ODDS ‘N’ BODS
THEO LOYLA, DJ Federation big cheese, has been made redundant by Polydor in his capacity as disco and regional radio plugger, but, while the future of Polydor’s DJ mailing service seems uncertain, Theo is confident he’ll have a new gig in no time – meanwhile, don’t pester Polydor but wait for their official word . . . Karen Spreadbury and other EMI Motown staffers, understandably emotional about their uncertain position following Motown’s move to RCA, are open to other work offers just in case . . . Morgan Khan’s next monster on R&B Records will be Savanna ‘I Can’t Turn Away‘, currently in privileged limited circulation on acetate, a sensationally strong distinctively voiced guy-sung Luther Vandross-style mellow 57/114-115-116(incl. vibes)-117-116bpm smacking swayer which sneaks up on you so subtly that the next time you hear it, it seems like a long established old fave (and ain’t that what hits are made of?!) . . . Imagination and Linx are now both out on commercial release . . . Motown in the States have finally released the much-sought extended promo version of Rick James ‘Give It To Me Baby’ on commercial 12in (M35001V1), 121bpm with an even longer instrumental flip, in a move which sees them doing an about turn on their policy of not issuing 12in releases, Teena Marie ‘Square Biz’ (the UK 12in version) also being available there now – however, Rick James will not be issued here in this form (not by EMI at any rate) . . . Debbie Harry ‘Backfired’ is now available as an extended 111-112bpm 33 1/3 rpm 12in on French-pressed Chrysalis (CHS 12-2526) . . . Aretha Franklin’s new import LP, reviewed in haste last week, also features a strong jittery jolting 0-114bpm smacking revival of the Rolling Stones ‘You Can’t Always Get What You Want‘, along with many quality slowies and some less appropriate fast ‘uns . . . Stikki Stuff ‘The Wiggle‘ has been picked up from Floppy Discs for Carrere 12in (CAR 206T) . . . Tony Jenkins & Adrian John this Saturday between 1-3pm start a Froggy / Peter Powell-style weekly soul import show over the in-store radio at Peter Robinson Top Shop in the West One branch near Bond Street on London’s Oxford Street . . . Linx’s ubiquitous David Grant was recently spotted dining with Chic’s Nile Rogers & Bernard Edwards, lending credence to the rumour that they could soon be produced by Chic – but is this really necessary, and wouldn’t the reverse be more to the point? . . . RCA Motown could well be readying a Diana Ross greatest hits album to counteract her brand new Capitol-released set in October, while the Diana Ross / Lionel Richie duet 7in is reportedly being “sold-in” to record shops by both EMI and RCA sales forces . . . Julian Wood (Oxford Belfry Hotel) again sends in the local paper’s ad for Botley Blades, this time presenting “The Fantastic Grey Edwards” – if Capital Radio’s Graham Dene got a gig there then maybe he really would be billed as “Grey Rene”! . . . Greg Wilson, packing ’em in at Wigan Pier’s Tuesday jazz-funk nights, has started a series of Wednesday appearances at Manchester Legend featuring up-front stuff . . . London Greek Street’s Le Beat Route is extending its amazing Wednesday’s-only cheap booze, any drink 25p all night, by opening at 5.30pm and charging £1 admission before 9pm, after which it’s £3.50 (or £2.50 if you’re carrying a copy of Record Mirror) – this only on Wednesday, mind . . . I must emphasize (as people still seem to think I’m there) that I only did three nights at Le Beat Route and am as always at Mayfair’s Gullivers in Down Street most Fridays and Saturdays with Graham (another name check?) Gold, this and the next two Fridays finding me alone downstairs and Graham upstairs (to make things more complicated, this Saturday I’ll probably be in North Wales!) . . . Pete Tong is hinting that his Monday haunt at West Kingsdown’s Hilltop near Brands Hatch is where Spandau Ballet hang out on their nights off . . . Paul & Robin Wheeler’s eponymously surnamed elegant new Henley-on-Thames club doesn’t now open until Monday 21st September . . . John Diamond now jocks Tues-thru-Sat at Brighton’s Deacons Night Club in Dyke Road . . . Soho’s Groove Records closes early at 7pm for the next fortnight due to staff hols, so my import reviewing time will be seriously reduced (I don’t usually get there till 8.30!) . . . Ralph Tee of Groove Fortnightly, (as it will be for the time being) has become press officer for Groove Production, the label . . . Chris Ellis (8 Park Road, Wallington, Carshalton Beeches, Surrey) needs more paid ads (£30 full / £20 half page) for the Staines Fusion Few’s freely distributed Caister magazine . . . Anthony Bernards (Sutton Wallabys) sobs “au revoir” to ultra-wow Kathryn Peatfield, jetting off to Vancouver for a year . . . Pointer Sisters ‘Slow Hand’ is a killer chop mix out of the slow pause near the end of ‘Bette Davis Eyes’ for MoR jox . . . Funkapolitan’s 122-123bpm B-side rap synchs sensationally instead of the Modern Romance rap bit . . . Alan Taylor (North Wales Poppeys Country Club) says People’s Choice ‘Jam Jam‘ oldie has become enormous again . . . Martin Platts (Blackburn) was due to run in the local marathon, hopefully earning lotsa sponsored money for the East Lancashire Hospice Fund following a gruelling training period in which he lost 1½ stones over 2000 practice miles (retrospective sponsors call T. Emery on 0254–813460) . . . Devon was actually where I spent most time during the recent heatwave, having clotted cream with everything (except the Salcombe lobster!), and catching Swansea Sound’s mid-morning jock following every record with “That’s the sound of (XYZ) for you there”, or Plymouth Sound (which always had a reputation for playlisting odd material) following its interminable shopping price list with Ivor Biggun’s ‘Bras On 45’! . . . KEEP IT COOL!
LINDA TAYLOR, who came to fame singing with Gonzalez but now is even better known for her contributions to current Morrissey-Mullen and Cayenne releases, makes her Chris Palmer-produced solo debut next week with ‘(You’re) In The Pocket‘ on Groove production 12in . . . however, white label copies could well be about right now.
TREVOR WALTERS: ‘Love Me Tonight’ (Ital ITD 004, via Ital, 01-249 5445).
Absolutely gorgeous dynamite jazzily lilting atmosphere-filled 0-47/93-95bpm 12in lovers rock slowie with scatting gentle background voices behind sweetly wailing soulful Trevor, while guitar doodles through the relaxed rhythm. This is world-class music, on a par with Stevie Wonder, George Benson and all the superstars. Find it, hear it, love it!
SHIRLEY JAMES & DANNY RAY: ‘Right Time Of The Night’ (Black Jack BJ12 012, via Jet Star, 01-961 4422).
Jennifer Warnes oldie makes another instantly familiar sounding attractively catchy 0-77bpm 12in lovers rock killer for the winsome duetists, and already it’s ‘People’s Choice’ on Capital Radio. Danny’s sexy slurring makes it, and he’s solo on the slow sweet 34/68bpm ‘Got To Be True’ flip. They only just missed the national chart last time and sound just as strong a hit team now, so do give ’em a shot.
LEVEL 42: ’43’ (LP ‘Level 42’ Polydor POLS 1036).
Although the whole LP is good it’s not that dance orientated apart from the last two singles and this totally dominating killer, a sensational jazzy instrumental ramble that starts with maddeningly familiar beefily snapping bass before sloping off through 118-119-120-124-126-0-125-124-122bpm to scale some percussive Latin peaks. ‘Turn It On‘ here comes out at 115bpm – the 12in being 117bpm and 7in 119bpm, take your pick! – while the 138bpm ‘Heathrow‘ has that Change ‘Searching’ beat. Continue reading “August 29, 1981: Trevor Walters, Shirley James & Danny Ray, Level 42, Arthur Adams, Mike “T””