ODDS ‘N’ BODS
ADRIAN WEBB has resigned his founding directorship of Showstopper Promotions over policy disagreements and set up instead his own new Livewire operation to run amongst others The Ultimate Soul Weekend next April 11-14 at the evidently superior spacious Bognor Regis Butlins, exclusively using the usual Caister security and DJ team (including Chris Hill, Robbie Vincent, Martin Collins, Pete Tong, Froggy, Sean French, Chris Brown, Bob Jones plus such guest newcomers as Colin Hudd, Jonathon, Nicky Holloway, Gilles Peterson but minus the semi-retired Jeff Young), with proper sit-down concert presentations of visiting live acts, quality being his aim at all events (details on 01-440 3264) — meanwhile, although this move might be presumed to put their April 18-20 Caister Soul Weekender in jeopardy, Showstoppers’ John Morris assures me the traditional Gt Yarmouth Ladbrokes Holiday Village event will remain as planned with DJs including he claims established current Caister “names” as well as “new younger faces” (details on 01-886 8141) . . . Luton’s Sho-Pro owned Pink Elephant coincidentally has just reverted to being called The ‘New’ California — has this any bearing on anything? . . . Jeff Young, still doing just the odd selected evening gig, has given up jocking at weekenders no matter who the promoter as what with his Saturday lunchtime Radio London show and full-time Phonogram day job he needs to relax — he’s even reluctantly dropping his Sundays at South Harrow Bogarts after Christmas . . . Nicky Holloway following the artistic success of his own recent Bognor Regis weekender is planning a possible week away in Ibiza in May, on a small scale, with DJs playing in a different club every night . . . Ashley Newton and Julian Palmer are leaving it at the end of the year to start their own respective labels, but despite a strange spate of rumours to the contrary 4th + B’way will continue as before as Island’s funk outlet — and even celebrated the launch of its compilation double album ‘Beauty + The Beat > On Broadway‘ (BEAUT 1) last Monday week at Brixton’s The Fridge with a party attended by almost every DJ and disco figure from the London area, a great social occasion, entertained notably by Paul Johnson and friends from the London Community Gospel Choir singing acappella . . . Streetwave amazingly have snatched Cherrelle ‘Saturday Love’ from CBS, who nevertheless are enough on the ball to rush out Nicole . . . Bluebird/10 picked up Bobby Mardis — which, ultra-accurately, is (0-)117-117½-(break)-118bpm, and Meli’sa Morgan ‘Do Me Baby’ (Capitol 12CL 385) is already out here . . . Loose Ends ‘Choose Me’ has also been remixed on import . . . Sly & Robbie’s 12in has added ‘Bass And Trouble‘ to help it sell . . . Royalle Delite’s already promoed Streetwave newie after Christmas will be the dialogue started then sickly sweet 42¾-85½bpm ‘Spend A Little Time With Me‘, not terribly exciting, while Polo likewise have white labelled Midnight’s better pleasant gently cooed slow (0-)100½bpm ‘Easy Promise To Break‘, a bit Cool Notes-ish . . . Stevie Wonder was celebrating with an exclusive Christmas party at Stringfellows this Tuesday lunchtime, full menu details next week! . . . Junior as suspected did not anticipate much club play for ‘Oh Louise‘, wanting it to sound different and make it as a song . . . Haywoode, going to the same doctor as Paul Young for the nodules on her throat, doesn’t now visit the States until January to coincide with the release of her album . . . Five Star’s outfits didn’t exactly flatter their thighs and hips on last Saturday’s ‘Wide Awake Club’ on TV-am, talk about pork! . . . Leisa Dove, only 17 and no hits to her name, seems to be upsetting people by acting the prima donna already . . . Teddy Pendergrass’s ‘One Of Us Fell In Love‘ is actually a cover of 1981’s Liquid Gold single! . . . Lionel Richie on his upcoming LP has recorded one track with top country group Alabama, presumably to give him the chance of pulling off a truly across-the-board US chart-topper, Pop, Black, Dance, Adult and Country? . . . Isley Jasper Isley topped US Black 45s in Billboard . . . Gallup, to be fair, also openly allow record companies to hold albums off the UK LP chart during the first week when sometimes shipments have reached only a very few shops, although enough to result in an unrealistically low chart entry . . . Robbie Vincent points out that Radio One producer Pete Ritzema at least had been featuring Doug E. Fresh before it hit on Annie Nightingale’s Sunday evening show (thus giving Robbie the perfect excuse for not playing it himself?), although that’s not exactly a daytime “strip” show . . . BBC Local Radio stations together raised almost half the total money in the recent Children In Need appeal, in the face of TV and national radio competition — jolly well done! . . . LWR 92.1FM, TKO 102.4FM, KISS 94.05FM and JBC 105FM were still pumping out black music in London as of the weekend, when they were joined by yet another unidentified test transmission on both 106 and 101.05FM — while “upfront pop and soul” Radio Sanctum was due on 90.2FM (which won’t be popular with the Beeb) . . . Disco Mix Club main man Alan Coulthard is so addicted to TV soaps that he’s setting up a Soap-Opera Appreciation Society, and next Tuesday (10) he’s even talking about it on Radio London after 11pm with Steve Allen (not the Peterborough one!) . . . Pete Haigh does his monthly soul roundup this Sunday (8) on Steve Barker’s 2-5pm Radio Lancashire show, and doubtless will be raving about Manchester jazz-fusionists The Stems, with Viv Dixon’s vocals and Snake Davis’s slick sax sounding very American (and just a little characterless?) — they’re gigging at Withington Mulberry’s Tues (10), Sheffield University Thur (12), Carlisle Front Page Fri (20) . . . Colonel Abrams makes his first ever live concert debut, with British musicians, at Hammersmith Palais Monday (9) . . . Friday (6) Marsha Raven PAs for Adrian Parkin at Huddersfield’s revamped and renamed Hi-NRG 42nd Street (ex-Gemini Club, free admission), Saturday (7) Divine joins Norman Scott for a full show at Haringey Bolts, Sunday (8) Hazell Dean joins Bill Grainger for a 30 minute show at Edinburgh Fire Island . . . Tricky Dicky & Alex Baker have now started gay Wednesdays at Shepherds Bush Silks . . . Thursday (5) Lyndon T guests with Simon Goffe at London Leicester Square’s Secret Rendezvous . . . Chris Dinnis guests at Yeovil Electric Studio Sat (7), then souls with Chris Stagg Exeter Boxes Wed (11), Taunton Kingstons Thur (12), plus he’s jazzy Tues/funky Fri at Torquay Monroes weekly . . . LWR’s Ron Tom funks Canning Town Bentley’s Sat, Stamford Hill Cotton Club Wed . . . Chris Kaye took over Thursdays at Gillingham’s The Avenue (smart dress) . . . Thames Valley DJ Assn members meet Sunday (8) noon at Iver’s Tower Arms — I must agree with their Disco Action mag’s comment that for most mobile gigs 7in singles (apart from the rare essential 12in mix) are all that DJs need, which is precisely why (for my own use ultimately!) I always BPM the Hit Numbers on 7in for you . . . Kensington’s The Park went pop so Dave Rawlings left his funky Thursdays there after two years — he feels the DJ should be allowed to judge what music will work, while of course reacting to the dancers’ prevailing taste and that if forced into an unhappy musical compromise this will communicate to the audience (however he concedes that the new Top 20 format is working on the floor) . . . Full Force is neck and neck with Cherrelle as the number one in London’s clubs, with on their heels Kurtis Blow and Rochelle coming up fast — the latter being huge around Manchester too . . . Linda Clifford seems biggest along the Thames estuary for some reason! . . . Began Cekic’s prod/penned exciting catchy (0-)118bpm instrumental bounder from about three years ago, featuring Madness’s “Hey you” and other identifiable vocal punctuations, Brooklyn Express ‘Sixty-Nine’ has turned up in some London charts again evidently as a remix, which I’ve yet to locate although I’ve certainly seen the original (on US One Way) being used too — its shorter flipside ‘Change Position (88)‘ version always struck me as even more urgent . . . Corky Hale debuting at 93, is a female jazz harpist who otherwise sounds like Shakatak, if that’s your bag . . . EMI have mailed out import copies of Bernard Wright’s 12in, unscheduled here, so let’s see what delayed action they have on the Disco chart now — Clarence Carter as anticipated dropped right out again, and Sun returned, thanks to the “mailing list syndrome” (good records both, though) . . . Capitol need to get a Brass Construction video to Jonathan King in case Ashford & Simpson-like, lightning really can strike twice! . . . Froggy Productions Inc (or whatever it’s called) did the UK Gadget Version on the Doug E. Fresh remix, and Solar’s Chris Forbes with Disco Mix champ Roger Johnson were due to do one too although whether theirs is the Dr D. & Necam 7 Get Fresh Gadget Mix is unclear . . . Oliver Cheatham ‘Turning Point’ is now actually on Champion, for whom he’s currently cutting an album in London, licensed from Move . . . CBS have reissued not only Marvin Gaye ‘Sexual Healing’ but also Miami Sound Machine ‘Conga’ although not in its Hi-NRG hit Hot Tracks remix . . . Eurobeat breakers include Den Harrow ‘Future Brain (Remix)‘ (Italian Baby), Shady ‘Get Right Next To You‘ (Boystown UK), Bondettes ‘007‘ (Dutch Sound Shop), Evelyn Thomas ‘High Energy Medley’ (Record Shack), Angie St. Phillips ‘Light Up My Heart (Remix)‘ (US TRS), David Knopfler ‘Shockwave‘ (makingwaves), O’chi Brown ‘Whenever You Need Somebody‘ (Magnet), Tony Baron ‘Dream In Black‘ (French Carrere), Taracco, ‘Voodoo Night‘ (German Metronome), Eurythmics & Aretha Franklin ‘Sisters’ (RCA) . . . Christmas deadlines mean that if any gigs between now and January 8 are to be publicised, you MUST send details TODAY, not tomorrow, marking your envelope (addressed to me as usual) with “DISCO DATES” to arrive no later than Monday morning — that’s right, this coming Monday (9), for printing next week . . . SEND IT OFF!
Streetwave boss Morgan Khan hasn’t let colour supplement exposure go to his head, he really does appear with Masquerade on their record sleeve and at gigs with good reason — it seems he handles much of the lead vocal on their ‘One Nation’! Based on Funkadelic’s classic ‘One Nation Under A Groove’, with interpolations from other George Clinton P’funkers ‘Flashlight’, ‘Tear The Roof Off Sucker’ and ‘(Not Just) Knee Deep’, this version and the group’s use of the Union Jack have an underlying message, the significance of which would be more apparent to record buyers had the sleeve’s printing not obscured it. Morgan’s wise words which you should have been able to read are extremely pertinent: “Britain urgently needs to become one nation again, and perhaps the biggest obstacle preventing that happening is racism — a sickness that has to be wiped out. One way we can defeat racism is by reclaiming the flag for all Britons. The Union Jack has been hijacked and perverted by racist organisations and used by them as a symbol of hostility to any Briton who isn’t Caucasian. Let’s make the Union Jack the emblem of all the races in Britain today and at the same time deny the racists one of their most potent symbols. Then we can all have pride in our country, our environment and, most of all, in our future — one nation regardless of colour, creed, race, or sex.” Amen.
FULL FORCE: ‘Alice, I Want You Just For Me!’ (CBS TA 6640)
Out on Monday, this totally compulsive joyful bouncy (0-)101-0bpm unison-sung jiggler has as expected exploded and should even be a crossover monster maybe to rival Doug E Fresh, not that it’s a normal rap (two much more freaky quiet stark mixes on flip). Stay still if you can!
NICOLE with Timmy Thomas: ‘New York Eyes’ (Portrait TX 6805)
Currently a much bigger request than its parent import LP’s progress might suggest, poised to explode now on 12in, this delightful buoyant rhythm filled though surprisingly slow 79¼bpm tripping little jogger is duetted in irresistible pent-up style right from its “Hi, are you from New York?” conversational start (the ugly crass 125bpm ‘Ordinary Girl‘ flip’s a pity though).
SOPHIA GEORGE: ‘Girlie Girlie’ (Winner WIN/T 01, via Jet Star 01-961 4422)
Beware, here is a storm warning . . . storming the nation is this likely successor to the old ‘Up Town Top Ranking’ (at the same time of year too), another deadly irrepressible silly little (0-)81½-82½bpm reggae nonsense song that’ll scramble your brains with its indefinable charm (dub flip), too hot to stop and hitting hard in London already at all levels! Continue reading “December 7, 1985: Masquerade, Full Force, Nicole with Timmy Thomas, Sophia George, Colonel Abrams”