ODDS ‘N’ BODS
With ironic timing the day before he was profiled by London Weekend Television in their ‘South Of Watford’ series, Morgan Khan ran out of finance for his StreetSounds and Streetwave labels, making most of the staff redundant last Thursday while he struggled to assemble a new financial package to save the situation – hopefully his TV shot will help him … Disco Mix Club are looking for the UK’s best rappers to compete for the Shure Golden Microphone Award at March 8’s International DJ Convention – send demo cassettes to Shure Golden Mic, PO Box 89, Slough SL1 8NA, and be prepared if accepted for a rap slanging match to knock out your competitors! … Steve ‘Silk’ Hurley ‘Jack Your Body’ in its new Nomis Sirrah-mixed Monty ‘House’ Remix (London LONXR 117) clocks in at (0-)122⅓-122-121¼-122⅓-122-122⅓-121½-0bpm … Nitro Deluxe’s UK release, as well as doing away with ‘Let’s Get Brutal’ (which inevitably will be creatively marketed here in a few weeks with a remix), has been retitled for some strange reason from ‘The Brutal House’ to ‘This Brutal House’ … Paul Hardcastle’s remix of George McCrae ‘Rock Your Baby’, now that I’ve received it on 12 inch (Portrait 650312-8), turns out to be 112½-112⅔bpm and even better than the seven inch suggested … Record Shack are promoting Sadie Nine’s strangulatedly sung bounding 118½bpm ‘Let’s Work It Out’ (due Feb 23) as house rather than hi-NRG, although it’s getting support from both camps … The Jets, yet another family group who wiggle shoulders, arms and legs in a unison side-to-side three-step, have also had their Minneapolis-style frisky old (0-)125¾bpm ‘Curiosity’ re-promoted, flipped by a dub-ish 121⅔bpm ‘Crush On You’ version and the less danceable 119bpm ‘The Candle’ (MCA Records MCAT 1119) … The Real Thing ‘Hard Times’ has been much improved by a mellower more flowing (0-)110⅕bpm The Real Mix (Jive JIVER 137), although the lurching and surging song remains awfully uninspired … Steinski & Mass Media ‘We’ll Be Right Back’ has been stripped down into a dull (0-)101-0bpm Hard Sell remix (4th + B’way 12BWX 59) by the label’s Ian Dewhirst and Jon Williams, its only advantage being a backing-less Bonus Voices of the featured TV bits … Monte Moir is producing new material by Aurra … Atlantic’s new girl Miki Howard was of course in Side Effect … Maze, having sold out Wembley Arena at the end of this month, are adding four new dates on March 19-22 at Hammersmith Odeon – where Phyllis Hyman appears on April 13 … Caister Soul Weekend XIX is at Gt Yarmouth’s Seashore camp on April 3-5 … Roger Johnson, the first ever UK winner of the Technics DJ Mixing Championships in 1985, does live mixes every Monday on Radio London during Dave Pearce’s show, and otherwise works behind the counter at Hammersmith’s Spin-Off’s disco store – no globe trotting as an ambassador of mix for him … Dave’s radio guests two Mondays ago, scratching live, were Run-DMC! … Alan Coulthard would be first to admit that I was regularly using the term “Megamix” (which other people had even made my nickname in the late Seventies!) long before he is now reported to have “coined” it four years ago, when he began creating megamixed medleys as the Disco Mix Club’s original producer … Full Circle are having to be renamed as First Circle in the US to avoid confusion with another group there, although here they’ll remain the same (this means that only a very few rare copies of their now wrongly printed import LP have got through so far) … Hot House is obviously a good name for a group, except right now (with “house” having a whole new meaning) it may be the wrong name, their classy slowie sadly looking more like a turntable hit than a seller … Leeds’ Dave Hutchinson calls himself Funkmaster Hutchy, not (as last week’s caption had it) Funkmaster Hotcity! … LL Cool J is calling himself Ill Ill Cool J, as in “illin’”! … A&M’s disco man Mike Sefton now calls himself MC Double Def Sef! … Jamaican-accented the Masters Of Ceremony are from New Rochelle, just outside New York City heading north-east from The Bronx … Champion Records’ ‘Ultimate Trax 2’ compilation will feature another battle of the DJs, this one between Whiz Kid and Jazzy Jeff … Shep Pettibone has remixed Run-DMC ‘It’s Tricky’ for US release, flipped by the brand new ‘Uptempo’ … I’m pleased to see the Beastie Boys’ great ‘Girls’ is big in Liverpool! … Robbie Nevil topped US Club Play in Billboard – whose US Black Singles chart is now printed again in rm … Luther Vandross – nice for him but bad for us – has scored his first US Top 20 pop hit with the fast ‘Stop To Love’, which may influence his future release pattern … Luther did not, despite hints that he might, look in at Tony Jenkins’ welcome return to the Hippodrome (instead he was at Stringfellows) … Arthur Baker with singers Craig Derry and Will Downing of Wally Jump Junior & the Criminal Element are currently PA-ing around the country, including this Saturday in London at the Doo At The Zoo and Delirium … Friday (13) Danny Smith jazz-souls Gt Yarmouth’s Mole Club … Valentine Saturday (14) Jonathon More, Norman Jay and oldies-playing KJ & J McCray shake up Brixton St Matthew’s church crypt (opposite The Fridge) late … Adrian Dunbar’s popular Bolts gay nights have been forced to close at Bournemouth’s Academy with a farewell Valentine party this Sunday (15) … Man 2 Man meet Man Parrish are reviving Grace Jones’s ‘I Need A Man’ on import next month … Loose Ends PA at Swansea Martha’s Vineyard on Monday (16), when Jan Allen starts a weekly free admission jazz ‘n’ soul night at Eastbourn’s Bitter End … is the Limelight still burning bright? … you can stand still to anything – currently, it appears to be to ‘Almaz’! … ILLIN’ ‘N’ CHILLIN’!
Raze topped our Disco chart for six weeks last year with ‘Jack The Groove’, which only now has followed ‘Jack Your Body’ up the pop charts too. Masterminded by Vaughan Mason (right), whose ‘Bounce Rock Skate Roll’ was a funk hit in 1980, the New Jersey-based group includes Ben Epps (who has a hunch he may be related to veteran bongo star Preston Epps), and East Orange’s frisky Wanda Sykes, four times a winning body-builder, who sings their more recent ‘Let The Music Move U’.
Jazzy Jeff disappointed everyone (including judges Shep Pettibone, Steve Thompson, Bruce Forest and the Latin Rascals, who waited two hours for him) by failing to show up for the US Finals of the Technics DJ Mixing Championships at New York’s Hearthrob last Friday. As he’d won the North-Eastern US heat, there was no other DJ to represent such crucial cities as New York, Philadelphia and Washington DC, with the result that the winner (by unanimous decision) was San Diego’s ‘D.J. Master Rocker’ Joe Rodriguez, with Chicago’s Rodger Vergara Jr second and Miami’s Tony Garcia third. Jeff’s loss is Joe’s gain, the chance of international fame in the World Finals at the Royal Albert Hall on March 9.
Avtar Singh, after competing in the London heat of the Technics DJ Mixing Championships, returned home to find his studio (he runs a DJ school) had been burgled. £7,500 worth of equipment had gone, (drum machines, samplers, studio mixer, most items marked with “Calibar Roadshow”), plus all his record collection. He’s offering a £1,000 reward for information leading to recovery, on Slough 45521. And he wasn’t even placed in the heat.
Joanna Plumley is that relative rarity these days, a girl DJ. When discotheques began here in the early Sixties, it was normal for the DJs to be girls – a tradition carried on now mainly by the up-market hotel-situated chains run by such as Juliana’s, which is exactly who she worked for prior to her current shared residency at Bournemouth’s new Clouds. Incidentally, Ken Brudenell is keen to hear from more female DJs for the files of Mecca Agency International, so call him on 01-631 1976.
MILLIE SCOTT ‘Ev’ry Little Bit’ (Fourth & Broadway 12BRW 58)
Glamorous Mildred – sometime member of the Glories, Quiet Elegance, and Cut Glass (obviously from a very young age!) – is now produced by Bruce Nazarian & Duane Bradley in the shuffling and tapping typical Nick Martinelli style on a pleasantly gently jittering 102bpm smooth swayer featuring David McMurray’s jazzy sax (dub flip), already hot on import.
TULLO DE PISCOPO ‘Stop Bajon (Primavera)’ (Spanish Blanco y Negro Music MX 114)
We have Scotland’s gay clubs to thank for discovering this superb Italian jazz-funk throbber (more commonly called just ‘Primavera’) – at 104⅓-103⅙-103⅓-103-103⅔-0bpm hardly Hi-NRG despite its Eurobeat chart placing – which I’ve known about for some time but first actually heard on Radio Clyde five weeks ago, ordering it immediately afterwards, only for it finally to arrive in this its Spanish pressing a matter of days ahead of UK release on Greyhound Records! Leaping lightly along, it features jazz trumpeter Don Cherry with tympanist Tullio and one of those Falco-style unobtrusive muttering European chant-raps, or a shorter 104⅙-103-103⅙-102⅚bpm instrumental flip. Either way, miss it at your peril!
MEL & KIM ‘Respectable’ (Supreme Records SUPET 111)
Due commercially on February 23, the girls’ follow-up is a beefily bounding 0-121¾bpm house-type churner created once again by Stock-Aitken-Waterman (so it’s not the Isleys’ oldie!), with a deadly commercial Eurobeat-ish singalong vocal melody, and more sparsely Chicago-style (0-)119¼bpm Extra Beat Version jack track flip. Continue reading “February 14, 1987: Millie Scott, Tullo De Piscopo, Mel & Kim, Taurus Boy, Herb Alpert”