September 6, 1980: R.J.’s Latest Arrival, Ernie Watts, J.R. Funk & The Love Machine, Queen, Stevie Wonder

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

BADEM’S DISKOTEK ’80 equipment exhibition at London’s Bloomsbury Centre Hotel is this weekend, the only public (i.e. you, me and other DJs) day being Saturday 6th from 10am – 6pm, trade (i.e. dealers) days being Sun / Mon / Tuesday – comments are invited . . . Morgan Khan, back from the States and lurid video viewing, finally reveals that first releases on his new Excalibre label (ex-Calibre, geddit?!) will be Geraldine Hunt and future BT Express product plus several UK groups are also currently recording, while his RIB Division promotion service will be plugging Inner City, Buddah, Roadshow, WMOT, Source and many other labels material. Mailouts to DJs starting with Michael Henderson, Hiroshi Fukumura and a Judy Roberts newie imminently, his number being c/o Red Bus at 01-402 9111 (but don’t bother applying for his list if you’re not already on his old one) . . . George Benson’s follow-up 12in couples ‘Love X Love’ / ‘Óff Broadway’ / ‘On Broadway’, Deodato’s being ‘Night Cruiser’ / ‘Love Magic’ . . . Diana Ross’s US newie is rightly ‘I’m Coming Out’ but here we get ‘My Old Piano’ . . . Linx ‘You’re Lying’ has a remixed instrumental flip on Chrysalis (the 7in anyway, CHS 2461), while Ottawan ‘D.I.S C.O.’ is now on 7in (and promo 12in) in both English and French versions (Carrere CAR 161) . . . McFadden & Whitehead ‘I Heard It In A Love Song’, on US 12in promo due commercially here next week, has been spliced from the 7in into a bootleg acetate 12in by someone evidently impatient . . . Funktion starts at Mayfair’s Penthouse Club this Friday (5) and switches to Sundays at Battersea Bennett but has temporarily pulled out of Dial 9 as too many big-spending Arabs were still being admitted, their Lipps Inc requests clashing with Funktion’s jazz-funk policy (details of this exciting moveable-venue club on 01-352 7349) . . . Chris Brown’s hefty ‘Family Album’ photo book is finally out and it really covers comprehensively all the events at which funk mafia followers can claim “I was there!” – so, if you was there you could be in the book, which costs £7 or £8 by post from The Mail House, 111A Kew Road, Richmond, Surrey TW9 2PN . . . ‘Family Album’ perusers should note that since our various photos were taken, Tom Holland has lost 5 stone, Sean French and myself 3 1/2 stone (each!), and Graham Canter has put on a lot! . . . Tunbridge Wells’ recently opened Carriages club was burnt down early lást Sunday morning, arson being suspected . . . Canvey Island’s infamous Hill haunt, the Goldmine has instituted a ‘Stanley’ award for significant contributors to the jazz-funk cause, consisting of mounted antique miner’s lanterns . . .  Showstoppers’ sold-out Bank Holiday Brighton Beach Party saw the unveiling of their new computerised illuminated message board, now installed at Southgate Royalty . . . Kev Hill (Brentwood 0277 221309), distraught that due to a mail screw-up his deposit never arrived, wonders if anyone has four spare tickets to the first October Caister . . . Noss Ryan (Maidstone 861951 / 50151) plays a wide variety of black music and wants a club gig – who doesn’t? . . . Greg Davies has left the now Top 50-orientated Watford New Penny but plugs his promos at Stevenage Bo Jangles and Luton Sands still . . . Trevor Funk finds himself playing a lot of class oldies like Natalie Cole and Dee Dee Bridgewater, even Nat King Cole, amongst the jazz at Covent Garden’s hip Rumours wine bar at weekends (usually Fridays) . . . I did well last Thursday night after a few days with my parents 150 miles up the A1, I drove home to London to find I’d forgotten my keys, so – after a meal at the Rock Garden with Cuddles, Zit and the Brat – I drove back to get the keys and then down again in time to put Roger Scott’s Story Of The ’60s and Cruising together – phew! . . . Graham Bond of Teesvalley Roadshow says, “Jazz-funk up here in the North-East is like what Kelly Marie is to the so-called funky South – let’s get back to our roots, disco music, which everyone can freak out to, as it’s what the public want and not what we like that makes a good disco night” – hmm, d’you think jazz-funk fans don’t freak out down South? . . . Richard ‘Lofty’ Lofthouse gigged at a Gateshead social club where a gigantic Geordie skinhead asked him to follow the Gap Band (to which everyone was rowing on the floor) with Judge Dread’s old ‘Up With The Cock’ – and to Lofty’s amazement and the girls concern all the fellas came up with a brand new dance from the same position! . . . Andy Greg (Loughton) mixes Cameron ‘Funkdown’ through the backing-less bit of George Benson . . . Brass Construction ‘How Do You Do’ is a killer out of Fred Wesley ‘House Party’ (how long before the latter’s on much-needed 12in?) . . . KEEP IT GOOD.


IMPORTS

R.J.’S LATEST ARRIVAL: ‘Ultimate Masterpiece’ (US Stand-By VR SB-1001-D).
Excellent bassily bumping jaunty 118 – 120 – 121bpm 12in jolter with squawking chix counterpointing mellow chaps goes into a percussion and conversational back-chat break before pleasant piano fills in for a jazzily swaying finish, this piano coming to the fore on the instrumental remix flip with extra echoing bits, the whole thing having “an old Lacy Lady flavour” comments young Martin Collins!

ERNIE WATTS: ‘Just Holdin’ On’ (LP ‘Look In Your Heart’ US Elektra 6E-285).
Instant Funk ‘Got My Mind Made Up’- influenced dynamite jauntily jiggling steady 115bpm chix-supported smacker, sadly short at just 4:12 as apart from the unconvincing blatantly “disco” 123bpm ‘Dance Music‘ this sax / woodwind multi-instrumentalist’s set is pure jazz with the 123 – 0bpm ‘Marching To Cretonia’ being quite Frank Zappa-ish. How about a 12in, Fred?

J.R. FUNK AND THE LOVE MACHINE: ‘Feel Good, Party Time’ (US Brass BRDS 2511).
Useful unaccompanied “get up” start to a great powerful James Brown-type heavily funky 113 – 116 (rhythm) – 113 (guitar/chix) – 112 – 113 – 114bpm 12in thudder that chugs along through several segments and varimixes beautifully with ‘Unlock The Funk’, the angrily buzzing synth being brought out more on the instrumental flipContinue reading “September 6, 1980: R.J.’s Latest Arrival, Ernie Watts, J.R. Funk & The Love Machine, Queen, Stevie Wonder”