and typically Wonderful lovely lazy 46/92bpm ‘You’re Supposed To Keep Your Love For Me’ swayer, ‘Feelin’ Free’ being a strange slow-starting then alternately Tony Rallo/Michael Jackson/Chic-like 29(seashore effects)-120-121-122-123-124-123bpm jitterer, ‘You Got To Hurry Girl’ a jiggly jolting smooth 118bpm clapper and ‘We Can Put It Back Together’ a 35½bpm smoocher.

COMMUNITY PEOPLE: ‘Education Wrap’ (US Delmar Int’l DI-747)
Corny “stay in school” message put across as a unison rapped/sung 118(intro)-119-120-121bpm 12in “rock” clapper gets really good in the second instrumental half with excellent long jazzy piano, guitar and sax solos, worth checking.

VAUGHAN MASON AND CREW: ‘Bounce, Rock, Skate, Roll’ (US Brunswick DISCO 211) (BNDA debut 2/9/80)
Originally dismissed as a crass Sugarhill Gang copy this admittedly ‘Good Times’-type jogger has since become a US smash and in fact is more instrumental than vocal, the bass-bumped long stereo smacking bits being great! ‘Part 1’ is 112-111(break)-110bpm while the better B-side reverses everything at 111-112(vocal)-111bpm. Check it again.

CON FUNK SHUN: ‘Got To Be Enough’ (US Mercury 76051) (BNDA debut 4/12/80)
Solidly smacking jittery 124bpm 7in “rock” clapper with staccato choppy vocals and booming bass pattern is also on promo-only 12in (with 123bpm start to the long version’s intro).

AVENUE B BOOGIE BAND: ‘Bumper To Bumper’ (US Salsoul SG 322)
Joe Tex/Bobby Rush-type old fashioned 112-110-111bpm 12in “funky soul” burbler goes well between Ben E King and James Brown.

STEPHANIE MILLS: ‘Sweet Sensation’ (US 20th Century TCD 106) (BNDA debut 4/12/80)
Bass-bumped ponderously thudding 109-110-111bpm jittery 12in smacker builds through a break to a finale that’s like the early part of ‘Ladies Night’.

LAKESIDE: ‘From 9:00 Until’ (US Solar YD-11932) (BNDA debut 5/24/80)
Extremely heavily thudding remixed 115-113-114bpm 12in smacker with a “say what” catch-phrase during the party noises break works well with Teena Marie. I know everything this week seems to be a smacker, but that’s the beat of the moment!

HEAT: ‘Whatever It Is’ (from LP ‘Heat’, US MCA MCA-3225)
Well produced but totally derivative EWF/Emotions-inspired squeaky chix, chaps ‘n sax set, this being a pleasant ‘That’s The Way Of The World’-like 81bpm jogger, ‘Just Like You’ a slow sax-introed 116bpm strutter, ‘Side Steppin’’ a jittery 122-123bpm wailer and ‘Billet Doux’ a slow 29/58bpm instrumental jazz doodler.

MASQUERADERS: ‘Rock Jam’ (from LP ‘The Masqueraders’, US Bang NJZ 36321)
Bohannon-style exciting polyrhythmic fast 119-120-121bpm jitterer, the veteran ‘60s soul group reverting to type for the pleasant softly bumping 49(intro)-46-48bpm ‘It’s So Nice’ sweet slowie, dead slow 17/34bpm ‘Into Your Soul’ and gruffly hollered datedly storming 126bpm ‘Desire’.

HAMILTON BOHANNON: ‘Feel Like Dancin’’ (from LP ‘Music In The Air’, US Mercury SRM-1-3813)
Fairly typical 127-128bpm jitterer distinguished briefly by wild over-amplified flute, flipped on DJ-serviced promo 12in by the even more polyrhythmic 85bpm ‘The Funk Walk’. Other 12in promos causing a more genuine stir are (at last) the great 108(intro)-106-108-107½bpm Ben E King ‘Music Trance’ and 116-118-116-118-116-117-119bpm Kleeer ‘Winners’. Some of you may be lucky!

THE WATERS: ‘Party People’ (from LP ‘Watercolors’, US Arista AB 4253)
Simplistic dated “disco” dross by a black brothers and sisters family foursome, this at 133bpm with ‘Dance The Night Away’ at 132bpm and ‘Dance With Me’ at 128bpm.

COMMON SENSE: ‘I Really Want You (Just Can’t Help Myself)’ (US BC BC-4005) (BNDA debut 4/12/80)
Gals ‘n guys-sung 108bpm 12in ‘I Want Your Love’-like Chic copy with burbling bass break.

RUDDY THOMAS & WELTON IRIE: ‘Shake Your Body Down To The Ground’ (US Joe Gibbs JGMD 8085)
Slowed down 94bpm 12in reggae version of the Jacksons oldie goes into a ‘Funky Reggae Party’ chanting dub last part.

GIL SCOTT-HERON/BRIAN JACKSON: ‘Shut ‘Um Down’ (from LP ‘1980’, US Arista AL 9514)
‘Rise’-like heavily thudding 99bpm vocal jitterer protesting at the danger from nuclear power stations, ‘Willing’ being a mellower 107bpm swayer also sung in a rasping lived-in gruff croak.

RICHIE HAVENS: ‘Goin’ Back To My Roots’ (from LP ‘Connections’, US Elektra 6E-242)
That other gruff croaker revives Lamont Dozier’s classic with lop-sided stereo piano building into an intense 121bpm jazzy jitterer that doesn’t go on long enough.

MR Q: ‘Party Party’ (US Monica’s DK 20)
The busy Canadian returns yet again with an easily flowing funky 109-110bpm 12in thudder punctuated by a catchy old Stargard bass line, and – yes – the flip is a ‘Party Rapp’ version.

MACHINE: ‘Is It Love’ (US RCA PD-11943) (BNDA debut 4/5/80)
Monotonously thudding 112bpm 12in chugger with mellow guys ‘n gals vocal that’s at least a lot less shrill than their ‘Grace Of God’.

P’ZZAZZ: ‘I Heard It Through The Grapevine’ (US Roy B. RBDS 2505) (BNDA debut 3/8/80)
Dated churning fast 131bpm 12in “disco” treatment with rattling synthetics behind squawking chix does admittedly have pop potential.

THE CRITICS: ‘Disco’s Dead’ (US Panorama YD 11925)
Dirgey 107bpm 12in thudder based on ‘Ding Dong The Witch Is Dead’ is not even funny though meant to be satirical and uses the “disco” format quite unabashedly.

UK Disco Top 90 – March 29, 1980

01 01 Whispers – And The Beat Goes On – Solar 12″
02 02 Brothers Johnson – Stomp! / Let’s Swing – A&M 12″
03 03 Tony Rallo & The Midnite Band – Holdin’ On / Burnin’ Alive – Calibre 12″
04 05 Narada Michael Walden – Tonight I’m Alright – Atlantic 12″
05 04 Michael Jackson – Rock With You – Epic 12″
06 06 Phyllis Hyman – You Know How To Love Me – Arista 12″
07 09 Leon Haywood – Don’t Push It Don’t Force It – 20th Century 12″
08 07 Gibson Brothers – Cuba / Better Do It Salsa – Island 12″
09 12 Fern Kinney – Together We Are Beautiful – WEA 7″
10 17 Trussel – Love Injection – Elektra 12″
11 10 Brass Construction – Shakit / Music Makes You Feel Like Dancing – UA 12″
12 08 Jocko – Rhythm Talk – Philadelphia Int’l 12″
13 15 Shalamar – Right In The Socket / The Right Time For Us – Solar 12″
14 11 Slave – Just A Touch Of Love – Atlantic 12″
15 13 Patrice Rushen – Haven’t You Heard – Elektra 12″
16 14 GQ – Standing Ovation – Arista 12″
17 26 Liquid Gold – Dance Yourself Dizzy – Polo 12″
18 20 Bobby Thurston – Check Out The Groove – Epic 12″
19 30 Detroit Spinners – Working My Way Back To You – Atlantic 12″
20 18 Positive Force – We Got The Funk – Sugarhill 12″
21 21 Narada Michael Walden – I Shoulda Loved Ya / You’re Soo Good – Atlantic LP
22 16 Players Association – We Got The Groove – Vanguard 12″
23 27 Earth, Wind & Fire – In The Stone / Biyo / Africano – CBS 12″
24 23 Ronnie Laws – Young Child – UA 12″
25 34 Chuck Cissel – Cisselin’ Hot – Arista 12″
26 25 War – The World Is A Ghetto – MCA 12″
27 22 Light Of The World – The Boys In Blue / This Is This – Ensign 12″
28 39 Rodney Franklin – The Groove – US Columbia LP
29 NE Blondie – Atomic – Chrysalis 12″
30 19 Roy Ayers – Don’t Stop The Feeling – Polydor 12″
31 28 Ronnie Laws – O.T.B.A. Law (Outta Be A Law) / Every Generation / As One / Never Get Back To Houston – UA LP
32 37 Mystic Merlin – Just Can’t Give You Up – US Capitol LP
33 24 Kool & The Gang – Too Hot / Tonight’s The Night – Mercury 12″
34 33 Atmosfear – Motivation / Extract – Elite 12″
35 38 Crown Heights Affair – Sure Shot (all cuts) – US De-Lite 12″ promo/LP
36 36 Wilbert Longmire – Hawkeye / Strawberry Sunset – US Tappan Zee LP
37 46 Brothers Johnson – This Had To Be / Light Up The Night / Celebrations / Treasure / Smilin’ On Ya / You Make Me Wanna Wiggle – A&M LP
38 29 Donna Summer – On The Radio – Casablanca 12″
39 44 Kleeer – Winners (all cuts) – US Atlantic LP
40 31 Azymuth – Jazz Carnival – Milestone 12″
41 41 Players Association – The Get Down Mellow Sound – Vanguard 12″
42 35 Billy Ocean – Are You Ready – GTO 12″
43 48 Gap Band – I Don’t Believe You Want To Get Up And Dance / Steppin’ Out / The Boys Are Back In Town – Mercury 12″
44 32 Prince – I Wanna Be Your Lover – Warner Bros. 12″
45 40 La Pregunta – Chameleon – US GNP Crescendo 12″
46 47 Bobby Thurston – You Got What It Takes – US Prelude LP
47 50 Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes – Prayin’ – Source 12″
48 45 Sharon Paige – Tonight’s The Night – US Source 12″
49 56 Osibisa – Pata Pata – Pye 12″
50 42 Nolans – I’m In The Mood For Dancing – Epic 7″
51 76 Dayton – Eyes On You / Livin’ For Today – US UA LP
52 52 Stop – I Can Feel It – Calibre 12″
53 59 Shalamar – The Second Time Around – Solar 12″
54 68 Joe Bataan – Rap-O Clap-O – Salsoul 12″
55 88 Ben E. King – Music Trance – Atlantic 7″/US 12″ promo
56 NE Mass Production – Shante – US Cotillion LP
57 61 Grover Washington Jr. – I Can’t Help It / Open Up Your Mind (Wide) / Snake Eyes / Easy Loving You – US Motown LP
58 43 Spyro Gyra – Catching The Sun / Percolator – MCA 12″
59 60 Destination – Move On Up/Up, Up, Up – Butterfly 12″
60 51 Sugarhill Gang – Rapper’s Delight – Sugarhill 12″
61 53 Guardian Angel – Self Service Love / Jim Screechie – MR 12″
62 65 Don Armando’s 2nd Avenue Rhumba Band – Deputy Of Love / I’m An Indian Too – ZE 12″
63 49 Gordon’s War – Got To Fan The Flame / The Rock Is Gonna Get You – US Stan-Jay 12″
64 55 Bonnie Pointer – I Can’t Help Myself – Motown 7″/LP
65 72 Bunny Mack – Love You Forever – Rokel 12″
66 54 Michael Jackson – Off The Wall / Working Day And Night – Epic 7″
67 73 Mandrill – Getting In The Mood (all cuts) – US Arista LP
68 58 Eugene Record – Fan The Fire / Your Love (Ain’t Nothin’ Like It) – Warner Bros. LP
69 63 Modern Sound Corporation – Safari – Epic 12″
70 67 Givens Family – The Year Of The Child – US Venture 12″
71 79 Alton & Johnny – Hang On In There Baby – Polydor 7″
72 70 B.T. Express – Give Up The Funk – US Columbia 7″/LP
73 64 Fat Larry’s Band – Here Comes The Sun – Fantasy 12″
74 57 Chain Reaction – Dance Freak – US Sound Of New York 12″
75 82 Al Johnson & Jean Carn – I’m Back For More – US Columbia 7″/LP
76 NE Chico Hamilton – Strut / Magic Fingers / Alekasam – US Elektra LP
77 77 L.A. Boppers – Watching Life / Is This The Best / Funk It Out / Life Is What You Make It / You Did It Good – US Mercury LP
78 75 Brass Construction – Movin’ / Changin’ – UA 12″
79 69 Jan Akkerman – She’s So Divine / Stingray – Atlantic 7″/LP
80 78 Randy Brown – The Next Best Thing To Being There / We Ought To Be Doin’ It – Casablanca 12″
81 66 Dan Hartman – Vertigo / Relight My Fire – Blue Sky 12″
82 NE Teena Marie – Behind The Groove – Motown LP
83 74 Rick James – Love Gun – Motown 7″/LP
84 87 Leo’s Sunshipp – Give Me The Sunshine / I’m Back For More – US Lyon’s LP
85 84 Chicago – Street Player – US Columbia 12″
86 83 Grey & Hanks – Now I’m Fine / Single Girls – US RCA 12″/LP
87 NE Niteflyte – If You Want It – Ariola 12″
88 80 Brenda Russell – In The Thick Of It – A&M 7″/LP
89 RE Invisible Man’s Band – All Night Thing – US Mango 12″
90 NE Blondie – Call Me – Polydor LP
NE = new entry; RE = re-entry

Appeared in Billboard:
#1 (BNDA debut 1/12/80) / #2 (BNDA debut 2/23/80) / #3 (BNDA debut 1/5/80)
#4 (BNDA debut 12/22/79) / #5 (BNDA debut 8/18/79) / #6 (BNDA debut 11/10/79)
#7 (BNDA debut 2/23/80) / #8 (BNDA debut 4/7/79 & 9/8/79) / #10 (BNDA debut 12/8/79)
#11 (BNDA debut 5/31/80) / #13 (BNDA debut 3/22/80) / #14 (BNDA debut 1/12/80)
#15 (BNDA debut 12/15/79) / #16 (BNDA debut 3/1/80) / #17 (BNDA debut 11/17/79)
#18 (BNDA debut 3/1/80) / #19 (BNDA debut 10/20/79) / #20 (BNDA debut 1/12/80)
#21 (BNDA debut 12/22/79) / #22 (BNDA debut 3/22/80) / #25 (BNDA debut 1/12/80)
#28 (BNDA debut 5/17/80) / #30 (BNDA debut 12/22/79) / #33 (BNDA debut 9/8/79)
#35 (BNDA debut 3/22/80) / #38 (BNDA debut 11/17/79) / #39 (BNDA debut 4/5/80)
#41 (BNDA debut 3/22/80) / #42 (BNDA debut 12/13/80) / #43 (BNDA debut 3/8/80)
#44 (BNDA debut 11/10/79) / #46 (BNDA debut 3/1/80) / #48 (BNDA debut 2/16/80)
#53 (BNDA debut 3/22/80) / #54 (BNDA debut 12/1/79) / #55 (BNDA debut 3/1/80)
#59 (BNDA debut 8/25/79) / #60 (BNDA debut 10/13/79) / #62 (BNDA debut 9/22/79)
#64 (BNDA debut 1/5/80) / #67 (BNDA debut 4/19/80) / #72 (BNDA debut 4/19/80)
#73 (BNDA debut 2/9/80) / #81 (BNDA debut 11/10/79) / #82 (BNDA debut 3/29/80)
#83 (BNDA debut 11/24/79) / #86 (BNDA debut 3/8/80) / #89 (BNDA debut 1/26/80)
#90 (BNDA debut 3/8/80)

Bubbling under the UK Disco Top 90 are:

TROIANO: ‘We All Need Love’ (Capitol 12”) (BNDA debut 8/18/79)
JON FADDIS: ‘Good And Plenty’ / ‘Razor Blade’ / ‘Baker Street’ (US Arista LP)
SMOKEY ROBINSON: ‘Cruisin’’ (Motown 7”)
SHEENA EASTON: ‘Modern Girl’ (EMI 7”)
GQ: ‘GQ Down’ / ‘Lies’ (US Arista LP)
HEATH BROTHERS: ‘For The Public’ (US Columbia LP)
HERBIE HANCOCK: ‘I Thought It Was You’ (Japanese CBS/Sony LP)
COMMUNITY PEOPLE: ‘Education Wrap’ (US Delmar 12”)
ROBERTA FLACK & DONNY HATHAWAY: ‘Back Together Again’ (US Atlantic LP) (BNDA debut 4/5/80)
JAMES BROWN: ‘Don’t Stop The Funk’ / ‘Regrets’ (US Polydor LP)
DELEGATION: ‘You And I’ (Ariola 12”)
AVENUE B BOOGIE BAND: ‘Bumper To Bumper’ (US Salsoul 12”)
LONNIE SMITH: ‘Lean Meat’ (US Groove Merchant LP)
RINDER & LEWIS: ‘Blue Steel’ (US AVI LP)
CEDAR WALTON: ‘Latin America’ / ‘Naturally’ (US Columbia LP)
JERMAINE JACKSON: ‘Let’s Get Serious’ (US Motown LP) (BNDA debut 4/5/80)
DYNASTY: ‘Satisfied’ / ‘It’s Still A Thrill’ (Solar 12”) (BNDA debut 1/19/80)
HEAT: ‘Whatever It Is’ / ‘Billet Doux’ / ‘Side Steppin’’ / ‘Just Like You’ (US MCA LP)
ALTON MCCLAIN & DESTINY: ‘Love Waves’ / ‘I Don’t Want To Be With Nobody Else’ (US Polydor LP) (BNDA debut 4/19/80)
HAMILTON BOHANNON: ‘Feel Like Dancin’’ / ‘Funk Walk’ (US Mercury LP)
THE WATERS: ‘Party People’ (US Arista LP)
FINAL EDITION: ‘No Limit’ / ‘I Can Do It’ (US VAP 12”)
STEPHANIE MILLS: ‘Sweet Sensation’ (US 20th Century 12”) (BNDA debut 4/12/80)

DORC (Dance Orientated Rock Chart):

1 (3) Police, 2 (7) The Beat, 3 (2) Specials, 4 (11) Elvis Costello, 5 (5) Cliff Richard, 6 (4) Tourists, 7 (-) Vapors, 8 (6) Styx, 9 (10) Marti Webb, 10 (-) Martha & The Muffins, 11 (17) Bad Manners, 12 (-) KC & The Sunshine Band, 13 (14) Pat Benatar ‘We Live For Love’, 14 (13) Jon & Vangelis, 15 (-) Bodysnatchers, 16 (16) Selecter, 17 (-) Monkees, 18 (8) Pretenders, 19 (12) Joe Jackson, 20 (-) Lambrettas.

4 thoughts on “March 29, 1980: Mass Production, Heath Brothers, Roberta Flack & Donny Hathaway, Jermaine Jackson, Community People”

  1. This is the period when all the undisputed classics of a couple of years later when I was on the scene seemed to be coming out. The two Roy Ayers legends on one 12″ and Mass Production Shante.
    In about 1982/83 my local was a jazz-funk pub the jukebox of which was full of Jazz-funk classics (obviously only the 7″ versions that no one would have normally played but I don’t think the 12″ jukebox was ever invented;-)) and Shante aling with stuff like Prance On, Cyclopse were on what almost seemed like constantly. Great days.


    1. I’m also spotting the emergence of several tracks that were revived by the London KISS FM crew in the late Eighties, at the tail-end of the rare groove scene: Donald Byrd “Dominoes”, Leo’s Sunshipp “Give Me The Sunshine”, Roy Ayers, Lonnie Liston Smith, Gary Bartz, Trussel.

      Re James’s comments on having fun with the “freeze” breaks in Rodney Franklin’s “The Groove”: a work colleague at the time (a fully fledged white-socks-and-loafers Essex soul boy), told me that at his local club, the whole room would punctuate each pause with massed shouts of “WANKER”. I’ve never been able to hear the track any other way!


  2. A mouth watering chart featuring so much amazing music- apart from one fly in the ointment, Liquid Gold! It really is fascinating how quickly the style of music changed from the back end of 79 and the height of the Disco era. I consider this era the 3rd golden period of dance music in the UK- 74-76, 77-79 and now the early 80’s. Seeing the Waters appear under their own name is quite significant- this family of vocalists were the “go to” session singers who appeared on so many soul/disco classics over the years, backing just about every artist of importance during the late 70s and 80s. They truly are “unsung” hero’s!


    1. Agreed, I do think that spring/early summer 1980 represents another, less universally acknowledged, golden age. And just as in the summer of 1979, we also have many superb crossover chart hits. The sound may have moved on from what most people would describe as classic disco, but – after a bit of a post-backlash dip in autumn 1979 – the quality is just as strong.

      Interestingly, after a glut of rap reviews at the very start of the year, the craze gives every impression of having died out. That matches my perception of rap at the time: an entertaining novelty, with a short shelf life. How wrong we all were…


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