February 22, 1986: Russ Brown, Janet Jackson, Funk Masters, Viola Wills, Dino Terrell


DES MITCHELL won Newcastle Walkers’ DJ Mixing heat and could actually give Birmingham winner Chad Jackson a fright at the final — funnily enough he entered after watching Chad in Brum, where he lives himself (jocking at Kingswinford’s Christopher’s American 2 and the Powerhouse all dayers) — best runner-up being Wakefield’s Keith Peters, local hopeful Keith Pringle suffering from nerves on the night … Edinburgh Electric Circus’s heat winner was Paisley’s George Little, with Jeff Cree and John Scott as runners up … Harleqiun Four’s ‘Set It Off’ has to be the record most used by competing mixers, others the judges are getting sick of including Whistle ‘Just Buggin’’, Tears For Fears ‘Shout’, the James Brown ‘Sex Machine’ intro, and dialogue from ‘Thunderbirds’! … The Technics DJ Mixing Championships’ UK final at London’s Hippodrome next Wednesday (26) has as first. prize a Citronic Trent 2 console incorporating two SL 1200 decks, the World champion on March 16 winning the Thom EMI Video Jockey Console with a year’s supply of video disc software worth over £6,600 – a purpose designed club video system, this has been on impressive display at all the heats … Thorn EMI Business Communications will in fact lease their VJC video mixing console to clubs for about £50 a week, projection and/or monitor screen systems adding relatively little to the total (the instantly cued VHD video disc programmes are specially made for professional purposes only and in monthly updated production, not to be confused with the more limited commercial type of video discs): for further details Ted Edgerton on 021-502 5152 — and remember, this gives you continuous video sequenced track by track in any running order you want, just like mixing records! … 10 Records have picked up (and needlessly rejiggled) Lonnie Hill ‘Galveston Bay’, Lovebeat International got Dino Terrell, EMI are remixing Roshelle Fleming (and forming a new dance label), while Warner Bros are finally releasing Jocelyn Brown in a fortnight — a pity she dropped off our chart this week! … Frankie Johnson Jnr ‘Whenever You Call Me‘, white labelled before Xmas, is now on Debut (DEBTX 3003) … Frank Sinatra’s high kicking 56/112-109-107-74-96-0bpm crowd rousing party classic ‘The Theme From “New York New York”’ is now on a hit-bound 4-track 12in (Reprise K14502T) along with a quickstepping live ‘My Kind Of Town’ … John Rocca’s new 105⅓bpm Hot Mix of Evelyn Thomas ‘Cold Shoulder’ (Record Shack SOHORT 60) replaces its subtle soul drive with a more basic blatant bounce for the pop market, while Alan Coulthard’s 112⅔bpm remix of Sister Sledge ‘When The Boys Meet The Girls’ (Atlantic A9486T) is jerkily stripped down, delayed and echoed … Les Adams’ Musclemix is being added to the Grace Jones album … Evelyn ‘Champagne’ King’s remixed ‘High Horse’ 12in in three weeks will include her classic ‘Shame’ … Hardrock have remixed Projection … Froggy & Simon Harris’s total remix with new added rhythm of the Real Thing’s 10 years old ‘You To Me Are Everything’ is imminent … Hot Chocolate ‘Heartache No 9‘ (Rak 12RAK 386) has a pattering 130½bpm rhythm reminiscent of Steely Dan ‘Do It Again’ and lyrics like Wilson Pickett ‘Engine Number 9’ … The Boss ‘Dancing In The USA (Medley)‘ (WEA X8838T) although a purpose built 119…142½-134½bpm Bruce Springsteen soundalike medley merely segues the songs together about as competently as a mobile jock could do using the originals … The Cool Notes are currently recording with Philadelphia producer Bobby Eli, while Dexter Wansel’s upcoming LP will feature two numbers by the Jones Girls, who are otherwise now defunct as a group … Taka Boom shakes ass, and anything else that waggles, to crowd pleasing effect at her PAs! … London’s legendary Fatman Graham Canter is back at Soho’s refurbished Le Beat Route, as “greeter” rather than DJ, with Change playing live this Sunday (23) plus an interesting California-style “slave market” on Thursdays (the winning bidder gets to take her prize hunk for a free dinner at L’Escargot!) … ‘The Real’ Chris Hill & Eddie Gordon start Skindeep Saturdays (22) at Dagenham AJ’s in Green Lane (where, when it was the Royal Oak, Chris began jocking!) … Birmingham Hi-NRG mixer Tony de Vit opens Boos opposite Shifnal railway station on Monday (24) … Tuesday (25) Vaughan Toulouse starts the partying Poppers at London Charing Cross Road Buzby’s … Essex Radio’s Tony Monson revives soul-jazz oldies Tuesdays at Rye Park’s Rye House Tavern near Hoddesden … Flash Gordon Joins Richard Dean seriously funking Bristol’s Reeves on Thursday … BBC2 ‘Arena’’s go go documentary was very disappointing, restricted as it was to Island-pacted acts, whereas the Def Jam-signed young Junk Yard Band for instance could have really rocked the house … Effectron ‘Don’t Stop That Go Go Beat‘ should be listened to alongside 1982’s Micki Jessup ‘Take It Easy When You Get Down‘ (US Starplex), hint hint, while Kevin Ashton (Chichester Hospital Radio) suggests Billy Ocean’s hit is kinda like Queen ‘Body Language’, and Felix Prince Jr (San Diego, California) reckons Total Contrast ‘The River’ is like Starpoint ‘Restless’ … Colonel Abrams’ LP topped US Club Play, Meli’sa Morgan Black 45s in Billboard … GET LOOSE

Just Buggin’‘ while they wait for their exciting debut single to hit the chart here, hip hoppers WHISTLE are (left to right) 21 year old writer/rapper KD, 17 year old composer Jazz and 20 year old cutmaster Silver Spinner, all from Brooklyn … and the latter, like so many other hip hoppers from that New York borough, being of Jamaican origin.

DURELL COLEMAN, in ‘Do You Love Me‘, has one of the month’s hottest soul singles, and he’s currently over here PAing up and down the country. In Roanoke, Virginia, as a child he started out singing in the High Street Baptist Church Choir — surprise, surprise! — before eventually heading west to Los Angeles for fame and fortune, which he found on retiring as undefeated champion after 13 straight weeks of winning US TV’s ‘Star Search’ talent show. Catch him if you can.


RUSS BROWN ‘Gotta Find A Way’ (US Jump Street JS 1001)
The biggest blast since Whistle, although probably too subtle for mass acceptance, this mournfully sung monotonous nagging 112⅔bpm rambler builds mesmerically through rock guitar, plonking piano, and eventually — guess what — the ‘Set It Off’ cymbal beat, with a dynamite instrumental flip too. Jump to it!

JANET JACKSON ‘Control’ LP (US A&M SP-5106)
Michael’s kid sister is produced now by Jam & Lewis on an excellent set whose standouts are the jauntily jolting Vanity 6-ish sassy 103¾bpm ‘Nasty’, cooly attractive 0-116¼bpm ‘When I Think Of You‘, delightfully yelped 0-120½-0bpm ‘He Doesn’t Know I’m Alive‘, smoochy Jones Girls-ish 0-77¼-0bpm ‘Funny How Time Flies (When You’re Having Fun)‘, which isn’t to forget the strutting 0-114⅕bpm ‘What Have You Done For Me Lately‘ (remixed on 12in), 116¾bpm ‘The Pleasure Principle‘, 0-120-120½-0bpm title track, 114bpm ‘You Can Be Mine‘, 21½/43-0bpm ‘Let’s Wait Awhile‘. Superb singing and tight production, pure class.

FUNK MASTERS ‘Love Money (Remix 86)’ (Tai Wan TWD 1950)
Originally on Master Funk in 1981 but now remade, rather than remixed, this cleanly striding compulsive sprightly 120bpm instrumental has enough catchy twiddles to be another (faster) ‘Twilight’, with a jazzier possibly even better ‘Fort Knox’ version as double-A side flip. Continue reading “February 22, 1986: Russ Brown, Janet Jackson, Funk Masters, Viola Wills, Dino Terrell”

February 15, 1986: Freddie Jackson, Meli’sa Morgan, Juicy, Durell Coleman, Total Contrast


CHAD JACKSON, who started out by synching ‘The James Bond Theme’ with ‘Set It Off’, is going to be a hard act to beat in the 1986 Technics DJ Mixing Championships, easily winning the Birmingham heat at Millionaires, where others worthy of mention were runners-up Tony De Vit and Mike T, plus Stourbridge’s Mick Jones (a faulty stylus foiled Chad in last year’s contest) … London’s heat at Croydon’s Easy Street saw a less high general standard of mixing although it was stylishly won by John Robinson (just back jetlagged from Dubai) in a close finish with his Julianas chum Alan Muir, Hastings-based runner-up Mark Ryder and currently gig-less Andrew Marriot also deserving credit … I’ve bad news for the winning national finalist – DJ Cheese seems likely to be representing America in the international final at the Disco Mix Club’s March 16 DJ Convention at the Hippodrome, where other star attractions will include Jermaine Jackson, Jaki Graham, Princess, LW5 and a singing Samantha Fox … Technics incidentally have a rival at last as Citronic have just launched their own competitively priced vari-speed disco decks (how about a pair for review, then?!) … CBS/Epic, flush with crossover hits by “unknown” black acts, have finally realised there’s more to their soul catalogue than Michael Jackson and have appointed Julian Palmer (recently of 4th & B’way) to the newly created post of UK A&R manager for black product, as of next Monday … Total Contrast’s import 12in of ‘The River’ will be on sale here at UK prices next week (London LONX 83), after which the actual UK pressing will substitute ‘Takes A Little Time (US Mix)’ instead of ‘Sunshine (Instrumental)’ on the flip – ah, the manipulations of creative marketing! … Aretha Franklin’s UK 12in only contains the main US Dance Mix, flipped by the dead slow ‘Kind Of Man’ … Mantronix actually comes in at 101⅚bpm and Whistle at 101⅔bpm on UK 12in: their beats remain the same! … Narada Michael Walden’s 1980 classic ‘I Shoulda Loved Ya’ has had a heavyhanded 112¾-113¼bpm revival by the old Cool Runners (Streetwave), due next week … The Walkers have had to add an opening ‘Hey’ to their upcoming 114¾bpm ‘Don’t Waste My Time‘ (Club) so it won’t clash with Paul Hardcastle’s current title! … The Three Degrees ‘This Is The House‘ (Supreme) has been promoed already in a fairly tedious 110½bpm mix three weeks ahead of release – after which who knows how many more Stock-Aitken-Waterman remixes there’ll be? – while Brilliant’s far better ‘Change Of Heart’-style 107⅚bpm ‘Love Is War‘ (WEA/Food) by that same production team is due a week earlier, by which time a Cool And Deadly Mix of O’chi Brown and John Rocca’s remix of Evelyn Thomas should also be about … LPs now out here include Yarbrough & Peoples’ ‘Guilty’ (Total Experience FL8S715) and Nicole ‘What About Me?’ (Portrait PRT 26844) … Sunday is a good night to be driving away from London with only a radio for company, Steve Walsh’s black music programme on Radio London stretching on FM as far as Watford Gap where if your tuning is right you then switch to Robbie Vincent’s soul show (note the distinction) on national Radio One – Steve’s interesting guests two Sundays ago were his MIDEM mates the mixers John Morales and Timmy Regisford, rapper (and Beauty and The Beat label owner) Duke Bootee and Reality Records owner David Lucchesi … London’s “independent soul stations” seem more off than on these days, latest name on the airwaves being Fame 94.4FM … Birmingham’s PCRL (People’s Community Radio Line) 103.7FM souls around the clock … Radio London’s Soul Night Out returns at Hammersmith Palais Thursday (13), visiting Windsor Blazers next week, the new season running until July … Ian Stewart this Thursday (13) launches a weekly soul night at Charlies in Wickford’s Dickens pub, with special guest “The Real” Chris Hill — as opposed to the impersonator who’s currently fooling club managers in Birmingham! … Kenny B, Paul ‘Mix Wizard’ Dixon and Frenchie solidly funk Edgbaston Faces every sweaty Sunday … Gordon Mac starts weekly funk at Luton’s Tropicana Beach next Tuesday (18) with Steve Walsh, Rapattack, George Power, CJ Carlos and dance troupes as regular guests … Peckham Kisses becomes the over-21s La Plaza next weekend … Dartford Flicks’ massive lighting rig is finally elevating up and down again … James Brown topped US 12in Sales, Jennifer Holliday Club Play in Billboard … ‘Gilligan’s Island’ was an old US TV series whose theme tune, like ‘Inspector Gadget’ and others, is now cropping up in many hip hop records such as 12:41 … The Bombers ‘Let’s Dance‘ (US West End LP) is becoming a revived big boom tune in London’s darker dives … Ian Levine suggests anyone seeking a good New York City source for deleted Hi-NRG material should contact Charlie Groppone at Vinyl Mania s 52 Carmine Street branch in Greenwich Village … Junior went along on the Red Wedge tour not to boost Labour but to get black kids interested in politics generally, but he only saw one black face in the audience at both Newcastle and Birmingham, and two girls down front at Cardiff! … Phyllis Hyman actually sang at a Duke Ellington tribute concert here, so May’s New York jazz Explosion will hardly be her first UK visit ever, regardless of what The Gutter Press says, but no matter … GET LOOSE!

FREDDIE JACKSON has become America’s hottest new soul heart-throb thanks to the huge success of his debut solo album, and especially to his wondrous now reissued single smash ‘Rock Me Tonight (For Old Time’s Sake)’ (Capitol 12CL 358). This romantic smoochy 71¾bpm knee-trembling return to ‘Sexual Healing’ territory (on 12in in three mixes) benefits now from only an included new poster so there’s little incentive for has established UK following to re-buy it, but with lots of TV lined up here there’s every chance it’ll finally get through to the country at large. And about time too!


MELI’SA MORGAN ‘Do Me Baby’ LP (US Capitol ST-12434)
From the same Paul Laurence-produced stable as — and indeed featuring support from — Freddie Jackson (although in this case largely collaborating with jazzy keyboardist Lesette Wilson), sweetly walling Miss Morgan’s debut set has the outstanding soulfully grinding smooth 100¼bpm ‘Fool’s Paradise’, and jittery 115¼bpm ‘Lies‘, juddery 111½bpm ‘Getting To Know You Better‘, skittery 0-123½bpm ‘I’ll Give It When I Want It‘, while joining her sultry 62⅔bpm title track hit as other smoochers are the 93¼bpm ‘Heart Breaking Decision’, 42⅔bpm ‘Do You Still Love Me’, 37½bpm ‘Now Or Never’. Not bad.

JUICY ‘Sugar Free’ (Epic TA 6917)
CBS continue putting all their eggs in one basket, or hot tracks on one 12in, this ‘Juicy Fruit’-ish sinuous (0-)92bpm groin-grinder’s two Deodato remixes and the previously released catchy 105bpm ‘Bad Boy‘ here being joined by the brother/sister duo’s next-best album cut, the sweetly jolting ‘Forever And Ever‘. Good value, huh?

DURELL COLEMAN ‘Do You Love Me’ (Fourth & Broadway 12BRW 42)
A bit of a grower, although oddly it attracted little attention on import, this soulful wriggly (almost go go-hip hop compatible?) 97⅓bpm roller is by a strong voiced O’Neal-type guy who, like Motown’s Sam Harris before him, won US TV’s ‘Star Search’ talent contest. The flip’s edit is joined by the 116bpm ‘Take Me Back To My Love In China‘. Continue reading “February 15, 1986: Freddie Jackson, Meli’sa Morgan, Juicy, Durell Coleman, Total Contrast”

February 8, 1986: Aretha Franklin, Alexander O’Neal, Whistle, Mantronix, Stimulus featuring Milton Smith


GEORGIE FAME has been booked for a bluesy bar-room session at Live Wire’s April 11-13 Bognor Regis Trading Places Soul Weekender — yeh yeh! — where the star live attraction will be Kleeer, doing three concerts … Hammersmith Odeon’s next New York Jazz Explosion on May 3/4 features Oui centrefold Phyllis Hyman, pianist Ramsey Lewis, fiddler Noel Pointer, and once again trumpeter Tom Browne … B Boys really did jam Old Bond Street when CBS refused to admit a crowd of “real people” specially invited by Rick Rubin to the UK launch party of his Def Jam label at The Embassy, where instead such crucial hip hoppers as Boy George, Lemmy of Motorhead, and Janet Street-Porter were admitted to watch rapper LL Cool J (the conversation level rose again after his first number) and the pathetic foul mouthings of the Beastie Boys (like little kids saying “piss, bum, willy”) — the food was good, though! … Five Star turned down Walt Disney’s offer of a US TV cartoon series based on the family group — is their father/manager mad? … Regina, who pronounces her name “Regeena” even though the correct Latin is “Regyna”, has a more soulful 114¾bpm remix with extra David Sanborn sax due on heart shaped picture disc (promoed on regular 12in) … Billy Ocean’s UK 12in does indeed now include the Club Mix, making it the same four-track format as the import — so why wasn’t it from the start? … Juicy ‘Sugar Free‘ is being rushed out here … Grover Washington Jr’s fast stuttery circa 126bpm instrumental ‘Poppin’‘, almost electro in character if not sound, seems the main attraction on ‘A House Full Of Love: Music From The Bill Cosby Show’ (US Columbia LP) … Isabel Roberts’ smoothly bubbling 115½bpm ‘Rhythm Of Your Love‘ (Hot Vinyl) is creating interest on promo ahead of release in 10 days … Streetwave, with piles of unsold stock from 1984, are reissuing the 122⅓bpm rapping Divine Sounds ‘What People Do For Money‘ (MKHAN 11), while Viola Wills’ UK 12in now will include ‘Both Sides Now’ as a third track … DDR Records are compiling a DJ mailing list on 0782-331925 … Manchester Mix Studio (061-740 5419), purpose built by and for DJs, offers services like mixing tuition, customised jingles and full practice/dubbing facilities — the studio’s Dave Fawkner sent me some of his own inventive mixes, one unbelievably melding together ‘Mouldy Old Dough’/’They’re Coming To Take Me Away Ha Ha’/’Oops Up Side Your Head’/ ‘Michael Row The Boat Ashore’, all at the same time! … DevonAir Radio’s blues presenter Dave Treharne hosts his monthly Hot Dance Night with upfront soul, oldies, all kinds of blues and the Big Town Playboys live at Willand’s Verbeer Manor this Friday (7), which might be something different for Devonians … Manchester’s first allniter of ’86 on Saturday — or rather Sunday (9) as it starts at 1am, confusingly in a club called Thursdays! — stars Chad Jackson, Pete Haig, Andrew Holmes, John Mortimer and London’s waggish Julian Palmer … Terry Davis is playing traditional and deep soul, ancient and modern, on Wednesdays at Bermondsey’s free admission Bugles in Grange Road — a similar set-up to Bob Jones and Ed Stokes’ longer established Mondays at London Bridge’s Royal Oak in Tooley Street … Essex jock Mad Marx, revealed as demon go-go-jazz-rap percussionist ‘Snowboy’ on his own recent single, is retiring temporarily from DJ work to play percussion for Polydor-pacted Chris Sutton … Deptford club Cheeks is now called Champs, having dropped its short-lived gay policy in favour of upfront funk, with Wild Magnum Geoff Watts back as main weekend jock … Bristol’s Nigel Halkes, a keen correspondent to these pages since he was 14, now studying in London and jocking, as ‘Nik’, at Deptford Winston (Tuesdays), has landed a regular spot on the pop panel in Peter Powell’s Sunday morning Radio One show … Prince returns to soul on his upcoming ‘Parade’ album, much of which, however, continues the Lennonesque flavour of his last one … The Mohawks’ 1968 underground club classic ‘The Champ‘ (Pama) later became an equal monster in New York as a break beat from about 1976, and had Tommy Boy managed to locate the rights (in fact Sparta-Florida publish it), it could have replaced the embargoed Herman Kelly ‘Dance To The Drummer’s Beat‘ for a commercial release of Double D & Steinski’s ‘Lesson Three — The History Of Hip Hop‘ megamix — is it too late now? … GET LOOSE!

Russell Simmons, his manager, claims LL Cool J’s ‘Radio’ LP (now out here, CBS/Def Jam 26745) in the USA is out-selling Barbra Streisand, who happens to have the top Pop LP in Billboard – where Sade topped Black LPs, Grace Jones ‘Slave To The Rhythm’ Club Play.


ARETHA FRANKLIN ‘Another Night (Dance Mix)’ (US Arista AD-I-9454)
Sounding much like Tina Turner doing ‘Jump To It’, Lady Soul’s soaring and surging 119¼-119⅓-0bpm chugger has been remixed by Steve Thompson & Michael Barbiero so that amongst their other chattering rhythm implants her opening “you will remember my name” gets the ’19’ stutter treatment. A four-tracker with Dub/Radio Mix/Edit in America, the UK pressing next week (Arista ARIST 12657) may well be different.

ALEXANDER O’NEAL ‘What’s Missing’ (Tabu QTA 6391)
What a surprise! In a completely unannounced move, his much demanded calmly striding 111¼bpm soulfully pent-up massive album track — a logical follow-up stylistically to ‘Saturday Love’ — has been thrown away instead as an added B-side attraction on the reissued ‘If You Were Here Tonight‘. This latter, always an unrealised potential smash in its own right, is a tranquil 81¼bpm smoocher with interesting Indian tablas in its fadeout, and an alternative more delicate Soft Version mix. At least the 12 inch makes good value, but what a waste!

WHISTLE ‘(Nothing Serious) Just Buggin’’ (Champion CHAMP 12-12)
Rushed out on white label to counteract Mantronix, this terrifically exciting extremely similar but much more widely appealing gimmicky 0-102-0bpm go go hip hop rap ‘n’ scratch, produced by UTFO’s Kangol Kid and Howie Tee, brilliantly makes a musical melody out of the word “bug” cut up by emulator (inst/edit flip). The next Full Force! Continue reading “February 8, 1986: Aretha Franklin, Alexander O’Neal, Whistle, Mantronix, Stimulus featuring Milton Smith”

February 1, 1986: Jellybean, Tavares, Billy Ocean, William Bell, Smokey Robinson


MADONNA soundalike (and old running mate) Regina’s name, she admits on the sleeve of her ‘Baby Love‘, is derived from the Latin word for queen which also symbolises the Virgin Mary — or the Madonna! … 10 Records beat off Chrysalis and Island to win Mantronix ‘Ladies‘, hopefully not too late as although still hot it’s fast being overtaken by the more exciting similar (same BPM and rhythm) double def Whistle ‘Just Buggin’‘, which Champion are already rushing out here! … Streetwave snapped up Viola Wills ‘Dare To Dream‘ flipped here by a remix instead of ‘Both Sides Now‘ … Ian Levine encapsulated Hi-NRG with Evelyn Thomas’s ‘High Energy’ and seems set to do the same for Eurobeat with Eastbound Expressway’s upcoming ‘You’re A Beat‘ – clever, nest ce pas? … Afrika Bambaataa is reviving MC5’s ‘Kick Out The Jams‘ in blatant rock style but refuses to repeat its notorious ‘mother’ line, although he does add the shout, “This ain’t no go go this is rock ‘n roll”, in what can best be described as a Gary Glitter break — Bam’s also answered George Clinton’s ‘Atomic Dog’ with ‘Bionic Kats‘, and really lets rip on the infectious go go ‘Funk Jam Party‘ (all from his upcoming album) … Soulsonic Force meanwhile have teamed with Trouble Funk for the somewhat simplistic ‘Go Go Pop‘ … Daryl Hall is cutting a solo album in London, with drums programmed by Steve Harvey — who’s also busy producing his own material when not hanging about in studios waiting for Total Contrast! … M&M have more percussively (and slowly) remixed the now doom-laden 111½-111⅔-111¼-111½bpm The Winans ‘Let My People Go‘ (Qwest W8874TX, still with the Raw Instrumental flip), and the now less vocal 124½bpm Ready For The World ‘Oh Sheila‘ (MCA Records MCAX 1005) … The Isley Brothers ‘Colder Are My Nights‘ has been speeded up on a promo to 102bpm (short)/101¼bpm (long)/102⅙bpm (inst), other current promos including Shirley Murdock’s ‘Billie Jean’-ish semi-whispered 121bpm ‘Truth Or Dare‘ (Elektra), Funk Masters’ 120bpm re-make of ‘Love Money‘ with a jazzier ‘Fort Knox‘ version flip (Tai Wan) … Sheila E ‘A Love Bizarre’, as warned, is indeed now also the B-side of an unnecessary new 130-128⅔-113½bpm ‘medley’ of ‘The Glamorous Life/Sister Fate/A Love Bizarre’ (Warner Bros W8890TX) … DJs seem predictably to be using only the first slower half of the Grace Jones Musclemix … Les Adams himself made sure I heard his January Disco Mix Club funk megamix, his most brilliant yet incorporating perfectly timed dialogue from gangster movies — while Paris DJ Dimitri Yerasimos sent me some excellent mixes in the hope of getting a London gig, so any offers? … The 1986 Technics DJ Mixing Championships hold their regional heats at Birmingham Millionaire Tues (4), Croydon Easy Street Thur (6), Newcastle Walkers Tues (11), Edinburgh Electric Circus Thur (13), Wakefield Casanovas Wed (19), Bristol Papillon Thur (20) – I hope to be a judge at all but Edinburgh — DJs possibly still being able to enter if they call 06286-67276 TODAY! … Bootleggers nightclub owner and generous friend of the many stars who frequent it, Mark Raymond was killed last week when he rolled his Rolls Royce on the Hendon Way – London’s nightlifers will miss him … Dionne & Friends topped US Black 45s, Jocelyn Brown both 12 inch Sales and Club Play in Billboard … Melba Moore’s own sitcom ‘Melba’ is on US TV Tuesday nights … Essex Radio’s Easter soul cruise to Holland is so over-subscribed that extra spaces have had to be found, the superior boat having a three-tier purpose-built disco showcase complete with stage … Nicky Holloway’s soul week in Ibiza is set for May 17-24, with apartment accommodation and DJs Chris Brown, Martin Collins, Trevor Fung, Paul Clark, Gilles Peterson, Johnnie Walker, Chris Bangs and Nicky himself spread across at least five venues (£135, booking details on 01-853 1953) … Wolverhampton’s redecorated Eve’s opens again with Steve Dennis on Tuesday (4) … Orin Cozier is the newly created dance music development manager at RCA … Marie Birch is starting a Sound Promotions club mailing list at Spartan Records, London Road, Wembley HA9 7HQ … Tululah Moon’s label Beauty and The Beat belongs to ‘The Message’ writer Ed Fletcher … Nina Simone’s new US VPI Records LP includes the frisky ‘Jazz Freak’-like ‘Touching And Caring‘ … Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis have started to be adopted by hit-hungry white popsters, producing Human League’s next LP – can Mick Jagger be far behind in the queue?! … Phil Spector’s classic lead singer Darlene Love is recording again for CBS … Paul Hardcastle’s current 12in on white label has stamped between the run-out grooves the message “Morgan who?” … GET LOOSE!

STEVE WALSH unveiled his Soul Set (very Sixties, that name) at London’s packed Hippodrome last week. This amounted to a dozen PAs by the likes of Masquerade featuring Morgan Khan, Sophia George, Aswad, Precious Wilson, Ladies Choice and of course the Cool Notes, all of whom one would have seen at Tony Jenkins’ similar Private Funktion nights when they used to be there, but this time held together by big Stevie baby from a mobile disco rig positioned stage centre. This may have been to spare us the sight of his backside, as the venue’s own console faces away from the audience! A celebration of the familiar (yes, he played Dennis Edwards, Fatback and Cheryl Lynn), the night was not for those hoping to hear upfront newies — although Manchester megamixer Chad Jackson later took over for a more serious selection — everyone encountered, however, confessing they’d enjoyed it. Another is set for March 5. Anything more regular could seriously undermine Radio London’s Soul Night Out.


JELLYBEAN ‘Sidewalk Talk’ (EMI America 12EA 210)
Catherine Buchanan sings lead, but the fact that this 115⅓bpm jittery pop disco leaper features Madonna on backups and composer credits seems to be attracting rather more attention! Funksters anyway will flip for the barking introed tense jiggly 0-98⅓bpm ‘Was Dog A Doughnut’ instrumental, originally by Cat Stevens and like a Wally Badarou-ish slowed down ‘Axel F’, burning up select floors since last summer.

TAVARES ‘Heaven Must Be Missing An Angel’ (Capitol 12TAV 1)
Ben Liebrand’s long awaited Dutch remixes add skittery surface rhythm to this 117-115¼-114bpm nominal A-side and the even zingier (0-)128-127½bpm ‘Don’t Take Away The Music‘, both aimed at pop play, although of the 12 inch single’s three revived ex-hits the one that meant least to soul jocks in 1977 is now hottest as it’s surprisingly similar to the Wally Badarou beat the 97-96-97bpm ‘Whodunit’.

BILLY OCEAN ‘When The Going Gets Tough, The Tough Get Going’ (Jive JIVE T 114)
Here we get this tautly striding infectious crossover smash (0-)121¾bpm Change ‘Searching’-ish roller in only three mixes, the better value ‘banned’ four-track import’s Club Mix presumably being left off for creative marketing later. If Warner Bros can give us all four mixes on Rochelle’s UK 12 inch, why can’t Jive? Continue reading “February 1, 1986: Jellybean, Tavares, Billy Ocean, William Bell, Smokey Robinson”