December 27, 1980: Hammy Awards 1980 / “The year that disco died” / End of Year Chart 1980

HAMMY AWARDS

ONCE AGAIN the spotlight hits the podium. Ray McVay strikes up the band, Peter Gordeno comes dimpling into view, and . . . what the hell has this to do with disco? Yes folks, on a more serious note, it’s time for the Hammy Awards for 1980!

LABEL OF THE YEAR:
“White Label”, the hottest logo of the lot (at least at Record Shack!).

RECORD COMPANY OF THE YEAR:
WEA (including Atlantic, Elektra, WEA, Warner Bros, Whitfield, Carrere), way out ahead with their number of hits among our year-end chart champs.

RUNNERS UP: (scored by number and stature of hits):
2) CBS (including CBS, Epic, Philadelphia International, Tabu, TK),
3) PRT (including Calibre, Sugarhill, Excaliber, Casablanca, Vanguard),
4) Phonogram (including Mercury, De-Lite, Ensign),
5) RCA (including Solar, RCA, 20th Century-Fox, Milestone),
6) Motown, 7) Arista, 8) EMI (including Capitol, Island, EMI, UA, Source),
9=) DJM/Champagne, 9=) A&M.

HIT OF THE YEAR:
Whispers: ‘And The Beat Goes On’ (Solar).

IMPORT OF THE YEAR:
Ned Doheny: ‘To Prove My Love’ (Japanese CBS Sony LP – evidently due for belated CBS 12in soon).

12in OF THE YEAR:
‘Bits & Pieces III’.

LP CUT OF THE YEAR:
MFSB: ‘Mysteries Of The World’ (US TSOP – purely because it’s the biggest so far not yet to be put out on 12in).

OLDIE OF THE YEAR:
Donald Byrd: ‘(Fallin’ Like) Dominoes’ (US Blue Note LP ‘Live At The Roxy’).

ONES THAT GOT AWAY:
Voyage: ‘I Love You Dancer‘ (US Marlin LP), Lakeside ‘From 9.00 Until‘ (Solar 12in), JR Funk ‘Feel Good Party Time‘ (US Brass 12in).

HITS THAT SHOULD HAVE BEEN (if they’d been better marketed):
Raydio: ‘For Those Who Like To Groove‘ (Arista), Ben E ‘King: ‘Music Trance‘ (Atlantic), Ronnie Laws ‘O.T.B.A. Law‘ (UA), Starship Orchestra: ‘You’re A Star‘ (CBS), Bobby Thurston: ‘You Got What It Takes’ (Epic).

MARKETING PLOY OF THE YEAR: Arista creating a buzz on Tom Browne ‘Funkin For Jamaica’ via acetates and getting the 12ín out here ahead of the US.

RUNNERS UP:
Record Shack proving you can fool some of the people some of the time by making them think that a white label is in itself worth buying blind. Morgan Khan’s belief that anything already recorded can be made more saleable by a remix.

DISCO PROMOTION PERSON OF THE YEAR:
Morgan Khan, still with a word power problem but now slightly better understood, whose enthusiasm for disco is a 24 hour-a-day obsession.

RUNNER UP:
RCA’s David ‘Rowdy’ Yeats, whose real job is actually in Marketing but that doesn’t stop him.

TREND OF THE YEAR:
Jap-Jazz.

EVENT OF THE YEAR:
Showstopper Promotions’ Knebworth National Soul Day (and not any ill-fated imitations!)

JOCK OF THE YEAR:
Chris Hill, still the most visible, audible, sensible and outright most impressive of them all.

MIXER OF THE YEAR:
Kenwood Chef.

IN THE GROOVE:
Chris Palmer.

LADIES’ MAN:
Orin Cozier.

JAPANESE GENTLEMAN:
Sadao Watanabe.

SLIMMER OF THE YEAR:
Sean French.

SHOULD TRY HARDER:
Steve Walsh.

FIRST ON THE ‘URBAN COWBOY’ COUNTRY & WESTERN BAND- WAGON:
James ‘Fish’ Heron (which bandwagon was that, or was it really big in Stranraer?).

IF KELLY MARIE CAN DO IT WHY CAN’T SPARGO AND MASSARA?:
Dave McAleer.

WHATEVER HAPPENED TO:
Boney M, Chic, Sister Sledge?

COMEBACK OF THE YEAR:
James Brown.

ALBUM SLEEVE YOU’D LEAST LIKE TO WAKE UP NEXT TO:
Prince: ‘Dirty Mind’.

WETTEST TIME OF THE YEAR:
February 1980 in Los Angeles with ‘The Wonderful World Of Webb’ Tours.

BEST TRIP OF THE YEAR:
M1 – M6 – A66 – A595 to the Whitehouse in Whitehaven.

MOST TRAVELLED ROUTE OF THE YEAR:
A12 to and from Caister.

COFFEE TABLE TOME OF THE YEAR:
Bruno Brown’s ‘Family Album’.

DANCE OF THE YEAR:
Rowing.

A NICE LADY REALLY:
Loraine Trent.

WHO SHOT J.R.?:
Don Ghostey (or was it Geno D’Sothy?).

WHAT A FOOL BELIEVES (SCAM OF THE YEAR):
Kanu Sukalagwun.

Well, that little lot will have to do. Thanks for all your Christmas cards. See you in the New Year . . . and (I almost forgot) – KEEP IT GOOD!


HINDSIGHT

1980 – THE YEAR that “disco died”. Oh Yeah? The Americans for some reason may have got cold feet and allowed the media to kill the goose that in 1979 had laid so many golden eggs, but here in Britain if anything, disco in chart terms was never more powerful. The economic recession may have resulted in fewer records being sold, and as the year wore on, in fewer people going out dancing so often, but for several reasons it was obvious that the British are a disco-orientated nation. It is true that 1980 probably saw a real fragmentation within the disco arena of clubs, pubs, mobiles, dance halls and all other venues, dividing them into those that specialise in general popular “dance” music and those that specialise in hard jazz-funk, soul or what is known now as disco. Despite this broadening of the mass taste in dance music, the market for soul-type disco showed its strength as sales of other types of music slumped around it. Soul has always been a fairly predictable seller (just as has been the year’s other “unexpected growth music”, heavy metal) so that when sales in general reached a low ebb, the fans and especially DJs buying the disco releases in their usual steady amounts were enough to push certain records into the charts on sales that previously would not have been sufficient to reach the Top 75. Of course, once a record is seen to be selling, even if in fact only relatively within a depressed market, the media may be more inclined to feature it and – the important factor – record shops to stock it. When those conditions were allied to Top Of The Pops being off the TV screens, the disco hits really had a field day! Jazz-funk may not have won over everyone – the year’s biggest seller (John Lennon not-withstanding) was Kelly Marie, proving that old-style zingy “disco” is still alive too, and Liquid Gold, Ottawan, Lipps Inc, the Nolans and more are a legacy from the previous almost prehistoric disco era who still loom large within the sphere of generally popular dance music. However, it’s fairly safe to say that never before have so many surprisingly hard-core soul and jazz-funk records scored so consistently well within the pop sales charts. Even if radio is unwilling to feature the music outside of its specialist programmes (the ratings of which have grown this year too), at least it’s obvious that this is the music that a large and loyal following are prepared to buy. So, disco is dead? Long live disco! 

UK NEWIES

STEVIE WONDER: ‘I Ain’t Gonna Stand For It’ (Motown 12TMG 1215).
Unexpected singles choice in view of the timely ‘Happy Birthday’ and popular ‘Lately’ it’s a laidback then spurting 57 – 114 – 57 – 114 – 115bpm 12in romper with nice snappy bass synth near the end.

JUANITA GOOCHIFRITA & THE ORCHARD STREET BAGEL BAND: ‘Go Funk Yourself’ (EMI 12EMI 5128).
Steadily chugging brassy 111bpm 12in B-side groove with catchy chaps-sung double-entendre title line and splurging synth, spoilt on the vocal plug side by an over-the-top Midler-type Puerto Rican Jewess from the Bronx.

MISTER P.C.: ‘C’Mon Home’ (Fx FX1).
Good smoothly thumping 112bpm 7in jazzy sax instrumental with humming chick, evidently due on 12in and worth checking.

STEELY DAN: ‘Glamour Profession’ (LP ‘Gaucho’ MCA MCF 3090).
Tom Scott / Michael Brecker backed fabulous easily loping 118bpm swayer with nice piano, the 7in-issued ‘Hey Nineteen‘ being a typical steadily pulsating 120bpm languid ticker and ‘Time Out Of Mind‘ a punchier Brecker Bros / David Sanborn-backed 125bpm sparse skipper.

POLICE: ‘Voices Inside My Head’ (LP ‘Zenyatta Mondatta’ A&M AMLH 64831).
Out for ages but this useful bass burbled purposeful 109bpm funk thudder with subdued background vocals slots nicely between Blondie ‘Rapture’ and Bowie ‘Fashion’, the 144bpm ‘Canary In A Coalmine’ and 147 – 148 – 149bpm ‘De Do Do Do De Da Da Da’ of course being big already.

THE SPECIALS: ‘Maggie’s Farm’ (2-Tone CHS TT 16).
Dynamite throbbing percussion-backed strange 137bpm 7in treatment of Bob Dylan / Solomon Burke oldie with Afro feel and disco appeal, flip of their current hit.

ASHFORD & SIMPSON: ‘Happy Endings’ (Warner Bros K 17738T).
Long doodling dead slow intro before standing-still singing finally picks up a 34bpm tempo, the 12in flip being their now once again more popular rolling attractive 114bpm ‘Get Out Your Handkerchief‘ thumper.

CAPTAIN & TENNILLE: ‘Song For My Father’ (LP ‘Keeping Our Love Warm’ Casablanca NBLP 7250).
Moodily starting specialist 60/120 – 62/123 – 61/122 – 135 – 65/130bpm straight jazz instrumental piano patterer suddenly erupts out of some great short breaks into Brazilian percussion – and is convincing enough for John Grant & Colin Curtis to pretend it’s a new version by originator Horace Silver!

MASSARA: ‘Margherita’ (Champagne FIZY 1002).
Languidly clapping 115bpm 12in Europop swinger, better in its Italian-sung alternative A-side version and rather good of its type, though without the brash ghastliness needed to make a hit. Why wasn’t I sent this, McAleer?

RAYDIO: ‘It’s Time To Party Now’ (Arista, ARIST 12380).
Last Spring’s jiggly thudding 112bpm monotonous funk chanter now on 3-track 12in with the slow-introed slinky 104bpm ‘More Than One Way To Love A Woman‘ and throbbing 43/87bpm ‘Can’t Keep From Crying’.

SLICK: ‘Forget You (It’s Too Late)’ (Fantasy FTCT 193).
Wheezing synth introed naggingly catchy slinkily chugging subtly accelerating 110 (intro) – 112 – 118 – 117bpm 12in girlie group thumper which never did much on import many months ago.

THE DAZZ BAND: ‘Shake It Up’ (Motown TMG 1213).
Kinsman Dazz as was with a lacklustre plodding 113bpm 7in jitterer serviced on promo-only 111bpm 12in demo flipped by the separately issued HIGH INERGY: ‘Hold On To My Love‘ (Motown TMG 1214), a Switch-accompanied perky 0 – 102 – 104 – 0bpm 7in jogging smacker.

MAVE & DAVE: `Do You Really Want My Love’ (Red Stripe SON 2215).
Tony Wilson-penned Hot Chocolate-type facile reggae-flavoured pleasant 101 – 103bpm 7in pop swayer.


DISCO CHAMPS

THIS YEAR for the first time, Alan Jones (who does the hard part in compiling our UK Disco chart) has based the year-end honour roll of chart champs purely on the actual “chart points” scored by each title at the time of its success, rather than on the usual inverse-ratio system that would normally just use the printed weekly Top 30 as its basis. Thus a few surprises have been thrown up. For example, Tony Rallo never went higher than No.3 but finishes fourth, having spent 27 weeks in the chart, most of them fairly high including eighteen weeks in the Top 20. On the other hand, George Benson’s ‘Give Me The Night’ spent seven weeks at No. 1 but finished seventeenth overall, this being due partly to the fact that either side of its stint at the top it experienced a rapid rise and decline, and partly to the fact that for several weeks it secured only a reasonable points total but stayed top by default due to a dearth of other high scorers.

End Of Year Disco Chart 1980

01. AND THE BEAT GOES ON – Whispers – Solar 12”
02. STOMP! – Brothers Johnson – A&M 12”
03. I SHOULDA LOVED YA – Narada Michael Walden – Atlantic 12”
04. HOLDIN’ ON – Tony Rallo – Calibre 12”
05. CHECK OUT THE GROOVE – Bobby Thurston – Epic 12”
06. OOPS UP SIDE YOUR HEAD – Gap Band – Mercury 12”
07. TONIGHT I’M ALRIGHT – Narada Michael Walden – Atlantic 12”
08. ROCK WITH YOU – Michael Jackson – Epic 12”
Note: This chart accidentally omitted Odyssey – Use It Up And Wear it out at Number 9 – the omission is mentioned in James’s January 17th column.
09. DON’T STOP ‘TIL YOU GET ENOUGH – Michael Jackson – Epic 12”
10. DON’T PUSH IT DON’T FORCE IT – Leon Haywood – 20th Century-Fox 12”

11. YOU GAVE ME LOVE / USE YOUR BODY & SOUL – Crown Heights Affair – De-Lite 12”
12. LET’S GET SERIOUS – Jermaine Jackson – Motown 12”
13. BACK TOGETHER AGAIN – Roberta Flack & Donny Hathaway – Atlantic 12”
14. BEHIND THE GROOVE – Teena Marie – Motown 12”
15. THE GROOVE – Rodney Franklin – CBS 12”
16. FUNKIN’ FOR JAMAICA (N.Y.) – Tom Browne – Arista GRP 12”
17. GIVE ME THE NIGHT – George Benson – Warner Bros 12”
18. JUST CAN’T GIVE YOU UP – Mystic Merlin – Capitol 12”
19. YOU KNOW HOW TO LOVE ME – Phyllis Hyman – Arista 12”
20. OFF THE WALL – Michael Jackson – Epic 7”

21. JUMP TO THE BEAT – Stacy Lattisaw – Atlantic 12”
22. WE GOT THE FUNK – Positive Force – Sugarhill 12”
23. RAPPER’S DELIGHT – Sugarhill Gang – Sugarhill 12”
24. YOU’RE LYING – Linx – Chrysalis 12”
25. CELEBRATION – Kool & The Gang – De-Lite 12”
26. YOU GOT WHAT IT TAKES – Bobby Thurston – Epic 12”
27. I LIKE (WHAT YOU’RE DOING TO ME) – Young & Company – Excaliber 12”
28. BRAZILLIAN LOVE AFFAIR – George Duke – Epic 12”
29. I WANNA BE YOUR LOVER – Prince – Warner Bros 12”
30. BURNIN’ HOT – Jermaine Jackson – Motown 12”

31. JAZZ CARNIVAL – Azymuth – Milestone 12”
32. CAN’T FAKE THE FEELING – Geraldine Hunt – Champagne 12”
33. WORKING MY WAY BACK TO YOU – Detroit Spinners – Atlantic 12”
34. UPSIDE DOWN – Diana Ross – Motown 12”
35. LOVE X LOVE – George Benson – Warner Bros 12”
36. LOVE INJECTION – Trussel – Elektra 12”
37. TOO HOT- Kool & The Gang – De-Lite 12”
38. FUNKYTOWN – Lipps Inc. – Casablanca 12”
39. CUBA / BETTER DO IT SALSA – Gibson Brothers – Island 12”
40. UNLOCK THE FUNK / BLACKJACK / FAR BEYOND – Locksmith – Arista 12”

41. CASANOVA – Coffee – De-Lite 12”
42. SEARCHING – Change – WEA 12”
43. IN THE FOREST – BABY’O – Calibre 12”
44. THIS FEELIN’ – Frank Hooker & Positive People – DJM 12”
45. THE SCRATCH – Surface Noise – WEA 12”
46. LADIES NIGHT – Kool & The Gang – Mercury 12”
47. MASTERBLASTER (JAMMIN’) – Stevie Wonder – Motown 12”
48. SHANTE – Mass Production – Atlantic 12”
49. JUST A TOUCH OF LOVE – Slave – Atlantic 12”
50. NIGHT CRUISER – Deodato – Warner Bros 12”

51. BACKSTROKIN’ – Fatback – Spring 12”
52. QUE SERA MI VIDA – Gibson Brothers – Island 12”
53. BIG TIME – Rick James – Motown 12”
54. RHYTHM TALK – Jocko – Phil Int 12”
55. TAKE YOUR TIME (DO IT RIGHT) – S.O.S. Band – Tabu 12”
56. DON’T STOP THE FEELING – Roy Ayers – Polydor 12”
57. AMIGO – Black Slate – Ensign 12”
58. CISSELIN’ HOT – Chuck Cissel – Arista 12”
59. KEEP IN TOUCH – Freeez – Calibre 12”
60. DANCE YOURSELF DIZZY – Liquid Gold – Polo 12”

61. GIVE UP THE FUNK – BT Express – Calibre 12”
62. A LOVERS HOLIDAY /THE GLOW OF LOVE – Change – WEA 12”
63. TASTE OF BITTER LOVE – Gladys Knight & The Pips – CBS 12”
64. IT’S A DISCO NIGHT – Isley Brothers – Epic 12”
65. IS IT LOVE YOU’RE AFTER – Rose Royce – Whitfield 12”
66. HAVEN’T YOU HEARD – Patrice Rushen – Elektra 12”
67. I NEED YOUR LOVIN’ – Teena Marie – Motown 12”
68. INHERIT THE WIND – Wilton Felder – MCA 12”
69. GONNA GET ALONG WITHOUT YOU NOW – Viola Wills – Ariola Hansa 12”
70. WE GOT THE GROOVE – Players Association – Vanguard 12”

71. COULD YOU BE LOVED – Bob Marley & The Wailers – Island 12”
72. HUNT UP WIND – Hiroshi Fukumura – Champagne 12”
73. ON THE ONE – Cameo – Casablanca 12”
74. RIGHT IN THE SOCKET / THE RIGHT TIME FOR US – Shalamar – Solar 12”
75. FOR THOSE WHO LIKE TO GROOVE – Raydio – Arista 12”
76. SHAKIT – Brass Construction – United Artists 12”
77. THE SECOND TIME AROUND – Shalamar – Solar 12”
78. STANDING OVATION – GQ – Arista 12”
79. FEELS LIKE I’M IN LOVE – Kelly Marie – Calibre Plus 12”
80. LOVELY ONE – Jacksons – Epic 7”/French 12”

81. I OWE YOU ONE – Shalamar – Solar 12”
82. SPACER – Sheila & B. Devotion – Carrere 12”
83. BE THANKFUL FOR WHAT YOU’VE GOT – William DeVaughn – EMI 12”
84. MUSIC – One Way / Al Hudson – MCA 12”
85. GROOVE ME – Fern Kinney – US TK 12”/WEA 12”
86. FALCON – Rah Band – DJM 12”
87. YOUNG CHILD – Ronnie Laws – United Artists 12”
88. LIGHT UP THE NIGHT – Brothers Johmson – A&M 12”
89. D.I.S.C.O. – Ottawan – Carrere 12”
90. LONDON TOWN / PETE’S CRUSADE – Light Of The World – Ensign 12”

91. ARE YOU READY – Billy Ocean – GTO 12”
92. NO MORE TEARS (ENOUGH IS ENOUGH) – Barbra Streisand & Donna Summer – CBS 12”
93. IT’S ALRIGHT – Sho Nuff – Ensign 12”
94. DO YOU FEEL MY LOVE – Eddy Grant – Ensign 12”
95. THIGHS HIGH (GRIP YOUR HIPS AND MOVE) – Tom Browne – Arista GRP 12”


CHART TOPPERS

NEW YEAR’S EVE traditionally finds many DJs reviewing the past year, so here for those who might find it useful is a listing of the number one disco hits of 1980.

Dec 22 RAPPER’S DELIGHT: Sugarhill Gang – 4 wks
Jan 26 OFF THE WALL: Michael Jackson – 2 wks
Feb 9 WE GOT THE FUNK: Positive Force – 1 wk
Feb 16 AND THE BEAT GOES ON: Whispers – 7 wks
Apr 5 STOMP: Brothers Johnson – 5 wks
May 10 CHECK OUT THE GROOVE: Bobby Thurston – 1 wk
May 17 THE GROOVE: Rodney Franklin – 3 wks
Jun 7 I SHOULDA LOVED YA: Narada Michael Walden 1 wk
Jun 14 LET’S GET SERIOUS: Jermaine Jackson – 1 wk
Jun 21 BACK TOGETHER AGAIN: Flack/Hathaway – 2 wks
Jul 5 THE SCRATCH: Surface Noise – 1 wk
Jul 12 JUMP TO THE BEAT: Stacy Lattisaw – 5 wks
Aug 16 USE IT UP AND WEAR IT OUT: Odyssey – 1 wk
Aug 23 GIVE ME THE NIGHT: George Benson – 7 wks
Oct 11 YOU’RE LYING: Linx – 6 wks
Nov 22 CELEBRATION: Kool & The Gang – 5 wks


HIT NUMBERS

Beats Per Minute for last week’s pop chart entries on 7in are:
Gary Numan 103f, John Lennon 50/25 – 49/24 – 0f, Rod Stewart 0 – 35/69f, The Look 87 – 175 – 181 (perpetually repeating runout groove!), Elvis Costello 124/62 – 126r, Racey 0 – 163 – 169f, Visage 56½ – 113/ 56½f, Sad Café 0 – 28 (intro) – 123 – 127 – 128f, EWF 156 (intro) – 116 -119f.

One thought on “December 27, 1980: Hammy Awards 1980 / “The year that disco died” / End of Year Chart 1980”

  1. Fascinating to read a contemporary “on the spot” review of 1980 by Hammy. UK clubbers certainly had become more tribal and the music more sophisticated- all in the few short years since 1974/5. The soul/dance music fans buying were certainly instrumental in regularly placing more soul/dance oriented music on the mainstream pop charts. The year end chart is arguably the best of the golden disco era. 1980 really was the high water mark for disco/dance in the UK

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