November 2, 1985: Tyrone, Serious Intention, DSM, Brass Construction, The Concept, hip hop review special

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

IMPORTANT RECORDS are about to circulate a DJ limited edition 12in with four of their eight different Fatback ‘Is This The Future?’ mixes (including M&M’s), the proven favourite then also being released commercially . . . ‘StreetSounds 14‘ includes Frankie Kelly and Gardenia already, along with current hits by Ready For The World, Three Degrees, Collage, Five Star and Tramaine, plus 12in imports by Bernard Wright, Jeff Tyzik and Starpoint — however, the label’s Gilles Peterson-complied ‘Jazz Juice‘ amongst other Latin-slanted goodies will have Quartette Tres Bien’s ‘Boss Tres Bien‘, which should cause much gnashing of teeth for those few jocks who paid fortunes for the few rare copies to be tracked down on US Decca LP! . . . Maze have repeated their ‘Live In New Orleans’ video and album concept (a double LP with three sides live, one new), except this time they were live in LA, not for release until March . . . Jaki Graham & David Grant reunite for the Todd Rundgren-penned poppily rolling heartily duetted brightly noisy 105-0bpm ‘Mated‘ (EMI 12JAKI 6), due next Monday . . . Streetwave have promoed, a fortnight before release to coincide with her current visit, 17 years old New Yorker Leisa Dove’s lurching 109bpm ‘I Wish That I Were Older‘, soulfully enough squalled to belie her age (but then she’s a product of the ‘Fame’ School Of The Performing Arts) . . . Grace Jones is backed by The TTED All Stars comprised of members from not only EU but also Slug-go and Redds & The Boys, it being the latter who are confirmed as the subject of studio attention from Dexter Wansel, Verdine White and now Kenny Gamble in an effort to expand their go go sound . . . TTED boss Maxx Kidd is planning a definitive four-LP ‘Anthology Of Go Go‘ . . . Lifesighs agreed with my review before even seeing it last week, and have already remixed ‘Get Serious‘ to soften the beats . . . Island told me Sly & Robbie ‘Make ‘Em Move’ was faster on promo 12in, but it always was 114bpm . . . Formtronic Audio have organised a stand-crammed Southern Disco ’85 equipment exhibition primarily for the mobile market next Sunday (17) noon-6pm at Rochester’s Crest Hotel in Maidstone Road . . . Gary Raymond & Cino’s ‘Best Of British Funk 85’ night at Epping Forest Country Club last Tuesday was packed with people to see Haywoode, Julie Roberts, Total Contrast, Lifesighs, Princess, Odyssey, Sonique, Peter Royer, Claudia and Shi Shi Ha Ha (three pretty white girls looking for a deal) — wot, no Cool Notes?! . . . Princess threw DJ at that particular moment Peter Davis into a tizzy when instead of singing her cued-up newie she launched into an acappella ‘Say I’m Your No. 1’, which he didn’t even have out, but then when she carried on into ‘Ain’t Nobody’ he got the idea and was able to relax . . . Haywoode is suffering from nodules on her throat, so she’ll either be a lot quieter or else croaking when she unavoidably has to make a promotional visit to plug ‘Roses’ in the States . . . Julie Roberts carries on singing very soulfully when the record ends at PAs, given the chance, which she didn’t get at Essex Radio’s Soul Night Special last Friday at Braintree’s crammed and steaming Barn (if it’s that hot in winter what’s it like in summer?) . . . Johnny Nash, The Team, LW5, Josie James and Rick Clarke were others enduring the steam, while main presenter Dave Gregory was badly let down by the unprofessional attitude of some in his technical team allowing records and tapes to miscue very sloppily — the guy crusades for soul on the station and these outside broadcasts are already successful enough for syndication to be discussed, so he deserves better support from those around him however grudgingly given . . . Radio London’s Soul Night Out back at Luton’s Pink Elephant this Thursday is totally sold out . . . Nick Ratcliffe has taken over the Saturday 6-8pm soul show on Guildford’s County Sound 96.6FM — nice one! . . . Steve Collins at last is back unearthing (wittingly or not) great new non-needletime soul Sundays 1-5am on Capital Radio 95.8FM — where Greg Edwards last Saturday in his weekly philosophy slot, “the bathroom call”, could surely have produced a more convincingly unanswerable argument than merely to tell all rioters, looters and muggers that they’re “arseholes”? . . . Johnny S is disappointed my wavelength-sweeping digital radio tuner has never locked onto North London’s Contrast Radio 90FM, broadcasting between violent busts since January and due back soon (possibly under another name) . . . Northern Ireland’s recent Radiothon raised £55,000 for children’s charities, with 41 out of the country’s 50 discotheques contributing their own raffle proceeds . . . South Shields Chelsea Cat’s resident jock Adrian Allen presents a ten minute ‘Pop File’ slot every Thursday night on Radio Tees, and would welcome inside info from record companies on Boldon 364895 to help keep it as upfront as possible . . . Peter Anthony as originally tipped has settled in at Radio Luxembourg, leaving London’s Stringfellows with two girl DJs, Marie Thompson and Tigrr (sic ’em) . . . SEDA meets Sunday (3) at 8pm in Canterbury’s Coach And Horses pub, but check first with Roger Eagleton on 0795-89436 (potential new members always welcome) . . . BBC-1’s ‘Songs Of Praise’ from Detroit last Sunday showed a glimpse of Winans Gospel Record Shop, surely too coincidental not to be connected with The Winans (who are pronounced “Whynans”) . . . El DeBarge with DeBarge ‘You Wear It Well‘, only a quick flash here, topped US Club Play in Billboard . . . Aleem ‘Confusion‘ is now on US Atlantic . . . Segue Steve Goddard (Gants Hill The Villa) confirms my suspicion that Rene & Angela’s ‘Secret Rendezvous’ always was on 12in, in fact as flip to its present B-side ‘Bangin’ The Boogie’ . . . Thursday (31) predictably sees nearly every club having a Halloween night, Colin Hudd’s at Dartford Flicks being a Bride Of Frankenstein variation, Mike Allen & Brian Mason’s at Cricklewood Ashtons being free for fancydressers, as is Dave Rawlings (before 10.30pm) at Kensington The Park, Dave also celebrating late at Basingstoke Martines Saturday (2) . . . Gloria Gaynor does her reputedly first-ever UK club PA at Charing Cross Heaven Friday (1) . . . Saturday (2) Donald Banks PAs with Chad Jackson & Andrew Holmes at Manchester Hacienda, jazzy Chris Brown joins Paul Oakenfold & Trevor Fung at Croydon Scarletts, the Cool Notes join Jan Allen & Paul Wernham at Eastbourne Winter Garden — Jan also souls nearby Oscars wine bar usually on Saturdays, and for other larger venues can always use good PAs on 0323-23835 . . . Fridays at Rayleigh’s Pink Toothbrush have gone drastically upfront with a DJ roster including Chris Hill, Froggy, Pete Tong, Jeff Young, Tom Holland and John Dean, the latter’s Sunday at Hastings JR’s having similar guests weekly while on Mondays John joins Froggy at Canning Town Bentleys . . . Double “B” soul sound’s jocks Tony B, Chas, Eddie & Frank spin upfront funk in London at Euston Road Tulips Sun, Orchard Street Blitz Fri/Sat, and more commercial Lower Richmond Road Caines Sat too, while they’re due to start laid back jazz-soul at Warren Street, Jeaves wine bar . . . Mike Sullivan (Portsmouth Ritzy Tues/Wed/Thurs, Leigh Park Frenchie L’Amours Fri) reports that Mecca’s new fun pub Central Park opens at the Ritzy Nov 29 but the lighting rig’s already working and as of now the music policy is completely upfront — though compared to what? . . . Lance Nuttall manages Brighton’s fairly new seafront Club Savannah (48 hour advance membership and admission free), and is more likely to get the desired PAs if his letterhead has a ‘phone number! . . . Keith Valle, still six nights a week at Bristol Bibas, wonders how many other jocks have been solidly at it for over 20 years . . . John Clancy (Medway 53992), a hospital radio and mobile disco veteran of 15 years, is keen finally to cross over into club work (less lugging to do!) . . . Stuart Murray reckons the only clubs making an effort on the Isle of Wight are Ryde Patsy’s (where, wouldn’t you know, he does Fridays) and Sandown Court Jester — punters are ruled by Radio One, but he promises to play more funk than others . . . Disco Gary Van Den Bussche finds big demand for Stacy Lattisaw’s old ‘Jump To The Beat’ as it sounds like Madonna . . . King Enri (Sidcup Danielles) wonders what happened to Second Image’s prize pilot TV show after winning Freddie Starr’s Showcase, why in ‘EastEnders’ is Miquel Brown always on in the background, and when is Luther Vandross actually touring here? . . . Mark Barker (Brighton Secrets) says it’s all very well Bobby O borrowing from other records, Ian Levine has used the same tune with just different words on at least twelve Hi-NRG hits! . . . Keith Sterling, playing a wide range of music at Taunton Kingstons, Southampton Riverside and Bournemouth Shunters, doesn’t appreciate Island dictating the limited range suitable for inclusion in his disco chart returns — fear not, our man Alan Jones keeps promising the more applicable Nightclub chart will be back soon . . . The Team appear to be only a “mailing list hit”, without the strength of sales their Disco chart placing might suggest . . . Franklin Sinclair (Manchester Playpen) in thinking it isn’t fair that our disco charts list all remixes separately, when combined they could put a record much higher, completely misses the previously stated point: all mixes are listed separately precisely to minimise that sort of “creative marketing” advantage, and to discourage the now thankfully less widespread practice of multiple mix releases . . . SET IT OFF!


HOT VINYL

TYRONE: ‘I’m Gonna Make You Love Me’ (Total Control 12TOCO 4, via EMI)
Diana Ross & The Supremes & The Temptations’ 1969 MoR classic sounds comfortable and comforting enough to be hitbound again in this 63½(intro)-90-91-91½bpm lovers rock revival shared by Tyrone with the unbilled but equally featured Yasmine James, who sticks to Di’s original vocal line until after a nice brass break (inst flip).

SERIOUS INTENTION: ‘You Don’t Know (Special Remix)’ (Important Records TANT 8)
This loosely skittering (0-)116½-0bpm instrumental third remix of an old Paul Simpson-produced track has a chiming melody and dubbily washing vocals to make it another ‘Set It Off’ (two acappellas sandwich the flip’s tighter 116bpm Live/Extramental mix) . . . except all of a sudden it’s got strong competition.

DSM: ‘Warrior Groove’ (Elite DAZZ 45)
Not due fully for a fortnight but too hot to hold, Danny D and chums have shameless fun combining the best bits from ‘Set It Off’ and ‘Twilight’ to make a powerful cymbal-shushed 0-111¼-0bpm groove with Tyzik-ish trumpet toots, scratching, gibberish, chicks ‘n’ whistles that like its influences will — and already does in London — drive dancefloors wild!

BRASS CONSTRUCTION: ‘Give And Take’ (Capitol 12CL 377)
Duetted by Randy Muller with Lisa Fischer, this long overdue superb pent-up 103½bpm chugger has all the crossover appeal of Ashford & Simpson’s ‘Solid’ and deserves to be massive — it’s already winning radio soul polls — flipped (dub too) by a disappointingly jerky and messy John Morales-mixed ‘Vintage Brass Medley’ which any UK disco DJ with years of practice at mixing this material could have blended more smoothly for our market. Continue reading “November 2, 1985: Tyrone, Serious Intention, DSM, Brass Construction, The Concept, hip hop review special”

October 26, 1985: Moontwist, Kleeer, Frankie Kelly, Quando Quango, Hugh Masekela

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

AGAINST ALL expectations it’s Cooltempo who are rushing out Doug E. Fresh here — however there may be a hiccup due to its use of the Inspector Gadget theme, and a snatch of the Beatles’ ‘Michelle’ . . . Evelyn ‘Champagne’ King ‘Your Personal Touch’ (RCA PT 49916) is due here now (why does it make me want to sing the lyrics in “Bahaia”?) . . . John Morales still has amongst other versions an unreleased nine minute vocal remix of Fatback ‘Is This The Future?’ featuring Evelyn Thomas, which he’s offering to Important Records . . . Cat Stevens’ original very similar ‘Was Dog A Doughnut?‘ is being whispered as a possible single release — meanwhile Dutch pressings have helped put Jellybean’s album version back in the chart . . . The Team’s follow-up could be flipped by a jinglebelled ‘Wicki Wacky Christmas Party’ if it’s out soon enough, and (CBS permitting) Roy Ayers could be adding vibes to ‘Rock Creek Park’, as well as to Frankie Kelly . . . The Three Degrees have belatedly been remixed, but Donald Banks is another from Island to guarantee “No further mixes will be available” . . . Al Jarreau joins Shakatak for the blandly pleasant jauntily chugging (0-)104¾bpm ‘Day By Day‘ (Boiling Point POSPX 770), due commercially in two weeks . . . Alan Coulthard’s previously mentioned 0-117½bpm ’85 Remix of Gloria Gaynor ‘I Will Survive’, instrumentally much revamped with new breaks and Chic-ish guitar, has been promoed to gauge reaction before possible release, flipped by his galloping medley of her early hits . . . Jeff Lorber’s single has actually been cancelled, along with his tour (could a US label change be in the air?) — and Eugene Wilde’s UK visit has been postponed until the new year, when he’ll headline a five artiste full Philly World package along with Cashmere and JoAnna Gardner . . . North West DJ Association hold their first major equipment exhibition on Sunday February 16, 1986, at Offerton’s Belgrade Hotel in Stockport, stand space being bookable from David Jon on 061-761 5811 . . . TV-am’s kids-aimed ‘Wide Awake Club’ last Saturday was possibly an inappropriate slot but certainly had all red blooded big boys wide awake when Eighth Wonder made their TV debut fronted (and that really is the word!) by the delightfully ingenuous sex kitten Patsy Kensit whose elbow raising, tummy flashing, knee cocking routine climaxed with her shoulder strap coming undone as all the group rolled on the floor (their shuffling tiny-voiced samba (0-)132/66bpm ‘Open Your Mind‘ was promoed to encouraging DJ reaction, as flip to the outright pop jerkily jumping breathy (0-)170bpm ‘Stay With Me‘ and 0-137bpm ‘Loser In Love‘ (CBS TX 6694) — if Britain has to have a homegrown Madonna, make it her! . . . Radio London’s Soul Night Out this Thursday (24) hits Croydon’s Cinatras: last week at Hammersmith Palais, despite plugging it on his show Tony Blackburn sure enough drew a blank with the dancers by playing Ready For The World . . . Friday (25) Essex Radio’s second monthly Soul Night Special is at Braintree’s Essex Barn on the A120 with Dave Gregory, Disco John Leech and star PAs live on air 11-12pm, sandwiched by Tony Monson in the studio 9pm-1am following Dave’s normal 6pm stint . . . Sunday (27) Luton’s Bluebird Records shop celebrates the start of its regular Sunday opening with Chiltern Radio’s soul show broadcasting live from it, Martin Collins introducing PAs on air behind the counter! . . . Happy Hippo Jerry Hipkiss, now summer’s over, has moved his Saturday Severn Sound 95FM soul show from 4-7pm to the current 7-10pm, and would welcome extra mailing list attention c/o Severn Sound, PO Box 388, Gloucester GL1 2DQ . . . Steve Walsh, unable any longer to divide his loyalties, sadly leaves Capital to start a Sunday evening 7-9pm soul show on Radio London 94.9FM from next week, Nov 3 . . . Peter Young’s Soul Cellar oldies show returns to Capital Radio 95.8FM on Sunday nights 11pm-1am! . . . London’s airwaves may have lost Solar and Horizon, but between busts there are still LWR 92.15FM, KISS-fm 93.95FM, JBC 104.95FM . . . Phil Easton of Liverpool’s Radio City and Sonny King this Friday start running a contest for female DJs, part of the prize being a voice test at City (details from Sonny on 051-263 5907) . . . John Jessop in the 1-5am snooze shift on Radio City 96.7FM isn’t specifically a soul jock but the majority of his non-needletime music is black . . . Paul Laurence ‘She’s Not A Sleaze’ has met black radio resistance in the States, some programmers thinking the line “they called her loose Lucy” sounds like “they called her loose pussy”! . . . Stevie Wonder topped Black 45s, Tramaine Club Play in Billboard’s US charts — ‘Fall Down’ on promo here at least, has been clumsily re-edited (it loses the beat!) into a new hybrid 118½bpm Long Version . . . Sly & Robbie ‘Make ‘Em Move‘ featuring Doug E. Fresh has been slightly speeded up on promo 12in to 114bpm . . . Andy Heryet finds dancers at Worthing Carioca (Wed/Sat) far prefer ‘They Say It’s Gonna Rain’ by Kerry Delius to Hazell Dean (who’s now also in a percussion started 0-115bpm Zulu Mix) . . . Derek Boland has permanently joined the mixing team of Froggy and Simon Harris, who are planning their own label (whatever happened to Krack?) . . . The PDM Perry Daniels two Saturdays ago at Deptford Cheeks sent up Dirty Dave Shirt & Wild Magnum Geoff Watts’ efforts of the previous night by synching Stephanie Mills ‘Medicine Song’ right through Harleqiun Four’s, and Colonel Abrams through the instrumental of Conway Brothers ‘Turn It Up’, to wild reaction . . . Mix Doctor Les Adams actually won one of the recent RM contest’s CD players! . . . Greg Parrott (Telford Cascades) is after a 12in of Locksmith ‘Unlock The Funk‘/’Blackjack’ on 0743-240649 . . . Gwen McCrae ‘Funky Sensation‘ (and indeed Afrika Bambaataa ‘Jazzy Sensation‘) which never really went away for jocks with any sense, along with Archie Bell & The Drells ‘Don’t Let The Love Get You Down‘ from their ‘Where Are You Going When The Party’s Over?’ LP are the latest big buzz London revivals — all this energy wasted finding oldies when there are so many good newies being ignored . . . Dotty Green PAs in North Wales at Llandudno’s Speakeasy Bar and Towyn’s Mirrors Friday (25) . . . Bangor’s Dylans and Anglesey’s Min-Y-Don Hotel Saturday . . . Pete Tong joins Paul Oakenfold & Trevor Fung at Streatham Chaplins Friday (25), and closes Disco ’85 at Purfleet’s Circus Tavern Saturday (26) . . . Gary Stevens moves over from funky Friday to help Mike Whitaker for this Saturday’s fancy dress Halloween party at Woolwich’s Dover Castle pub (by the College), where Mike normally teams with Mark Galvin for soulful Sat/Sun . . . Sunday (27) Hastings Pier’s noon-midnight alldayer has Chris Hill, Jeff Young, Jan Allen, Paul Wernham, Chris Kaye, Donovan Dwyer, Si Grant . . . Princess PAs at Charing Cross Heaven for Damon Rochefort’s “gay funk” Tuesday (29) . . . Thursday (31) Blackburn Peppermint Place’s refurbished Pepps 2 reopens as Kaleidoscope, funked as ever by Gary Hickson . . . Paul Taylor is back at Burnley’s Angels, redecorated and renamed now as Clarets, doing wally Thurs/funky Sat 10pm-2am . . . John Mayoh is currently doin’ it at Leicester’s The Studio . . . Dave ‘Hutchy’ Hutchinson mixes soul Sundays at Bradford’s brand new Imps Nitescene with 10,000 watts sound system, three decks, digital delay, sampler, harmonizer, drum machine, spare stylii . . . Studio 222 plays fun music with mix spots by Mix Wizard & Double G Fridays at Birmingham Ward End’s Fox And Goose, and upfront newies with Dave, Dave, & The Crew Tues/Wed at Hagley Road’s Duck Inn (next to Libertys) . . . Neil Fincham now souls Styx in Edinburgh’s George Street Thur/Fri/Sat, newly decorated with more to come . . . Cramond Perry does Edinburgh’s brand new Tuttles in their over-25s VW disco club Fridays, with free champagne . . . Chris Britton, literally ‘Trapped’ at Tottenham’s Websters the other Sunday, points out he doesn’t funk so much as pop/Euro/electro/reggae/rock/funk Leicester Square’s Empire Ballroom! . . . Phil Howell, after nearly four years at Derby’s Blue Note, took a year off jocking to set up his own private nursing home business but now has returned, with BBC Radio Derby afternoon presenter Chris Baird, at Burton on Trent’s Clown’s . . . Dave Clark has added Tues/Wed at Rainham (Essex) Yesterdays, a non-dancing winebar/pub under the same ownership as his other gigs, Barking’s Chains (Sat/Thur) and Cowpers (Fri/Sun) . . . Nicky Leek (South Yardley), unhurt in a car crash, had £700 worth of records stolen which she’s been having to rebuy before insurers pay up . . . Island’s mailing list DJs chart returns eased off this week leaving us basically with our old faithful upfront chart contributors (making this week’s Disco 100 as current as possible, Theo Loyla please note, instead of a fortnight out of date), and — surprise, surprise — Island’s own product did a lot better! . . . SET IT OFF!


HOT VINYL

MOONTWIST: ‘Sight And Sound’ (Certain Records 12ACERT 4, via Priority/EMI)
Sade meets Cleo Laine (actually it’s Ruth Rogers-Wright, ex-Mrs Joe Jackson) for a lethargically mannered fashionable slow 76/38bpm meander, interesting and full of haunting atmosphere if not immediately danceable.

KLEEER: ‘Never Cry Again’ (Atlantic A9505T)
Bassily boosted here, the excellent solidly rolling 108bpm catchy soul chugger now for added value is flipped by the guys’ superb A-side worthy slinkily sensuous (0-)108¾bpm ‘Lay Ya Down Ez‘, and ancient lurchingly cantering 116½bpm ‘Winners‘.

FRANKIE KELLY: ‘Ain’t That The Truth’ (10 Records TEN 87-12)
Had this been easier to find when first on import, would so much attention have been focussed on it? Copying every inflection and detail from Marvin Gaye’s early ’70s style, it’s an immediately familiar sounding 107¼-108¼-108-109bpm weaving and tugging swayer, extremely well done even if it is only a copy. Still, the original’s no longer around. . . Continue reading “October 26, 1985: Moontwist, Kleeer, Frankie Kelly, Quando Quango, Hugh Masekela”

October 19, 1985: Freddie Jackson, 52nd Street, Fatback, Evelyn ‘Champagne’ King, Howard Johnson

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

WOODY CUNNINGHAM of Kleeer made a flying visit to England lasting one day just to PA at the Caister soul weekender, where the combined jocks came up with an unusual official chart: new hits were The Winans, Serious Intention, lsley Jasper lsley ‘Dancin’ Around The World‘, Frankie Kelly, Diane Schuur ‘It Don’t Mean A Thing If It Ain’t Got That Swing‘, established biggies were The System, Kleeer, Wally Badarou, Harleqiun Four’s, Doug E Fresh, while — the trick category! — not heard at all were Cheryl Lynn ‘Encore’, Ready For The World ‘Oh Sheila’, Princess, Cool Notes or Five Star . . . Steve Walsh & Tony Blackburn return to Hammersmith Palais Thursday (17) with Radio London’s Soul Night Out (now why did I follow the previous item with that?!) . . . Robbie Vincent, hinting that Radio One could be getting blacker, will at some stage soon devote his Sunday night soul show to a recording of Bobby Womack’s London concert — I caught Bobby on Friday when unfortunately he was being videoed for US consumption, which meant the show was super slick with lights on the stubbornly undemonstrative audience, such cornily staged tackiness as a flamenco-type flirt cavorting through ‘Gypsy Woman’ and a plainly terrified little girl walking on with a bunch of flowers (how would any kid react when confronted with a screaming sweaty middle aged black man?), warmth only beginning to spill across the live audience when Alltrinna Grayson did her spine-tingling screech on ‘Harry Hippy’, after which there were a lot of good bits but it was nowhere near so spontaneous or memorable as last year (and the sound made the star’s voice indecipherable for much of the time, especially when talking) . . . Princess ‘After The Love Is Gone‘ as before has been white labelled ahead of Oct 28 release, more of the same at 99½-99¾bpm from the Stock-Aitken-Waterman team . . . Paul Hardcastle’s eagerly awaited ‘Just For The Money‘ is a Lord Olivier introduced 0-113-0bpm cluttered bassy chugger possibly too overloaded with dialogue and effects to cut through clearly on dancefloors although it retains the ’19’ format, Bob Hoskins in his ‘Long Good Friday’ gangster voice going on about “this could be the crime of the century” in a scenario that embraces the Great Train Robbers and Al Capone’s Feb 14 shootup . . . Thames Valley DJ Association return to Sunbury on Thames’ Kempton Park racecourse for their expanded 2nd Disco Exhibition on Sunday afternoon, January 26 1986 (stand space bookable from Pauline Smith on 07842-58881), followed that evening by the Imagination-starring Shownite ’86 awards dinner at Windsor’s Blazers (£10 all in, £1 exhibition only, ticket applications payable to TVDJA at PO Box 14, Ashford, Middlesex being advisable now) . . . Kev Hill at Mecca Agency International Ltd, 14 Oxford Street, London W1N OHL, wants to hear from mobile and club jocks (send CV, demo tape, SAE) in case there’s work for them, and from clubs who’d welcome PAs and live appearances . . . “Dave” (01-734 6249) is auditioning alternative music DJs for a well known Mayfair discotheque next door to a late nite eaterie (which still seems to be undergoing alterations), and Debbie Gopie (01-588 0174) is in urgent need of good female DJs for an interesting project . . . Larry Foster, whose most requested oldie at Gants Hill Villa Fridays is Fred Wesley ‘House Party‘, with Segue Steve Goddard has started a rare record finding service on 04023-74864 — he and King Erni both lead the first seasonal wave of Christmas cards, many thanks! . . . Kerry Delius’s deleted 112¼bpm ‘They Say It’s Gonna Rain (Remix)‘ is finally available again as flip to the less disco 109¾bpm ‘Slipping Away‘ (Arrival 12PIK 17, via Priority) . . . Nicci ‘So In Love‘ oddly late in the day is now on Boiling Point (POSPX 774) . . . Disco Mix Club’s October mixes are Les Adams’ tough funk, Alan Coulthard’s recent pop, Sanny X’s slightly scrappy Bob Marley, Prince productions and Simple Minds medleys, none so strong as on last month’s major set . . . Paul Sanders (177 Ludlow Road, Itchen, Southampton SO2 7EL) wants to hear from anyone else who’s had trouble with something called the Grand Groove Mixing Club . . . Colin Hudd’s latest Wally Badarou mix at Dartford Flicks (where he revives 1984 this Friday) is with George Benson ‘Soulful Strut‘ . . . Chris Kaye (Tunbridge Wells) suggests mixing the old Rose Royce ‘RR Express’ with either Andre Cymone or more trickily Harleqiun Four’s — he also complains that Kent’s clubs don’t get a fair share of artist PAs despite being an easy drive from London (maybe that’s because they aren’t on the way to anywhere else?) . . . Steve Jason, who’s added funky-ish Fridays at Peterborough’s refurbished Millionaires (ex-La Scala), finds on his Tuesdays at the Gables that Simple Minds ‘Forget About Me’ doesn’t deter soul dancers possibly because it’s such a doddle to mix with ‘Sexomatic’ . . . Johnny Hero (Belfast The Boxes Fri/Greenan Lodge Mon) wonders why CBS let Alexander O’Neal ‘If You Were Here Tonight‘ slip away when it’s still his most requested smoocher and local wholesalers can’t get enough — something similar happened when it was huge in London, the sales force seemed to ignore it . . . Certain Records has been set up by “millionaire book publisher” John Spiers, chairman of the Harvester Publishing Group and a founding director of Brighton’s Southern Sound ILR station, who in pitching initial releases at the dance market obviously has noticed the immediate chart impact DJs’ purchases can make . . . Ashley Hooper (Bournemouth Shunters) reports local shop demand for Brian Jackson & Gil Scott Heron ‘In The Bottle’ has come around again to such a pitch that whoever owns the rights now would do well to re-release it . . . US Elektra, retaining it for DJ promos, has stopped issuing the 12in format commercially, saying now of all times it’s not viable! . . . Alan Schivek of New York’s Mega Records is giving Record Shack their own custom label identity in the States, with virtually simultaneous release there . . . Freddie Jackson returned atop the US Black LPs (as well as 45s), Ready For The World topped Club Play as well as the pop Hot 100 in Billboard . . . New York’s black radio news currently carries many South African apartheid stories . . . Inspector Gadget is a lyrically much mentioned Saturday morning US TV cartoon show which has inspired a hip hop dance step, so don’t be surprised if the timely ‘Chief Inspector’ gets another Gadget Mix! (UK commercial copies incidentally appear after all to have both Vine Street and Hill Street versions) . . . Luther Vandross is in the middle of producing the Temptations, one of whose old stomping grounds Harlem’s Apollo is due to reopen this month — I myself maybe surprisingly took an undeserved bow there when a judge of the Tip Top Bread Talent Contest in 1964 (contest entry had less to do with talent than the number of bread wrappers your family could muster)! — while just down the same block on 125th Street another of my old stomping grounds the Baby Grand club appears completely unchanged after 21 years, still with piano shaped window in art deco style . . . Haggis & Chris Howard reggae-funk Marsh Farm (Luton) The Cotters pub’s last ever disco night before a jukebox is installed, Steve Allen & Nick Graham electro-funk Peterborough’s Fletton Fleet Centre, and Brian Davies has a tramps and tarts party at Stourport Severn Manor, all on Friday (18) . . . Saturday (19) sees Chris Hill & Robbie Vincent start their new weekly Hill & Vincent’s Fundamental Music Corporation at Croydon’s Sgt Peppers, guaranteeing “no youth club music” . . . Tuesday (22) Tonbridge’s free admission Loggers fun pub (by the station) turns two years old with Chris Kaye running down the ten soul tracks most requested there in that time, while at the Epping Forest Country Club near Chigwell Cino & Gary Raymond feature PAs by Princess, Total Contrast, Haywoode, P.P. Arnold, Precious Wilson, Julie Roberts, Peter Royer and more as ‘The Best Of British Funk ’85’ (over-21s, advance £5.50 tickets only, on 01-660 8645 or 0992-469069) . . . Wednesday (23) Paul Needham has a Motown promotion night at Derby’s Knotted Snake . . . John Coomer jazz-R&B-soul Sundays at Yeovil’s Three Choughs Hotel 7.30-10.30pm, future guests including Bournemouth’s Graham T (27), Exeter’s Chris Dinnis (Nov 3) . . . Russ B & Ian Stewart plus guests funk Friday’s The Wak Wak Club at Options on the A127 near Basildon . . . Neil Matthew souls Ramsden Heath’s Nags Head pub (free) near Billericay every Tuesday . . . Facade ‘The Groove‘ could more concisely be called a cross between the early styles of Paul Hardcastle and The RAH Band . . . Island’s effort to get more DJs sending in charts has helped stagnate the Disco 100 to their disadvantage, as by far the week’s biggest seller was Wally Badarou who stays stuck at 4: other sellers that previously would have reckoned to be higher include The System, Total Contrast, Donald Banks, Grace Jones, The Winans, Sade, Evelyn King, whereas still rising although sales have long tailed off are Michael Lovesmith, Lukk, Roy Ayers, Skipworth & Turner — Kleeer and The Team have actually yet to register major sales despite high placings, and charting purely on mailout reaction without any sales at all are Vikki Love, Jeff Lorber, Bar-Kays and even Brass Construction ‘Zig Zag’, so as always suspected from past experience, huge numbers of DJ returns don’t necessarily help make an accurate up-to-the-minute, interesting chart . . . SET IT OFF!


HOT VINYL

FREDDIE JACKSON: ‘You Are My Lady’ (Capitol 12CL 379)
Freddie’s definitely the successor to Teddy Pendergrass’s crown as the new romantic black balladeer, to judge from his current huge US success with both his debut LP, very popular here, and this quietly starting sweet slow 0-92/46bpm smoochy ticker. Now can Capitol break him here where CBS didn’t even bother with the similar in appeal Alexander O’Neal? The flip’s 105½bpm “Special Theme Version” of the gently lolloping ‘I Wanna Say I Love You’ amounts to an instrumental.

52nd STREET: ‘Tell Me (How It Feels)’ (10 Records TEN 74-12)
The snappingly introed immediately familiar Nick Martinelli production will make you wonder which Loose Ends (or whoever) record it is until Diane Charlemagne and the four fellahs from Manchester start cooing the 105½bpm drifting but driving swayer (dub/edit flip), their classiest to date if overly tied to a formula.

FATBACK: ‘Is This The Future?’ (Important Records TANT 7)
Possibly the biggest recent black dance hit to remain unreleased on UK 12in until now, this terrific bass synth bumped rolling calm 108½-108¼bpm pusher from 1983 has a memorable chocolate voiced message rap, apparently here re-edited from several known mixes to end up with Evelyn Thomas wailing instead of the original LP version’s great sax, to make a hybrid new version of less contemporary appeal, the flip revives the accelerating 105-109bpm FATBACK BAND ‘Wicki Wacky‘ street funk partaay chant. Continue reading “October 19, 1985: Freddie Jackson, 52nd Street, Fatback, Evelyn ‘Champagne’ King, Howard Johnson”

October 12, 1985: Patris, Serious Intention, Grace Jones, Sade, Facade

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

STEVIE WONDER actually counters accusations that ‘Part-Time Lover‘ sounds like Hall & Oates’ ‘Maneater‘ with the confession that both owe their inspiration to the Supremes’ ‘My Whole World Is Empty Without You‘! . . . Strafe’s original 111¾bpm ‘Set It Off‘ finally hits our Disco chart over a year after it came out — the Harleqiun Four’s version was recorded as a retaliatory replacement when Strafe split from the Jus Born label and according to producer Craig Peyton it almost included rock guitar (thank goodness it doesn’t!) . . . Prince-associated records noticeably dipped in last week’s Disco chart thanks largely to their main boosters being out of the country in New York . . . TC Curtis snapped up Mark Fisher’s vocalist Dotty Green for his Hot Melt label, promoing her strong simple bubbly striding 111¾bpm ‘I Caught You Out‘ three weeks ahead of full release . . . Bobby Womack will again be accompanied by Alltrinna Grayson at his Hammersmith Odeon concerts this week, while Roy Ayers is going to have Dee Dee Bridgewater — try and keep snooker’s Steve Davis away! . . . Jean Carne apparently added an “e” to celebrate her divorce from Doug Carn, after also consulting a numerologist — as did Dionne Warwick in her brief Warwicke phase and Al Greene in his permanent Green phase, before her . . . ‘In My House‘ was originally by Val Young until Sergio Munzibai flexed his muscles and got the Mary Jane Girls to record it, as he reckoned their album needed beefing up — it was their biggest US hit to date, and served notice to Motown on the West Coast that their new boy in New York knew what he was talking about, after which he was then able to convince them that ‘Nightshift’ should be more than just a Commodores album track! . . . Miquel Brown having been diverted to another producer and Seventh Avenue’s next single postponed for three months, Ian Levine has decided to quit Record Shack when his contract expires and to go freelance producing Earlene Bentley and Eastbound Expressway in the new year (where there’s smoke there’s fire!) . . . EMS plugger Ian Dewhirst in New York unearthed an old white label M&M remix of Fatback ‘Is This The Future’ — do Important Records know about that one? . . . Jellybean not surprisingly is closely following the belated British progress of his instrumental version of Cat Stevens’ 1977 ‘Was Dog A Doughnut?‘ appreciating that supplies on EMI America are likely to remain limited now it’s known his new product will be on his own Warner Bros-distributed label . . . Andrew Holmes (Manchester Brown’s) complains he couldn’t buy Chuck Brown as Spin Inn sold their only copy to Mike Shaft — who then didn’t even play it on air! . . . Pete Haigh (0253-824156 after 5.30pm) is servicing North-West go go jocks with new TTED product (he also guests with Steve Barker on Radio Lancashire this Sunday afternoon) . . . TTED boss Maxx Kidd is bringing in George Clinton, Dexter Wansel and Verdine White to work with Washington DC’s go go artists, and broaden their appeal . . . The Jones Girls have split up . . . Norman Connors’ Starship Orchestra has a new vocal trio offshoot The Lift . . . New York mixers the Latin Rascals are producing Frankie Gaye . . . Warp 9 have moved to Motown, and far from staying electro now sound more like the Cool Notes! . . . The Real Roxanne looks like reverting to the name Dimples to help reduce US radio resistance following saturation of all the associated ‘Roxanne Roxanne’ records . . . Pepsi has the Jacksons, and in a similar US TV commercial New Edition sing “Coke is it!” . . . ABC ‘Be Near Me‘ topped US Club Play, Madonna ‘Dress You Up‘ 12in Sales, Freddie Jackson ‘You Are My Lady‘ Black 45s in Billboard — whose disco columnist Brian Chin I was pleased to meet . . . Dance Music Report’s editor Stephanie Shepherd actually came over to London before anyone had returned from the New Music Seminar, but later last week I took her to such relevant hot spots as Radio London’s Soul Night Out at Luton’s Pink Elephant (where Hot Licks plugger Danny D was so late with Total Contrast they didn’t get on the radio), Mayfair’s Gullivers, London Bridge’s Royal Oak, Old Sarum, Stonehenge and Avebury (eh?) . . . Go West ‘Eye To Eye‘ sounded really “urban” on New York black radio even before I knew Alan Jones’ Chartfile had speculated about its acceptance by that market . . . Darryl Hayden, whose video roadshow played at Horizon’s farewell gig, a trouble free melting pot of 3,000 people, observes that soul music leads to racial harmony which is why it’s such a shame the soul pirates are being hounded off the air . . . LWR had their studio busted last Wednesday under dodgy circumstances considering they’d just inherited another station’s premises . . . Dave Brown’s 7-9.30pm BBC Radio Kent soul show this Friday (11) is also being relayed by both Radio Norfolk and Radio Cambridgeshire to coincide with Caister — he’s of course as usual on Radios Saxon and Orwell Saturday 6-9pm too . . . Peter Young is back on Capital, 5pm weekday drive time — yay! . . . Sandy Martin’s Friday night Disco Trekin’ on Wiltshire Radio now reaches Bristol too — WR becoming GWR — and by coincidence I caught some of it last week . . . Billy Paul ‘Lately’ LP (Total Experience FL85711) is out here . . . Gary Hickson (0253-66701) needs good PAs to celebrate the refurbishment of his “funk factory” at Blackburn’s Peppermint Place on Thursday Oct 31 (or any Friday) . . . Alan Taylor (0745-36757, 6-7pm) is again after good quality soul acts for Friday PAs at Towyn Mirrors near Rhyl, including return visitors (expenses, accommodation and additional North Wales PA opportunities provided as usual) . . . Dan Pucciarelli, well known around Blackpool/Manchester for his many seasons mixing there but currently at Manhattan’s Starbucks (45th St between 3rd & Lexington Ave), would appreciate any offers enabling him to return here — write to 9 Hancock Street, Staten Island, NY 10305 or call 010-1-718987 0124 . . . Tony ‘Flange’ Glass creates his own live electronic remix and sampling effects with his mobile roadshow as well as at Wickford Dickens Wed/Thorpe Bay Shorehouse Thurs/Wickford Charlies Fri . . . Dirty Dave Shirt with Wild Magnum Geoff Watts Friday (ladies free before 11pm) and The PDM Perry Daniels Saturday at Deptford Cheeks mix, phase, remix and generally cut ’em up . . . Froggy too seems to be trekking North-East, recently pleasing a Teeside crowd at South Bank Bonnets with two hours of mixing . . . Colin Hudd’s hot mix at Danford Flicks is Whodini ‘Freaks’/Wally Badarou/Doug E Fresh ‘The Show’ . . . Gary Campbell pulls about 400 from North and East London as well as Essex to Harlow Whispers for Sunday’s under-18s, with whom Sahara ‘Love So Fine‘ is huge — a Sleeper Of The Year? . . . Fatman Graham Canter revives 1979 at Victoria Park Follies Thursday (10), Steve Allen funks Wellingborough Tithe Barn Friday (11) . . . Keni Stevens PAs at Bournemouth Academy Fri (11), Southend Fantasies Sat (12), Birkenhead Promises & Warrington Carlton Sun (13), Liverpool Trophies’ launching night with Kev Edwards Mon (14) . . . Adrian Parkin displays our Hi-NRG chart as a poster at Huddersfield’s Gemini Club, while of course the number of record shops who display the Disco chart is enormous — and now it’s a Top 100 again! . . . Stuart Cochrane (Clackmannanshire) was finally the first jock to chart Tony McKenzie’s invigorating ‘Lolita‘ (Belgian USA 12in) . . . UK and US disco product is flooding out in such quantity at the moment that a lot of good records are in danger of getting lost, as nobody can afford them all . . . SET IT OFF!


HOT VINYL

PATRIS: ‘Love Oasis’ (US Emergency EMDS-6554)
Classy disco rather than soul — and in fact a brief Hi-NRG chart entry four weeks ago, although it’s not that fast — this smoothly striding sinewy 118bpm shuffler is subduedly cooed by nice little 19 year old singing actress Patris Pitman, whose oddly accented name was given her by mother Delethia Brown in honour of Congolese politician Patrice Lumumba, a bloke. I know all this as I kept bumping into her (and mum!) in New York.

SERIOUS INTENTION: ‘You Don’t Know (Special Remix)’ (US Easy Street EZS-7512)
An old Paul Simpson-produced track now in its crucial third remix, by Pablovia Raban, this new loosely skittering and drifting (0-)116½-0bpm instrumental version has chiming melody and dubby vocals washing through it to make it another ‘Set It Off’, snapped up already here by Important Records (two acappellas sandwich the flip’s tighter 116bpm Live/Extramental mix).

GRACE JONES: ‘Slave To The Rhythm (Blooded)’ (ZTT 12IS 206)
Trevor Horn doubtless has a host more mixes waiting in the wings of this theatrically introduced languidly rolling EU percussion pattered (0-)96¾-0-96¾-0bpm slinky atmospheric pull up to the bumper and other past rhythms, extracted from a longer piece, the flip’s instrumental 95½-97bpm ‘Jones The Rhythm‘ being even more go go, followed by a throwaway 140bpm rigid rock beat. Continue reading “October 12, 1985: Patris, Serious Intention, Grace Jones, Sade, Facade”

October 5, 1985: “New York’s black radio is now so bland and boring, even Tony Blackburn sounds more upfront”

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

Rapidly writing with jetlag straight off the Virgin Atlantic plane from New York (first class, of course, thanks to my hosts the Disco Mix Club), I may not have time to give you as complete a column as usual but will make up for it next week with full details of all that was of interest about the New Music Seminar . . . Doug E Fresh disappointingly chickened out of competing in the Human Beat Box battle, possibly with good reason as it was convincingly won by Cleveland, Ohio’s Erroll Holloman, while similarly Melle Mel and LL Cool Jay (whose LP will be the first on Def Jam/CBS) failed to show up for the MCs rap battle in which Busy Bee controversially beat the excellent Roxanne Shante after Kurtis Blow on the judging panel gave her low marks for obscenity . . . London’s own Cut ’em Up Max (ex-Mastermind) in his second heat of the fiercely fought DJs cutting contest excitingly took Pittsburg’s Boogie to a triple tie playoff in which the judges went for Max’s speed but finally a precise audience count decided it for the native American, but he and reputation shatteringly both Zulu Nation champion Afrika Islaam and Mixmaster Cheese were then each beaten by the conquering relative unknown Ezgee — no wonder so many of the guys with internationally known names stayed away . . . Downstairs Records, much less upfront than before, in the large oldies section of the shop (selling repressed 7in copies of The Champs ‘Tequila’ for 59 cents!) were inundated by calls from radio and TV stations for ‘Gloria’ by Laura Branigan, Them, anyone, and for anything to do with storms as Hurricane Gloria bore down on the Eastern Seaboard — the hurricane needlessly closed down much of New York as the media over-reacted to a bit of wind and rain, although of course it could have turned out worse, and indeed Brass Construction leader Randy Muller’s house in the suburbs north of the city was damaged and lost some trees . . . Gloria prevented any imports reaching here at the weekend, but the new Bernard Wright and Prime Time albums had already arrived in the UK when they weren’t to be found anywhere in New York! . . . Colonel Abrams’ UK “remix” merely turns out to be the long US 12in version, which I hadn’t realised wasn’t out here anyway . . . Evelyn Thomas ‘Reflections’ is being beefed up in the mix before commercial release next week, while Divine ‘Hard Magic‘ has been promo-ed ahead of Oct 14 release in a rocky percussive Village People-ish 144bpm Magic Mix and more Dead Or Alive-ish 142½bpm Hard Mix, commercial copies only to feature one of these . . . George Hargreaves has started his own label, Boystown UK! . . . Virgin/Hot Melt picked up York, his single here being ‘Plain As Black And White‘ flipped by ‘Star’, in about two weeks . . . Michael Lovesmith has just escaped being dropped from Motown by the strength of British interest in him . . . Steve Stein of legendary state-of-the-art mastermixers Double Dee & Steinski is keen to come to London to create ‘Lesson Four’ for any record company with a suitably diverse catalogue (he emphasises that mere remixes do not interest him), so company people call me to be put in touch — Steve actually writes and produces commercials for MTV and other cable networks, Douglas Franco being a studio engineer at an advertising production studio, it taking them 20 hours to do about five minutes of their intricate mixes which are all done manually (no emulators or razorblades), the basic background on 8-track with the segued edits inserted off 2-track, Steve having 200 spoken word LPs from which to draw . . . John ‘Jellybean’ Benitez is a really nice friendly and unaffected guy, constantly rushing up to introduce me to people, his current production work includes Jocelyn Brown for his own Warner Bros-distributed Jellybean label, Debbie Harry for the ‘Krush Groove’ film, Madonna ‘Gambler’, Siedah Garrett, Jermaine Stewart, Joyce Kennedy and Elizabeth Daily . . . Russell Simmons tells me ‘Krush Groove’ is the name given to his Def Jam label in the film, which he revealingly confides could have been better but should please the kids as the music’s good! . . . Princess has been remixed yet again now by Shep Pettibone for US radio (KISS-fm did a nice mix from it into Nolan Thomas ‘Yo Little Brother‘), while Doug E Fresh ‘La-Di-Da-Di‘ is all over the airwaves too with its naughty bits bleeped or reversed by the radio stations themselves: others much heard included both of The System’s singles (I met affable David Frank), Tramaine, Freddie Jackson’s LP, and continuously Diana Ross — in fact New York’s black radio is now so bland and boring even Tony Blackburn sounds more upfront, and I ended up taping gospel station WWRL! . . . Sunday afternoon I drove so far out into sunny summery New Jersey (with Capital Radio producer Mike Childs and his American wife Jan) to visit the Great Adventure amusement park that Philadelphia’s stations were strongest, including Power 99FM’s great oldies show (possibly hosted by veteran Jerry Blavat, The Geater With The Heater?) which played Frankie Beverly & The Butlers! . . . ‘Hill Street Blues’ no longer starts with the rollcall and some of the guys have swapped moustaches, new series ‘The Insiders’ copies the ‘Miami Vice’ format teaming white Nicholas Campbell and Prince-ified black Stoney Jackson as investigative reporters with of course a rock soundtrack, ‘Charlie & Company’ as anticipated is cosy and middle aged with Gladys Knight and Flip Wilson as parents of humbly cute kids, Lady Ashley and Luke failed to survive the ‘Dynasty’ massacre, and to complete your new season roundup with ‘Dallas’ (well it was bigger news than records last Friday!), Barbara Bel Geddes is back as Mizz Ellie, Sue Ellen hits skid row, Bobby’s buried by his childhood tree house and leaves his 30 per cent of Ewing Oil to Christopher but in trust to Pam, who’s immediately visited by a slavering Cliff Barnes who she turns down flat! . . . Alan Coulthard has created a rather ‘Telstar’-like version of the theme from ‘Dallas’ which cleverly cuts up dialogue from the actual soundtrack, with the official approval of Lorimar Productions . . . Bobby Womack and presumably Altrinna Grayson really wail practically a whole song as a radio commercial for Stroh’s beer! . . . Chris Greenwood, an English DJ just this week returned to London, has spent the last three years jocking on Long Island at Southampton (where I spent a summer DJing myself once), successfully turning his Conscience Point Inn punters onto reggae . . . OK, that’s the New York news — all the really detailed night club and seminar scandal next week! . . . London could find a new Shadow FM on the horizon (hint, hint) . . . Radio London’s Soul Night Out this Thursday (3) is at Luton’s Pink Elephant, while Friday’s ‘6.20 Soul Train’ sadly is the last of the present series, and a compilation of “best bits” . . . Friday (4) is Sue Ellen night at Dartford Flicks with half price vodka before 11pm and the club’s own JR, John Rush, being beastly to Colin Hudd! . . . Dave ‘Hutchy’ Hutchinson, mixing at his funkiest Fri/Sat at the Time & Place, puts us back in touch with Bradford, where Sunday (6) he joins Jonathan and more for an alldayer at Bensons . . . Gary Crowley celebrates his birthday on Tuesday (8) at South Harrow Bogarts with surprise star guests . . . Alan ‘Gibbo’ Gibson has joined Paul French at Bergen’s Oleana in Norway (the largest Bacchus venue there), using the stage to impersonate Prince, Bruce and the like, as well as now fire-eating and juggling in his act . . . Chris Britton currently funks London’s Leicester Square Empire Mon/Tues, Tottenham Websters Thur/Fri/Sat/Sun . . . Eastside Connexion duo Lee Taylor & Gary Smith funk an East London circuit including Hackney Road Septembers, Bethnal Green Tipples, Cambridge Road Martins, Mile End Nashvilles, Gants Hill Flamingo, plus Kensington’s The Park across town — yes, yes, but which nights? . . . Sterling Vann, where if anywhere are you jocking now? . . . Gilles Peterson (plus guests) plays real R&B and soul Thursdays, jazz Sundays, at Richmond Sheen Road’s Belvedere Arms — which, a pub, has free admission . . . David Holmes Hi-NRGises Thursdays at Ripley Chaplin’s in Derbyshire . . . Trevor Hadley deserves support for his funky soul Saturdays at Deal’s Lifeboat Inn . . . Essex based team Mixmagik Productions have evidently been getting their mixes aired on both Invicta Radio and Radio London . . . New Orleans legends the Neville Brothers (including Aaron & Art) play two concerts at Euston’s Shaw Theatre on Sunday November 3, not to be missed . . . Christopher Walken’s upcoming movie ‘Respect’ will feature Jocelyn Brown’s remake of the title song, plus tracks by Evelyn ‘Champagne’ King . . . Loleatta Holloway is joined on the label of her current solo Hi-NRG hit by its producer Nick Eastside merely to get around the terms of her contract with Streetwise Records . . . Chris ‘Connie’ Crooks (Derby Rising Sun) is amazed at Bobby O’s cheek in borrowing again from another record, this time Lime ‘Unexpected Lovers’, for his Hi-NRG duet with Claudja Barry . . . Rob Harknett (Harlow) is rightly worried, and proud — his eight year old son Kerry DJed at a wedding reception and made more money than dad did doing another gig at the same time! . . . Five Star may jerk and pirouette like little marionettes, earning scorn in some quarters, but it’s a joy to see an act in Britain who have really worked hard to achieve such professional precision . . . Chartfile’s Alan Jones still thinks Warren Mills sounds like the name of a furniture warehouse in the Midlands! . . . Stuart Edwards (Bellshill) longs for someone else to acknowledge the similarity between One Way ‘Let’s Talk‘ and Prince ‘DMSR‘ — when he played them all day long in rotation even his sister thought they were the same record (odd things they get up to in Scotland!) . . . The ‘E’ Factor of Golders Green likes Brass Construction ‘Conquest’, so there! . . . IT’S NOT NECESSARILY GOTTA BE STEVIE!


HOT VINYL

HARDROCK: ‘Do It Anyway You Wanna (Jam, Jam, Jam)’ (Elite DAZZ 43)
Max and Dave, ex-Mastermind, treat People’s Choice classic much as Boe Brown does ‘Sound Your Funky Horn’, setting up a monotonously grooving 109½-0bpm electronic texture swamping the original’s verve while chix chant and a sax screeches away back in the mix. Even fresher for b boys are the expertly cut ‘n scratched instrumental version and the flip’s two 111½bpm mixes of ‘Hardrock Throwdown‘.

TOTAL CONTRAST: ‘Hit And Run (Media Mix)’ (London LONX 76)
Produced here by Steve Harvey and mixed in New York by Michael Brauer, this wriggly rumbling 114bpm tugger again quotes freely from the Vandross Handbook Of Vocalese, but stays brighter ‘n lighter than Luther would (dub/edit flip), impressive for a British effort. Evidently no remixes are planned — shall we hold them to that?

NO TIME for fresh reviews, but check the “third remix” (it’s the one with three tracks on the flip) of SERIOUS INTENTION: ‘You Don’t Know (Special Remix)’ (US Easy Street), the hottest thing that the British contingent could find in New York, plus GRACE JONES ‘Slave To The Rhythm‘ (ZTT), FATBACK BAND ‘Is This The Future?‘ (Important Records), THE COOL NOTES ‘Have A Good Forever‘ (Abstract Dance), EARL TURNER ‘Love Caught You By Surprise‘ (US CRI), J.M. SILK ‘Music Is The Key‘ (US DJ International Records), ORTHEIA BARNES ‘Green Eyed Monster‘ (US MSR), plus the albums by BERNARD WRIGHT (US Manhattan) and PRIME TIME (US Total Experience). Continue reading “October 5, 1985: “New York’s black radio is now so bland and boring, even Tony Blackburn sounds more upfront””

September 28, 1985: Josie James, Wally Badarou, Rene & Angela, Frankie Kelly, The Team

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

PAUL HARDCASTLE’s ‘Just For Money‘, due next month and based on both the Great Train Robbery and St Valentine Day’s Massacre, features specially recorded cameos by not only Bob Hoskins but also no less than Lord Olivier! . . . Stevie Wonder’s unexpected 87¼-174½bpm 12in remix of ‘Part-Time Lover’ puts it more firmly in the Chill Fac-Torr bracket, with scat, fingersnap ‘n’ brass intro . . . London mailed DJs two copies (in a double fold sleeve) of Total Contrast’s Lutheran 114bpm ‘Hit And Run‘ so that they can create their own mixes as, it says here, no remix is planned — really? . . . Five Star has inevitably been remixed for a 119bpm The Limit Edition Mix (a play on its producers’ name and not a misprint) with Dub Take Over too, while Colonel Abrams and Mercy Mercy are also due as remixes to rekindle soul sales now they’re crossing over pop . . . Jeff Lorber’s excellent album track sung by Luther-ish James Robinson, ‘Every Woman Needs It‘ has a disappointingly disjointed 0-104½bpm remix due fully in a fortnight . . . Randy Muller right now is remixing The Team, to make it even more Brass Construction like, and Alan Coulthard is working on Gloria Gaynor ‘I Will Survive’ . . . Mersey’s mixer Greg Wilson is setting up his own dance label InfraStructure, with a mailing list at City Buildings, 21 Old Hall Street, Liverpool L3 9BS . . . Fourth & Broadway are rushing (the two years old!) Donald Banks, while Paul Laurence is due next week — however Howard Johnson’s superior US Remix full of impersonations is not coming out here . . . Skipworth & Turner’s 115¼bpm commercial 12in includes an added 105½bpm A Love Awakened remix of their old ‘Thinking About Your Love’ (yawn) . . . Friday’s ‘6.20 Soul Train’ has Jennifer Holliday, Three Degrees, Shannon, Teddy Pendergrass and Bobby Womack, both alone and with Patti LaBelle . . . Horizon have gone, Solar close down this Sunday, but LWR have been back on 92.1FM, JBC moved to 104.8FM, and “KISS-fm” will soon be hitting London weekdays on 94FM with K-JAZZ there still on Sundays . . . T Zee Mindich was for one week only, thank goodness, Steve Walsh returning on Capital Radio Sunday 1-5am while Steve Collins does Phil Allen’s show . . . Margate jock Tim Stewart (Franks Wed/Fri, Thorleys Tues/Thur/Sat/Sun) has started presenting a Monday 11pm-1am soul show on France’s RBL 91.6FM, beamed at the Eastbourne-Margate-Ashford stretch of our South Coast . . . DevonAir Radio’s Summer Soul playlist was so popular that there will be much more black music generally now on all daytime programmes . . . NE Wales/Cheshire/N Shropshire’s Marcher Sound could have a problem, as whenever I drive back from North Wales (rather often just recently) I can get Liverpool’s Radio City on FM clear down to Shrewsbury . . . Disco John Leech is currently doing weeknight 11pm-1am late shows on Essex Radio, as well as his Saturday 6-9pm soul show, and reports the station’s first Soul Night Special at Zero 6 was such a lock-out success that more are planned elsewhere in bigger venues very soon — now all DJ the DJ needs is full service from record companies! . . . Radio London’s Soul Night Out this Thursday (26) is at Ilford Palais, where hopefully there won’t be the pandemonium seen last week at Hammersmith when mounted police had to hold back the mob outside (leaving the pavement foul with horse droppings) while inside birthday celebrating Steve Walsh prompted the noisiest of many noisy crowd reactions especially on introducing Aswad for a bubblers session (after Tony Blackburn had left the building!) . . . Steve Walsh then took his birthday party to Soho’s Bananas and the bouncers only let half of them in! . . . Royalle Delite proved to be crowd pleasers, even though of the four girls only Magareita and raunchy tall white Melanie were brought over to Britain by cheapskates Streetwave — incidentally, just how is the Scene down on The Street? . . . Bluebird/10 boss Billy Russell had evidently paid £ 15,000 for the Harleqiun Four’s but there was then a delay in exchanging contracts, and Morgan Khan snuck out his Masquerade cover version! . . . Quila wonders why colour supplement king Morgan Khan and Radio Orwell soul jock Dave Brown suddenly left Ipswich Cindys just as they were being bought a drink — could it be the music wasn’t commercial enough? . . . Erskine Thompson denies it all, Frankie Kelly’s single having been sent to Tony Blackburn direct from the States by its distributor . . . Gallup have added the main reggae record shops to their chart panel, which looks like having an interesting effect . . . PRT could be reverting to their old name Pye should a takeover by Tony Calder come to fruition . . . Derek Harold and Tommy Edwards always get lots of classy bookings for their smart Rinky Dink Disco by hiring a stand at Liverpool’s annual Bridal Exhibition in the Atlantic Tower Hotel, its this coming Wednesday (2) 3-10pm — they’ll give a discount to anyone booking them there . . . Kev Hill (Harlow Whispers) moved house only a few miles in Essex to find he no longer gets London’s ITV, let alone the radio pirates — however he’s just got married so there must be other things to do! — plus next week he becomes Mecca’s national promotions manager on 01-637 9401, organising all the disco chain’s PAs and events . . . Andrew Holmes (Manchester Satellite) acts as representative on 061 865 2844 for a couple of US tracks available to UK record companies, the unreleased infectious semi-instrumental go go Louie Oxley ‘Go Go Gadget’ and older disjointed jazz-funk Nature’s Creation ‘Freak Unique‘ . . . Disco Gary Van Den Bussche recommends Kettering’s Out Of The Past Records in Havelock Street for 7in soul oldies from 65p, while Brian Mason tips off that around 1,500 unrequired 12in disco oldies have just been offloaded at Sounds Familiar in London E17’s Wood Street . . . Steve Stuart (Boston Elizabethan Club) is after a replacement ‘250 Disco Jingles’ LP from about 10 years ago, on 0205- 50993 . . . Pete Haigh, who’s now after Sweet G ‘Waiting For Your Love‘ and Chi-Lites ‘Try My Side Of Love‘ on 0253-824156 says there’s yet another version of ‘Set It Off’ by C-Sharp . . . Brian Davies 0562-3488 ext 27) needs more PAs for Tuesdays at Stourport-on-Severn’s Plato’s . . . George McCrae joins John Dean at Dover Images Thursday (26) . . . Friday (27) finds Robbie Vincent returning to Dartford Flicks, jazz man Chris Brown with Trevor Fung and Paul Oakenfold at Streatham Chaplins, while Nick Graham, Trevor Mac and Andy Ibbott funk Wellingborough’s Tithe Barn members club . . . Jon Kutner has not only free admission but also a free bottle of wine (each) for everyone in fancy dress at his Hammersmith Palais beachwear ‘n’ bikini disco party this Saturday (28) . . . Hazell Dean prays for rain at Bolts in Haringey Sat, Brighton Sun . . . LWR’s 3pm-2am soul and reggae alldayer on Sunday (29) at Forest Gate Upper Cut Stadium stars Derek Boland, Tim Westwood, Ron Tom, Eddy James and more with lots of PAs, Sundays being when Gordon Mac and black blonde Kags have cash prize competitions for amateur DJs, dancers and the like at Peckham Kisses . . . Chris Hill will be rushing back from the New Music Seminar to find his wife’s moved house while he was away, and to soul Newcastle-upon-Tyne’s Walker’s Club Café again on Monday (30) . . . Total Contrast guest with Gary Crowley at South Harrow Bogarts Tuesday (1) . . . Ian Dewhirst’s Tuesday Wicked Pulse funk night has moved in London to Leicester Square’s Comedy Store (next to the Odeon) . . . Damon Rochefort does St James’s L’Equipe Anglaise every Wednesday with Torso, the black dance troupe he’s now managing, plus this Tuesday he starts a “gay funk” night at Charing Cross Heaven . . . Philip Sallon has started the Saturday Fire Island above London’s Astoria Theatre with DJs Jay Strongman, Fat Tony (a.k.a. Diana Dogg), and Mark Moore in the Psychotronic Room . . . Paul Clark now joins Richard James and Bob Jones on Saturdays at Sheffield Green Hilly’s upstairs playing jazz, leaving Tim Jeffrey alone at Brighton’s Escape Club Sat/Wed (the latter funk oldies night) — Tim’s also looking on 0273-680231 for an upfront Friday venue in London (who isn’t?) . . . Sho-Pro’s Caister team could be in need of new recruits to supplement “good boys” Chris Hill, Froggy and Robbie Vincent . . . Andy Baker was expecting Danny D at Rhyl’s Downtown and luckily checked with pluggers Hot Licks on the evening he was due, only to find “he couldn’t get a hire car” — sorry, but it’s the ones who don’t turn up that everyone hears about: Hot Licks will in fact be making it up to the Edinburgh Soul Club, whose expected PAs had never actually been confirmed it seems . . . Danny D’s latest waxing is due on Elite white label, ‘Warrior Groove‘, now credited as by DSM . . . Rayners Lane Record & Disco Centre owner Andy Phippen followed up his Greek holiday club-going by buying the Disco Mix Club franchise for Greece — and right now is with me, host Tony Prince and DMC’s Ceri Berry (plus what seems like most of London!) in New York for the New Music Seminar . . . Ready For The World ‘Oh Sheila‘ topped US Black 45s, Prince ‘Pop Life‘ 12in Sales, Pointer Sisters ‘Dare Me‘ Club Play in Billboard . . . Andre Cymone’s UK pressing is 112½bpm, to be precise, Diana Ross on 12in is 128¾-0bpm, the O’Jays’ 12in is (0-)107½bpm, and in the Mirage ‘Into The Groove (Medley)’ the 124½bpm ‘Holiday’ should have been between ‘Lucky Star’ and ‘Like A Virgin’ . . . HAVE A NICE DAY!


HOT VINYL

 

JOSIE JAMES: ‘Call Me (When You Need My Love)’ (TPL 12TPL01, via PRT)
Nigel Martinez produced, and wrote with her, both sides of the often heard session singer’s solo debut, this pleasant shuffling wriggly 104bpm swayer revealing her Deniece/Minnie/Emotions/Jones Girls-ish voice which is much more satisfyingly cushioned on the Dexter Wansel-ish sultry slow 78bpm ‘Win Your Love‘ flip, for good value.

 

WALLY BADAROU: ‘Chief Inspector (Vine Street)’ (4th + B’way 12BRW 37)
Although strictly only a promo the initial 12in pressing is already in some shops and — not the generally available coupling — teams this bubbling extended version of the compulsive 101bpm jiggly jazz-funk instrumental monster with the percussion overlaid Hill Street remix that’ll be out in the States (but not evidently here), so hurry, hurry — which doubtless is what Island want you to do. How many ‘promos’ were pressed?

 

RENE & ANGELA: ‘I’ll Be Good (Club Mix)’ (Club JABXR 18)
Mark Berry’s radical remix typically restructures the rhythm into a more urgent 110¾-110½-110¾bpm ‘Sexomatic’ mould, lurching and juddering angrily rather than oozing sleazily, which could come as quite a shock (110¾bpm Dub Mix flip). Continue reading “September 28, 1985: Josie James, Wally Badarou, Rene & Angela, Frankie Kelly, The Team”

September 21, 1985: Collage, Stevie Wonder, Andre Cymone, Haywoode, The System

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

BOBBY WOMACK’s ‘So Many Rivers’ LP is finally out here (MCA MCF 3282), and his single on 12in — as is The O’Jays ‘Just Another Lonely Night‘ (Philadelphia International 12PIR 1) . . . Roy Ayers’ new thudding 113¼bpm tripper ‘Slip N’ Slide‘ duetted with BJ Nelson, has arrived on import 7in but CBS promoted it on single-sided 12in ahead of UK release next week . . . Erskine Thompson has pulled one of his typical strokes, buying up all the imported 7in copies of Marvin Gaye-soundlike Frankie Kelly’s ‘Ain’t That The Truth‘ (US Trans World International) to ensure it remained rare, then feeding one copy as an exclusive to Radio London’s morning soul presenter Tony Blackburn who’s merrily been playing it for weeks, thus building the demand (although in truth without this irritating lack of availability it would probably have been dismissed as a good Marvin clone), and now of course it’s coming out on Virgin! . . . Jerome’s imminent newie should be titled ‘Extra Special’ . . . Capital Radio gospel jock Al Matthews has compiled an ‘Inspiration Dance‘ LP for StreetSounds. ranging from recent hits by Steve Arrington, James Ingram, Staple Singers, through Philip Bailey’s ‘I Want To Know You’, to the Edwin Hawkins Singers and Mighty Clouds of Joy . . . NE Wales/Cheshire/N Shropshire’s Marcher Sound 95.4FM has started a new soul show with Paul Edwards every Friday 6-9pm, Saturday 6-10pm, Sunday 7-10pm — not bad going! . . . Tony Dortie hosts ‘The County Party’ including hot soul newies and freebies Saturdays 9pm-1am on Kent’s Invicta Radio 95.1/95.9/96.3/97/103.8 FM . . . Steve Collins, Steve Walsh, or someone, come back soon — who was that bozo last Saturday night?! . . . Surrey’s Sunfire Radio 104.5FM soul pirate, broadcasting Sunday afternoons since April 1984, had their very first — full studio — bust two weeks ago, seemingly along with all the others (Horizon have now voluntarily closed down pending their community licence application) . . . Swansea’s Harry’s Dance Bar has its own “radio station” HFM playing soul every night pre-recorded by Wednesday jocks Jeff Thomas and James Lewis . . . The Northern Ireland Radiothon to benefit various children’s charities on Friday October 11 from 8pm to 10am at Cookstown’s Glenavon Court Hotel will include Gary Davies & Adrian John in Radio One’s first ever all night live broadcast, tied in with a concurrent event in Britain, as the climax to a fund raising campaign — NI clubs are invited to help with special nights of their own, so for details contact Belfast co-ordinators David Hull Entertainments on 0232-240360 or 0265-57386 . . . Radio London’s Soul Night Out begins a new season (in which it’ll switch venues weekly) this Thursday (19) back at Hammersmith Palais, where Tony Blackburn, Steve Walsh & Freddy M will be joined by Five Star, Three Degrees, Royalle Delite, Merchant, Aswad, Warren Mills, PP Arnold, Shakatak, an PA-ing! . . . Friday’s ‘6.20 Soul Train’ has Skipworth & Turner, Miquel Brown, Gap Band, Pointer Sisters, Flesh . . . I find it sad that Harlem’s re-opened Apollo Theater, legendary showcase for black talent, should now be gaining most publicity from the appearance there of such as Boy George, George Michael and especially, of course, Hall & Oates, no matter how reverential their respect for its history . . . Washington DC’s very young D-I-Y go go street group the Junkyard Band, witnessed and reported on last March when I thought they could be huge, have signed with Def Jam (whose product will now be distributed by CBS) . . . George Howard’s ‘Dancing In The Sun’ LP finally topped Billboard’s Jazz chart after 19 weeks, while Kool & The Gang’s ‘Cherish’ topped US Black 45s and the Goon Squad’s ‘Eight Arms To Hold You‘ US Club Play . . . Breakers under the RM Dance 85 include Dante, Precious Wilson, Vikki Love, Commodores, Jennifer Holliday 12in, Trouble Funk . . . DJs faced with a sudden rush of autumn newies seem to be ignoring such recent strong imports as Conquest, Prime Time, Carl Carlton, Janice Christie, Finesse and even Charlie Singleton . . . Derby’s Way Ahead record shop specialises in punk and heavy metal, shoving all the latest soul albums into bargain bins at just £2.49 or £2.99 (try to get there before Paul Needham!) . . . Rene & Angela’s ‘Secret Rendezvous’ (Capitol LP) as previously warned now really is becoming London’s next ‘Buttercup’-like revived oldie . . . Sandy Martin (Swindon Brunel Rooms) plays Madonna ‘Borderline’ rather than her current hyped-up material, while Paul Lewis at the same venue’s Amphitheatre has built a huge buzz on the extended remix of Magnum Force’s ‘In The Mix‘ . . . Paddington Green’s Bluebird Records are trying to recreate a buzz on Bootsy Collins’ ‘Body Slam‘ as they’re now its only stockists — and shop assistant there Steve Watt is itching to DJ again, even warming up for major names (he’s upfront in Rhythm Pals style), on Coulsdon 07375-52110 . . . Ray Davies (Milton Keynes 0908-678314) is after Thur/Fri club work where mixing and party competitions are equally appreciated . . . The Sound Of Music has been formed from their mobiles by Wandsworth’s Brian Devine, Colindale’s Trevor Moore and Acton’s Nigel Lydice on 01-205 7665, hoping to fill the gap left by Mastermind . . . Graham Gold (Mayfair Gullivers) finds Toney Lee synths so perfectly with Tramaine he suspects it’s the same song! . . . Segue Steve Goddard has been mixing Wally Badarou into Jellybean ‘Was Dog A Doughnut?’ since July at Hackney’s Camis Nitespot, East Londoners liking their funk nice ‘n hard ‘n sleazy ‘n slow . . . Pete Tong tips the thus far unimported Gardinia ‘Chiquita Linda‘ (French Magic) . . . China Crisis’s current Walter Becker-produced 121½bpm hit ‘You Did Cut Me‘ is surprisingly soulful, worth checking . . . Tony Cochrane’s first tour on his recently mentioned Scottish Club PA Circuit takes Vince Clark & Andy Bell of Erasure on Thursday (19) to Brechin Jars/Aberdeen Mr G’s, Friday (20) Dundee Buddies/Kirkcaldy Jackie O’s . . . Friday (20) finds Colin Hudd reliving 1983 at Dartford Flicks, the return of monthly funk to Peterborough Fletton Fleet Centre with Nick Graham & Trevor Mac, and Jeff Young joining Danny Smith at Gt Yarmouth Aquarius for a warm-up to Caister (quite a few converted locals go there now) . . . Saturday (21) Baz Fe Jazz, Chris Reid, Rhythm Doc & El Dorado show rare Cuban/Jazz films at Kings Cross La Scala’s latin-jazz allniter . . . Hereward Radio soul jock Steve Allen starts weekly at Peterborough Rinaldo’s this Sunday (22), free before 10pm . . . Tricky Dicky Scanes has added London Cavendish Square’s Phoenix to his gay pub circuit every Saturday . . . Sunday (22) Miquel Brown plays Plymouth Bolts, and Wednesday (25) Three Degrees visit Kensington’s newly video equipped The Park . . . Disco Gary & Paul French do under-18s every Thursday 7-10.30pm at Chatham’s St George Hotel (behind Radio Kent) . . . Sheila E’s ‘A Love Bizarre’ is another song from the ‘Krush Groove’ movie, in which she appears . . . Evelyn ‘Champagne’ King, still with RCA, has also turned up on Private I Records with the George S McFarlane produced ‘Give It Up‘ from a movie called ‘Fright Night’ . . . Dante either have a different single, ‘Freak In Me‘ on US Panoramic or else they’ve got an American rival to their name . . . Island/Fourth & Broadway pluggers Adrian Sykes & Tim Rudling are getting tough with DJs who don’t return charts to RM — I’d better point out that if now suddenly masses of DJs decide to inundate us with charts, they mustn’t merely list any one company’s product but should genuinely reflect what’s happening on the floor, or else they wont get used . . . Welcome to RM, where rock and disco can coexist and IT’S NOT NECESSARILY GOTTA BE MADONNA!


HOT VINYL

COLLAGE: ‘Romeo Where’s Juliet?’ (MCA Records MCAT 1006)
Now again selling on 12in, it took inclusion on a strong album for this excellent insidious bass and jitter guitar driven gut-tugging 107bpm rolling thudder to explode in its own right, the sometimes Shalamar-ish seven man group building the excitement as they growl and slide around the powerhouse beat (even longer dub flip). Superstars of the future?

STEVIE WONDER: ‘In Square Circle’ LP (Motown ZL72005)
Well worth the wait and up to vintage standards on a punchy smash laden set are the great buoyantly shuffling and wriggling 119¼bpm ‘Go Home’, lovely singalong hustling 112bpm ‘Stranger On The Shore Of Love‘, strongly lurching and loping 113bpm ‘Spiritual Walkers‘, busily burbled jittery rolling 110¾-0bpm ‘I Love You Too Much‘, jerkily flowing lightly swinging 121¼bpm ‘Never In Your Sun‘, classically attractive being the melodically swaying 73-0bpm ‘Whereabouts’ and summery slow drifting 83-0bpm ‘Overjoyed’, while ‘It’s Wrong (Apartheid)’ is a rattling fast 125¼bpm exotic skitterer leaving just the frantic flashdance 147¾bpm ‘Land Of La La’ and his current 174½bpm pop hit as the only disappointments for soul fans.

ANDRE CYMONE: ‘The Dance Electric’ (CBS TX 6435)
The acceptable face of Prince so far as British soul fans are concerned appears indubitably, and very fashionably at the moment, to be The Family, Sheila E, Morris Day, and this home town boy whose Prince-prod/penned typical muttering jittery 112¼bpm piledriving groove is more genuinely exciting than anything the Purple Prancer himself has had out in ages. Continue reading “September 21, 1985: Collage, Stevie Wonder, Andre Cymone, Haywoode, The System”

September 14, 1985: “Where’s the supposed London bias?”, Chaka Khan, Paul Scott, Five Star, Mirage

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

ISLAND RECORDS took my advice and have started stickering certain releases with a “GUARANTEE: No further mixes of this record will be available”, which hopefully will soon give them a marketing advantage and be adopted by other companies . . . Mark Berry has done an even newer and harder remix of Rene & Angela, due here instead of their earlier US remix, and Larry Levan has remixed Nile Rodgers ‘State Your Mind’ for eventual 12in . . . Randy Muller tells me John Morales has created a ‘Vintage Brass Medley‘ from eleven oldies by Brass Construction — whose LP ‘Conquest’ (Capitol BRASS 1) is now out here — and that further versions of ‘Movin’ could be possible as the original was in fact 15 minutes long, with lots of bits we’ve never heard! . . . Streetwave’s next DJ Limited Edition 12in pairs McFadden & Whitehead ‘Ain’t No Stoppin’ Us Now’ with Billy Paul ‘Bring The Family Back’ — craftily ensuring sales of two copies to any mixing jocks too young to own the originals! — while third in the series will be by just the Blackbyrds, ‘Walking In Rhythm‘/’Rock Creek Park‘ (a chart cert?) . . . Mink ‘You Were The One (Too Late)‘ (US River Edge Records) now evidently won’t be out here, thus making it almost beyond doubt THE One That Got Away in 1985 . . . ‘The Artists Volume 3‘ (Street Sounds ARTIS 3) has all the monster hits that fit by Womack & Womack, O’Jays, Kleeer and The SOS Band — possibly, if believable, even stronger than previous collections . . . Miquel Brown ‘Close To Perfection’ has been flipped for a limited edition by a ‘So Many Men’ medley of her Hi-NRG oldies . . . Chris Cameron’s 119½bpm pop song ‘Written In Your Heart‘ (Steinar STE 1285) sounds like something Buddy Holly might have done were he alive today, backed vocally by such as Jane & Carl of Loose Ends, Princess, Phil Fearon, Junior Giscombe, Richard Jon Smith, P.P. Arnold . . . Richard Jon Smith’s ‘Hold On’ is about to be re-flipped for its main pressing run by my old marathon megamix of his past material, previously only available on a cassette sold with an earlier single (and not to be confused with its current Megamix flip), so do indeed hold on! . . . Simon Grant has joined Bryan O’Connor to update the “alternative” disco/dance mailing list at Silhouette Promotions, 20 Mitcham Park, Mitcham, Surrey CR4 4EG . . . Paul Barron (Sheffield Silks and Romeo & Juliets) takes over Radio Hallam’s Saturday 6-8pm ‘Ebony + Ivory’ soul show from next week (21), for which he wants to hear from local soul/funk/reggae jocks about their gigs, from local rappers for a competition, and from reggae labels on whose lists he may not be, at Radio Hallam, PO Box 194, Hartshead, Sheffield S1 1GP . . . Douglas Hurd appeared before quite sympathetic towards radio affairs and so could make a useful Home Secretary . . . Peter C. Helyer, still at Bristol Mayfair Wed/Cardiff Ritzy Fri, very urgently needs other residencies within an hour and a half’s drive of 19 Bedwas Close, St Mellons, Cardiff CF3 0HP, or else he’ll have to get a day job to pay the mortgage . . . John Dineley (Camberley Krugers) is after any of the old Technics SL D202 decks in working order, on 01-989 8736 . . . Friday’s ‘6.20 Soul Train’ has Animal Nightlife, 7th Heaven, Hugh Masekela, Aretha Franklin, Hall & Oates with Eddie Kendricks & David Ruffin at Harlem’s Apollo . . . Steve Jerome is about to enter “D” Train territory with his imminent 118bpm ‘Suspicion’ — which makes me think his old ‘If You Walk Out That Door’ would adapt rather well to that treatment too . . . Disco Mix Club’s September mixes were almost uniformly excellent, Les Adams doing Cameo and current funk, Alan Coulthard doing The SOS Band and Transatlantic British hits, only Sanny X’s remix of Madonna ‘Into The Groove’, potentially so timely, turning out a mess (someone take away his infernal digital delay!) — he also sequenced a current Continental pop selection . . . Royalle Delite’s Good Groove Mix actually features Derek Boland & Simon Harris on turntables and Froggy on edits and engineering . . . Soul On Sound presents as usual lots of PAs with Derek Boland & Steve Wren jocking at London’s Hippodrome tonight (Wednesday 11) — unfortunately dental appointments are keeping me from my regular boogie ‘n bump with Barbie . . . Dave Gregory & Disco John Leech host Essex Radio’s first ever Soul Night, to celebrate the station’s first birthday, on Friday the 13th at Southend’s Zero 6, with star PAs — while over the river that night Colin Hudd has an “appalling bad taste” night at Dartford Flicks . . . Saturday (14) finds rhythm pals Pete Tong & Jeff Young together for the first time away from Caister at Brands Hatch Kentagon, plus Dan Corrin, Jonathon More & Rob Day starting the weekly urban funk Speako with rapping, toasting, and visual projections at Deptford’s Albany Empire 11pm onwards (free membership for first nighters), while Kevin Sebastian and other outrageous entertainers present crazy cabaret at Mayfair South Molton Street’s Widow Applebaums from 9pm . . . The Three Degrees play Edinburgh Fire Island Sat (14), Miquel Brown hits Luton Bolts at Ronelles Sun (15) . . . Nicky Holloway tempts Jeff Young, Martin Collins, Bob Jones, Gilles Peterson and more for a ‘Do At The Zoo’ in London’s Regents Park on Sunday (15) 6pm . . . Dave Malone, still at the Queens Arms Thursdays, has just started funking Fridays now at Sudbury’s brand new Gainsborough Nightclub (converted from a cinema), and also next Tuesday (17) starts a jazz night at Castle Hedingham Memories . . . Mr Jazz soul-jazzes the new Tuesday ‘9.30 Soultrane’ at Stockton Harveys Wine Bar . . . Willie McKenzie has set up the Centre City Soul Club every Thursday at Stirling Diamonds (50p beer/spirits) . . . Kenny Hume souls the refurbished in Wimbledon Nelsons Thursday ladies night . . . Pete Haigh souls Sundays 7-10.30pm at Blackburn Darwen Street’s Zanzibar . . . Fatman Graham Canter is now at East London Victoria Park’s plush Follies cocktail pub-disco (casual over-23s, free apart from £1 after 10pm Fri/Sat), with a video Motown special on Tuesday week (24) . . . Graham Gold at Mayfair Gullivers does a killer mix from Kurtis Blow ‘America’ to Dr Jeckyll & Mr Hyde ‘The Challenge’ . . . ‘Baby Talk‘ off Alisha’s new US Vanguard LP is just like ‘Into The Groove’ . . . Eddie Murphy is finally following up his ‘Boogie In Your Butt‘ vocal classic with the long rumoured Rick James-produced ‘Party All The Time‘ . . . Den Lewis (Edgware), back from a radio listening tour of the States, reports that New York’s WBLS electro jock Mr Magic despite its “not for broadcast” lyrics nevertheless spins Doug E Fresh & The Get Fresh Crew ‘La-Di-Da-Di‘ . . . Whitney Houston’s far superior ‘Saving All My Love For You’ topped US Black 45s and her album Black LPs, while Colonel Abrams and Tears For Fears ‘Shout’ swapped charts to top now respectively Club Play and 12in Sales in Billboard . . . John Abbey’s Atlanta based Ichiban label has signed the remnants of Slave, plus veterans Rufus Thomas & Clarence Carter . . . Ashley Hooper currently revives Francine McGee ‘Delirium‘ at Bournemouth Shunters . . . Aaron Lewison-White (Chichester Brooksies) finds the two years old Slimline ‘You Can Dance You Can Do It‘ (Pinnacle) has suddenly taken his area by storm . . . Paul French (Gillingham The Avenue) is another local newspaper disco columnist, in the Medway Extra and as of now The North Kent Courier . . . Breakers under the Disco 85 include Roberta Gilliam, Phil Fearon ‘If You’re Gonna Fall In Love’/’All I Give To You’ (LP), Bernard Wright, Conquest, Jennifer Holliday 12in, Warren Mills, Shirley Lites, Paul Laurence, Vikki Love . . . Mike Shaft and other poorly serviced Manchester mafiosi maybe ought to shop instead in either Levenshulme or Stockport at Russ Gray’s import stocking Record Cellar, which had Princess white labels a fortnight ahead of anyone else in the area, and generally carries more good soul LPs in depth (incidentally, Maze obviously sold in shops like this, but it was in the all important — unfortunately — Gallup chart return stores around Manchester that it was slow to cross over) . . . I repeat, this time for Tony Prince’s benefit, where have I ever dismissed DJs outside the London area as pop jocks? I admit to a bias towards “black” music because, as virtually everything is a dance record these days and photogenic white acts find general media attention far easier to come by, it narrows the field to a more manageable (and, I personally feel more worthwhile) form, but surely anyone who regularly reads this column will realise it also publicises DJ activities right across the country whether they be soul, pop, wally, Hi-NRG or whatever? Last week’s column for example included items from or about DJs in Kidderminster, Manchester, Dartford, London, Nottingham, Newcastle, Canterbury, Stourport, Barnet, Portsmouth, Guildford, Ashford, Plymouth, Huddersfield, Austria, Lanzarote, Edinburgh, Harlow, Thamesmead, Midlands and more, of which five were plugs for specifically soul gigs with three of those being North of Watford — so where’s the supposed London bias? I myself am a pop jock when doing mobile gigs (in fact I’m a better pop jock than soul jock, to be honest), and if ever I refer to pop jocks, or soul jocks, or gay jocks, or MoR jocks, or rock jocks, or jazz jocks, it’s in recognition of a particular breed — and if ever I fancy, for instance, that pop jocks up North may go for a certain record it means just that, not that all jocks up North play only pop . . . RECORD MIRROR’s main Disco chart reflects reported DJ plays in the whole country’s specialist soul clubs (Alan Jones hopefully will soon again get around to compiling the other more general Nightclub chart, and we have plans for an Alternative chart too), although admittedly for practical reasons the most upfront new entries tend to reflect a mixture of plays and sales in just the London area over that previous weekend, but as this — whether others like it or not — contains the highest concentration of black music clubs I feel it’s justified as a guide for those jocks elsewhere who use our chart as a shopping list (it should be pointed out that while, as an example, Harieqiun Four’s maybe broke first in Manchester it only really took off once it had belatedly reached London’s shops) . . . DJs who don’t themselves send in charts and info have no right to criticise the result that their own contribution could so easily have had an effect upon — given time and space I try to use everything sent in (rambling complex letters sometimes take too long to precis down under pressure, so keep things succinct), the address being: James Hamilton, RM, Spotlight Publications, Greater London House, Hampstead Road, London NW1 7QZ (that’s a “Q” before the Z), to arrive no later than first post on the Wednesday of the week before publication . . . IT’S NOT NECESSARILY GOTTA BE MADONNA!


HOT VINYL

CHAKA KHAN: ‘(Krush Groove) Can’t Stop The Street’ (US Warner Bros 0-20367)
Oh dear — the overwhelming success of ‘I Feel For You’ seems to be channelling Chaka into a Shannon-type mould as America’s purveyor of perky hip hop. From the Russell Simmons biopic ‘Krush Groove’, this Dan Hartman co-penned herky jerky 110½bpm tricksy jitterer has Nile Rodgers rapping like Melle Mel and producer Russ Titelman filling the first half with juddering edits to create surface excitement (instrumental flip).

PAUL SCOTT: ‘Off The Wall’ (US Ace Beat AB9362)
Confusingly hidden as the third track on someone else’s (Scott-produced) 12in, this sneakily burbling, chattering and pausing 117½bpm electro instrumental (starting with some James Brown squawks) has finally exploded now it’s more widely available five weeks after Steve Walsh first unearthed it on radio — the A-side is actually EVERESS: ‘Don’t You Take Your Love‘, a gradually building (0-)125½bpm chix-sung bounder with a harder 125¼-0bpm Dub, which did itself attract a few jocks initially. Not necessarily, but possibly another ‘Twilight’!

FIVE STAR: ‘Love Take Over’ (Tent PT 40354)
Although in their album’s context not an obvious standout, this The Limit-prod/penned, Paul Hardcastle-mixed, slippery little 119bpm breathy jiggler sounds sweetly appealing enough on its own now to sell like hot cakes, flipped as usual by a new instrumental, the Level 42-ish 112½bpm ‘Keep In Touch‘, and yet another variation on an oldie, the 114bpm ‘Let Me Be The One (Instrumental)’. Continue reading “September 14, 1985: “Where’s the supposed London bias?”, Chaka Khan, Paul Scott, Five Star, Mirage”

September 7, 1985: Cameo, Lukk featuring Felicia Collins, Conquest, Kleeer, Roberta Gilliam

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

SUPREME RECORDS sadly now get greedy with an 104bpm ‘HRH Mix No. 3‘ of Princess, which brings in the ‘Billie Jean’ bass virtually from the beginning but without the Alternative Version‘s shock impact (again it’s confusingly labelled) . . . Jeff Young’s 103½bpm Candlelight Mix of Peter Royer is indeed now out, incorporating Dexter Wansel’s piano . . . Brass Construction’s US 12in ‘Give And Take’ continues to climb as the choice of DJs who buy their records, now they’ve heard the disappointing LP and different UK 12in (although doubtless the mailing list effect will have begun to bite by next week’s chart) . . . Rene & Angela’s video on ‘6.20 Soul Train’ really helped their single’s sales on Saturday, as did Luther Vandross’s ditto a week earlier: this Friday’s acts are Jaki Graham, Odyssey, ‘D’ Train, Warren Mills, Tavares, Ike & Tina Turner . . . Al Jarreau’s Wembley-recorded ‘In London’ concert is new out in the States on Warner Home Video . . . Jean Carn is with Norman Connors’ band next Wednesday (11) at London’s Festival Hall — at least I suppose she is, all the posters spell her “Carne”! . . . Bobby Womack will be at Hammersmith Odeon for five solid nights, October 9-13 . . . Womack and Womack have left Elektra to start a label of their own, called Sar II in homage to Linda Womack’s father Sam Cooke’s own label Sar, on which the Womack brothers recorded as the Valentinos such as their 1964 classic ‘It’s All Over Now’ . . . Tramaine turns out to be Edwin Hawkins’ sister, and sang with his Singers . . . Select Records, UTFO and Full Force, amongst others, are fighting a rearguard action by attempting to sue all the makers of answer versions to ‘Roxanne Roxanne’, citing unfair business competition, copyright infringement and trademark misuse — additional complaints apply to the misleadingly packaged cover version album ‘The Complete Story Of Roxanne‘ on Compleat . . . Phil Canty (Kidderminster) is keen for DJs to co-ordinate a Disco-Aid scheme tied in with Live-Aid: the only way I see something like that having any more impact than the present essentially small scale type of charity disco gigs (from which of course even the smallest contribution counts) is if, say, the majority of clubs across the country could be persuaded on one particular night to synchronise for a special nationally publicised event from which absolutely all proceeds would go to Live-Aid — this just might re-tempt the public into digging deep again, but are club owners big hearted enough? . . . Mark Wimmers & Ben Evans have revived their ‘The Spice Of Life’ ancient and modern Black American music night every Friday, this time at Manchester’s Cloud Nine, starting this week . . . Colin Hudd revives 1982 at Dartford Flicks this Friday (6) . . . Saturday (7) finds Baz Fe Jazz & Andy McConnell with the Tommy Chase Quartet live at a late night Jazz/Salsa Fish Fry, in Bermondsey at 99 Rotherhithe Street (now that sounds like a warehouse party what is a warehouse party!) — Baz is also at Nottingham Rock City’s alldayer with Womack & Womack live on Sunday (8) . . . Chris Hill returns on Monday (9) to Walker’s Club Café in Newcastle Upon Tyne (where Phil Mitchell and Adrian Allen may have been wacky, but more to the point they’re weekly — chart contributors, that is!) . . . Dom McLeman, an ex-mobile jock now in banking, is currently sweltering in Vanuatu amidst (I think?) the Melanesian Islands, where it’s so hot that vinyl records warp and the only music available is Asian bootlegged tapes of old material: however, Tony Bromwich at Newcastle’s Hitsville USA sells him all the “hot” new stuff by remote control, storing the vinyl until Dom’s return and instead personally cassetting his purchases for airmail delivery! . . . South Eastern Disco Assn members meet at 8pm this Sunday (8) in Canterbury’s Coach & Horses . . . Radio Thamesmead’s breakfast show presenter Jamie Wisdom (interviewing Streetwave/StreetSounds boss Morgan Khan next Wednesday 7-9am on the pioneering closed circuit legal community station) lost his pub residency and is after another East London/Thames Estuary gig on 0322-72208 . . . Solar and Horizon may come and go, but West London’s JBC 96.95FM carries on regardless, and is very listenable anyway (if you’re within its very local range) . . . Steve Collins, come back soon! . . . Paul Major, his residency sold from under him, is after another good Midlands dance gig on 0455-291624 . . . Kidderminster’s syndicated local newspaper disco columnist Brian Davies does Tues/Wed/Sat at Stourport’s brand new Plato’s, where this month’s Tuesday star PAs are Dante & Sonique (10), Miquel Brown (17), Kelly Marie (24) . . . Andy Caddy, writing a fortnightly Soul Press column in his local Barnet newspaper, sent me a cassette of his mixes that are amongst the best I’ve ever heard — now all he needs is a gig with two varispeed decks! . . . Nick Ratcliffe (Portsmouth Ritzy/Guildford Cinderellas Rockerfellas) reflects this Madonna mad era with a ‘Medonna Medley’ (sic) which neatly and smoothly blends all her most danceable hits, with doubled-up and edited effects instead of digital delay . . . John ‘Razorblade’ Rushford & Julian ‘Slipmat’ Guffogg (Ashford, Kent) recommend Dutch radio KRO 675KHz on Sundays 11am for an hour long ‘And The Beat Goes On‘ continuous mix of upfront material — their own home-produced mixing efforts are good if over busy when remixing/editing one record, less neat when seguing/blending between records, but as actual remixers they’ve already interested some record companies . . . Tricky Dicky Scanes starts selling Gary London’s rare boots and Disconets from next Thursday at Record Cellar in Newport Court (behind Leicester Square tube) . . . King Enri has a wicked nomination for Slimmer Of The Year — suffice to hint his initials are R.H. . . . Boys Town Gang creator Bill Motley died of AIDS two weeks ago . . . Norman Scott refused a fortune for copies every time he packs the floor with a cassette he made in 1983 at Harringey Bolts when macho George Michael rapped and sang over the dub side of Rockers Revenge ‘Walking On Sunshine’ . . . Plymouth Sound radio DJ Brian Day has opened the gay Friday Cruisers at Plymouth Studio 84, jocked by Glyn Warren . . . Adrian Parkin is now full time Mon-Sat at Huddersfield’s Hi-NRG Gemini Club . . . I promised not to reveal which well known record producer/DJ huffily said “Record company presidents don’t go around hitting their producers”! . . . Record Shack released it last Christmas but now, since it’s been a Continental summer smash, Epic have picked up the 112¾bpm Video Kids ‘Woodpeckers From Space‘ (TA 6504) . . . Atlantic for some reason (unsold stock?) have re-serviced the bright smacking 115¾bpm Stacy Lattisaw & Johnny Gill ‘Block Party‘ (B9719T) . . . Danish DJ Kenneth Baker, touring Europe for inspiration, reports radio in Austria plays lots of soul but also Madonna once or twice an hour, while the Jocelyn-ish Amii Stewart & Mike Francis ‘Together‘ is worth looking out for . . . Dave Clark (Barking Chains) feels fed up that in Lanzarote all the DJs even in bars use SL 1200 decks, and massive Dynacord mixers — at least he didn’t hear Opus! . . . Anthony Bernards’ letter last week winding up Damon Rochefort (now there’s two of a kind!) reveals that the notorious Chris Ellis is still alive and well, and living in Lancashire — how nostalgic . . . Loose Ends, along with Total Contrast and Peter Royer, failed to turn up at the Edinburgh Soul Club for a PA last month, without warning or apology from responsible pluggers Hot Licks (who got them as far as Newcastle I know — so did ET’s battery fail?) . . . Danny D & Collusion’s great but oddly ignored (except by radio) ‘Party People‘ appears fated to be another One That Got Away in 1985 — why? . . . Breakers queuing up below the Disco 85 (NB: not the next 20 places) include No Way Jose (Espanol), Charlie Singleton 12in, Luther Vandross, Weather Girls, Prince ‘Raspberry Beret’, Doug E. Fresh, Sylvia Bennett, Class Action, Billy Griffin ‘Systematic’, Pressure Point, Shirley Lites, Stevie Wonder, John Ingram, Rockie Robbins, Juicy, Nile Rodgers ‘Stay Out Of The Light’, Roberta Gilliam, PP Arnold, Red Hot Chilli Peppers ‘Hollywood (Africa)’, Rosie Gaines . . . Music Week didn’t receive my column in time for the current issue as it took three days by first class mail from North Wales: at least it arrived eventually, which is more than many of the records sent me do — as I’ve suggested before, to be sure please bike ’em (to my home address) . . . I was staying in a house party which included a crowd of kids, and it was the under-10s who kept spinning around on their backs to the music! . . . Darren Fogel keeps dropping cryptic hints that suggest he’s to be seen in ‘East Enders’ (not that I’ve ever watched it) . . . Rob Harknett (Harlow) only needed three records to satisfy the returned holidaymakers last week, Baltimora ‘Tarzan Boy’, Black Lace ‘Megamix’, Madonna ‘Into The Groove’, played in rotation — yup, IT’S GOTTA BE MADONNA!


HAZELL DEAN has taken advantage of the original’s unavailability by covering ‘They Say It’s Gonna Rain’ for her debut Parlophone release (12R 6107), not fully available for four weeks but promo-ed in a chugging 0-115bpm Europop flavoured Indian Summer Mix (the opening chants suggesting “Injun”, rather than the weather). It was in fact the lyrics’ topicality during this dreadful summer that prompted Hi-NRG club DJs belatedly to activate the by then already deleted Kerry Delius version. I’d have hoped the weather might be better by Hazell’s release date, so maybe she ought to rush it instead!


HOT VINYL

CAMEO: ‘Single Life’ (Club JABX 21)
My and seemingly everyone else’s fave of the moment, this superb subtly made very powerful sparse 110½bpm nagging pusher is filled with bits to hook you, especially the Ennio Morricone spaghetti western twiddles, “single guys clap your hands” and “eyes right” instructions, and the devilish way “life” is teasingly left until the next beat after you’ve already anticipated it. Brilliant!

LUKK Featuring FELICIA COLLINS: ‘On The One’ (Important Records TANT 6)
I can’t bear it (and you’ll see why) but initial calculations suggest this languidly rolling dead catchy lurching jiggler, like Five Star singing to a Jocelyn/Jenny-ish backing, has been slowed here by about one beat per minute — which without going right through it again means it now must be roughly (deep breath!) 103-103¾-105¾-103¼-106¼-103¾-102¼-103-104¾-105-104¼bpm (inst flip). You won’t be aware of this, and the thing is a hit!

CONQUEST: ‘Optimistic’ (US Epic 49-05255)
Amir Bayyan-produced excellent chaps chanted and muttered Johnny Guitar Watson-type buoyantly jittering infectious 97bpm jogger with a braying trumpet solo and bags of rhythm ‘n’ bluesy sass that’ll have you poppin’ and boppin’ by the time it’s through (dub flip). What a blast! Continue reading “September 7, 1985: Cameo, Lukk featuring Felicia Collins, Conquest, Kleeer, Roberta Gilliam”

August 31, 1985: Royalle Delite, Bobby Womack, Brooklyn Bronx & Queens (BB&Q), Three Degrees, P.P. Arnold

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

THE FAMILY have confounded sceptics despite their Prince connection by exploding with the hottest album in ages — as mentioned last week it’s real music — and also riding purple coat tails to as yet less widespread dancefloor raving is Andre Cymone, not to be missed . . . No Way Jose’s Espanol version is finally on 12in A-side, flipped by the Knockout Mix . . . Atlantic have reissued the old 115¾bpm Margie Joseph ‘Midnight Lover‘ (B9713T) presumably because it’s so like ‘Holiday’ . . . Sister Sledge ‘Dancing On The Jagged Edge’, reviewed off LP, on 12in turns out to be 113-0bpm . . . ‘Hot Pursuit!‘ is the enthusiastic jittery lurching 116bpm Skipworth & Turner newie, out in about two weeks . . . John Morales has remixed Michael Lovesmith ‘Ain’t Nothin’ Like It‘ as follow up . . . The Weather Girls have had a sombre dull 97½bpm remix (it is indeed David Sanborn’s sax) . . . DJs charting Five Star’s “Cutback Mix” presumably mean the ‘Dance Mix by Hard Rock’ — or has there been yet another remix that I missed? . . . Peter Royer’s sales have been hanging back in anticipation of the re-edit incorporating Dexter Wansel, which should be due now . . . Rene & Angela ‘I’ll Be Good’ irritatingly has shown up on import as a proper remix (inst flip), whereas the UK released version successfully beat Stevie Wonder as record of the week on Guy Hornsby’s 2.30-4.30pm Radio London soul show last Thursday, picked by myself with Walthamstow mates John McDowell (hello to his sister!) and Steve Parker, who both knew a lot and sure had taste . . . I also guested last Monday in Newcastle Upon Tyne, somewhat shattered and sleepless, on Ian Hughes’ weekly 6.20-8pm Metro Radio soul show, where I reminisced about the city’s Club A Go Go 20 years ago! . . . Chris Hill has adapted his Boogaloo Joe Jones-backed ‘Caister Rap’ as a radio commercial for his regular Newcastle gigs at Bill & Malcolm Walker’s eponymous Walker’s Club Café, the coolest spot in town which only plays soul music, both upstairs and down in its day-long brasserie (Chris is back on Monday Sept 9): last week he took a while to warm up although once past the silly session he really cooked for the rest of the night, which possibly thanks to its St Trinians theme turned some parts of the club into one long water fight with the girls the worst culprits — and Fred Dove proved quite handy with a hockey stick too! . . . I was pleased to meet wacky chart contributors Phil Mitchell from Walker’s, and Adrian Allen from South Shields Chelsea Cat, with whom I had a long chat . . . Chris Hill (who incidentally soon strikes out for pastures new, leaving Sheffield Green Hilly’s to the local Sussex Young Farmers!) does a hot mix from Sly & Robbie ‘Make ‘Em Move’ into Manu Dibango ‘Soul Makossa’ . . . Newcastle’s Hitsville USA in Old Eldon Square, run by Tony Bromwich & Joan Wright, as already noted is the local disco stockist (with all the new imports but selling more Hi-NRG), but it was at The Record Box second hand shop (Waterloo Street, and also Percy Street) that I picked up stacks of useful old 7in oddities for party sessions, well worth checking with an open mind . . . Frank Anderson of Camden Town while visiting Dublin stumbled across the Beat Records shop in Abbey Mall, Middle Abbey Street, stuffed with mint condition 12in classics . . . Tony Cochrane (0382-644003/22348) has organised a Scottish Club PA circuit for visiting artists, all expenses paid and chauffeur transport around 12 venues to cover the country in four days, plus radio and TV where possible . . . Friday’s ‘6-20 Soul Train’ has Total Contrast, Rene & Angela, Womack & Womack, The SOS Band, Nona Hendryx, Temptations — meanwhile, almost distraught, Liverpool’s Sonny King appeals for the series to be extended beyond October as he reckons it’s at last getting the music through to people who’d never normally hear it . . . Island’s go go movie ‘Good To Go’ is probably not opening in the USA until November now — DETT/TTED boss Max Kidd, quite accurately impersonated in the film (some of it shot in his actual office), in real life Washington DC appears not to have the hold over the local go go musicians he used to . . . Tony Blackburn, boring? (tee hee!) . . . Tony was actually a bit late in claiming an exclusive on the Lisa Lisa album, about ten days, the reason other radio stations weren’t playing it already possibly being that it isn’t all that good! . . . Dayton, O’Jays, Jennifer Holliday, Windjammer and Azymuth were other import LPs last week, best mainly for slowies, while Phil Fearon & Galaxy’s new album, arrived on UK-priced Dutch import well ahead of its scheduled release here! . . . Colonel Abrams topped US 12in Sales, Tears For Fears ‘Shout’ topped Club Play (and entered the Black chart there) . . . Megatone releases are evidently being widely boycotted in the States because one of the label’s owners failed to pay royalties promised to the AIDS Research Fund from a charity Patrick Cowley Megamedley, which explains why Modern Rocketry is only doing well in Britain where this news wasn’t widely known . . . Dusty Springfield’s current comeback hit was co-penned by Donna Summer . . . I’d just like to point out for some gay DJs’ benefit that our Hi-NRG chart is compiled from the charts we are sent, and first class postage is currently 17p . . . Breakers bubbling under the Disco 85 include The Three Degrees, Kabbala, Merchant, Sugarloaf ‘Kiss’, The SOS Band, Shakatak, Carl Carlton, No Way Jose (Espanol), Prime Time, and a Kool & The Gang medleying ‘Dance Into The Future (Cool Mix)’ bootleg . . . Thursday (29) the Marlboro Roadshow puffs into Derby’s Knotted Snake, hopefully complete with McLaren racing car — other similar promotions or PAs would be welcomed there by Paul Needham on 0533-374469 (days) . . . Friday (30) Kensington’s Roof Gardens find Eon Irving funking designer Charlie Allen’s sneak preview of his spring ’86 fashions modelled by the like of Loose Ends, DC Lee, Andy Polaris and Nick Heyward (ticket info from Jackie at Tony Hall’s office on 01-437 1958) . . . Chris Dinnis souls Cullompton Blazers Studio Saturday (31) . . . Birmingham Maximillian’s cosy alldayer Sunday (11) has Frenchie T, Trevor M, Paul Dixon, Richie Rich and jazzy Chris Reid . . . Sunday’s PLASA equipment exhibition appears to be at Hammersmith’s Novotel in London, but I can’t help thinking we’d have been sent details had they actually wanted DJs and other mere mortals to turn up . . . Clinton Cambridge does Edgware High Street’s Bald Eagle wine bar with new soul Fri/old soul Tues/rocky pop Wed . . . Ray Davies (Milton Keynes) reckons Indian weddings are the key to a fortune: he did one for 900 guests, they supplied the Indian music, paid him £110 for three hours, and he got another £78 in tips — apparently it’s the custom to reward entertainers who play music they like . . . Lonnie Liston Smith’s old ‘Expansions’ seems to have reached the new generation, who request it incessantly according to both Big H and Chris Hill . . . Walls Ice Cream are test marketing in Yorkshire a yummy new choc bar with malt, toffee and chocolate flavour filling, called Romero — ice cream freaks, like me, look out for it! . . . “What you gon’ play now, Bobby?” “Ah don’ know, but what’s ever I play, IT’S GOTTA BE MADONNA!”


HOT VINYL

ROYALLE DELITE: ‘(I’ll Be A) Freak For You’ (Streetwave MKHAN 51)
Nearly a year old, the Brooklyn girls purposefully wriggling here 108½bpm hauntingly moronic nagger never charted in a big way yet has hung on in certain of London’s low dives as an underground monster, now finally to hit the nation flipped by a new clever Derek Boland-cut, scratched ‘n phased 108½-108bpm Good Groove Mix (edit too).

BOBBY WOMACK: ‘So Many Rivers’ LP (US MCA Records MCA-5617)
Hottest release of the week and because of an early deadline I haven’t time to review it properly! Rest assured that if you’re into Bobby you’ll simply love it, although as a dance set its not strictly essential unless you and your crowd love soul.

BROOKLYN BRONX & QUEENS (B.B.&Q.) ‘Minutes Away’ (Cooltempo COOLX 112)
Their album’s attractive crawling Curtis Hairston crooned 0-75½/37¾bpm ballad has been extended, and flipped for real power by a punchily jolting 112bpm remix of the chunkily chugging ‘Main Attraction‘ — which indeed it probably will be, so far as discos are concerned. Good value.

THE THREE DEGREES: ‘The Heaven I Need’ (Supreme Records SUPET 102. via PRT)
From the same team as Princess and like her selling in some lucky shops on single-sided white label ahead of release on September 16, the girls return is a brightly snicking and ticking 110bpm choppy unison harmony pusher that at last gives them a modern, smash bound, credible sound again. Continue reading “August 31, 1985: Royalle Delite, Bobby Womack, Brooklyn Bronx & Queens (BB&Q), Three Degrees, P.P. Arnold”