ODDS ‘N’ BODS
PAUL HARDCASTLE has pseudonymously recorded an electro remake of ‘Papa’s Got A Brand New Pigbag‘ for release as flip of the Pigbag original — on yet another label! . . . MCA have imported 5,000 Thelma Houston 12in and 1,000 Whispers LPs for sale at UK prices, while Eugene Wilde’s LP is already out here (Fourth & Broadway BRLP 502) with different sleeve and running order . . . CRC plan a brand new US remix of Linda Clifford ‘Runaway Love’ just after Christmas . . . Chaka Khan, back together again with Rufus, will make one solo and one group LP a year for the next five years — can’t be bad! . . . Howard Johnson is currently recording here with Rod Temperton and Barry Blue . . . Marvin’s two years younger brother Frank Gaye is in London shopping for a deal — sounding and looking the same, he was drafted to Vietnam in ’65 before he could start his own career and then later was overshadowed by those very similarities . . . Peter Stringfellow’s special Poppy Day charity night at London’s Hippodrome raised an incredible £40,000 in donations . . . Brothers Johnson have left A&M, a final ‘Best Of’ set being due next month compiled by Orin Cozier with a 4-track medley mixed by Les Adams . . . Victor Carstarphen, responsible for the brilliant Temptations ‘Treat Her Like A Lady’ arrangement, was a sometime partner of McFadden & Whitehead in the mid-’70s . . . Cheryl Lynn ‘Encore’ finally dropped out of our chart after nearly a year, in which it came to personify 1984’s “hot tempo” — now readjusting as you may have noticed into “today’s groove” (all these tempos are basically slow-ish, tense, and the soul equivalent of reggae’s heartbeat) . . . Kool & The Gang have a greatest hits “live” video called ‘Tonight’ on sale in America . . . ‘Thriller’-videoing John Landis’ next film ‘Into The Night’ has BB King singing three songs, each made into a video too . . . Hall & Oates ‘Out Of Touch’ topped US Hot Dance/Disco (oddly its exciting video hasn’t helped it here) . . . JFM came back on 103.3FM . . . Solar-FM’s loud Graham Gold will be warm-up, JFM’s large Steve Walsh on-air jock for the next three Thursdays at BBC Radio London’s Soul Night Out while Tony Blackburn is away — they at least will know how to keep a disco crowd actually dancing instead of just standing around looking bored stiff (let’s face it, once the novelty of seeing Blackburn act like a prat has worn off he doesn’t do much else to move one) . . . Friday (23) Tony Simmons (there every Sun) funks Luton Dumbos with lovers rock by Lovelite, Gary Oldis has a silly “jungle safari party” at Dalton Piercy Slix (fancy-dressers free), Norman Scott hosts the national Gay Disco Dancing finals at Harringey Bolts . . . Jackson Moore PA’s Stratford Romford Road’s The Pigeons Sat (24) . . . Sunday (25) Hammersmith Palais 3pm alldayer has Booker Newberry III, Cool Notes, Jaki Graham, Intrigue, Haywoode ‘n more with CJ Carlos, Chris Stewart, Cleveland Anderson, Lyndon T, Frenchie T, Baz Maleady etc plus hip hop events (out of town details on 0772-700282) . . . Booker Newberry III also joins many of the above plus Paul Hardcastle and possibly Phil Fearon PA-ing while Bluey’s new group Dante debut “live” at Gary Raymond’s Tuesday (27) Epping Forest Country Club funk special (advance tickets only, details on 0992-469069) . . . Wed (28) JFM’s Dave Collins (after extra soul gigs on 01-946 4534) & Marc Damon funk Purley Cinderellas Rockerfellas with the Cool Notes playing live . . . Sean Brett should by now have fully refurbished surroundings at Bolton’s The Dance Factory . . . George Knowles Jr & Sr and Stuart Cochrane of Scotland’s Stirling Leisure are opening a ¾-million quid Rox Rainbow club in Stirling mid-February and already are scouting for record company contact re PAs/etc on 0259-50655 or 0786-64904 . . . Pete Tong has left Fridays at Sheffield Park Hilly’s to find a new gig nearer his lnvicta Sound catchment area . . . Chic’s LP Version of ‘Chic Cheer’ does indeed seem hotter than the remix, while Disco Gary (London Tramp/Croydon Club Musique/Hastings Flamingos) tips their first LP’s ‘Est-Ce Que C’Est Chic?‘ and finds the ‘Good Times’ beat has made the Sugarhill Gang ‘Rappers Delight’ huge again . . . ‘Let’s Make A Baby’ was the Billy Paul classic now reggaefied by Peter Campbell, and for the third time of trying it’s Eramus Hall (not Erasmus) P’funking on US Capitol! . . . Richard Knapp (Hornchurch 41043) spent the summer jocking at San Antonio’s Star Club on Ibiza and now with colleague ‘Starmixer’ Si Read plans an Ibiza 84 reunion roadshow if any (beach?) parties are interested . . . Scarborough Scene 1 & 2 jock Howard Nurse is after a couple of weekly Sheffield Hi-NRG disco gigs while at university there, c/o Stephenson Hall, Sheffield S10 3LF . . . Danny Daniels seems to be steaming Sundays at Earls Court La Vie En Rose II, one of London’s black clubs where Krystol determinedly hangs on as an underground smash . . . HUBBA HUBBA!
THELMA HOUSTON: ‘I’d Rather Spend The Bad Times With You Than Spend The Good Times With Someone New’ (LP ‘Qualifying Heat’ US MCA MCA-5527)
Although all four of side one’s tracks feature Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis as main musicians, along with Monte Moir, they only prod/penned her 0-111bpm hit and this marvellously titled somewhat ‘I Feel For You’ flavoured exciting electro skittered frantic 120bpm driver, the previously unfamiliar Moir taking over for the actually much easier to use creamily bumping 0-113-0bpm ‘(I Guess) It Must Be Love‘ and infectious jauntily tripping 119bpm ‘Fantasy And Heartbreak‘. The less cohesive flip has Dennis Lambert’s classy 107bpm ‘Generate Love‘ (and AOR-ish 120bpm ‘Love Is A Dangerous Game‘), the good sultry slow tugged 85bpm ‘What A Woman Feels Inside‘, and inevitable rock-disco 158bpm ‘Shake You‘. Thelma herself sounds superb.
JAMES INGRAM: ‘Yah Mo B There (Jellybean Remix)’ (US Qwest 0-20270)
Jellybean remixed 4-track 12in of old material hottest for this great eagerly greeted smooth lush 117½-118bpm soaring Michael McDonald duet, now with fluttering electronic percussion and added break, flipped by the soulfully weaving subdued ‘Plane Love’-ish 95bpm ‘It’s Your Night‘ (both with new instrumentals).
KOOL & THE GANG: ‘Surrender’ (LP ‘Emergency’ US De-Lite 822 943-1 M-1)
Good simple sparsely striding 120bpm chugger, least worrying newie on a well-made set where not surprisingly in 1984 rock rears its head, but tempered with funk, the soulful 117½bpm ‘Fresh‘ thus making a sensible first UK single while the US gets ‘Misled‘, an exciting combination of taut vocal with yowling rock guitar and starkly lurching then spurting beat (sure to hit here eventually), the rock-funk 124½bpm title track and ambiguously racing catchy pop 182/91bpm ‘You Are The One‘ being other dancers, the lush swaying 75bpm ‘Bad Woman’ and attractive 0-95/47½bpm ‘Cherish’ (new song) the slowies. Continue reading “November 24, 1984: Thelma Houston, James Ingram, Kool & The Gang, T.Ski Valley, Scheer Music”