May 24, 1980: Surface Noise, Gene Chandler, Randy Crawford, Gayle Adams, Frank Hooker & Positive People

In The Groove

The story behind Surface Noise’s ‘The Scratch’ is an object lesson in how to make a hit. One-time musician and record company executive and now owner of Soho Greek Street’s Groove record shop, Chris Palmer not surprisingly knew exactly the sort of thing that his customers would be likely to buy, and so on April 27th at home he multi-tracked a catchy little instrumental to the mechanical beat of a Rhythmbox. This rough demo tape created enough enthusiasm from all who heard it for Chris to book studio time and a few supplementary musicians to lay down the finished version just over a week later. By Friday May 9th the acetates of this were being played to death on London radio and in enough clubs to hit our disco chart last week, by which time the buzz was so intense that WEA snapped up the master for such a fantastic deal that Chris is still reeling! Although the limited pressing on his own Groove Production label (the only one to feature the full-length flip) came into the shops last Friday (16th) and started selling like wild, WEA are now doing their best to get their own 12in (with added chick on the flip) into the shops during the course of this week. Now, is that hot or is that hot?!? Few potential chartbusters can have been turned around so quickly from initial conception to finished product, especially when by an unknown act (albeit with influential friends!). So, from The Groove we have ‘The Scratch’. What next . . . ‘The Warp’?!


This Monday (26) sees Europe’s biggest circus tent holding something like 15,000 funkateers at the first ever Knebworth festival to feature soul and jazz. Just outside Stevenage on the other side of the A1(M), the stately home’s park will now reverberate to the sound of Lonnie Liston Smith, GQ, Eddy Grant, Light Of The World all playing live and DJs Chris Hill, Robbie Vincent, Greg Edwards, Froggy, Sean French, Chris Brown, Tom Holland, Jeff Young, Brother Louie, Colin Curtis and John Grant. Additional features include a spectacular laser show, continuously running film of last month’s Caister weekenders, genuine circus acts – and doubtless some animal acts as well!

Then on Sunday, June 1st, it’s Stevenage Bo Jangles’ turn as the venue for Greg Davies’ Disco Forum 80. Starting at 2 pm, the event will include talks by record company reps, DJ association officers and someone from Bacchus International, displays by Optikinetics and Disco Supplies, and a panel discussion with record pluggers John Wailer, Sally Ormsby, Fred Dove, Theo Loyla, Loraine Trent, Roger St Pierre, plus (though not a plugger!) myself. To be sure of getting in on the day, book the £2 tickets in advance from Greg Davies, 11 Hampton Close, Wilstead, Beds MK45 3DA (further details on 0234-741462 or 04626-6821). And if he cancels this one at the last minute, I will personally kill him!


Odds ‘N Bods

Lipps Inc, evidently huge in Scotland (well it would be wouldn’t it?!), turns out to be but one of four tracks on a ‘Hot From The Casbah’ 12in EP featuring additional SLOP by Danielle, Evelyn Thomas & Ultimate . . . L.A. Boppers are due on 12in now . . . Voyage ‘I Love You Dancer’ (sensational out of ‘I Shoulda Loved Ya’) and Ndugu ‘Shadow Dancing’ (ditto ‘Stomp!’) deserve more support, while Stacy Lattisaw ‘Don’t You Want To Feel It’ and BT Express ‘Does It Feel Good’ look like being their respective LPs’ long-term winners . . . Change ‘Searching’ is already rapidly overhauling ‘A Lover’s Holiday’ to become a monster (how about singles release, Fred?), although John Kaye (Mirfield) adds to my original review saying “‘Angel In My Pocket’ is a 128bpm (?) Chic-like bass thudder that could be as hot, thus making the whole LP pretty useful all round” – OK John? . . . Three Degrees’ best known fan, no names mentioned, also digs Donna Summer and other black ladies! . . . West Kingsdown King’s Lodge is suddenly no longer a Pete Tong gig due to a takeover prior to last week’s advertised dates . . . RCA’s Rowdy “Chicken Shack” Yeats owned a Stourbridge record shop in the ‘60s called The Groove, and subsequently suggested this still registered name to the Soho shop when that opened . . . Soho’s Groove meanwhile has just started a “Check out the Groove” competition with free entry forms to customers, who have to list the most titles including the word “groove” to win (after July 4th) bumper prizes, the official adjudicator being myself . . . Dennis Brynner & Dave Van Seiger now spin ‘em and sell ‘em every Saturday lunchtime at Southampton’s Virgin record store . . . Raymondo returns to Fantasy, the US label this time though, as their UK advance man to work on building an import buzz for their product (excellent news!) . . . Rudy “Rapper” Gilpin, ex-Gulllvers, is now working in a hi-fi store while looking for another gig (01 578 3775 evenings), and Smokey Joe of the famed but now closed Cue Club needs a gig too (0442-47915) . . . Avenue B Boogie Band singer Will Collins hasn’t given up his day job yet – he works in a New York dry cleaners . . . Steve Dee’s new monster roadshow rig, featuring Gauss and JBL stacks driven by HH Electronic MOS FET power amps, will be unveiled at the next Bournemouth Stateside Center alldays (Froggy please note!) . . . Erik-Jack (Bognor Regis) is knackered what with discos at night and teaching disco dancing by day to 7,500 pre-teen schoolkids as part of the Butlins School Venture Weeks scheme! . . . Paul Stewart does his best to funk Belfast but says club managers there only want punters who dress like Wallys – still, Paul, it’s no worse than Peterborough! . . . Jo Field (Hemel Hempstead) now wants a BPM counter: you’ll have to get a “hand tally counter” from a stationers and click off the beats to a stopwatch, setting the counter to 9999 for the first beat to start on zero so that the timing is right . . . Sterling Vann (Bethnal Green Tipples) just won a T-shirt as I write this by ringing Dave Cash on Capital Radio and asking for more jazz-funk! . . . Brian Brindle (Chelsea Alibi) sez the rapidly reviving Lonnie Liston Smith ‘Expansions’ mixes perfectly out of Bunny Mack . . . ‘Calibre Cuts’ is actually number one for Richard Witcombe & Dave Higgins at Shopton Mallet Youth Centre . . . Noel “Double Top” Wright (Ware Beckets) is getting darts lessons (or something) from a lady punter . . . Edgbaston Faces manager evidently answers (reluctantly) to the name Eddie Dingbat, though he’d prefer Dignam! . . . Bournemouth Soul Centre – gee (hic!) thanksh! . . . Light Of The World’s upcoming new Augie Johnson-produced LP will revolutionize all our concepts of British soul, blah blah blah (sez “Ladies Man” Cozier) – just send us a promo and we’ll see! . . . Sean Martin (Borough Green) is keen to get a Swanley Moat gig as he thinks he could attract more funksters than the Wallys who are currently encouraged there – don’t bet on it, Sean . . . Andy Davison (Sawston) and another Andy of Paddington both point out the obvious, that Alvin Cash’s ‘Philly Freeze’ in 1966 preceded any invention of Chris Hills’ – yes, but . . . Bank Holiday Monday was originally going to be kept clear of funk events by gentleman’s agreement to make Showstoppers’ Knebworth a truly National soul day, except of course there aren’t many gentlemen in the business . . . Radio Invicta fans please note that I don’t listen to anything on the radio on Sundays, as once awake I watch telly! . . . Southampton University Bootsies’ student soul festival was evidently a big success, with visitors from all over South England, and yet the brief mention of it in this column amounted to half the advertising for it! . . . you know this page is read, so why aren’t YOU writing to it? . . . KEEP IT FUNKY!



UK Newies

SURFACE NOISE: ‘The Scratch’ (Groove Production GP 101)
Immediately catchy simple little flute ‘n synth hook over a bass-driven jaunty 119bpm jazz shuffle with sax, percussion, bass and piano breaks on 4:41 12in A-side, the 5:14 flip having more bass after the piano before the flute returns. As you’ve probably gathered, it’s gonna be huge!

GENE CHANDLER: ‘Does She Have A Friend?’ (20th Century/Chi-Sound TCD 2451)
Superb powerfully nagging purposeful 89-90-91bpm 12in plodder sets up an identifiable lyric situation from everyone’s personal experience that could make it the soulful summer’s answer to ‘Always In The Kitchen At Parties’.

RANDY CRAWFORD: ‘Last Night At Danceland’ (from LP ‘Now We May Begin’, Warner Bros. K 56791)
Crusaders-produced set for the ‘Street Life’ gal with Joe Sample to the fore, this being a lovely throbbing 106-110-112bpm jogger, ‘Same Old Story (Same Old Song)’ a slower 98-99bpm swayer, ‘Blue Flame’ a pent-up 108/54-111bpm lurcher and ‘Tender Falls The Rain’ a dead, dead slowie. 

BROTHERS JOHNSON: ‘Light Up The Night’ (A&M AMSL 7526)
Jiggly burbling staccato 122bpm smacker due on new longer 12in, with the slowburning old moody 116-117-118-115-117-118bpm ‘Streetwave’ jazz instrumental as flip.

EL COCO: ‘Let’s Get It Together’ (AVI AVISL 109)
Excellent remix of the lazily swaying hypnotic old 117bpm side-to-side kicker with added jazzy sax ‘n smack, flipped on 3-track 12in by the original version and coolly controlled 130bpm ‘Cocomotion ‘79’.

GARY BARTZ: ‘Music’ (Arista ARIST 12355)
Mtume & Lucas-produced steadily chugging 107bpm-109bpm jazz-funk sax jogger with cooing chix and swimmy bass synthetics, on 12in for the first time anywhere flipped by the jiggly jolting 114½-115½bpm ‘(Give It Your Best) Shot!’.

RONNIE LAWS: ‘O.T.B.A. Law (Outta Be A Law)’ (UA 12-UP 626)
Firmly established jittery driving 115-113-114-113bpm instrumental jazz-funk monster hidden after all as the third track on a 12in featuring long 35bpm vocal and short 33bpm instrumental versions of the pleasant but impact lacking slow ‘Every Generation’.

THE S.O.S. BAND: ‘Take Your Time (Do It Right)’ (Tabu TBU 1564) (BNDA debut 4/12/80)
Simple languidly bumping 119bpm 7in girlie group smacker with electronic undertow builds intensity (especially on full US 12in – US Tabu 4Z8 5523) and could have wide pop appeal.

EDDY GRANT: ‘My Turn To Love You’ (Ice GUY 37-12)
Monotonously repetitive but good jittery bubbling 118bpm 12in thumper vari-synchs nicely on into Jermaine’s ‘Burnin’ Hot’, the double-A 103bpm ‘Use It Or Lose It’ swayer being ‘Groovin’’-like.

FREEEZ: ‘Keep In Touch’ (Calibre CABL 103)
Catchy home-grown jazz-funk instrumental 12in still careers around between 130-135bpm even on the brat from PRAT’s more subdued B-side remix.

DONALD BYRD: ‘Dominoes’ (Blue Note 12-UP 622)
Atmospheric bumpy 106-104-105-104-103-102bpm 12in jazz jogger remixed from ‘Places And Spaces’ may now sell better for its 48/97-99bpm ‘Wind Parade’ flip as the faster if initially messier 119-118-117-118bpm ‘Dominoes’ from the old import ‘Blue Note Live At The Roxy’ various artists set has proved unquestionably to be the dancers’ choice.

CHAKA KHAN: ‘Clouds’ (Warner Bros. K 17617T) (BNDA debut 5/3/80)
Slightly complicated cheerful 114-116-114-116-118bpm 12in skipper with slower moody thunder effects intro and break may be tricky to slot in.

FESTIVAL: ‘Don’t Cry For Me Argentina’ (RSO RSOX 60) (BNDA debut 11/17/79)
Useful MoR SLOP 123bpm 12in “disco” treatment could be another ‘I Will Survive’ for the ladies, ‘Buenos Aires’ making a slightly tougher 122bpm flip.

KELLY MARIE: ‘Feels Like I’m In Love’ (Calibre + PLUS! + PLUSL 1) (BNDA debut 11/22/80)
UK-recorded dire Liquid Gold-type 121bpm 12in disco dross big up North, where hopefully it will stay.


Imports

GAYLE ADAMS: ‘Plain Out Of Luck’ (from LP ‘Gayle Adams’, US Prelude PRL 12171) (BNDA debut 5/24/80)
Absolutely dynamite soul set produced and accompanied by the exact same team as Bobby Thurston, all the dance tracks (most with good breaks) pack in a zestful wallop, this to my mind the best being 120-121-122-123-121bpm, ‘Stretch’ In Out’ 111-108-110-111(break)-112bpm, ‘Your Love Is A Life Saver’ 121-120bpm, ‘I Don’t Wanna Hear It’ 122-123-124bpm, ‘You Brought It On Yourself’ 124bpm.

FRANK HOOKER & POSITIVE PEOPLE: ‘This Feelin’’ (US Panorama YO-11985) (BNDA debut 5/17/80)
Immensely powerful ever-accelerating subtle funky 111-114-115-116-118 (brass/scat)-121(conga)-122(brass)-117bpm 12in “rock” chugger with an amazing brass frequency, catchy “ooh!” punctuations and clever developments, due out here imminently on DJM. Their deep soul 28bpm smooching of the Intruders’ ‘I Wanna Know Your Name’ is good too.

JEAN CARN: ‘Was That All It Was’ (US Phil Int’l 4Z8 3103) (BNDA debut 12/22/79)
Terrific rattling and smacking 116-117-118-119bpm 12in remix of her recent album track meanders soulfully about without really defining the song strongly enough as otherwise it could have been another Phyllis Hyman.

KOOL & THE GANG: ‘Hangin’ Out’ (US De-Lite DDS 502) (BNDA debut 9/8/79)
Killer thwacking 117(intro)-118-121bpm 12in remix (with ‘Ladies Night’ as flip) now works really well and has a 30 second break after “we’re on the loose – HUH!” which just about accommodates the freaky Breakwater ‘Splashdown Time’ intro for mixers.

CLIFFORD COULTER: ‘Don’t Wanna See You Cry’ (from LP ‘The Better Part Of Me’, US Columbia JC 35786)
Bill Withers-produced lovely jazz-tinged sweet soul set by the keyboardist/singer, this slightly ‘Ladies Night’-ish jaunty little 111(intro)-110-113bpm tripper chopping nicely out of ‘Back Together Again’, the title track being an Isleys-ish 34/68bpm smoocher with slinky synthetics and ‘Nothing In The World Is Free’ a gorgeous smoochy 34/67bpm swayer.

GEORGE DUKE: ‘Brazilian Love Affair’ (from LP ‘A Brazilian Love Affair’, US Epic FE 36483)
Somewhat specialist Brazilian jazz set, this rattling and tapping vocal lilter building from 62/125-126-128bpm into a terrific exciting 129-133bpm bass and percussion last half that chops perfectly on its own out of Odyssey ‘Use It Up’ for instance, the accelerating 127-135-133bpm ‘Sugar Loaf Mountain’ being even more Latin.

DENISE LASALLE: ‘I’m So Hot’ LP (US MCA MCA-3239) (BNDA debut 5/31/80)
Relaxed steady tempoed jittery 114bpm-115bpm title track “rock” tapper, the gospel introed 11-pause-113bpm ‘May The Funk Be With You’ being a sanctified smacker, ‘Giving Up’ a 34bpm revival of Gladys Knight’s old Maxx soul slowie, ‘Try My Love’ a 115bpm synthesizer burbler and ‘Coma Ta Ya Ha Dance’ a 98bpm slow funker.

OZONE: ‘Walk On’ LP (US Motown M7-938R1)
Rather storing [sic] jittery 113-114bpm title track jazz-funk instrumental with pent-up “rock” rhythm, tight solos and scat amongst the brassy framework.

STANLEY CLARKE: ‘We Supply’ (US Epic AS 779)
Snappy bass behind a veddy veddy British voice saying “hello, are you tired of the same old funk?” fills out to become a monotonous but powerful polyrhythmic 101(intro)-100bpm smacking heavy funk half-stepper, on promo 12in only so far.

MARK SOSKIN: ‘Walk Tall’ (from LP ‘Rhythm Vision’, US Prestige P-10109)
Bennie Maupin-dominated brassy 117-119-122-124-122-121bpm jazz instrumental jiggler by Sonny Rollins’ pianist, who – hard luck this! – is having his own solo edited out to make an even better UK 12in version die soon. Meanwhile, ‘That’s What Friends Are For’ is a gently building 93bpm jogger.


UK Disco Top 90 – May 24, 1980

01 01 Rodney Franklin – The Groove – CBS 12″
02 02 Bobby Thurston – Check Out The Groove – Epic 12″
03 05 Narada Michael Walden – I Shoulda Loved Ya – Atlantic 12″
04 04 Mystic Merlin – Just Can’t Give You Up – Capitol 12″
05 03 Brothers Johnson – Stomp! – A&M 12″
06 06 Jermaine Jackson – Let’s Get Serious – Motown 12″
07 07 Leon Haywood – Don’t Push It Don’t Force It – 20th Century 12″
08 08 Detroit Spinners – Working My Way Back To You – Atlantic 12″
09 12 Roberta Flack & Donny Hathaway – Back Together Again – Atlantic 12″
10 11 Crown Heights Affair – Use Your Body & Soul / You Gave Me Love – De-Lite 12″
11 13 Teena Marie – Behind The Groove – Motown 12″
12 09 Mass Production – Shante – Atlantic 12″
13 10 Narada Michael Walden – Tonight I’m Alright – Atlantic 12″
14 18 Jermaine Jackson – Burnin’ Hot / You Got To Hurry Girl – Motown LP
15 14 Raydio – For Those Who Like To Groove / Two Places At The Same Time – Arista 7″
16 21 Diana Ross & The Supremes – Supremes Medley / Love Hangover – Motown 12″
17 15 Tony Rallo & The Midnite Band – Holdin’ On / Burnin’ Alive – Calibre 12″
18 16 Whispers – And The Beat Goes On – Solar 12″
19 17 Liquid Gold – Dance Yourself Dizzy – Polo 12″
20 30 Freeez – Keep In Touch – Pink Rhythm 12″
21 20 Jerry Knight – Overnight Sensation – A&M 7″/US 12″
22 19 Shalamar – Right In The Socket (remix) / The Second Time Around – Solar 12″
23 22 Brenda Russell – In The Thick Of It / So Good So Right – A&M 12″
24 39 Sho Nuff – It’s Alright – Ensign 12″
25 28 Bobby Thurston – You Got What It Takes – Epic LP
26 29 Bunny Mack – Love You Forever / Let Me Love You – Rokel 12″
27 27 Gary Bartz – Music / Rockin’ All Night / After The Love Has Gone / Need Your Love / After Glow – US Arista LP
28 23 Roy Ayers Ubiquity – Running Away / Can’t You See Me – Polydor 12″
29 26 Chuck Cissel – Cisselin’ Hot – Arista 12″
30 32 B.T. Express – Give Up The Funk / Taking Off / Does It Feel Good / Have Some Fun – US Columbia LP
31 25 Gibson Brothers – Cuba / Better Do It Salsa – Island 12″
32 36 James Last Band – The Seduction (Love Theme) – Polydor 12″
33 31 Sharon Paige – Tonight’s The Night – Source 12″
34 24 Blondie – Call Me – Chrysalis 7″/Polydor LP
35 53 Change – A Lover’s Holiday / Searching / The Glow Of Love / It’s A Girl’s Affair – US RFC LP
36 43 Ronnie Laws – Young Child / Tomorrow – UA 12″
37 45 V/A – Calibre Cuts – Calibre 12″
38 41 Chico Hamilton – Strut / Magic Fingers / Alekasam / Mysterious Maiden – US Elektra LP
39 44 Billy Ocean – Stay The Night – GTO 12″
40 34 Michael Jackson – Rock With You / Get On The Floor – Epic 12″
41 68 Jimmy Ruffin – Hold On To My Love – RSO 7″
42 59 Stacy Lattisaw – Jump To The Beat / Don’t You Want To Feel It / Dynamite! / You Know I Like It – US Cotillion LP
43 63 Average White Band – Let’s Go Round Again – RCA 12″
44 61 Cameo – Cameosis (all cuts) – US Chocolate City LP
45 42 Phyllis Hyman – You Know How To Love Me – Arista 12″
46 33 Ben E. King – Music Trance – Atlantic 7″/US 12″ promo
47 58 El Coco – Let’s Get It Together (remix) – AVI 12″ promo
48 38 Prince – Sexy Dancer – Warner Bros. 12″
49 65 Ronnie Laws – O.T.B.A. Law (Outta Be A Law) / Every Generation / As One – UA LP
50 84 Surface Noise – The Scratch – Groove Production 12″ promo
51 55 Odyssey – Use It Up And Wear It Out / Don’t Tell Me, Tell Her – US RCA 12″
52 37 Stephanie Mills – D-A-N-C-I-N’ / Try My Love / Mixture Of Love – US 20th Century LP
53 56 Kleeer – Close To You – Atlantic 12″
54 49 Dr. Hook – Sexy Eyes / When You’re In Love With A Beautiful Woman – Capitol 12″
55 40 Lonnie Liston Smith – Love Is The Answer (all cuts) – US Columbia LP
56 71 Breakwater – Splashdown (all cuts) – US Arista LP
57 60 Donald Byrd – Dominoes (live at the Roxy) – US Blue Note LP
58 50 Chicago – Street Player – CBS 12″
59 52 Community People – Education Wrap – US Delmar Int’l 12″
60 76 Michael Jackson – She’s Out Of My Life – Epic 7″
61 78 Randy Crawford – Last Night In Danceland / Same Old Story / Tender Falls The Rain / Blue Flame – Warner Bros. LP
62 54 Heath Brothers – For The Public – US Columbia 12″/LP
63 69 Jeff Lorber Fusion – Wizard Island (all cuts) – US Arista LP
64 89 Junior Murvin – Police And Thieves – Island 7″/12″
65 67 Aurra – When I Come Home / In The Mood – US Dream 12″
66 51 Isley Brothers – Go All The Way / Pass It On / Don’t Say Goodnight / Say You Will – Epic LP
67 35 Dayton – Eyes On You / Livin’ For Today – US UA LP
68 NE Brothers Johnson – Light Up The Night / Streetwave – A&M 12″
69 47 Herbie Hancock – Go For It / Making Love / Tell Everybody – CBS 12″
70 66 Gap Band – I Don’t Believe You Want To Get Up And Dance – Mercury 12″
71 79 Detroit Spinners – Body Language – Atlantic 12″
72 RE Wilbert Longmire – Hawkeye / Crystal Clear – Tappan Zee LP
73 77 Voyage – I Love You Dancer – US Marlin LP
74 75 Manu Dibango – Goro City / Tek Time – Island 12″
75 74 Kwick – I Want To Dance With You / We Ought To Be Dancing / Tonight Is The Night – US EMI America LP
76 80 Judy Roberts – Never Was Love – US Inner City LP
77 48 Brothers Johnson – This Had To Be / Celebrations / Smilin’ On Ya / You Make Me Wanna Wiggle – A&M LP
78 64 Stephanie Mills – Sweet Sensation – 20th Century 12″
79 72 Skyy – First Time Around (remix) / High – Salsoul 12″
80 57 Herbie Hancock – Saturday Night / Stars In Your Eyes / Don’t Hold It In – CBS LP
81 NE Frank Hooker & Positive People – This Feelin’ / I Wanna Know Your Name – US Panorama 12″
82 70 Con Funk Shun – Got To Be Enough / Happy Face – US Mercury LP
83 NE Lipps, Inc. – Funkytown – Casablanca 12″
84 RE Viola Wills – If You Could Read My Mind – Ariola Hansa 12″
85 73 Avenue B Boogie Band – Bumper To Bumper – Salsoul 12″
86 87 Dynasty – Satisfied / It’s Still A Thrill – Solar 12″
87 83 Mandrill – Dance Of Love / Feeling Good – US Arista LP
88 NE Festival – Don’t Cry For Me Argentina / Buenos Aires – RSO 12″
89 NE Kool & The Gang – Hangin’ Out – US De-Lite 12″
90 RE John Handy – Hard Work – ABC/Impulse LP
NE = new entry; RE = re-entry


Appeared in Billboard:
#1 (BNDA debut 5/17/80) / #2 (BNDA debut 3/1/80) / #3 (BNDA debut 12/22/79)
#5 (BNDA debut 2/23/80) / #6 (BNDA debut 4/5/80) / #7 (BNDA debut 2/23/80)
#8 (BNDA debut 10/20/79) / #9 (BNDA debut 4/5/80) / #10 (BNDA debut 3/22/80)
#11 (BNDA debut 3/29/80) / #13 (BNDA debut 12/22/79) / #14 (BNDA debut 4/5/80)
#15 (BNDA debut 5/17/80) / #17 (BNDA debut 1/5/80) / #18 (BNDA debut 1/12/80)
#19 (BNDA debut 11/17/79) / #21 (BNDA debut 4/19/80) / #22 (BNDA debut 10/20/79)
#25 (BNDA debut 3/1/80) / #28 (BNDA debut 9/24/77) / #29 (BNDA debut 1/12/80)
#30 (BNDA debut 4/19/80) / #31 (BNDA debut 4/7/79 & 9/8/79) / #33 (BNDA debut 2/16/80)
#34 (BNDA debut 3/8/80) / #35 (BNDA debut 3/29/80) / #39 (BNDA debut 4/11/81)
#40 (BNDA debut 8/18/79) / #42 (BNDA debut 5/17/80) / #43 (BNDA debut 7/12/80)
#44 (BNDA debut 5/24/80) / #45 (BNDA debut 11/10/79) / #46 (BNDA debut 3/1/80)
#48 (BNDA debut 11/10/79) / #51 (BNDA debut 4/5/80) / #56 (BNDA debut 6/14/80)
#65 (BNDA debut 5/17/80) / #66 (BNDA debut 4/26/80) / #69 (BNDA debut 7/14/79 & 4/19/80)
#70 (BNDA debut 3/8/80) / #73 (BNDA debut 5/17/80) / #75 (BNDA debut 6/14/80)
#78 (BNDA debut 4/12/80) / #79 (BNDA debut 3/8/80) / #80 (BNDA debut 4/19/80)
#81 (BNDA debut 5/17/80) / #83 (BNDA debut 1/26/80) / #84 (BNDA debut 8/30/80)
#86 (BNDA debut 1/19/80) / #87 (BNDA debut 4/19/80) / #88 (BNDA debut 11/17/79)
#89 (BNDA debut 9/8/79)


Bubbling under the UK Disco Top 90:

CHAKA KHAN: ‘Clouds’ (Warner Bros. 12”) (BNDA debut 5/3/80)
DEXTER WANSEL: ‘Life On Mars’ (US Philadelphia Int’l LP)
DENISE LASALLE: ‘I’m So Hot’ / ‘May The Funk Be With You’ (US MCA LP) (BNDA debut 5/31/80)
GAYLE ADAMS: ‘Plain Out Of Luck’ / ‘Stretch’ In Out’ (US Prelude LP) (BNDA debut 5/24/80)
L.A. BOPPERS: ‘Is This The Best’ (Mercury 7”)
JEAN CARN: ‘Was That All It Was’ (remix) (US Philadelphia Int’l 12”) (BNDA debut 12/22/79)
WEBSTER LEWIS: ‘Give Me Some Emotion’ (Epic 7”)
STONE CITY BAND: ‘Strut Your Stuff’ / ‘Little Runaway’ (US Gordy LP)
COLLINS & COLLINS: ‘You Know How To Make Me Feel So Good’ / ‘Do You Wanna Dance’ / ‘Can’t Turn Down Love’ / ‘You Made Me Believe’ (US A&M LP)
HIROSHIMA: ‘Lion Dance’ / ‘Roomful Of Mirrors’ (Arista 12”)
YELLOW MAGIC ORCHESTRA: ‘Computer Game/Firecracker’ (A&M 12”) (BNDA debut 2/16/80)
LAKESIDE: ‘From 9:00 Until’ (Solar 12”) (BNDA debut 5/24/80)
CLIFFORD COULTER: ‘Don’t Wanna See You Cry’ / ‘The Better Part Of Me’ / ‘Nothing In The World Is Free’ (US Columbia LP)
EDDY GRANT: ‘My Turn To Love You’ (Virgin 12”)
RHYZE: ‘Just How Sweet Is Your Love’ (US Sam 12”) (BNDA debut 5/10/80)
ISAAC HAYES: ‘It’s All In The Game’ / ‘I Ain’t Never’ (US Polydor LP) (BNDA debut 6/7/80)
MANHATTAN TRANSFER: ‘Twilight Zone’ (Atlantic 7”) (BNDA debut 1/19/80)
S.O.S. BAND: ‘Take Your Time (Do It Right)’ (Tabu 7”) (BNDA debut 4/12/80)

5 thoughts on “May 24, 1980: Surface Noise, Gene Chandler, Randy Crawford, Gayle Adams, Frank Hooker & Positive People”

  1. That “SLOP” acronym really is so offensive looking back from a 2018 perspective! How did the big Knebworth Soul Festival go down? A real Jazz Funk dominance of this weeks new releases, by 1980 the UK really had developed a more sophisticated ear when it came to dance music although the odd rogue “disco horror” would always slip through, usually thanks to support from Smashy & Nicey jocks on Radio 1! Interesting story about the creation of “the Scratch”. 21st century kids have no idea how difficult it was to record your own music and get it to market back in the day.

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  2. Ive always remembered reading this but about The Scratch and also the competition seeing who could name most records featuring the word groove. It’s funny how ive remembered so many of the things he writes in this column.

    Things coming soon are the jap jazz craze and also James mentioning that around this time there were a lot of quite specialist funk records hitting the pop chart and him thinking that this had something to do with the strike that kept Top of the Pops off the air for a few weeks thereby removing the disadvantage American funk records had in that not many of these artists were featured in the studio on TOTP compared with pop artists.

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    1. Interesting point about the TOTPs strike- a similar effect was attributed to the success of US disco/soul records during an earlier strike in late summer 1974 that saw Three Degrees, Stylistics, Johnny Bristol, George McCrae dominate the charts. Easy to forget the lack of exposure for artists at that time with so few opportunities for TV appearances and the added strict rules and crazy quotas applied by the Musician’s Union regarding foreign musicians appearing and performing in the UK. Accompanying promo video’s were still not standard at this time, ABBA being the only act to harness this tool for every release. R&B acts were slow to adopt this practice and then MJ changed the rules

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