September 26, 1987: Matt Black + The Coldcut Crew, The Champs, Freddie McGregor, Shanice Wilson, Blaze


STOCK AITKEN WATERMAN had, as we went to press last week, taken out an injunction to prevent sales of the M|A|R|R|S remix because of its scratched-in use of a tiny bit from ‘Roadblock’, but later withdrew this before going to court (at that stage the remix was only available commercially as the seven-inch, the 12-inch now being out too) – it could have become a test case about the use of samples and scratches filched from other people’s records, so maybe it was dropped because it could also have become a case of the pot calling the kettle black? … Pete Waterman maintains that the use of ‘Pump Up The Volume’ in Sybil’s Red Ink Mix is something that M|A|R|R|S should have out with her label, Champion, rather than getting back at him through ‘Roadblock’ (especially as his involvement with the Red Ink Mix was, he claims, minimal) … US pressings of Michael Jackson’s ‘Bad’ 12-inch contain two extra versions, both merely edits, while his acappella mix synched over M|A|R|R|S apparently “runs and runs”, sounding brilliant! … PWL’s flirtation with Chic continues, Pete Waterman and Pete Hammond’s rush-released Sheer Chic Mix of ABC ‘The Night You Murdered Love’ (Club/Neutron NTXR 112) trotting along at a totally revamped 112bpm tempo through brief samples from ‘Le Freak’, ‘Good Times’ and much more, without any of Contessa Lady V’s rap now (and not a lot of Martin Fry) … LaToya Jackson’s single produced by Stock Aitken Waterman will be ‘(Ain’t Nobody Loves You) Like I Do‘, with a drum pattern similar to both ‘Casanova’ and ‘Lean On Me’ although based on Princess ‘After The Love Has Gone (Arresting Mix)’ … Bananarama’s new Stock Aitken Waterman-created cantering 119bpm Mel & Kim-ish ‘Love In The First Degree (Jailers Mix)‘ (London NANX 14) is flipped by the jiggly 100bpm ‘Mr Sleaze‘, a rare groove pastiche let down by lightweight vocals but featuring none other than Fred Wesley on sax, plus elements from ‘Cross The Track’ and ‘Roadblock’ … Hindsight ‘Lowdown’ is now also in a percussively altered smoothly pushing (0-)116bpm Uptown Remix plus a strong 116¼bpm Drumappella and rhythm-less Dream Mix (Circa Records YRTV 5), the flip’s funky ‘Everybody In The House’ on this pressing being 108⅓bpm … Luther Vandross’s reissued ‘Stop To Love’, a pleasant song but at a pop-orientated spiky fast tempo, has been given a more spacious, percussive 143¼-0bpm remix on 10-inch (Epic LUTH QT2), flipped by his all-time classic 108½-110-109½bpm ‘Never Too Much’ — in his current video, he seems to be copying ‘America’s Top 10’ presenter Casey Casem’s gesticulating arm movements! … Magnetic Dance assembled three British guys to be the House Master Boyz, even making up a group history for them, which means we won’t see the staff of Serious Records (who actually own the track here) pretending to be them on TV! … Fatback’s ‘I Found Lovin’’, before its renewed chart surge, had already sold over 120,000 copies here over the last three years, Rayners Lane’s Record & Disco Centre alone selling 500, for instance … Erskine Thompson and Clare Shave have combined to reactivate the Hot Licks club promotion service on 01-486 8794 … Swansea Sound has finally started a soul show, hosted by Kevin King for just one hour on Sundays, 4-5pm … Philadelphian rapper Shawnie G was stabbed to death on a train, evidently just for his leather-covered sunglasses, and left to be found three days later lying by the lines … DJ Coldcut and Matt Black have created a total remix of Eric B & Rakim’s ‘Paid In Full’, using an old stereo sampler LP’s “this is a journey into sound” introduction and lots more Double Dee & Steinski-type bits all through it — could this lead to a DJ clash when Eric visits London for the LL Cool J gigs in five weeks’ time? … ‘I Need Love’ has a female answer version by young-sounding Frosty, ‘I Need LLove Now‘ (US Tommy Boy), while LL Cool J’s album track ‘Go Cut Creator Go‘ remains much played rather noticeably in Liverpool … Cookie Crew ‘Females‘ has been delayed now until October 19, while they’re fiddling with the sleeve … Soho goes to Brighton for a jazzy weekend, with Baz Fe Jazz and Russ Dewbury plus the Tommy Chase Quartet live and the IDJ dancers at the Royal Escape Club this Friday and Churchill Palace Hotel Saturday (September 25/26), London-Brighton coach details on 0273-739309 … Brighton’s Paul Clark joins Danny Smith and Bob Masters at Great Yarmouth’s Scruples for some serious soul this Saturday (26), Paul’s Sundays at Hove’s Palmiera with Carl Cox now starting earlier at 7.30pm … Saturday (26) also sees another highly recommended Doo At The Zoo in London’s Regents Park, with much the usual DJ crew, advance tickets only as usual on 01-439 2628 … Desa, Kenni James, James Klaas and Pete ‘Seven Inch’ Haigh are funk-house-grooving The Defhouse Six on Monday (28) at Birkenhead’s Atmosphere… Paul Morrissey joins Steve Aspey for a jazzy night at Oxford’s Parkers on Tuesday (29) … James Lewis has left Bridgend’s Astons, being replaced on the Tuesday soul night for a four week trial by his very good friend Jeff Thomas … John ‘Nick’ Osborne, DJ and entertainment/promotions manager at Purley’s Cinderellas Rockerfellas, has started 50p drinks/50p admission on Wednesdays … Radio London’s Soul Night Out returns in a new season next Thursday, October 1, for the first time at the Astoria, Charing Cross Road —until recently the venue for Delirium amongst other trendy one-nighters, this is also being taken over on Fridays by Shake ‘N’ Fingerpop featuring Norman Jay and on Saturdays by Simon Goffe for the presentation of live international dance music acts, starting next weekend (Oct 2/3) with Gwen McCrae, to be followed soon by Chuck Brown, Slave, and Ronnie McNeir … Eon Irving is back from a break in New York (where he saw the Fat Boys film ‘Disorderlies’, like a hip version of the Three Stooges with lots of “fat” jokes), and has returned to London’s Munkberrys in Swallow Street on Saturday nights … Jon Wilde has become resident mixing jock with Peter Martine at Nottingham’s The Club, open Thur/Fri/Sat for commercial disco with gay nights the second Monday of every month … I wonder whether the timing of the Ritzy’s star-studded first birthday party was influenced in any way by the opening that very same night in Nottingham of the brand new New York, New York?! … Paul Reddington, photographer for Nottingham’s The Recorder and Evening Post, used to be a mobile DJ and avid rm reader… Dave Lee of Rough Trade reckons that Ten City ‘Devotion’ borrows the line from Azymuth ‘Jazz Carnival’, and Epee MD ‘It’s My Thing’ from Grandmaster Flash ‘Superappin’’ … Grandmaster Flash and the original Furious Five look like reuniting for an album on Elektra, incidentally … Paul Simpson is yet another New York producer/mixer planning to visit London soon … L.A. Mix leader Les Adams tracked down and is buying the car registration number LAM 1X … DON’T STOP (JAMMIN’)!


It really was a ‘Roadblock’ when the Stock Aitken Waterman bus battled through London’s Friday evening traffic, taking five hours to reach Nottingham for the first birthday party of the Ritzy. This is a Mecca disco, and in an earlier less lavishly decorated version it was one of the venues where, as he suddenly realised, Pete Waterman actually used to DJ! Now the music policy revolves very much around the PWL sound, so it made sense for the club to invite the sound’s creators to join the celebration. Amongst those along for the ride, and seen here, were (top right) chart-topping bus conductor RICK ASTLEY (“Hold very tight please!”), (bottom right) ex-Toto Coelo and now SAW-produced Body Band member LACEY BOND (emergency from the bus’s smallest room), (top left) PETE WATERMAN, MANDY SMITH, MATT AITKEN and SINITTA, and (bottom left) rm’s own JAMES HAMILTON with friends. Also making his presence felt was the Sunday Sport’s tired and emotional cub reporter Damon Cheesedip, while rm’s well behaved Alan Jones let loose for an hour on the dancefloor. A hot time was had by all, and the crowd seemed to enjoy it too, even the Mayor and his Lady in their chains of office.

THE EXTRA BEAT BOYS are PWL Studios tape operators Yoyo (left) and Jamie — it was the latter who came up with the expression ‘Showing Out’ for Mel & Kim — making a name for themselves now as remixers following their debut on Deja’s ‘Serious’. Although Pete Hammond is responsible for the more starkly rhythmic and less vocal 113bpm Escape From Newton Mix A-side of the remixed RICK ASTLEY ‘Never Gonna Give You Up’ (RCA PT1448R), it’s the Extra Beat Boys’ even more radically altered 113bpm Escape To New York Mix flip with new percussion and bass that’s causing most excitement.


MATT BLACK + THE COLDCUT CREW ‘That Greedy Beat’ (Ahead Of Our Time Records AHED 1202)
Fast selling excellent chugging (0-)106-105½-105⅓-105½bpm scratch mix using James Brown and much more but based on the recently reviewed Dub Specialists’ ‘Gready G‘ dub of ‘Get On The Good Foot’, coupled with (the numbering suggests it’s side one) the equally good though jerkier JB-cutting 0-101⅓-101bpm ‘The Music Maker’. Hit me!

THE CHAMPS ‘Tequila’ (Cooltempo COOLX 152)
Preceding Ritchie Valens in 1958 as a Tex-Mex crossover smash, this still floor-packing sax rasped chinkily jumping 178-173½-176½-174-0bpm instrumental classic has been newly extended, and flipped by last year’s hip hop rap adaptation of the tune (now tying in with the film ‘Pee Wee’s Big Adventure’), the 0- 90½bpm JOESKI LOVE ‘Pee Wee’s Dance‘. Continue reading “September 26, 1987: Matt Black + The Coldcut Crew, The Champs, Freddie McGregor, Shanice Wilson, Blaze”

September 19, 1987: Michael Jackson, Ten City, Mission, Cameo, Tony Terry


LaTOYA JACKSON is being produced here in London by Stock Aitken Waterman, and her brother Michael rang up offering to help if they got into a jam! … Pete Waterman hasn’t had time to create a complete jingles package for Capital Radio, just doing ones for the new Pete Tong show, but he’s already been approached by a thoroughly jealous Radio 1, wanting jingles too after reading this column! … Jellybean took me out for dinner on his last night in London, during the course of which we naturally discussed his appearance at Delirium, which turns out to have been the very first “exhibition mix” on stage that he’d ever had to do, using equipment totally alien to him: all the major New York venues he works at, as a regular club DJ just keeping the people dancing, are equipped with UREI mixers with rotary “pots” rather than faders (only the hip hop jocks use GLI mixers with faders), the decks at the Funhouse being three Technics SL1200’s (the old ones, not Mk II) and at the Paradise Garage they’re even older Thorens turntables — if he does any more live jocking here he’d want his own system of three decks side by side, mixer in front, and monitors … Jellybean’s current import LP, ‘Just Visiting This Planet’ (US Chrysalis BFV 41569), is full of US-orientated female pop, only his ‘Space Bass’-flavoured 120⅔bpm treatment of the classic ‘Jingo‘ being of probable interest here … Freddy Bastone, fresh from his Temptations remix, will be in London during October doing freelance studio work … Fourth & Broadway’s new club plugger will be Nigel Wilton, yet another recruit to the record business from Holborn’s City Sounds record shop … Ian Dewhirst is back as a consultant doing research for Serious Records — whose ‘Upfront’ compilation LP series is reverting to double album format … ‘Top Of The Pops’ appearances by the House Master Boyz could reveal a seriously unlikely line-up! … Stu Allan, despite the “blue” lyrics, has been playing Derek B ‘Get Down’ on Manchester’s Piccadilly Radio, where he’s just started a new Sunday 10-11pm hip hop show, followed until 2am by his regular soul show — he must be knackered by the end, as earlier that morning he’s also on all night 1-6am, making nine hours of black music in just 25 hours of airtime … Steve Allen (no relation) has changed time slots with a new revamped weekly soul show on Peterborough’s Hereward Radio starting this Saturday 5-8pm … Greg Edwards in his last weeks on Capital Radio has adopted L.A. Mix’s oldies-crammed ‘Don’t Stop (Jammin)’ as a nostalgic tribute to his ‘Soul Spectrum’ show … Lee Guest of the Bovver Boys did a mixing course with Les Adams … Bobby Byrd and James Brown are apparently claiming royalties from Eric B & Rakim for ‘I Know You Got Soul’ … LPs previously reviewed on import and now out here include Eric B & Rakim ‘Paid In Full’ (Fourth & Broadway BRLP 514), Colonel Abrams ‘You And Me Equals Us’ (MCA Records MCF 3388), James Robinson ‘Guilty’ (Tabu 460091 1) … Sherrick’s follow-up single will be ‘Let’s Be Lovers Tonight‘, Alexander O’Neal’s disastrously ‘Criticize‘ (the only album track not to chart here!), Levert will reissue ‘Pop Pop Pop Pop Goes My Mind‘, while apparently ‘Girls’ will now be double A-sided with ‘She’s Crafty’ as the Beastie Boys’ follow-up (maybe someone at CBS does read this column!) … ‘JC’ Reid funks Fri/Saturdays at Brighton’s Club Savannah with Tim Westwood and the London Posse there this Friday (Sept 18), and is looking for other future PAs on 0273-603548 … Adonis stars with Stu Allan at Bolton’s Ritzy house party next Monday (21), Radio London’s NITE-fm presenters Dave ‘First Class’ Pearce and Roger Johnson hip hop London’s Wag (22), while Bob Masters, Johnny Walker and Steve Aspey run from rare groove, rap and house to jazz and soul at Oxford’s Boodles on Wednesday (23) … Graeme ‘Def Dude’ Park funks the Urban Beat Club every Thursday now at Nottingham’s The Club … ‘JD’ Digweed gets Serious Saturdays at Saturdays in Hasting! … Kev Edwards (the Essex-based one, currently at Harlow Cheeks) is moving across the river to Kent and wants offers of gigs there on 0795-78182 …  Ashley Hooper now joins resident DJ Adrian Dunbar on Thursdays/Saturdays at Poole’s Mariners’ Wharf — Adrian, incidentally, without knowing how spot-on he is, criticises Bullet Club Promotions chief Theo Loyla for wanting to see obvious pop hits reflected in a Pop Dance chart, Theo’s own latest chart return as a DJ having Whitney Houston ‘I Wanna Dance With Somebody’ and the Pet Shop Boys ‘It’s A Sin’ as the fastest risers and the Communards ‘Don’t Leave Me This Way’ as a new entry, which may be sincere but doesn’t exactly advance the cause of new records (er, Theo, I hear Bill Haley has a hot floor-filler out called ‘Rock Around The Clock’) … Steve Hills is bucking the James Brown trend by reviving Brick ‘Dazz‘ as a rare groove at Leytonstone’s The Cube … Norman Scott (London/Luton Bolts) is raving about his discovery Tony Lee, a young white boy from Hackney who sings like Luther Vandross, signed up by Record Shack … Andy Stinton, legendary disco plugger and DJ at London’s old Sundown in the Seventies, returned from Canada for the PLASA Sound & Light Show ’87 – based in Mississauga, Ontario, at Gemini Sound & Light Design Inc, he now designs and installs the disco sound systems in all the Holiday Inns throughout North America … Zero 88 at the PLASA show sold 300 of their FX1.0 one channel lighting controllers at £75 each, a bit of a scam as it amounts to a simple on/off light switch! … Les Adams, Emma Freilich, Aniela and I went for a meal before going to last Tuesday’s Jocks party at Shepherds Bush Silks and then the big Turbo Sound/DMC bash at Uxbridge Regals, not realising that at both there were going to be groaning buffet tables of delicious grub for free! … Rick Astley, Donny Osmond, Edwin Starr, Steve Walsh and the Stock Aitken Waterman team were amongst the stars on stage at Regals (where it’s a pity the air conditioning didn’t reach the sweltering balcony), Rick Astley and Pete Waterman then being bright eyed and bushy tailed at 7.50 the very next morning on TV-am … Donny Osmond paid back Tony Prince for a trick played on his 16th birthday, by pushing a custard pie in his face! … Radio Manchester soul DJ Mike Shaft has followed his idol Luther Vandross’s example and lost a lot of weight … Damon Rochefort has graduated to his own pop scandal column in the Sunday Sport … Mandy Smith reckons that she and I could be starting a fashion trend for red and white spotted handkerchiefs, she wearing hers tied around her arm whereas I wear mine around my neck … Steve Walsh, whose hairstyle seems to be slipping further forward over his forehead these days, says that the stories about the vandalisation of his Rolls Royce were exaggerated, a passing drunk merely put something on the bonnet and left a four-inch scratch … Hot Vinyl reviews may not be completely up to date as I’ve a bus to catch (to Nottingham for the Ritzy party), so check the Black Dance chart for new entry BPMs, as always … ‘Librarian Girl’ and ‘Roadworks’ seem to be two currently hot requests! … DON’T STOP JAMMIN’!

CATHERINE BUCHANAN was the Madonna-supported actual lead singer of Jellybean’s earlier hit, ‘Sidewalk Talk‘, and it’s her operatic singing that starts off the current Jack E Makossa ‘The Opera House‘. However, tough luck on her (she is getting a British TV show devoted to her soon, which ought to compensate), all the “opera” element has been scrapped from the brand new excitingly pounding Phil Harding and Yo Yo-remixed 119¾bpm Blue Ink Mix of ‘The Opera House’ (Champion CHAMPR 12 50), now seemingly based more on the original flip’s ‘African Mix‘ and devoid of gimmicks.

Natasha Brice from Upper Norwood deservedly won last week’s competition to find ‘Miss Gullivers 1987’, and was immediately congratulated by (left to right) Nat Augustin, Patrick Boothe, Rick Clarke and Everton McCalla. Gullivers will in fact be moving to brand new Soho premises just off Regent Street in a month’s time, but right up until the night before the change will be open as usual at its legendary site of 17 years, in Mayfair’s Down Street.

LES ADAMS went over to say goodbye to resident jocks Nic Wakefield and Jon Jules, and to thank them for playing L.A. Mix ‘Don’t Stop (Jammin)’, at Uxbridge’s Regals during the Turbo Sound/DMC party last Tuesday — but he wasn’t allowed to leave until he’d done a quick and fierce scratch mix session!

One item that caught my eye at PLASA’s Light & Sound Show ’87 was Harrison Information Technology of Cambridge’s SP12 stereo mixer, which includes two crossfades, stereo emphasising image controls and other useful functions (as it should for £781.48), including a built-in beats per minute counter (top right corner). How accurate this is, of course, remains to be seen, as I’ve yet to encounter one that’s totally satisfactory.


MICHAEL JACKSON ‘Bad (Dance Extended Mix)’ (Epic 651155 6)
Already massive on dancefloors in its LP version, his urgently jittering smacker is now in a much extended 114⅓bpm Bruce Swedien remix that dips down into a false fade three-quarters of the way through, before bursting back on the beat (dub/acappella flip).

TEN CITY ‘Devotion’ (US Atlantic 0-86652)
Marshall Jefferson-produced excellent smoothly hustling 120-0bpm house-style bounder, but a proper song in traditional disco style with whinnying Sylvester-like soaring vocal, sawing strings, schlurping cymbals (more dubwise 120¼-0bpm Bam Bam’s House Mix flip, and 120¼bpm Bonus Beats).

MISSION ‘Show A Little Love’ (US Columbia 44 06836)
Nick Martinelli-produced terrific bouncily buoyant ‘Casanova’-ish gently grooving 95⅓bpm jiggly jogger, lushly harmonised to breezy brass by a group-backed soulfully agonised fellah (edit too), with possibly a more mature member leading the flip’s similarly syncopated more upbeat 104⅓bpm ‘Sensuous Mood’. Continue reading “September 19, 1987: Michael Jackson, Ten City, Mission, Cameo, Tony Terry”

September 12, 1987: Michael Jackson, Chic, Loop, Ray Parker Jr., Gwen McRae


M|A|R|R|S’ exciting 113bpm ‘Pump Up The Volume (Remix)’ (4AD BAD 707R) actually starts with less impact but has far more stuff scratched and sampled over it, including digital repetition of just part of Tom Browne’s ‘Funkin’ For Jamaica’ high note, and some bizarre Eastern singing … Dancin’ Danny D has given the bland Total Contrast ‘Jody’ a beefily juddering and hi-hat schlurped 119bpm Yardie Remix (London LONXR 142), with an instrumental too and an even tougher dubwise ‘That’s My Man Throwin’ Down’ Mix, full of fresh goodies … Danny D was about to spend a fortune on James Brown oldies until his father said, “Don’t do that — go and look in the attic, I’ve got them all up there” … that’s my man throwin’ up … Les Adams has created another excellent Cameo megamix for the B-side of their upcoming ‘She’s Mine’ … Supreme Records are starting their own club promotion mailing list, DJs’ application forms from Martin Shaw at Supreme, The Works, 105A Torriano Mews, off Torriano Avenue, Kentish Town, London NWS 2RX … ‘Roadblock’ is the only overground hit on the roots-reverting new ‘Street Sounds ’87 – 2‘ (Dance Music/StreetSounds STSND 87-2), otherwise full of obscure album tracks and imports including the terrific soulfully tugging Timmy Thomas-ish 106½bpm My Forté ‘Sometime Lover‘, a devil to trace on single despite several DJs charting it … Hindsight’s commercial pressings of ‘Lowdown’ include the party atmosphere lurching funky 108⅔bpm ‘Everybody In The House’, rather good … Bang The Party should have been the name of the act credited last week as S.A.W., these initials stamped onto the white label’s sleeve apparently standing for the deliberately misleading slogan “Sinful And Wicked” — oh, yes? … Jellybean has been remixing Whitney Houston’s ‘So Emotional’ (and a Frontline Mix of his own ‘The Real Thing’), producing Man Friday (with Larry Levan on lead vocals) and Anthony & The Camp (he, Marcus Miller, Nick Martinelli and Eumir Deodato each producing two tracks) – but his big exclusive revelation for rm was full details of the next Madonna album, a dance compilation called ‘You Can Dance’, that he has continuously segued using new remixes, Shep Pettibone’s of ‘Into The Groove‘ and ‘Where’s The Party‘, Bruce Forest’s of ‘Everybody‘, his own of ‘Holiday‘ and ‘Spotlight‘, and Steve Thompson’s of ‘Over And Over‘, the CD version also containing three bonus dubs … Shep Pettibone’s jumpily bounding 119½bpm Silver Screen Mix and more percussive 120bpm Movie House Mix of Madonna ‘Causing A Commotion’ (Sire W8224T) meanwhile give her the tightest groove she’s had in ages … Pepsi & Shirlie’s tritely chugging 135bpm ‘Can’t Give Me Love‘ (Polydor POSPX 885) has no connection with Stock Aitken Waterman, who do, however, appear to be behind the ‘Living In A Box’-tempoed (0-)108⅓bpm tapping jittery “white boy funk” pusher, Paul Barry ‘Complicated (Dance Mix)‘ (MCA Records COMT 1) … Living In A Box, meanwhile, are returning on the similarly tempoed purposefully jittering 101-0bpm ‘So The Story Goes‘ (Chrysalis LIBX 3), with some vocal interjections by Bobby Womack himself, in a Bruce Forest Dynamite Club Mix and bare Hip And Hop Dub Mix (flipped by a ponderously thrashed 114¾bpm house effort called ‘The Liam McCoy‘) … The Bootleggers’ 118¾bpm ‘Hot Mix 2‘ (Polo POLO 12-44), even more clumsily than their first one, mixes up remakes of many current pop disco hits without anything like the finesse of Mirage … Steve Walsh’s version of ‘I Found Lovin’’ has probably returned to the pop chart because it’s just about the summer’s biggest holiday hit in Spain! … Nottingham Ritzy celebrates its first birthday this Friday (September 11) and is sending a bus to collect, as special guests for the night, Stock Aitken Waterman, several of their star acts and myself – so see you there! … Tony Jenkins has an Up West night this Friday at Northolt’s C&L Country Club, with Ralph Tee, Barry Jeffrey, Bill Griffin and more, plus PAs … Saturday (12), Nicky Holloway and his Special Branch guests funk Great Shelford’s DeFreville Arms in Cambridgeshire, while his next Three Day Doo at Rockley Sands near Poole is set for October 16-18, with such as Pete Tong, Gilles Peterson, Bob Jones, Chris Brown, Chris Bangs, Johnny Walker, Paul Oakenfold (£40 tickets on 01-439 2628) … Camber Sands Pontins near Rye on that same October 16-18 weekend has Soul Brothers Promotions’ funk-to-reggae three-dayer (£41 ticket details on 0772-700282), followed there on November 6-8 by Kent Soul Festival’s weekender (£35 tickets on 0233-33652) … SEDA (South Eastern Disco Association) actually got its newsletter to me in time to plug the next meeting, this Sunday (Sept 13) at 7.30pm in Wrotham Heath’s Royal Oak … UK Mixing Champ 1985, Roger Johnson, now goes it alone presenting Friday’s 10pm NITE-fm slot on Radio London … Les Adams’ hot tip for a running mix that works for at least a minute is Prime Time ‘He’s Def‘ out of Joyce Sims ‘Lifetime Love (Def Beat Mix)‘, while Graham Gold tips Newcleus ‘The Huxtables (Dub)’, synched under Levert ‘Casanova’ … Aniela, the recently photographed female mixing jock, is leaving Cricklewood’s Ashtons in a month to follow Alan Coulthard’s route in reverse, going to Cardiff to study law at university (and possibly DJ there) … Siedah Garrett, as co-writer of ‘Man In The Mirror‘ on Michael Jackson’s new LP, is likely to be a millionairess by Christmas! … DON’T STOP JAMMIN’!

L.A. MIX, it has to be revealed as others have started to give the game away, are in fact none other than the Mixdoctor LES ADAMS and keyboardist EMMA ‘E FORCE’ FREILICH, their hot white labelled ‘Don’t Stop (Jammin)‘ being due commercially at the end of the month on Breakout (USAT 615), although proper promo copies should be about this week. The record was totally created in Les’s equipment-packed home studio, a converted bedroom only about eight feet by five (even smaller as all the walls are clad at least 12 inches thick with records!) and despite Les’s prowess as a mixer with vinyl the track’s multitude of bits from past hits were all added as electronically triggered digital samples.

Jellybean in live mixing action at Delirium last week was, to ears now tuned to the fast cut ‘n scratch of modem mixing styles, surprisingly slow and unadventurous, all has painstakingly accurate traditional running mixes seeming an age in coming as he played nearly all of each record. Realising that the uptempo US-orientated female pop that he’d begun with wasn’t going over that well, he did finally catch a groove when he ran through Manu Dibango ‘Soul Makossa’, Fred Wesley & The JB’s ‘Everybody Got Soul’, Criminal Element Orchestra ‘Put The Needle To The Record’, Nitro Deluxe ‘The Brutal House’ and his own version of ‘Jingo’.

John Robie, New York producer and mixer of much electro-hip hop material in the past but not so often name-checked these days, is currently ensconced at the Advision Studio here in London mixing Boy George and producing a brand new session with Afrika Bambaataa, while back in New York amongst his other projects due for release is new product from C-Bank.


MICHAEL JACKSON ‘Bad’ LP (Epic 450290 1)
Maybe not as smooth for sustained listening as a whole album in comparison with his last one, the set’s main dance tracks are the ‘Thriller’-ish juddery jittering (0-)114bpm title track with Jimmy Smith organ, infectiously lurching and churning (0-)112⅔bpm ‘The Way You Make Me Feel’, forcefully jiggling and surging (0-)106bpm ‘Another Part Of Me’, ‘Wanna Be Startin’ Somethin’’-ish (0-)118¼bpm ‘Smooth Criminal’ and rather dated Stevie Wonder-duetted spikily snapping 118¾bpm ‘Just Good Friends’, while a lot less floor-orientated are the jittery half-stepping 99bpm ‘Speed Demon’, moodily swaying 0-52½/105bpm ‘Liberian Girl’, heavy metal 0-65½-0bpm ‘Dirty Diana’, trickily unfurling 0-50-100-0bpm ‘Man In The Mirror’, already released 0-50/100bpm ‘I Just Can’t Stop Loving You’.

CHIC ‘Jack Le Freak’ (Atlantic A9198T)
Phil Harding’s Two Grooves Under One Nation remix of ‘FLM’ incorporated lots of jack track elements in ‘Do It Properly’ style before ending with Chic’s ‘Le Freak’, and now he’s used all those same jack track elements (plus some Mel & Kim!) to create a similarly styled total 120⅓-120-120¾-121-120¾bpm remix of ‘Le Freak’ itself, great fun (flipped by the 71-70⅓bpm ‘Savoir Faire’ jazz guitar instrumental).

LOOP ‘Keep On Moving’ (Rock The House 001T, via Jet Star)
Ignore the misleading label name, this is an absolutely excellent really soulfully sung and teased jiggly buoyant 99bpm jogger with a gentle go-go-ish rhythm, something like ‘Casanova’ without in any way being a copy, produced by Rodney Secret and Peter Hines (dub flip). So satisfying! Continue reading “September 12, 1987: Michael Jackson, Chic, Loop, Ray Parker Jr., Gwen McRae”

September 5, 1987: L.A. Mix, Jellybean, Wally Jump Jr., Ernesta Dunbar, Stephanie Mills


The Extra Beat Boys are Jamie and Yoyo, two tape operators at Pete Waterman’s studio, and NOT the actual Stock Aitken Waterman team who were mistakenly advertised as creators of the Deja ‘Serious’ remix: however, the two Beat Boys have also just done a percussive Escape To New York Mix of Rick Astley’s smash, 113bpm as pressed on a special four-track PWL Records promo given to guests at the Stock Aitken Waterman party, which includes too the brand new galloping 119½bpm Edwin Starr ‘Whatever Makes Our Love Grow’, “guilty” verdict-introed (0-)117⅓bpm Bananarama ‘Love In The First Degree’ and shrill Sinitta-ish 122bpm Mandy Smith (now called A Man Das) ‘Positive Reaction (Miami Mix)’, latest product from the hit factory … Rick Astley had to sing the Temptations’ ‘Ain’t Too Proud To Beg’ live at the party just to disprove Damon Rochefort’s silly wind-up in The Sun that Luther Vandross was the real singer of his hit! … Scott La Rock has been shot dead, twice in the head, after walking into someone else’s gangland fight in the South Bronx … PLASA’s equipment exhibition, Light & Sound Show ’87, is at Hammersmith’s Novotel in West London this coming Sunday-Wednesday (September 6-9) – if not at other times, I’ll certainly be there on Tuesday afternoon … Jellybean will be jocking this Thursday (Sept 3) at Delirium, in Charing Cross’s Heaven, following a Steven Danté PA … Champion Records are after yet more DJs for their mailing list – write to Lyndon T and Rick Davis there, at 181 High Street, Harlesden, London NW10 – and have already hit our chart with a much tidied up new 111⅓bpm PWL Remix of the old Advance ‘Take It To The Top’, which isn’t properly out for over three weeks (incidentally, I hear that Colourbox plan to pay back the Sybil Red Ink Mix by “borrowing” something off the label for their M|A|R|R|S follow-up! … Kenny G’s contribution much improves the 82bpm Cool Sax Remix of Imagination ‘The Last Time’ (RCA PT 41472R) … Les Adams has created a neat 117-118¼bpm ‘Megamix’ out of ‘Trapped/I’m Not Gonna Let You/How Soon We Forget’ as a new B-side for Colonel Abrams (MCA Records MCAX 1179) … Polydor are being coy about the fact it’s Shakatak on white labels of the juddering jittery go-go-ish densely rolling 99¾bpm ‘Mr Manic & Sister Cool’ (MANIX 1), but there’s no disguising the bursts of female vocal and piano between its angrier vocoder … Level 42’s newie for pop jocks, ‘It’s Over (Remix)’ (Polydor POSPX 900) is a lovely lushly atmospheric undulating 63⅕-0bpm slow moody swayer with pedal steel guitar, harmonic and an ‘I’m Not In Love’-like resonance … Phil Harding’s ‘Jack Le Freak’ remix of Chic will be released in a fortnight … Julian Palmer’s scratched-up remix of Bros was created several months back, before the current spate of similar scratchers, and is only in a promo pressing of 500 unless copyrights can be cleared for full release … ‘Special F/X’ and ‘Rock Steady’ are now back-to-back on the Whispers’ 12 inch (Solar MCAZ 1178) … Atlantic have had to press promo copies that speed up Levert’s ‘Casanova’ to 98⅓bpm from 92⅔bpm, and The System’s ‘Don’t Disturb This Groove’ to 88⅔bpm from 80¼bpm, as some provincial DJs and dancers couldn’t handle the slow tempos (well, they aren’t house, are they?)! .. Gil De La Paz’s Latin House Mix of ‘Casa’ should have been printed as 0-122½bpm … Jimmy Spicer’s old ‘Money (Dollar Bill Y’All)’ is now due to turn up here on Wax Records … Michael Jackson’s ‘Bad’ LP wasn’t even being released to the press until September 1, so you’ll have to wait a week for the review … Madonna’s opening act on her European tour has been the Force MD’s, personally chosen by her after they’d sung an acappella version of ‘Who’s That Girl’ at her New York movie premiere party … World Mixing champ Chad Jackson and runner-up Joe Rodriguez found that their mixing Tour de France was hell on wheels, driving every day from one end of the country to the other for their badly routed gigs … Steve Walsh (whose Rolls Royce was recently vandalised) and Total Contrast join Les Adams at Norbury’s Sussex Tavern this Friday (Sept 4), when Simon Dunmore and Les Fisher are joined by Chris Brown at the monthly Rhythm Zone in Northolt’s C&L Country Club … Chris Hill and Tony Fernandez soul this Saturday (5) at Great Shelford’s DeFreville Arms near Cambridge … Gillingham’s Joanna’s, after a rapid total refit, has reopened as Catch 22 … Jeff Thomas’s soul policy at Swansea Martha’s Vineyard seems to be slipping, suddenly he’s playing Spagna, Pseudo Echo and Sinitta … London’s Across The Tracks and Manchester’s Nude Night take turns visiting each other’s venues next week to compare styles, at Camden Town’s Dingwalls on Thursday (Sept 10) and Manchester’s Hacienda on Friday (11) – could there be a roadblock on the M6? … Steve Roberts sent a card to Greg Edwards to get a plug on Capital Radio for his free admission Thursday soul ‘n jazz wine bar gig at Putney’s Mr Micawber’s, but Greg read out the place’s name as “Mr Michael Webb’s”! … Greg Edwards, in the short term, is going into the condominium business with his uncle, but Capital hope he may one day return … Pete Waterman is strongly tipped to have produced Capital Radio’s as yet unheard new jingle package, “the best the UK has ever had” (to quote Richard Park) … Franklin Sinclair reckons that in the Manchester area only 14-year-olds are into rap, and he gets no demand for it – whereas down around London (now Rap City UK!), it’s huge with all the older serious clubbers … DJs returning charts to us, please try to specify which mix you mean when there’s a multiple choice (as with, currently, Sherrick, Sybil, Deja, T-Coy, Vivian Vee, Spagna, Taffy, Splash, Rose Laurens), and – especially Hi-NRG contributors – please list the labels of anything not already charted … Hi-NRG breakers this week include Mel & Kim ‘FLM (Two Grooves Remix)’, EDB featuring Pat Marano ‘Love Disco Style’ (US NRG), Rose Laurens ‘American Love (Remix)’ (Italian Limited Edition), Mandarine ‘On Fire’ (Canadian Unidisc), Exposé ‘Point Of No Return (PWL Remix)’ (Arista), Kevin Power ‘In Search Of Love’ (Fantasia), Colby ‘From Here To Eternity’ (Italian Technology) … Archie Bell & The Drells’ ‘Tighten Up’, now revived by Wally Jump Jr, remains one of my all-time favourite records – the first time I heard it in 1968, my chum Sparrow Harrison had recorded it off Emperor Rosko’s show and I spent an entire afternoon sitting in his car repeatedly running the cassette back for the one song, and beating out its then revolutionary rhythm on the steering wheel! … HI, EVERYBODY!

Bjorn Borg, the tennis champ, turns out to be a fan of Stock Aitken Waterman, and at their celebratory party at Stringfellows last week handed over the silver disc for ‘Never Gonna Give You Up’ to Rick Astley (centre) and the lads!

By now everyone who’s really keen will have seen the Martin Scorcese-directed video for Michael Jackson’s new single and album title track, ‘Bad’, when it was premiered by Channel 4 on Tuesday night. They may also have been disappointed. Filmed mainly in monochrome, it finds Michael (his face now a near fleshless skull) playing the part of a kid returning from a rather posh school to his home in the ghetto, where his hoodlum chums dare him to be “bad”. Michael’s conscience causes him to warn an old man who they’re about to mug in a subway, and then, as at last the screen becomes coloured, he answers his friends’ taunts by showing them who’s really bad in a fantasy dance sequence reminiscent of ‘Beat It’, surrounded by evil looking accomplices while he himself is in his now probably familiar new leather bondage gear. The moral, however, is that it’s bad to be bad.

It’s soon to be all change on radio. Jeff Young (seen above signing off from Radio London), although on the verge of accepting a show on Capital Radio in London, had a last minute offer he couldn’t refuse from BBC Radio One to host a Friday evening dance music programme (playing pop as well as soul), while on Radio One Robbie Vincent is moving to Saturday night and Andy Peebles is starting a specialist “real soul” show on Sunday. The big news however was exclusively revealed to rm by Richard Park, head of music at Capital Radio, where the Saturday 6-8pm replacement for the departing Greg Edwards will be — wait for it! — Pete Tong (who’s currently Jeff Young’s temporary replacement on Radio London’s Saturday breakfast soul show). Also coming to Capital are (as hinted last week) Tim Westwood, plus Alex George, Saturday night-time becoming a soul “magazine”-type programme featuring these with Chris Forbes remaining as anchor man, one hour each week being relayed live from a different club. This begins at the end of the month. Meanwhile, John Sachs will be moved to the mornings, up against Tony Blackburn on Radio London, David ‘Kid’ Jensen will handle the evening “drive time” and inaugurate a weekly London black music sales chart, Peter Young will revive his popular ‘Soul Cellar’ oldies show under the new title ‘Soul Circle’ on Friday evenings 10pm to midnight (and do soulful Saturday lunch and, on the split frequency CFM service, Sunday brunch-time shows). And this is just the start!


L.A. MIX ‘Don’t Stop (Jammin)’ (white label)
The latest white label scam, a DJ delighting real sizzler, sneakily samples many disco faves from the late Seventies/early Eighties (notably the chorus refrain from Dayton ‘The Sound Of Music’) over a Montana-ish 114¾bpm loping and swinging riff inspired by ‘Heavy Vibes’ and ‘Love Is The Message’, the flip’s 114½bpm Philly Jazz mix being straightforwardly this without the samples, while the 0-114⅓-0bpm overdubbing mix lays on even more gimmicky bits. Find it while you can!

JELLYBEAN ‘The Real Thing (West 26th Street Mix) (Chrysalis CHS 12-3167)
The record-producing New York DJ’s previous Madonna-type ‘Who Found Who’ US A-side has rapidly been replaced (even in the States) after it was eclipsed by its flip, the instrumental version of this ominous yet infectious churning and chugging 113⅓bpm powerful house-ish pusher, which, now we have the vocal version, turns out to be sung in moaning Colonel Abrams-style by none other than Britain’s Steven Danté – with the 114¼bpm Part II (Instrumental) again as flip, plus a 113¼bpm drumappella. Another ‘Brutal House’?

WALLY JUMP JR. & THE CRIMINAL ELEMENT ‘Don’t Push Your Luck’ LP (US Criminal Records CRLP 101)
Arthur Baker and the boys’ vigorous house-inspired set has a terrific (0-)116bpm mixed up medley revival of Archie Bell & The Drells’ ‘Tighten Up/I Just Can’t Stop Dancin’’, which does a running mix on into the less crucial 114-0bpm ‘Sworn To Fun’, and a beefy ‘I Love Music’-like 122bpm ‘Private Party’ that’s rooted in Philly soul, Otherwise, the 117⅕bpm title track and 117½-0bpm ‘She’s Gotta Have It’ are more routine, while a 0-118⅓bpm remix of ‘Turn Me Loose’ joins (in fairly brief form) their even earlier (0-)114½bpm ‘Jump Back’ and 0-110⅓bpm ‘Ain’t Gonna Pay One Red Cent’ hits. Continue reading “September 5, 1987: L.A. Mix, Jellybean, Wally Jump Jr., Ernesta Dunbar, Stephanie Mills”