April 30, 1983: Brass Construction, Steve Harvey, C.O.D, Mary Jane Girls, The Chi-Lites


DAVID JOSEPH ‘Let’s Live It Up (Nite People)‘ will be the follow-up in about two weeks, a bubbly 120½bpm jitterer tied to a busy more electronic beat and possibly less catchy as a pop crossover than last time — but sure to be big in the clubs . . . Steve Harvey is not on Elite but on Pressure, who share the same building, and released Norman Giscombe Junior’s debut in 1980 — meanwhile, Elite/Challenge’s Andy Sojka has kicked off the new extremely limited Blackmarketing mailing list (great name!) with a (needlessly?) remixed Craig Peyton ‘Be Thankful For What You Got‘ white label, which will be on Elite! . . . Island’s Bryan O’Connor, who claims “Galaxy is currently outselling David Bowie on 12in”, will be reviewing his mailing list soon and warns “anyone not pulling their weight will be knocked off” . . . Phonogram’s Jeff Young is joined by DJ/import distributor Mike Sefton as a similarly knowledgeable plugger from May 9 . . . Prince Charles ‘In The Streets‘ has evidently been remixed for Greyhound 12in . . . Gladys Knight is indeed on UK 12in (CBS TA3314) . . . George Clinton ‘Atomic Dog’ unseated ‘Billie Jean’ as top US Black single — and has a dynamite video, if you can catch it . . . Edwin Starr appears at Mayfair’s Gullivers for the next two Thursdays (28/5), sandwiching the Chi-Lites on Wednesday (4) — mmm-hmm! . . . Second Image continue touring at Preston Clouds (Thur 28), Retford Porterhouse (Fri), Harlow Benny’s (Sat), Purley Cinderella Rockerfella’s (Sun), Ilford Room At The Top (Tues), before supporting all the Maze concerts . . . Galaxy’s Phil Fearon PAs Saturday (30) at Peckham Kisses, where Froggy makes his first monthly appearance alongside regulars Steve Walsh, Lyndon T, Gordon Mac . . . Steve Walsh, Tony Jenkins, Owen Washington, Ian Shaw, Chris Ellis, Tim Westwood soul London Lyceum’s Bank Holiday Monday alldayer (2) — and mafioso Chris Brown joins the National Soul Festival line-up for the next one on May 30 . . . Capital’s cool talkin’ pin-up Gary Crowley joins George ‘Zorba’ Alexander for a return engagement at Harrow Leisure Centre on Friday (29) . . . ‘DJ Of The Year’ winner at Edgbaston’s Faces French was Franklyn Hughes (Long Eaton Donovan’s), runners-up being Mick McGinley (Wakefield Heppy’s), Ian Plant (Blackpool Raffles), Jimmy Franks (Birmingham Cagney’s) — all from north of Watford, you’ll note . . . Brian Cardno has started Saturdays (Thurs/Fri too when possible) at Berwick’s Red Lion in Castle Gate, pub hours (free admission) and as up-front as punters and finances will allow . . . Darryl Hayden has stopped managing nightclubs to concentrate on a mobile big-screen video show, which you can see at Wimbledon Tiffany’s (Thurs), London Lyceum (Sat), Mortlake Rumps (Mon) weekly — the Monday Rumps gig includes an audition slot for which two aspiring jocks are always needed, and incidentally John ‘Kojak’ Harvey has resurfaced at Rumps spinning soul oldies (what else?) on Thursdays . . . Dave Thomas has switched to Shrewsbury Tiffany’s on Saturdays, doing under-18s on Mondays . . . Steve Davies is part of a DJ team who pack 1,300 under-18s into Kirkcaldy Bentleys every Monday! . . . David Bryant however does over-23s at Camberley Splinters on Mondays — hey Dave, get hip! . . . Frank Samms is “now well established Sunday night at Addleston’s Holly Tree, and Mondays at London’s Maximus in Leicester Square playing rock and electro music” . . . Nick Ratcliffe & John Dene on Tuesdays at Guildford’s Cinderella Rockerfellas have gone mad on phasing, doing it to practically everything — and to my surprise I’ve had much praise for the phasing on my Wish remix, which I wouldn’t mind re-doing with less gimmickry . . . C.O.D. ‘In The Bottle’/Tyrone Brunson ‘The Smurf’ megamix begins with some electronic drum beats laid down by Streetwave’s resident engineer Rob Mallett (a big inspiration and help with the studio tricks), a quick ‘Smurf’ scratch before editing alternate beats into some “harmonized” instrumental, the “uno dos” countdown then synched over the music before it then synchs one bar apart, phases, adds Rob on electronic drum “gating” another synched copy, then runs the vocal over the instrumental before hitting the main “gated” break which segues into a similarly “gated” ‘Smurf’ before returning to a less tampered with but much re-edited mainly instrumental finale — so now you know! (“gating” is a trick that cuts out the body of the beat to leave just the peaks) . . . PRT or Streetwave must have something running slow, as somehow both my remixes have ended up 2bpm slower than anticipated . . . I-Level I am delighted to see has posed fewer problems to other jocks than experienced by me, when on its first play the floor just vanished — like gone, baby, goodbye! — which was upsetting as I’d only played it because I thought they were good . . . Frenchie (Blackpool) is not alone in noticing how Burgess Gardner’s album uses several old Al Hudson backing tracks, ‘Gemstone‘ in particular being nothing less than ‘Spread Love‘! . . . Catherine Harris (Preston — was that you at Gully’s last Saturday?) reckons Jeffrey Daniel is seen looking mean behind the first warehouse door in Michael Jackson’s ‘Beat It’ video . . . David Grant took time out from his club PAs to look in at Gully’s and tell me to lay off with the “Jeffrey Daniel” comments — gulp! . . . Kev Hill (Brentwood) ended up gigging (playing tapes from his car) just for the booze at Easter on his fruitless trip to Cornwall, when asked to help make a “jazz-funk” night at Liskard’s Carlton Suite more accurately just that . . . ‘Darktown Strutters’ Ball somehow moved ‘Downtown’ in my party top 20 last week! . . . Danny & The Juniors founder Danny Rapp apparently killed himself on April 5 in Arizona, aged 42 — ‘At The Hop’ will never die, though . . . Derek Lawrence (75 Argyll Ave, Southall, Middx) needs copies of Maurice Starr ‘Let’s Dance’ and Lime ‘You’re My Magician (Instrumental)’, adding that some of his Saturday punters at Southall White Hart’s Friends refer to electrophonic phunk as ‘ET music’ — Extremely Tedious! . . . Adrian Dunbar (Bournemouth Adams Sun/Tues, Southampton Warehouse Thurs/Fri/Sat) says Julius Brown ‘Party‘ sandwiches perfectly with Sylvester ‘Be With You‘ / ‘Don’t Stop‘ — he also hopes for some mailing list recognition now he’s working five nights a week, playing up-front black as well as gay music (in fact he’s so busy he’s considering giving up his day job!) . . . Chester Browton (Selsy) says ‘Beat It’ is a killer mix with Ike & Tina Turner ‘Nutbush City Limits’ (150-154bpm), but somehow he hasn’t noticed we print not one, not even two, but actually three different types of disco chart! . . . DJs not on record pluggers mailing lists, or at least who buy a lot of their material, may have nothing much to gain by sending us their charts but those are the ones we especially want — please? . . . YOWSAH YOWSAH YOWSAH!


BRASS CONSTRUCTION: ‘We Can Work It Out’ (LP ‘Conversations’ US Capitol ST-12268)
This one’ll blow you away! Already a monster for those lucky few serviced with promos, it’s a fantastic old-style ‘Movin’-type 117-119-118-117-116-118bpm hard driving leaper full of life (acappella fade finish), dominating the solidly trucking set’s 12in-issued 114½-116bpm ‘Walkin’ The Line‘ and the groovin’ movin’ 121-122-123-122bpm ‘I Do Love You‘, 118-119bpm ‘No Communication‘, 109½bpm ‘Physical Attraction‘, 111-114-117bpm ‘It’s A Shame‘, 130-131bpm ‘Breakdown‘, and nice mellow instrumental 0-98-100bpm ‘Easy‘. Ha cha cha!

STEVE HARVEY: ‘Something Special’ (Pressure PRESS 005, via PRT)
Perhaps significantly our top request at Gully’s already, an excellent insistently pushing simple sparse 117bpm 12in thwacker with nice little twiddles between the cool title line repetition, instrumental flip.

C.O.D.: ‘In The Bottle’ (Streetwave WAVEL 2)
The much loved/hated 117bpm vocal and instrumental electrophonic versions of Gil Scott Heron’s classic are here on 3-track 12in flipped by my own 115-116-115bpm ‘Special Megamix incorporating ‘The Smurf’ by Tyrone Brunson‘ (for full description see Odds ‘N’ Bods). Getting great floor reaction, this one I’m quite proud of. Continue reading “April 30, 1983: Brass Construction, Steve Harvey, C.O.D, Mary Jane Girls, The Chi-Lites”

April 23, 1983: Lenny White, Ingram, Wilton Felder, Joe Sample, Marcia Griffiths


CAISTER’S BIGGIES apparently were Lonnie Liston Smith, Booker Newberry III and Brass Construction (at least these were heard the most by my spy!), Fred Dove’s videos dominated the final afternoon and PA’s by Galaxy’s Phil Fearon and the solo David Grant evidently went down a storm . . . Elite snapped up the hot Steve Harvey ‘Something Special‘ for imminent release, and also have the simmering Strike One ‘Can’t Touch Me Anymore‘ on the way . . . TC Curtis ‘Bump And Slide’ is another long range forecast tip . . . Streetwave’s version of C.O.D. ‘In the Bottle’ includes another of my “hit piggyback” remixes (and I do mean re-mix this time), amidst electronically altered “gating” it slips into Tyrone Brunson ‘The Smurf’ . . . Roy Ayers Uno Melodic product has been picked up here by Pinnacle, who also have future James Brown recordings from his Churchill label . . . David Grant’s 7in is wrapped in a real glamour-job colour poster, with four “Jeffrey Daniel” poses! . . . Peterborough’s Jeremy Payne, who also builds up mixes on a cassette deck with its pause button broken from over-use, more importantly edits an amazingly ambitious (and successfully so) fanzine called ‘Alternative Mix’ which is a crammed 20p-worth of all-embracing reviews, news, articles and charts — potential advertisers/contributors/subscribers will be equally impressed if they get a copy from Jeremy at The Willows, Spalding Road, Frognall, Deeping St James, Peterborough PE6 8SA . . . Steve Walsh starts this week funking Saturdays at Peckham Kisses, while on Tuesday (26) at Ilford’s Room At The Top he plugs PRT product with John ‘Nick’ Osborne, who in turn joins him and David Rodigan every Sunday at Streatham’s Cat Whiskers . . . David Rodigan, Capital Radio’s reggaemeister and currently co-star of BBC TV’s ‘Shackleton’ series, recently returned from a Jamaican jaunt to report that radio there plays more American soft soul than home-grown reggae (so it’s radio programmers versus the world there too!), and far more singles are just on 7in as people can’t afford the 12in size — in fact David’s UK 12in dub plates were a major excitement there, in what people think of as the home of reggae! . . . Glen Ricks’ sweet slow 35bpm ‘Heart Of My World‘ (Jamaican Black Jack 7in) currently mash up de nation murderation style, produced by Glen (real name Ricketts) and our own Curtis Simon with strings added in Canada, and brought back here by the box load in Rodigan’s baggage! . . . Soul On Sound’s Tony Jenkins & Chris Ellis join the National Soul Festival line-up of Walsh/Washington/Westwood/Shaw at the May 2 Lyceum line-up . . . Chris Hill & Colin Hudd play cops ‘n’ robbers at Dartford Flicks this Friday (22) . . . Second Image continue their tour at Birmingham Snobs (Thur 21), Leysdown Stage 3 (Sat), Luton Pink Elephant (Sun), Glasgow Henry Afrika’s (Tues/Wed), Preston Clouds (Thur) . . . Andy Baker is now fully occupied jocking seven nights plus lunchtimes at Rhyl’s Orange Peel disco (on the promenade under the Haven Hotel) — I hope he doesn’t go round the twist (geddit?)! . . . Rowdy Yeats, yes, has left PRT now, again . . . Claes Ockenholt in Denmark — where records are indeed expensive but professional DJs earn around £1,000 a month all in, so (as he charmingly puts it) “somebody must make some bacon”! — now stocks over 3,000 12in singles titles, Soul On Sound and the air-mailed RECORD MIRROR at Ding Dong Records, Silkegade (behind Illum warehouse on Stroget), Copenhagen . . . Danes evidently dance to anything by Divine, and a Dutch remix of Wham ‘Young Guns’ is hot too . . . Canadian reader Vince Degiorgio, boss of the new Power label (Ambiance ‘Na Na Hey Hey’), recently rang me from Toronto and nattered for all of twenty minutes! . . . Bill Fredericks tells me ‘Too Busy Thinking About My Baby‘ was recorded long before Forrest, but began by being much faster . . . JFM’s Dave Collins was particularly impressive in his latest fill-in role on Capital’s dawn shift last week, playing a lot of great music and being very listenable no matter what the material . . . Michael Jackson ‘Beat It’ as suspected is certainly not a big “black” record . . . Norman St John Stevas had a chat about mixing at my gig last Saturday, but is not noticeably a good dancer to today’s rhythms . . . Nick Ratcliffe reckons he must be the first DJ to do a 21st party for a girl who later frolicked in the nude in the sea in the sun in The Sun with Prince Andrew, Tracey Lamb (she’d celebrated at Haslemere’s Good Knight Country Club)! . . . Al Dupres recommends Cardiff’s apres-gig eaters should try the Goldburger in Guildhall Place, open until 3am — seriously, let’s hear about more, all, or at least late, night eateries around the country . . . Jonzun Crew’s import album is on lovely white vinyl but contains nothing of note that we don’t already know . . . Phil Mitchell (Newcastle-upon-Tyne Julies) has as a featured oldie this month, the Blackbyrds ‘April Showers‘ — couldn’t he have found a version of ‘Stormy Weather’ instead? . . . if you think this column’s going to end with “yes indeedy” again, NO SIRREE!


LENNY WHITE: ‘Didn’t Know About Love (Till I Found You)’ (US Elektra 0-67923)
Superb creamily pulsating chick-sung 105-106½bpm jogger oozing class, on 3-track 12in with an instrumental version and the exotic slow 97bpm ‘Tell Him (Fala Para Ele)‘. A must!

INGRAM: ‘Groovin’ On A Groove’ (LP ‘Would You Like To Fly’ US Mirage 90075-1)
Ingram is the whole Ingram Family, not just James M Ingram, and while brilliant creators of musical texture they keep lyrics to a minimum (on all dancers bar the Bobby Womack-ish 106-109bpm title track), hottest newie being this irresistibly churning 121(start)-123bpm Peoples Choice-ish groove, not to forget the sensational 12in-issued 116-114-113-114-114½–114-114½-116½bpm ‘Smoothin’ Groovin‘, 108½bpm ‘DJ’s Delight‘ flip, and indecisively jolting 110-112bpm ‘We Like To Do It‘ plus some slowies. Lovely stuff!

WILTON FELDER: ‘Summer Nights In Rio’ (LP ‘Gentle Fire’ MCA MCF-3167)
Already rushed out here, the Crusaders saxist and Joe Sample kick up an infectious brassy 123-122-122½bpm Latin leaper with jazzy solos (also on promo 12in c/w Joe’s ‘The Hunter‘), mellow joggers being the lovely slinky 96-95-94bpm ‘Somewhere In My Past‘ and 94½bpm ‘Driftin’ On A Dream‘, but A Taste Of Honey’s two vocal tracks let the set down rather. Continue reading “April 23, 1983: Lenny White, Ingram, Wilton Felder, Joe Sample, Marcia Griffiths”

April 16, 1983: David Grant, Neil Lockwood, Booker Newberry III, Shirley Lites, Craig Peyton


COUNTY SOUND, Guildford’s commercial station which hit the airwaves (96.6 FM/203 MW) on Bank Holiday Monday, is aimed at Surrey but reaches much of London and has a Saturday 6-9pm Street Life soul show hosted by Nigel Williams with help from Steve Walsh (yes indeedy, indeed!) . . . Steve Walsh this Saturday (16) scampers from Guildford to gig at Leysdown Stage 3, and from next Tuesday (19) weekly jazz-funks Ilford Room At The Top with John ‘Nick’ Osbourne . . . Showstoppers Caister XI is this weekend but sadly a mobile gig will keep me from it — still, four years on after attending 8 out of 10, I know what they’re like by now! . . . SEDA’s Spring Disco Fair VII is on Sunday (17) at the Great Danes Hotel (Ashford end of the motorway near Maidstone), noon-7pm, doubtless worth a visit if you’re into equipment and socialising with other DJs . . . Mike Shaft’s ‘TCOB NOW’ will be changing into ‘Groovi’ on 12th May, a monthly magazine to begin with, jointly edited by Mike oop t’north and Ralph Tee dahn the smoke, Ralph handling production — and he’s also currently compiling a fortnightly 8-page ‘Groove On’ give-away mag for Soho’s Groove shop (you get one per record purchase), so you can forget ‘Groove Weekly’ as it’s now ‘Fortnightly’ and ‘Monthly’! . . . Imagination’s hits have been remixed into dub versions for a ‘Night Dubbin’ LP released next month for only £2.99 (shades of Human League Unlimited?), promoed by a so far extremely exclusive 12in coupling (never to be commercially available) of the 0-128½bpm ‘Heart ‘n’ Soul‘ and dynamite 113¾-113¼bpm ‘Burnin’ Up‘ dubs . . . TMT’s initial pressing of the Rah Band ‘Sam The Samba Man’ had the same B-side remixes as the Red Label version, by mistake . . . Graham Gold (Mayfair Gullivers/JFM) has been getting rave reaction to an acetate of Steve Harvey ‘Something Special‘ — hot, hot, hot! — final label deal yet to be firmed although Phonogram have been in the running . . . Virgin put out next week on vinyl the previously moody cassette-only “new” ‘Stone Killers’ LP by Prince Charles & The City Beat Band . . . Polydor picked up the whole Mirage label, but evidently passed on Ingram — oops! . . . The Biz ‘Falling (Crash Beat Remix Pts 1 & 2)‘ has turned up on US Prelude 12in . . . Greg Kihn finally dislodged Michael Jackson from top of the US Dance/Disco chart at least . . . Ray Parker Jr (who started the trend), Prince and now Michael Jackson have learnt the best way to win pop radio play in the States is to make rock records — which is not on indictment of them, but of today’s radio programming policy . . . I reckon Rick James is the next most likely black superstar to follow them, if only to get his videos onto the MTV all-music TV channel, who (to paraphrase) insist their viewers don’t want no nigger music . . . Motown could never be ‘The Sound Of Young America’ in the ’80s! . . . Soul On Sound 015’s preview mix includes Kiddo ‘Thinking About Your Charm’/Muscle Shoals Horns ‘She Was Once My Woman’/Platinum Hook ‘I Don’t Wanna Live Without You’/Chew ‘Gimme Something’/Al Jarreau ‘Mornin’/William Robinson/Yarbrough & Peoples/Mtume/O’Bryan ‘Soft Touch’/Jimmy Cobb ‘So Nobody Else Can Hear’/Kashif ‘The Mood’/Indeep/Wish/Slim/Advance/Narada Michael Walden/Richard Jon Smith/Maurice Messiah ’50/50 Love’/Imagination ‘Burnin’ Up (Dub)’/Terry Burrus/Venna/Galaxy/Ingram/Transit/Lavias/”D” Train — incidentally, the Robinson bass break/Y&P makes a killer mix! . . . SOS stockists on the Channel Islands, Lady Jayne Records are organising Jersey’s very first jazz-funk alldayer on May 2nd Bank Holiday Monday, at Lord’s Disco with Smokey Joe, Melvyn John, Mad Munk & DJ Le Flem, tickets only £1 for noon-2am (bleedin’ eck!) . . . New York mixing jock Dan Pucciarelli is currently starring for the first few weeks at Ernie Priestman’s brand new Bunters club in Liverpool . . . Big Phil Etgart & Brian Bazzer Mason this Thursday (14) start a ‘ladies free’ night (fellars a quid) at South Harrow Bobby Magees, where also Lyndon T & Gordon Mac do elektro funk Mondays and Under-18s Tuesday (all nights the doors close at 11pm so get there early) . . . John DeSade does Under-18s Tuesdays/Over-18s Fridays at Rayleigh Crocs, the latter also still at Sheerness Woodys on Saturdays (he’d welcome other residencies on 0795 71543) . . . uh-oh, Bazzer Mason does Under-18s Mondays at Watford New Penny . . . Nick Aravis’s Under-18s Mon/Weds of Hornchurch Daniels are so popular the kids start queuing as soon as school is out (mainly ‘cos they’ve nowhere else to go!), two new tribes currently “getting down” on the floor with the descriptive names of the Hornchurch Bum-Biters and the Lady Thigh Biters (yer what?!) . . . Frenchie reports the Bank Holiday Preston Clouds alldayer was “absolutely packed” . . . Second Image kick off a tour at Dartford Flicks (Fri 15), Tolworth Recreation Centre (Sat), Southend Talk Of The South (Tues), Margate Winter Gardens (Wed), Birmingham Snobs (Thur 20) . . . Forrest plays Boscombe’s Academy in Bournemouth on Monday (18), ICQ jazz Camberley Frenchies on Sunday (17) . . . Sean French & Nicky Holloway recap Caister on Monday (18) at Bermondsey Dockhead’s Swan & Sugarloaf (lager 50p a pint), Nicky & Colin Hudd now also souling the Old Kent Road’s plush Green Man every Thursday . . . Phil Jay jazz-funks Tuesdays at the Barn Bar in East Horsley’s Horsley Hotel, pub hours . . . Paul Major makes a big switcheroo from Lincoln to Hinckley’s Bubbles, where he’ll have to be more cabaret star than DJ . . . Chad still starts the week (Mon-Wed) at Liverpool Cagneys but now mixes up all the hot newies Thurs-Sat at Wigan Pier . . . Darlington’s Bee Jays is in the midst of a complete revamp, new weekend jock being Dave Summers . . . Nicky King at the newly opened Harvester pub in Merseyside’s Withens Cantril Farm (I hope that makes sense) has £37,000 of sound and lights to play with . . . Chris Dinnis (Exeter Boxes) evidently is big in the Midlands! . . . Richard Scanes (London Dicks Inn venues) says Taco ‘Putting On The Ritz‘ (RCA) is getting renewed gay requests . . . Al Dupres (Cardiff) played Gilberto Gil’s old ‘Palco‘ (Warner Bros 12in) while warming up and was amazed he suddenly had a packed floor — incidentally, he’s desperate for 12in copies of Antonia Rodriguez ‘La Bamba’ (Magnet) and Baccara ‘Parlez Vous Francais’ (RCA — if 12in exists), call 0222-371406 afternoons/-613596 evenings . . . John Sinclair (Reading Rebeccas) wonders how a recent import (although serviced by Rush Release), Yvonne Brown ‘Goin’ Down‘ (US Montage 12in), never hit our chart — mainly because we only ever had two DJs “on” it, and that just ain’t enough! . . . I can’t understand why Patrick Simmons ‘So Wrong‘ (US Elektra 12in) hasn’t picked up any DJs other than myself yet . . . Big Phil Etgart is reeling from the speedy rush release of Rod, Cashmere, and Valentine Brothers! . . . Rubettes ‘Sugar Baby Love’ (Polydor 134-128bpm 7in) is a nice teaser for mobile/pop jocks if you rapidly chop its intro build-up in before David Bowie ‘Let’s Dance’ (EMI America 113-115bpm 12in/114-116bpm 7in), and Isley Brothers ‘Twist And Shout’ (DJM 125bpm 7in) is nice out of Bowie . . . ‘Street Sounds Edition 3’ features ‘Off The Wall’-type twinkling white sox on the sleeve — the flashy feet of Orin ‘Pzazz’ Cozier’ . . . Tony St. Michael (Holloway) recommends his local shop, Sounds To Go at 130 Holloway Road, for good UK prices (12in £1.15-£1.99/LP £2.99-£4.99), while Rayners Lane’s Record & Disco Centre (they advertise in RM as Harrow Disco Centre) confirm their import prices are currently 12in £3.99/LP £6.99-£7.25 (depending on supplier) — it ain’t cheap being a superstar import reviewer, I can tell ya! . . . John Wischhusen, ex-Groove Weekly club correspondent, says “Gullivers is now the only credible black club in London” — however, he met his future Belgian heiress bride at Xenon (the wedding’s in September)! . . . Medway megastar Nicky Peck marries Julie Phipps in May (a fair cop?) . . . Pete Tong has yet to reveal how many shares he has in I Level! . . . Pete Haigh (Standish Cassinellis — Thurs/Caton Scarthwaite Hotel — Sun) reports the hot disco phrase in New York is “Dick!”, shouted Italiano style as if by Robert De Niro in ‘Mean Streets’, especially appropriate whenever the DJ does a bummer and better by far than “yes indeedy!” — darling, anything is better than “yes indeedy!” (someone please tell Al Matthews!) . . . Paul Clark (Brighton Busbys) counters by recommending I close the column with the big nightclub phrase, he says, Pork swor . . . woops, no, on second thoughts — NO SIRREE!


DAVID GRANT: ‘Stop And Go’ (Chrysalis GRANX-1)
A Steve Levine produced amalgamation of old Linx and current Michael Jackson noises blended into a burbling jittery 118bpm backbeater with an incredibly long instrumental start, gimmicky rhythm hiccups, and backward running tape half-way, on 3-track 12in with short and instrumental versions.

NEIL LOCKWOOD: ‘Tell Tale Heart’ (Red Bus RBUSL 76)
Fabulous bright and breezy British blue-eyed soul skipper, the best since Jerome’s last one, a happy little 114¼bpm 12in ditty with ridiculously catchy whistling, short snappy sax, tight percussion tricks, an ‘Ai No Corrida’-ish lilt, and above all a totally masterful vocal performance. Now it’s on radio, watch it smash!

BOOKER NEWBERRY III: ‘Love Town’ (US Boardwalk NB-99905-9)
Hottest import of the past fortnight, a great easily rolling 113-114-116bpm 12in swayer soulfully sung by a mellow gruff gent in Vandross/Benson style, flipped by the useful grittier 117-118bpm ‘Doin’ What Comes Naturally‘ (both co penned by Len Barry!). Continue reading “April 16, 1983: David Grant, Neil Lockwood, Booker Newberry III, Shirley Lites, Craig Peyton”

April 9, 1983: D Train, Wish, Galaxy, Indeep, William Robinson


KOOL’S INCLUSION with Wish could well start a fashion tor piggybacking into the chart by incorporating bits of other artists’ back catalogue (generating additional royalties for them) — the Kool move, made at my instigation, was eased immensely by Phonogram’s John Waller and the perhaps surprisingly ready co-operation of De-Lite . . . Kool & The Gang have been much on my mind actually, as I’ve also just put together the long anticipated ‘Twice as Kool’ greatest hits double album, which Polygram will be advertising on TV next month . . . Loraine Trent’s new assistant at CBS is a fellah this time, Steve Ripley . . . Orin Cozier is setting up his own label, called — as hinted last week — Pzazz! . . . Paddington’s Bluebird Records shop has a new Bluebird label, debuting next week with a 12in of the old much-sought Manfredo Fest ‘Jungle Kitten‘ . . . 21 Records’ ‘The Perfect Beat’ electrophonic compilation LP of Soulsonic Patrol Crew stuff in its cassette form has a bonus scratch mix by Froggy . . . Dave Rawlings at Basingstoke Martines has ‘outer space’ fancydress this Friday (8), when it’s also a pyjama party with Chris Hill & Colin Hudd at Dartford Flicks, and Dave ‘TG’ Brown funks Gravesend Woodville Halls . . . Sean French guests at Brighton Busbys on Sunday (10), when in Birmingham at the Powerhouse DJs Phil & Funky Dunk go gay with a Boys Town night . . . The Band AKA play Boscombe’s Academy in Bournemouth on Monday (11), and the Stylistics start a week at Watford Baileys . . . Cleo of Stringfellows fame (it says here) and Gaz Anderson are resident now at London’s new Bootleggers, in Margaret Street on the old Speakeasy/Xclusiv site, Gaz slipping in plenty of upfront tackle . . . Ozzie, long a chart contributor, has stopped gigging at such as Waltham Cross Gatsbys and Soho Ronnie Scotts to concentrate on song writing — and maybe rapping? — good luck! . . . JoBoxers, Style Council, Tracie, now Culture Club continue the ‘Northern Soul’ renaissance . . . Adrian (Bournemouth Adams/Southampton Warehouse) reckons that if other pop groups copy New Order’s hit (“a solid slice of hard gay disco”), then maybe gays will move on to something else — or alternatively perhaps big Boys Town stars like Divine or Bobby ‘O’ will cross over more easily . . . Gary Allan (Liverpool Concert Street/Warehouse) will pay any price for a ‘This Is It’ various artists mixer, so any record store with a copy should call 051 526 5407 . . . Adrian Martin (Rhyl) semi-seriously is looking for a minder, after a hotel owner practically beat him up for charging a client £50 in a privately negotiated deal, when other discos the manager would have recommended cost only £20 . . . Nick Ratcliffe (0344 882535) would like replacement Thurs/Friday gigs nearer London after Basingstoke Martines new manager told him his mixing and presentation “goes over the head of the punters — you’re just too upmarket for this crowd”! . . . Nick on a recent Sunday at Haslemere’s Good Knight Country Club did the following “early evening” mix on fixed speed decks with a bit of fancy finger work: Kashif/Celena Duncan/Whispers ‘Tonight’/Evelyn King ‘Get Loose’/Glenn Jones/Melba Moore ‘Mind Up’/Michael Jackson ‘BJ’/Toney Lee/Jerry Knight ‘Down’/Jazzy Dee/Inner Life/David Joseph/Forrest (twice)/Mezzoforte/Michael Jackson ‘Thriller’/Central Line/Indeep/Thompson Twins — after which, he pants, the packed floor could stand any amount of upfront stuff . . . Brian Goodacre (Lincoln’s The Lion) on vari-speed decks mixes Forrest/Jaluka ‘Scatterings’/Howard Johnson ‘Say You Wanna’/Michael Jackson ‘BJ’/Evelyn King ‘Get Loose’ . . . Perian Wynne says a big “happy birthday” to Bristol’s Martin Starr for next Tuesday! . . . Steve Martin (Edinburgh Madhatters) apologizes to record companies for his lack of reaction reports, he’s been on honeymoon . . . ooh we, sweet peas, mmm-hmm, that’s baad, uhhh, YES INDEEDY!


“D” TRAIN: ‘Music’ (US Prelude PRLD 654)
Their long awaited newie kicks off with a tinklingly backed short soulful acappella intro before typical synth textures and chunky beat powerfully bump this slightly untidy 120bpm 12in rumbler, surprisingly soulfully growled and hollered with ‘Keep On’-type chants (the lack of form and its commendably “black” quality may hold it back, in fact), although once again it’s the instrumental flip which drives and bumbles along a straighter and narrower path, with probably more appeal in this electrophonic age. Both sides are different enough to give it real double-sided value.

WISH: ‘Mr D.J.’ (Streetwave WAVEL 1, via PRT)
I must declare self interest as the 3-track 12in B-side ‘Special Mega-Mix Incorporating ‘Ladies Night‘ by Kool & The Gang’ is my own effort, and to my taste it is overly freaky, but that’s what was demanded. Revolving around repeated pleas for a DJ to play a song again, the chap ‘n’ chix on the original 107-108-107-106½-107-108bpm vocal version weave around a chugging Kool-type bass line, the harder 111bpm instrumental having great sax, while the scratch-introed 108-107-106-106½-108(Kool)-107-108-0bpm remix messes everything about and slips into ‘Ladies Night’.

GALAXY: ‘Dancing Tight’ (Ensign 12ENY 501, via Island)
Anticipated by distributors Island as their next David Joseph-like crossover hit, the debut release on new-look Ensign is a lovely creamily whomping 115½-116bpm 12in swayer with chix answering classy pent-up Phil Fearon’s vocal (including some freaky stereo panning) and a trace of that old Martini ‘Dancing Easy’ lilt, the acappella introed 117bpm instrumental flip having jazzier synth, sax ‘n’ flute. Continue reading “April 9, 1983: D Train, Wish, Galaxy, Indeep, William Robinson”

April 2, 1983: Chill Fac-Torr, Al Jarreau, Class Action, Yarbrough & Peoples


DONNA SUMMER as a result of legal shenanigans will have her next new material once again on Casablanca here, something being due in a few weeks time, thus scuppering a re-release on 12in of her old ‘Love To Love You Baby’ — but not before promo pressings were sent out, consequently making them rather rare! . . . Jive Records have signed the soulful HCRC catalogue for Britain, debuting with Margie Joseph, while in other label moves Jimmy Young will be out here on Nite Life, Flowchart on Greyhound, T. Ski Valley ‘Sexual Rapping’ on Pama, plus Cashmere and Rod are belatedly due on Philly World and Prelude respectively . . . ‘Street Sounds Edition 3‘ (STSND 003) features current/recent disco hit A-sides by the Gap Band, Kashif, Jerry Knight, Richard Jon Smith, Angela Bofill, Gwen McCrae, Melba Moore, Cashmere, Steve Arrington (‘Approval’) . . . LPs on import includes a Jamaica-recorded Betty Wright ‘Wright Back At You’ (Epic), Denise LaSalle ‘Lady In The Street’ (Malaco), Dan Siegel ‘Reflections’ (PAUSA) plus three sets on Palo Alto Jazz by David Diggs, Richie Cole, David Lahm, and a 12in of George Howard ‘The Preacher‘ (PAJ PA 8035-12) . . . ABC ‘Poison Arrow’ has been remixed with a nice jazzy flute intro on US Mercury 12in (811 329-1) . . . “D” Train ‘Music’ (US Prelude 12in) is evidently now in the country, but football crowds in Wembley evidently prevented it getting through to Rayners Lane last Saturday! . . . Streetwave’s Morgan Khan with characteristic impatience hustled out test pressings of the Wish ‘Mr DJ’ remix (incorporating bits of Kool ‘Ladies Night’) before it had been properly balanced and EQ-ed, and with a final edit that was not my doing — wait for the finished cut! . . . Xenon in London’s Piccadilly, home of Fatman Canter and Peter Romer, had a star-studded first birthday party last Thursday which just about everyone was at, including David Joseph, Leee John, David Grant (with a spec-less, slimline, slicked back hairstyle new look), Patrick Boothe (in his old clothes), and all the pluggers you’d expect plus some you wouldn’t . . . David Joseph has hopefully opened up the pop chart to a hipper rhythm by getting so surprisingly high with a hard club sound . . . Radios Orwell & Saxon are about to have Medway soul jock Dave ‘TG’ Brown doing the Mon-thru-Thursday 10pm-midnight show, starting after Easter, Terry — oops, sorry! — Dave promising some soft soul and jazz amongst the easy listening . . . Ray ‘Raymondo’ Edwards may be down but not out at Radio West — he’s still got a funk show every Tuesday at 8pm . . . London’s Radio Invicta is planning to be back with a bang every Sunday on 92.4FM with amongst other things a gospel hour at 6pm followed by three hours of jazz in collaboration with Fusion FM . . . Capital’s Gary Crowley had the World’s Famous Supreme Team on his Saturday afternoon show last week but they were disappointingly unimpressive . . . Nick Sanquest (01-727 8676) is looking for jocks to do two weeks throughout the summer at a disco in Cork (Ireland) . . . Edgbaston’s Faces French next Thursday (7) hosts the national final of a Disc Jockey Of The Year contest, the title being decided there between Stuart Gensian (Ealing Madocs), Andy King (Brighton Busbys), Neil Fincham (Edinburgh Mad Hatters Speakeasy), Gary Oldis (Aycliffe Bee Jays), Mick McGinley (Wakefield Heppys), Ian Plant (Blackpool Raffles), Dave Maurice (Nottingham Isabellas), Jimmy Franks (Birmingham Cagneys), Franklyn Hughes (Long Eaton Donovans), Marcus Lee (Stowmarket Maltings), Phil Rees (Wrexham Shafts), Stuart James Rendle (Plymouth Boobs) . . . George Power & Steve Walsh headline an allniter at Peckham Kisses this Thursday (31) . . . Robbie Vincent, Colin Hudd, Tom Holland & John Rush have a charity allniter (for the elderly) on Good Friday at Dartford Flicks, with lotsa videos, and traditional English breakfast included in the £5 cost . . . Saturday (2) a weekly disco and fashion show starts at Birmingham city centre’s Vintage Room in Corporation Street, music by Frenchie-T and mixing Dr. P (Paul Dixon) . . . Bob James, Steve Allen, Jonathon Cleveland Anderson and more jazz-soul an Easter Day alldayer (3pm) at Peterborough’s Cresset Centre . . . Colin Curtis, Richard Searling, Mike Shaft, Kev Edwards, Frenchie, Baz Williams, ISIS “live” and more jazz-soul Preston Clouds alldayer (2pm) on Bank Holiday Monday when two rival evening events in Kent threaten to cancel each other out, best established being the 5th Kent Soul Festival at West Malling Greenways with Nicky Peck, Chris Kaye, Tom Felton, John DeSade, Kev Ashman, a Richard Jon Smith PA and more, while the 1st Kent Soul & Jazz-Funk Carnival at Bearsted Tudor House has Keith Kapri with unspecified guest DJs and Kabbala live . . . Ian Reading won’t be joined by Froggy on Good Friday at Southend’s Zero 6 as the club is closed, but it will be open until 1am on Thursday and Saturday — and interestingly the Zero 6 operates a coach service for punters from various East London/Essex areas (details on Southend 540117) . . . Steve Jason (0733 43161) — who does Peterborough’s Taverna Wine Bar in Bridge Street on Sundays with free admission before 9.30pm and cheap booze — is organising a coach for the Maze concert at Nottingham’s Rock City on Wednesday 11th May, with pickups on the A1 and A52 Peterborough/Stamford/Grantham/Nottingham route — call him days for details . . . Chris Dinnis is selling tickets for the Showstoppers Bournemouth bank holiday bash at Exeter Boxes for those who want to join the Devonshire funk contingent . . . Invicta’s Andy Bailey and Richard Felstead at Islington JR’s in Upper Street feature soul/jazz/funk/lovers rock Fridays, a wider range Saturdays . . . Steve Walsh stopped his Thursdays at Hammersmith Palais after a series of pop concerts disrupted the jazz-funk continuity, and then regretfully left the Lyceum after many years to enable Mecca to switch Saturdays to over-25s MoR in an effort to retain their lease (Andrew Lloyd Webber is after it to turn the venue back into a theatre — just what London needs with so many “dark” already, right?) . . . Gary Alan now doubles Thurs/Fri/Sat at Liverpool’s Warehouse but still has his “Sleaze ‘n’ Cruise” every Fri/Sat 7-11.30pm (free admittance) at McMillans — except this is now called Concert Street, after the street it’s in, and this Easter Sunday starts a Sunday lunchtime gay session in addition to the evening one . . . Edinburgh’s Fire Island gay club in Princes Street, featuring the Incredible Jason Horror Show on Easter Sunday, now sells a full range of import newies but does not intend operating a mail order service . . . Billboards US Dance/Disco Top 80 when last seen included only 18 non “disco” records, of which 13 were British and Michael Jackson still hogged the top (Black LP/Single charts too) . . . Orin Cozier is dusting off his flares — well a guy’s gotta have ‘Pzazz’! . . . Virgin’s Mick Clark huffily says I Level ‘Minefield’ is a floor filler at the clubs he’s visited recently . . . Shaun James (Aylesbury), who kindly defended our Disco coverage in a letter last week, looked in at Mayfair Gullivers last Saturday to say “hi” and request Ingram — the guy does have taste! (Gullivers incidentally is fully open on Good Friday, but I’ll be away this weekend) . . . Whiskers Casstoke should try the earlier unremixed Buddy Holly & Bob Montgomery version of ‘Pinky Blue’ it’s much more soulful! . . . Brian Cardno (Morpeth) and Tony Cochrane (Dundee Club Feet) both sent in a clipping from the Scottish Sunday Post about one Paul Johnston of Edinburgh suffering from “disco knee”, brought on by his over doing the Jeffrey Daniel-type body popping! . . . PRT to tie in with Chil Fac-Torr’s ‘Twist’ are toying with the idea of running a twist dance contest — and indeed they can count me in! . . . Cleveland, Ohio, DJ Doug Shannon in his USA-published book ‘Off The Record — The Disco Concept’ traces the birth of disco to the Paris of World War II when during the German occupation live jazz was banned, forcing jazz fans in their Left Bank cellar clubs to dance to amplified gramophone records — having spent my school holidays in Paris during the late ’50s, I knew that discotheques were fashionable there then (my parents used to go to one called L’Etoile with the Duke & Duchess of Windsor!), but I hadn’t realised they’d started like that . . . John Krenski, who wrote ‘The Cheater‘ for Bob Kuban & The In Men back in ’65, could profit by listening to ‘Boxerbeat‘ — Jo Boxers may not be the Bee Gees, but the two songs are sorta similar! . . . Kev Hill (Brentwood 223030) accepted from a Mr Wallace (think about it) to do a gig at ‘Sugars’ in Newquay, booked accommodation for himself and some mates, and then only when his confirmation letter and subsequent phone call’s failed to find a Mr Wallace realised that he’d been booked for April the 1st — Kev still doesn’t know who fooled him, but his mates think it’s VERY funny, and they’re all going to Newquay anyway even without a gig there (unless someone genuine wants him at short notice)! . . . Nigel Halkes (Portishead) says the old KID ‘Don’t Stop’ (Groove Production 12in) goes well with Man Parrish now . . . Frenchie (Blackpool Barons) is getting great response to the old Gene Dunlap ‘Before You Break My Heart‘ (Capitol LP) . . . Dave Stodart (Bridge Country Club) has started noticing how nubile young ladies seem to be getting prettier and less fully clothed, making him wonder if this means he’s becoming a dirty old man or whether it’s the fate of all DJs? . . . that’s right, baby cakes, mmm-hmm, ouch, YES INDEEDY!


CHILL FAC-TORR: ‘Twist (Round ‘N’ Round)’ (Philly World PWSL-109)
Now as huge on the floor as it’s been in the shops on import, and surely headed for novelty pop smash status, this is a brilliant adaptation of Hank Ballard’s Chubby Checker popularised ‘The Twist’ disguised for much of the time by being stretched and spaced out into a still twist-tempoed cool 183-91½bpm 12in funk framework, the original lyrics only meshing recognisably with a burst of the vintage arrangement for a while halfway, the slow acappella vocal side and instrumental flip both taking most of their power from a superb sax duet that soars, honks and squeals in stereo.

AL JARREAU: ‘Mornin’ (LP ‘Jarreau’ US Warner Bros 23801-1)
Already on import 7in, this superb classy 90bpm swayer has all the potential to be another ‘Hold Me Tighter In The Rain’, and is the standout dancer on an obviously excellent listening set (fuller review when more time).

CLASS ACTION Featuring Chris Wiltshire: ‘Weekend’ (Jive JIVE T 35)
In the same 4-track format and at 33 1/3rpm as in the States, this revival by its original girl singer of the Patrick Adams Phreek disco oldie is an exciting Gwen McCrae-ish ever changing fast seeming though only 122bpm 12in galloper, the Sergio Munzibai & John Morales-mixed ‘Weekday Side‘ on the flip being most soulful while the Larry Levan-mixed ‘Weekend Side’ A-side is a zingier pop/gay concoction, there also being dub and acappella versions. Bright enough to break out overground. Continue reading “April 2, 1983: Chill Fac-Torr, Al Jarreau, Class Action, Yarbrough & Peoples”