September 18, 1982: Jay W. McGee, The Limit, Melba Moore, Gary’s Gang, Kool & The Gang

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

SHARON REDD’S ‘Never Gonna Give You Up’ has rapidly been re-pressed on UK 12in with both the instrumental and vocal remix versions of ‘Beat The Street’ as 2-track flip — this’ll kill her album, but boy what a bargain! . . . The Quick’s ‘Touch’ will now indeed be on full length commercial 12in . . . Morgan Khan’s Streetwave label next week puts out a 6-track £2.99 33 1/3rpm LP-type 12in called ‘Streetnoise‘ containing Hi Voltage ‘Let’s Get Horny‘, Weeks & Co ‘Go With The Flow’ (vocal and instrumental), The LIVE Band ‘A Chance For Hope’, Carol Jiani ‘You’re Gonna Lose My Love’, NY Skyy ‘Let’s Celebrate (Remix)’ . . . Weeks & Co is currently on US Prelude 12in as well as Canadian Black Sun, this switch to a hip label doubtless causing its sales surge . . . Capital Radio’s Greg Edwards must take credit for reviving Hi Voltage’s fortunes . . . Elite has licensed from Inner City for 4-track £2.50 12in the jazzy Lee Ritenour ‘Sugarloaf Express‘, Kazumi Watanabe ‘Gentle Afternoon‘, Don Latarski ‘Jennifer Anne’s Samba‘ / ‘Beginning Song‘ (Elite 4 PLAY 101) . . . ‘D’ Train ‘Walk On By’ is now remixed with a longer instrumental start on 3-track US 12in (Prelude PRL D638) with the herky-jerky c.124bpm ”D’ Train (Dub)’ and ‘Tryin’ To Get Over’ . . . Imagination’s single is ‘In The Heat Of The Night‘, which could be a bad mistake — especially as radio loves ‘Heart ‘N’ Soul’ . . . Fat Larry’s Band ‘Zoom’ is now on LP-length 12in (WMOT VS 546-12) with 2-track flip of the Rick James-inflected 115-116-115-116-117-119bpm ‘Traffic Stoppers‘ and ‘Jamming’-quoting 117-118bpm ‘House Party‘ . . . Alton Edwards next week issues ‘Shining Light‘, a 126bpm bright squeaky pure pop skipper which soul fans will hate, recorded because according to his manager Margaret Hamilton (no relation, though I wouldn’t mind!) CBS confess they can’t market disco material . . . BADEM’s exhibition featured an impressively created disco environment in which to demonstrate a well co-ordinated but slightly too long lighting effects display, while out on the stands the stacks of boring old lightboxes looked decidedly outmoded by the far more sophisticated (if more expensive) developments that have taken place in disco hardware — although the most welcome sight was the Cambridge Pianola Company’s cassette operated automatic piano, an oasis of old world simplicity . . . Roger Squire’s had a suite of their own in which to show their many wares, and over the road in a pub there was a rival ‘Discoextra’ exhibition featuring Cliff Wilding’s Lampseed lighting products amongst others . . . Rob Harknett (Roydon) expressed before the event his hope that this year more DJs would stop and chat to each other instead of brushing by in a world of their own, and I certainly talked to quite a few, including at length Chris Cole of the West Surrey & Hants DJ Assn . . . Paul Anthony, who arrived by motorbike from Wolverhampton Eve’s, wonders what awful secret prevents Radio One’s Steve Wright from appearing at his or any other Wolverhampton club . . . Ilford Room At The Top’s John Osborne is, I now realize, a dead ringer for Haircut 100’s Nick Heyward — down girls! . . . Room At The Top celebrated its 12th birthday this Wednesday (15), incidentally . . . Larry Foster packs Gants Hill Villa every Friday and does Stratford Reflections on Wednesdays, amongst other gigs, but has stopped doing Romford Lamps on Tuesdays and Thursdays and thus would like other work those nights (on 01-519 7280) . . . Travis, one of the dancers, has a Sunday afternoon 3-6pm dance and exercise session at Gants Hill’s The Villa (Ilford), take £3 and your ‘Fame’ togs . . . Steve Goddard, who now does Romford Lamps on Fridays, seems like an amiable loony to judge from what he says about his Saturdays and Mondays in the guise of The Soul Messiah at Barking’s Chains, where “anybody genuine enough to convince me of a more ‘in the groove’ venue gets a free Curly-Wurly bar and a photo of my Aunt Hilda of East Grinstead — Curly-Wurleys away, with a hip-hop, chow chomp, you don’t stop chomping till it’s all gone!” . . . “Harry” or “Big H” as he’s variously known, only jocking a year despite advancing age, has the mouth and confidence of another Chris Hill (although not the music) and could be fun to catch at Bagshot Pantiles, Ascot Belvedere Arms, Southampton Barbarellas amongst other regular gigs . . . South Harrow’s Bogarts is bulging with happy funksters every Thursday thanks to Chris Paul, who jams along on sax over the records — he’s also at Southampton Barbarellas on Fri/Saturdays, where they can’t otherwise hear or buy import soul . . . Direct Drive were evidently unaware of the PA they were reported as ignoring, but by actually naming a group even if they were as in this case innocent I hope the message was rammed home that lack of appearance can be damaging to both the act and the club — however beware the old con where a promoter bills an act as appearing for a PA without first having actually booked the act, and then expecting the act to turn up so as not to disappoint the fans . . . John Grant, until recently one of the North-West’s most revered jocks, has moved his harbour mastering location from Newhaven to the far hipper Brighton, where the Vinyl Demand record shop had the good fortune to buy up his entire jazz-funk collection — they may even have some of it left, if Paul Clark hasn’t bought it all! . . . David ‘Rowdy’ Yeats is at liberty (with a small “l”), not Liberty the record company — ie: he needs a gig! . . . Soho’s Le Beat Route in an effort to cut costs have perhaps unwisely stopped using any DJs who actually charge proper money, hence, and it’s a wrench, my Tuesday ’60s soul night is no more — and I’d love another somewhere else! . . . Fatman Graham Canter hosted an early evening party last week for music biz liggers at London Piccadilly’s Xenon, which turned out to be nowhere near as big or flashy as I’d expected . . . Showstopper Promotions take over Luton’s Caesar’s Palace premises for another of their Pink Elephant Fun House venues, to open in December as a companion to the similarly revamped Southgate Royalty . . . Sandy Martin (Swindon Brunel Rooms) was playing his Soul On Sound cassette’s preview mix so loudly in the car that he didn’t know he’d lost a hubcap until someone flagged him down a mile later! . . . Soul On Sound’s next preview mix, which took me 26 hours to create, flows as well as the last one with 28 record snippets blended into 22 mins 55 secs, but lacks a similar overall strength of material and has to hiccup slightly to accommodate Kenny G and Carl Carlton — however listen out for the Pressure Drop/Sharon Redd instrumental / “Q” and the Alfie Silas/Suzy “Q”/Nighthawk instrumental/Donald Byrd sequences, and then tell me which record is which ‘cos I’m still not sure myself! . . . Beats Per Minute fine tunings for some of last week’s Imports are Jamaica Girls 119-121-120-120½bpm, New Jersey Connection 116½-115-113-115-113-115-113bpm, West Street Mob 113-114-115-116-117-115-116bpm, Began Began 0-124-122-124-122-124-0bpm . . . American black music has always shifted in style and sound through the years — under the general euphemistic labels of “race music”, “sepia sounds”, “rhythm & blues”, “soul”, and now “black” or “urban contemporary” — and if what black American funk musicians are now getting into in a big way is electronics then I don’t see how we are in a position to pontificate and argue about the relevance to “soul” of this move: it’s on a par with gospel purists in the ’50s being upset about their favourite singers switching to the devilish blues — which brought about “soul” in the first place! . . . Robbie Vincent leads the field of those DJs now too hip to play Rockers Revenge — I hear he says it’s a “youth club record” . . . Rotherham Tiffanys’ Paul Barron hopefully has better luck with the horses than he has with the Gee Gee’s! . . . Tom Wilson (Edinburgh Oscars) can’t wait to see plugger Erskine Thompson’s new film, ‘E.T.’! . . . Mayfair’s Rockafella’s late nite eaterie (next to Samantha’s) currently has Maggie Thatcher’s Swiss holiday chef Jack Garlic cookin’ in the kitchen while waiting to start at a new restaurant being opened by Maggie’s hubby’s company . . . Yazoo on its US-pressed Sire 7in singles is now appearing as Yaz, a mistake (or intentional move?) which has been carried over into the Billboard charts — who took the “oo” out of Yazoo?! . . . I alone seem to have been right in my spelling of Jay W McGhee, where everyone else had him as JW . . . Orin Cozier’s “Ladies’ Man” influence seems to be spreading at Streetwave to Morgan Khan and now Patrick Boothe! . . . Adrian Martin (Denbigh Bamboo/Towyn Jollie Nights) is the North Wales DJ who started the local demand for Pete Brown’s ‘Can’t Be Love‘ 12in — he’s had offers of £25 and £30 for his copy . . . Van Martin revives Johnny Guitar Watson ‘I Need It‘ at Ernie ‘Whitehouse’ Priestman’s new Touchdown Tavern in Blackpool’s Talbot Road . . . Paul Major (East Anglia) revives Philadelphia International All-Stars ‘Let’s Clean Up The Ghetto‘ out of ‘The Message’ . . . Richard ‘Lofty’ Lofthouse (Chester-Le-Street Whispers) re-recommends Callers Records in Newcastle-upon-Tyne’s Northumberland Street for good import prices to bona-fide DJs . . . Adrian Dunbar (Bournemouth Adams) is mixing Lime ‘Agent 406‘ with Sylvester/Cowley (incidentally UK 7in pressings of Sylvester are slower than the import 12in and I’ve not heard the UK 12in), Derek Pierce (Bath Moles) mixes Soul Sonic Force and Giorgio ‘The Chase‘, Ian Levine (London Heaven) mixes Carl Carlton and Carol Jiani ‘You’re Gonna Lose My Love‘ . . . JUMP JUMP JUMP TO IT . . . HEY . . . DO IT DO IT!


UK NEWIES

JAY W. McGEE: ‘When We Party’ (Ensign ENYT 231).
If at first this doesn’t hook you, hang on in there, as the surprisingly subtle GQ-ish jauntily pushing 120-121bpm 12in kicker builds through ultra catchy “uptown downtown” chants (now in fact tagged on in brackets after the title on UK labels) to truck through a buoyantly instrumental last half, the deep soul slow ‘I’ve Been Checking Out (Too)’ flip being a goodie (too).

THE LIMIT: ‘She’s So Divine’ (Arlola AROD 285).
Given such a low profile UK release by Ariola that I haven’t even had a copy or seen it advertised, this Dutch originated successor to Blue Feather is a superb resonantly loping easily soulful 116bpm 12in romp through the song previously done by Jan Akkerman but now remade by its original writers. Huge on import already, it evidently has a flip here called ‘Pop‘.

MELBA MOORE: ‘Love’s Comin’ At Ya’ (EMI America 12EA 146).
Prod/penned by Paul Lawrence Jones III to sound just like his ‘I Can’t Stand It’ on Evelyn King’s LP, this carefully controlled 114bpm 12in judder and thud-filled cool slinky smacker is also extremely like Howard Johnson — but then they’re all from the same production team. Continue reading “September 18, 1982: Jay W. McGee, The Limit, Melba Moore, Gary’s Gang, Kool & The Gang”

September 11, 1982: Sharon Redd, Dennis Brown, Freddie James, Pressure Drop, New Jersey Connection

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

AND WHAT sort of shape do we find you in this morning? (You can see what shape we are now!) . . . BADEM’s disco equipment exhibition public days are Sunday/Monday (12/13) at London’s Bloomsbury Centre Hotel, no details of timing but afternoons obviously. I’ll maybe see you there sometime late-ish Sunday . . . Joe Tex died of a heart attack aged 49 last month — best remembered by the present generation for his ‘Ain’t Gonna Bump No More (With No Big Fat Woman)’ smash in 1977. His real heyday as a soul star was the latter ’60s, when his incredible microphone catching acrobatic stage movements were amongst the most exciting of all . . . Hot Quisine ‘Keep That Same Old Feeling‘ has had a complete Rockers Revenge-style remix (if not remake?) full of fiercely flanged flutter echo claps, but unfortunately they didn’t change the rushed tempo . . . Michael Wycoff’s ‘Diamond Real‘ has shown up on US RCA 12in with instrumental flip, c.109 bpm . . . Push ‘My Heart‘, recently circulated on white label promo, will be remixed on Excaliber in a month . . . David ‘Rowdy’ Yeats, after just four months of working in largely undefined ways on Solar product here, suddenly finds WEA reckon they can promote Shalamar without him — thus he’s at Liberty on 01-874 4003 . . . London’s Barracuda in Baker Street has suddenly become an Arab club, on Saturdays anyway, turning away scores of dejected funksters when they turned up as usual . . . Capital’s Graham Dene must take most credit for constantly plugging Fat Larry’s ‘Zoom’ on his weekend breakfast shows over several months . . . Lloyd Charmers, or rather his wife, gave birth to twins Debbie & Donna at Paddington’s St Mary’s Hospital — if it’s good enough for Chuck & Di, what? . . . Josh Wedgewood-Benn, son of the ex-Lord Stansgate, drums with Buddhist reggae group Ozo . . . Chris Hill returns for just one night on Wednesday 22nd September to the Lacy Lady, or at least to its original site at Ilford’s Kings . . . Greg Wilson’s half-hour mixing spot comes up on its three-weekly rota this coming Monday (13) on Mike Shaft’s TCOB soul show, 8-11pm Piccadilly Radio . . . I hope my Soul On Sound mix out of Rockers Revenge into Norwood B ‘You’re On The One‘ (Philly World 12in) draws more deserved attention to the latter . . . Nick Davies (Aylesbury 87970), keen to buy/swap Ashton Gardner & Dyke’s old ‘Resurrection Shuffle’, had Wham bring acetates of their new Kid Creole-ish ‘Young Guns’ into his Watford New Penny gig . . . West Surrey & Hants DJ Assn members meet this Monday (13) at 8pm in Guildford’s Stoke Hotel, all DJs welcome — oh, and Chris Cole, WHAT T-shirt? . . . ‘E.T. (The Extra-Terrestrial)’ is a nice little movie full of good vibes, not a blockbuster, but just nice . . . Harvey Fuqua, now known as a record producer, turned up on TV screens last week in his original guise as one of the doo-wop singing Moonglows in the movie ‘Rock Rock Rock’ — young Harvey was the tallest of the backing vocal trio standing at the end . . . Afrika Bambaataa somehow loses a “k” and an “a” on UK labels of Soul Sonic Force . . . Polydor seem to have someone called Adam Vincent servicing DJ mailouts . . . Richard ‘Lofty’ Lofthouse packs Chester-Le-Street’s Whispers every Sunday, claiming it as the only regular black music gig in the whole North-East (it’s currently running a disco dancing competition too), and wonders why more pluggers don’t visit . . . Reading Rebecca’s now has free admission before 10pm every Thurs/Fri/Saturday but a tighter dress code — no jeans, trainers, T-shirts etc . . . Rayners Lane Record & Disco Centre’s bronzed Andy Mann reports that in Greek discos, the decor of which would shame most UK clubs, the jocks spend all night mixing brilliantly — plus there’s no admission charge, you just pay for your drinks (not that licensing laws would allow that here) . . . Leslie Hill (Chippenham), also back from Greece’s Thassos Island, says the likes of Human League, Soft Cell, Haircut 100 and Bob Marley are big with the locals, but luckily the Just In Time disco was supplied with all the moderately current UK disco biggies . . . I blew a core plug on the M1 going up to Denbigh for the bank holiday weekend, and four tows and ten hours later eventually arrived there thanks to the AA’s Relay service — which, had it been a gig would not have got me there in time, but at least does get your vehicle wherever you want it for free (or at least a small subscription) . . . Jim ‘Ripper’ Kershaw (Sheffield Fanny’s Scene Two) revives to great floor activity the old Spencer Davis Group ‘Keep On Running’, currently the basis of a loo-paper commercial . . . Tricky Dicky’s younger gay crowd are well into Yazoo, Soft Cell and now Billy Idol . . . Yazoo ‘Don’t Go’ was inadvertently missed out of last week’s Gay Top 20, while Stateside their ‘Situation’ remix is still top Dance/Disco hit and Aretha Franklin the new top Black single . . . Boris Midney is reported to have done one of his “disco suite” jobs on the ‘Dreamgirls’ score . . . Greg Edwards was really cookin’ on his Capital soul show’s continuous last half hour on Saturday . . . Andy Baker (St Asaph Flicks) mixes Rockers Revenge ‘Acappella Sunshine’ over the intro of Sly Cabell ‘Special Club Mix’, Tom Wilson (Edinburgh Oscars) mixes Sylvester/Patrick Cowley with Kat Mandu ‘The Breaks’ (yeah, well it is Scotland!), Neil Fincham (Edinburgh Mad Hatters Speakeasy) mixes Chic ‘Le Freak’ out of the Tom Tom Club rhythm break . . . JUMP JUMP JUMP TO IT!


UK NEWIES

SHARON REDD: ‘Never Give You Up’ (Prelude PRLA 132755).
Just as good, though currently not quite as hot, as ‘Beat The Street’, this more Evelyn King-ish chunky 112½bpm 12in disco roller is the UK singles choice and chiefly remarkable for its amazing rhythm track, flipped by the stolid 101bpm ‘Send Your Love‘.

DENNIS BROWN: ‘Halfway Up, Halfway Down’ (A&M AMSX 8250).
More traditionally reggae than ‘Love Has Found Its Way’, although just as catchy, this lazily looping Marley-esque 75-76-77bpm 12in swayer is flipped by the superbly subtle floating 77bpm ‘Weep & Moan‘.

FREDDIE JAMES: ‘Don’t Turn Your Back On Love’ (Arista ARIST 12489).
Dangerously late out here, the excellent Tony Green-prod/Tee Scott-mixed simple strong straight ahead 113bpm 12in disco roller builds through nagging vocals in very mixable familiar fashion, with a slightly fiercer instrumental flip. Continue reading “September 11, 1982: Sharon Redd, Dennis Brown, Freddie James, Pressure Drop, New Jersey Connection”

September 4, 1982: Shalamar, Zapp, Passion, Sharon Redd, Brenda Taylor

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

BADEM’S 1982 disco equipment exhibition is at London’s Bloomsbury Centre Hotel next weekend, Sunday/Monday 12/13th September being public days and Tuesday/Wednesday for trade visitors, the largely Pernod-sponsored show including a ‘Superdisco’ exhibit combining various brands of hardware with music, dancing girls, and doubtless the odd drink or two! . . . Howard Johnson’s ‘So Fine’ romped home on Capital Radio as last week’s listeners-voted People’s Choice — but then they have had a while in which to get used to it . . . Evelyn King’s album, meant to be out here ahead of US release, has been delayed (wouldn’t you know?) but is sure to thrill you with its um-yum photos of the lovely lady! . . . Junior’s follow up, due soon, couples the Tee Scott-remixed ‘Let Me Know’ / ‘I Can’t Help It’ . . . London are releasing a cassette version of Rockers Revenge, but to qualify as a single it’s only 10 minutes each side . . . Motown’s hot shot plugger Robert Blenman lost his driver’s licence so can’t get around much any more, yet remains the label’s hippest contact . . . Direct Drive and other bands should realize that if they commit themselves to doing a PA at a club, they should then appear even if subsequently offered a more lucrative engagement elsewhere — PAs may only be promotional appearances but if handled right they are meant to benefit those doing them, are likely to have cost the venues in advertising and effort, and are hopefully an attraction for potential fans who turn out on purpose to see them, so that non-appearance can do nothing but harm to reputations . . . Dartford Flicks’ excruciatingly tight restaurant seats, fixed too close to the tables, were a design fault (no?) and are being repositioned . . . Flicks resident Colin Hudd and Brighton’s Paul Clark replace relatively “new boy” Nicky Peck and, surprisingly, the long serving Tom Holland on Showstoppers Xth Caister bill . . . Woking’s Tristins wine bar in Chertsey Road, under new ownership, is jazz-funked Fri/Saturdays by Paul Hazelle, who also funks Camberley’s Cambridge Hotel in its Splinters guise (rather than Frenchies) on Thursdays . . . Mark Clark has sold his big Bracknell-based Back Chat roadshow to turn resident at Marylebone’s Italian/French-orientated Cinecitta in Welbeck Street, where he needs more Eurodisco material . . . Bazzer mutters that a twiddle to 92.2 FM around North-West London every Sunday 2-11pm (and especially 4-6pm, when he’s on!) could be an aural flashback . . . Martin Starr seems thoroughly ensconced in London now, jazz-funking Neasden’s Level One Thurs/Sundays (pop-funk Mondays) and just returning to Bristol at the weekends to join Superfly at Spencers on Saturdays until he gets a good weekend gig up the Smoke . . . Michael Bird (01-272 0310) offers his services as a relief DJ — is that oral or manual? . . . Chris Cole now writes and types most of the West Surrey & Hampshire DJA’s ‘Disco’ magazine, despite evident dyslexia . . . Mark Summers (Hackney Marshes Flappers) recommends East Ham’s Imaginations record shop for low import prices and DJ discounts . . . Andy Baker (0745-591 135), resident at St Asaph’s refurbished Flicks (formerly The Stables) in North Wales, pleads for a 12in copy of Peter Brown ‘Can’t Be Love‘ — I’ll have been staying just down the road over the Bank Holiday but can’t oblige . . . Neil Wiltshire, pre-match DJ at Billericay Town FC, reckons a recent Alan Coulthard mix on 208 slavishly copied (from ‘Lovers Holiday’ onwards) a bootleg mixer 12in called ‘Another One Madly‘ — how’s about it, kid? . . . I pretty well taught myself tape editing for the current Soul On Sound preview mix medley (easy enough after watching Capital’s Roger Scott in action), not that any of the mixes themselves are tape edits . . . Mike Allen, in a different musical context, last week played a ravishing segue sequence of John Williams ‘Cavatina’, Dire Straits ‘Private Investigations’, Marvin Gaye ‘Trouble Man’ . . . Trevor Hughes (Telford Redeye Roadshow) says he’s taking his pet hedgehog for a walk to see his flat mate on the M11 . . . Trevor then challenges Mike Page (Shifnal Nell Gwynn) to shoot it out on stage each using his own gear (sometime in November when Trevor’s not booked), the loser dancefloor activity-wise then forfeiting his share of the takings and paying for the hall — this is the stuff we want, pick up the glove Mike! . . . Karl (Barnsley Rebecca’s) miaous that Nick Bradman (Sheffield Maximillions) ought to lay off Tight Fit for periods of more than ten minutes and get some people into the club if he wants to get record company mailouts — more of the stuff we want, that could be another challenge there! . . . Steven Fay (Darwen) revives Bell & James ‘Living It Up‘ (A&M 12in), which I seem to remember broke first and always was hottest in the North-West . . . Alen Gaskell funks St Helens West Park every Sunday, and every other Thursday (next week 9th) does Widnes Tigers Rugby Club which he’s thinking of renaming Tardis (back in time), as the punters still think Diana Ross’s ‘I’m Coming Out’ is the hottest dancer . . . Flash Gordon (Bristol Misty’s) reckons our Nightclub chart should be relabelled Hype & Wally, while Paul Barron (Rotherham Tiffanys) grumbles that not enough alternative dance tracks show up in it now — I know, I know, but we can only work with the charts we get and if you don’t send ’em how can we change things? . . . Alan Jones, who does the groundwork in compiling the disco charts, actually has a new scheme which should soon improve the Nightclub situation . . . Paul Barron incidentally, rather than his club’s manager, recently won a £500 holiday incentive prize for doing the best promotion for Club Continental Holidays — not often that the DJ gets the recognition . . . Tricky Dicky (London Dicks Inn discos) has noticed the Gay Top 20 is already stagnating — the trouble with any chart is that they tend to be self-perpetuating over a period of time, even though as in this case we’re getting quite a good turnover of regular contributions . . . Progressive Discos is another publication’s euphemism for their gay chart — Retrogressive Disco would be more accurate to my mind, considering the rhythms and even the songs are all so old . . . ooh! . . . Adrian Dunbar (Bournemouth Adams) is surprised Yvonne Elliman, especially, and Lime have not been issued here as in common with so much “gay material” they’re basically just Wally fodder . . . Donna Summer’s album hasn’t exactly set the disco world on fire . . . I never cease to be amazed how in the middle of my very obviously ’60s Soul Tuesdays at Soho’s Le Beat Route people still ask for ‘Come On Eileen’ or modern disco . . . Dave Rawlings (Reading Rebeccas) suffers from the current complaint, asking “Is it just me or do all DJs have trouble finding enough time in a night to play all the records they want to?” . . . DO IT DO IT . . . HEY . . . DO IT DO IT!


SECOND IMAGE have a new Pete Wingfield-produced 12in due in a fortnight, ‘What’s Happening‘, a bushy tail wagging little pent-up 101bpm jiggler full of scarcely suppressed vocal eagerness (and not a little hint of Pete’s own bright harmonies).

What’s more, we have six autographed copies of the exclusive white label promo, PLUS six special red and white Second Image caps, to award to the six winners (one of each).

In this simple competition! Answer the following: 1) Name the first Polydor single by Second Image. 2) What link is there between Second Image and David Grant of Linx? 3) Which past producer do Second Image have in common with Central Line?

Send your answers with your name and address to Second Image Competition, Record Mirror, PO Box 16, Harlow, Essex — the first six correct entries opened get the goodies!


UK NEWIES

SHALAMAR: ‘There It Is’ (Solar K 13194T).
Strong and obviously smash bound jiggly slow thudding 103bpm 12in half-stepper (remixed) with an immediately recognisable typical slinkily sinuous tune.

ZAPP: ‘Dance Floor’ (Warner Bros K 17990T).
Kings of subtly shifting repetitive electrophonic phunk. Roger’s Family Troutman hit a steady 110½bpm 12in vocodered groove that just don’t quit, flipped by their similar original first 105bpm ‘More Bounce To The Ounce‘ hit from two years ago (when it went well with ‘Oops Up Side Your Head’).

ZAPP: ‘Do You Really Want An Answer?’ (LP ‘Zapp II’ Warner Bros 1-23583).
Ignored when the rest of the set was reviewed as not immediately a dancer, this fantastic 119-0bpm doo-wop soul vocal group swayer has seared its way into everyone’s mind thanks to repeated radio soul show play and should indeed be heard by all true soul fans. Continue reading “September 4, 1982: Shalamar, Zapp, Passion, Sharon Redd, Brenda Taylor”

August 28, 1982: “Some are born rappers, some are born mixers, some are born party ravers”

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

DARTFORD FLICKS now looks like a very pretty spacious ice cream parlour all in pale pink and blue, although the effect is more green thanks to the lighting — the suspended central lighting grid now includes a spinning multi-directional ‘Close Encounters’ UFO effect and dangling “jelly-fish” — but how the hell is anyone other than a midget meant to fit in the restaurant’s fixed chairs, which are almost as excruciating as the red Julienas wine!? . . . Sharon Redd’s UK single will now be ‘Never Gonna Give You Up’ next week, while London has picked up Patrick Cowley/Sylvester for imminent release . . . Morgan Khan’s latest “bitch”, due on Streetwave in a fortnight, the Hudsons ‘Show Me You Care‘ turns out to be a tentatively sung blandly “pleasant” mid-tempo 111bpm shuffling side-to-side swayer with semi-scat harmonies and an easy sophistication — well made but nothing you haven’t heard before, and hardly the potential pop hit crossover material Morgan must be badly in need of right now (why doesn’t he grab some white girls and record them chanting over a jungle rhythm, like everyone else does to get a hit these days) . . . Grand Master Flash UK 12in pressings are still the same “pissing” version, though doubtless the delayed 7in version will be different for radio . . . Melba Moore ‘Love’s Comin’ At Ya‘ and the similarly Paul Lawrence Jones III-prod/penned Evelyn King ‘I Can’t Stand It‘ album track are to all extents and purposes (especially for mixers) the exact same record! . . . Eddy Grant’s original ‘Walking On Sunshine’ has been reissued in the States on Epic with a bit of ‘Sunshine Jam’ added to extend the intro . . . Larry ‘Peech Boy’ Levan has completely remixed Gwen Guthrie’s ‘It Should Have Been You’ on US promo . . . Froggy says he’s a working jock and doesn’t have five days in which to assemble an Alan Coulthard-type mix, and anyway Radio One policy evidently is against that sort of thing . . . I know what he means, having spent 20 hours assembling the next Soul On Sound preview mix, which even if I say so myself is — given the usual restrictions — as close to perfection as anyone could get it, and at £1.50, better than most boots that would cost £8 or more . . . I’m all too aware that although it’s only a neat way of combining short segments of new releases for review purposes, everyone’s expecting a fully fledged mixer medley: well, now you’ve really got one! . . . Soul on Sound cassettes seem much in demand with our lads in the South Atlantic, incidentally . . . Tony Jenkins takes over funking Epping Forest Country Club every Thurs/Fri/Saturday in October . . . Pete Tong can’t have been studying our Disco chart during June/July, when over a six week run the 12.6.82 reviewed Billy Griffin ‘Hold Me Tighter In The Rain’ (US Columbia LP) peaked at 65 — not a monster maybe, but surely hard for most other people to miss? . . . Zapp ‘Dance Floor‘ is now top US Black Single with Grand Master Flash climbing fast, while Yazoo ‘Situation (Remix)‘ tops the US Dance chart — which is currently very dull, our own being much hotter . . . Romanelli ‘Chain Reaction‘ (21 Records 12in) is top new add for Ian Levine at London’s gay Heaven . . . Tony Walton (Blackpool 0253-24562), 10 year veteran DJ, first of the ballroom and most recently the Continental circuits, can really mix to judge from a cassette made at his last Munich Club New York gig, where much of the material he used would make him suitable for gay venue work: however, he’s not specifying that, but would like the high quality UK residency his skill so obviously warrants . . . Greg Wilson has started mixing funk/soul/jazz on Thursdays at Huddersfield Stars Bar and Saturdays at Liverpool Rotters Scene 2, in addition to Tuesdays at Wigan Pier and Wednesdays at Manchester Legend, and by all accounts has built up quite a following (all heavily into handclaps, huh?!) . . . Neil Fincham and Colin Cordrey, still at Edinburgh Mad Hatters Speakeasy, now take turns with Roy Menzies so that one of the three funks Whitburn’s Mainstreet club every Thurs/Fri/Saturday — and they do mean “funk”! . . . Chris Britton says Watford Baileys is leaving behind its old image and will be THE leading venue for upfront quality music both UK and US (he then adds he’s just become press and publicity manager too!) . . . Peterborough’s Sunday Slickers soul club returns to the Cresset in Bretton on September 26 . . . Tomorrow’s Edition ‘Walk On The Wild Side’ is not of course the mistaken composer credited Lou Reed song but the old movie-theme (previously souled by Brook Benton/Marvin Gaye, jazzed by Jimmy Smith), now given a vintage vocal group treatment . . . Patrick Boothe has already had his “badger” hairstyle chopped off! . . . Wonder Dog ‘Ruff Mix’ was created by one H. Trumann — presumably that’s Harry . . . Buzzz . . . still haven’t . . . who’s the speed king in the Sound 2000 disco Transit who tried to cut me up north of Aylesbury on Saturday evening? . . . I could only afford 14 of the week’s unusually strong batch of 12in imports — with so much useful material about and so few chances for DJs to get it across, there is going to be an awful lot that’ll get lost, making the market for this type of music almost exclusively made up of the DJs themselves, I should think . . . many of today’s Wally hits were yesterday’s hip imports, but they’re still the same records so why give up on them when nothing about them has changed? . . . next you’ll be sneering at Rockers Revenge . . . DO IT DO IT . . . HEY . . . DO IT DO IT!


Techni-Colah!

THE COLAHS are real live triplets — and how many of them have you heard of in the music biz? Classically trained from an early age, James now plays keyboards, Marke bass and Peter guitar, and as youngsters they wrote an experimental rock ballet before appearing in the Young Jazz Musician Of The Year competition, their career together being nipped in the bud by Peter’s incapacitating car crash in 1978.

Now regrouped, the Colahs have been gigging at such as Ronnie Scott’s Club and debut on 7in with ‘Hesitation’ (Epic EPC A2642), an Earth Wind & Fire influenced brassy lurching 119bpm blue-eyed chanter with many familiar ingredients, which is getting disco attention as a promo-only 12in.


Pain and passion

SHARON BROWN’S stunning grey-eyed features are worth seeing any time, even if her new Virgin 12in is causing disappointment in many quarters.

Titled ‘Love Don’t Hurt People’, the song makes out that it’s not love but “people who hurt people” — which is often true, but what about those people in love with the concept of being in love? Their partners can’t be blamed when the bubble bursts. Anyway, that’s enough heavy philosophising! You could find the record (reviewed last week) grows on you, and if it does to the extent that it sells well, we could then be graced by a visit from New York-based Sharon. Hmmm, it’s a hit!


GAZ ANDERSON currently jocks virtually every night at the swank Fred & Gingers in Mayfair’s Old Burlington Street, where he continuously mixes upfront music with no speech at all save for important announcements — which sounds familiar! Gaz reckons this could be the coming trend for clubs in major cities, although he snidely suggests it’ll take a while for most DJs to “mix” rather then just “patch” rhythms together, citing as a superb example of a real mixer Pelter Rommer at Xenon and casting libellous aspersions about patching in the direction of certain green skinned persona. Hey, as long as it keeps ’em dancing, let’s just do what we do do best! Some are born rappers, some are born mixers, some are born party ravers, some are multi-talented, and everyone should try developing their capabilities, but once these have been established don’t go forcing yourself into a hole you don’t fit, just because someone else is good at it.


IMPORTS

LACK OF sleep and subsequently time means that I can only list the new releases this week — but as everyone says that what they really like are the Odds ‘N’ Bods, I doubt if anyone will worry! Next week’s deadline being early on account of the Bank Holiday, I am going to have a lot of extra work cut out this way too, but that’s not the reason. BPM’s listed as “c” have only been roughly calculated at this stage. The following are all on import: Continue reading “August 28, 1982: “Some are born rappers, some are born mixers, some are born party ravers””

August 21, 1982: Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five, Howard Johnson, Evelyn King, Mike & Brenda Sutton, Melba Moore

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

CANADA’S SCORPIO label catalogue including Jay W McGee should by now have been picked up for Britain by Ensign Records . . . American jazz label Inner City has reportedly gone bust, Bob Jones (Chelmsford) suggesting that someone with the cash could buy up their entire back catalogue as there’s always a market for it amongst jazz punters here . . . Real Thing have signed with EMI, their Nigel Martinez-produced ‘Seen To Smile‘ being due now . . . Sweet Pea Atkinson’s ‘Dance Or Die’, reviewed last week on import will here be flip to ‘Don’t Walk Away‘, a gruff tumblingly dragging 102bpm jiggly jogger (Ze 12WIP 6808) . . . Jimmy Cliff’s debut album for CBS (CBS 85878), the very listenable ‘Special’, includes a “special offer” for all purchasers to then send off for a free 12in copy of his included new single, the gently reggae 79½bpm ‘Roots Radical‘ (much played on radio) . . . MCA appear to have reactivated their DJ mailings, under Paul Bunting . . . John Sachs’ Backstage club didn’t last long, the Mayfair premises in Green Street now reverting to the Greenstreet name under the new ownership of lovely model Beverley Knock, reopening this Friday — although Beverley emphasises that it isn’t a disco as such, the dancefloor being too small! . . . Greenford’s Barbarellas is looking for an established soul-funk DJ to do Fridays and Saturdays, no time-wasters . . . Chris Kaye, funking a busy round of regular gigs in West Kent, would like to be offered one-off guest spots in superior venues in the North or Scotland — anywhere but the South-East, for a change, sez he! — so managers/promoters, call Chris on 0892-45023 . . . Howard Johnson ‘So Fine’ now tops the US Dance Disco chart, Jennifer Holliday is still top US Black single and climbing Pop . . . Hi Voltage ‘Let’s Get Horny‘ makes a surprisingly late and unexpected chart debut here, considering the mixer-orientated 124½bpm fierce-ish track first appeared at the start of May . . . Bobby “O” is selling really well as a result of my mix with it on the first Soul On Sound, according to Rayners Lane’s Record & Disco Centre — incidentally, one problem with listening to “fierce” electro-funk at Rayners Lane is you can never be sure if what you’re hearing is on the record or off their ever-busy video games! . . . Peterborough’s Discoasis shop in Cross Street sells import LPs at £6.49, 12in £3.99, DJs getting a special discount . . . George Andrew (Salford Mister Shifters mobile) thanks Stockport’s Grove Records (in London Road, Hazel Grove) for their support at the otherwise largely unsponsored recent Bramhall Festival . . . Adrian, of Bournemouth’s gay orientated Adams bar/disco, recommends Carnival Records in Ashley Road, Bournemouth, for extremely cheap disco 12in prices . . . I’m surprised such a straight MoR record as the Boys Town Gang is getting so much evident “soul” disco play . . . Mark Clark (Bracknell) hopes record companies wouldn’t pounce on any DJs who happen to sell old promos at “car boot” sales in aid of the South Atlantic Fund — probably not, Mark, as long as all future rights to their mailouts aren’t included in the sale! . . . Neil Fincham & Colin Cordrey (Edinburgh Mad Hatters Speakeasy), recently pictured with Junior, claim to be the longest DJ team in the country — total height 12′ 8½” if laid end to end in bare feet (which wouldn’t surprise me) — and challenge all comers . . . I can’t compete, being partnered by Graham Gold, despite my 6’ 8” . . . Watford’s Ponderosa is all very well, but the trouble with unlimited um-yum is it’s too darned fattening! . . . OK, Roger Dynamite, you work at Tiffanys in Gt Yarmouth (we’re not mind readers you know) . . . Sandy Martin reckons after the introduction at Swindon Brunel Rooms of Angus the Angry Bull that women make the best bucking riders thanks to their thigh power — cor, slobbers Sandy, there were some on Angus that could turn an “all nighter” into a “weekender”! . . . thank you Sandy, we get your drift, now tell it to Spare Rib . . . ‘The Day The Music Died’, now published here, is a novelisation (and gripping read) of the development of black music within rock ‘n’ roll from ’56 to ’63, written by Joseph C Smith who under the name Sonny Knight scored the original hit with ‘Confidential’ in 1956, well worth finding and full of thinly disguised characters from the music business — if you’re into your history, read it . . . Cliff Dawson; with a soul listening set on US Boardwalk currently being imported, is from New York but used to be in our own Chosen Few . . . Mezzoforte, the Icelandic jazz-funkers, have rivals in the form of a Nottingham white boys group recording under the same name . . . Capital’s Phil Allen, whose Sunday morning 1.45am London funk chart I never miss hearing, mentioned “a heavy dew” and Peter Young in the same breath — brilliant! . . . Larry Foster, well busy at such East London venues as Reflections, Lamps, The Villa and the Albion pub, left between gigs for a brief holiday in the Lake District to return to London for the following weekend, only to drive back to the Lakes on Monday and repeat it again the next weekend — this doesn’t beat me however: years ago at midsummer I did four consecutive mobile gigs all in different areas, then drove hell for leather to the very North-West of Scotland just to see the midnight dusk, saw it, dug it (though it rained!), and then turned right round again to head back for two more gigs in the South just three days after the last one . . . Tom Wilson (Edinburgh Oscars) says also about his holiday at Salou in Spain that the jock in a club called Shalako mixed the Police ‘Roxanne’ over the break in Soft Cell ‘Tainted Love’ to great effect . . . Mad Marx at Clacton Butlins in his redcoat role had to extemporize when the bingo machine broke down in front of 200 old age pensioners, so he rapidly turned to the record decks and proceeded to rap over ‘You’re The One For Me’ — which was such a hit with the OAPs he now raps every night! . . . (Mad Marx now wonders, who the hell told him that?) . . . Nick Ratcliffe (Winkfield) and others should note that our two Disco and Nightclub Charts are compiled quite simply like this: DJs returns which only and obviously relate to soul/funk/jazz/black material are used for Disco, while any charts which include more than the odd few non-black pop-type titles go towards Nightclub, the orientation of the venues being easy to spot by these means (and neither being considered superior to the other) . . . that said, and although I know how dancers these days seem depressingly keen on oldies, is there any chance we could get some DJ contributors for our Nightclub chart who play something more recent than last month’s hits? . . . DO IT DO IT . . . HEY . . . DO IT DO IT!


DUNN & BRUCE STREET, whose ‘Shout For Joy‘ is chuckling up the chart on Satril, turn out to be two Philly Sound veterans with an interesting past. Dunn Pearson Jr has racked up extensive arranger credits especially with the O’Jays, as well as Wild Cherry, M’Lady, Patrice ‘Choc-let’ Banks, Lou Rawls, Teddy Pendergrass, Stephanie Mills and the Detroit Spinners, while his partner Bruce Gray with a similar background co-wrote the theme for US TV’s ‘Soul Train’ show and arranged the Trammps ‘Disco Inferno’. Continuing the Philly link, their hit in the States is on former O’Jay Bobby Massey’s Devaki label.


BRIAN “BAZZER” MASON, cueing up records at his Friday residency in South Harrow’s Bobby Magee’s, is kept busy also at Watford’s New Penny on Saturday’s (have you eaten at the Ponderosa yet?) and at Southgate’s Pink Elephant (the old Royalty) on Mon/Tues/Wednesdays. Thursday’s he sleeps!


CROWN HEIGHTS AFFAIR, after their past brilliances, have really disappointed with the UK release of their latest 12in, ‘Somebody Tell Me What To Do‘ (De-Lite DEX 8), a competent enough but scarcely exceptional pedestrian lurching 112bpm chanter flipped by the sweet soul slow 0-37/74-38/76bpm ‘Heart Upside Down’ both from an imminent new LP of which we must hope for better. At least they’re in commendably soulful voice, but all trace of dazzle and flash is sadly lacking.


UK NEWIES

GRAND MASTER FLASH & THE FURIOUS FIVE: ‘The Message’ (Sugarhill SHL 117).
Truly an overnight sensation, this reality rooted 100bpm 12in message is rapped in a mixture of conversational and beat binding voices with a sound-effect ‘Living For The City’-like street bust as climax of the mesmerizing simple repetitive rhythm riff. Dig the message — “its like a jungle sometimes, it makes me wonder how I keep from going under” —and look out for (I’m told) “kissing” instead of “pissing” on UK pressings!

HOWARD JOHNSON: ‘So Fine’ (Funk A&Merica USAF 1221).
Funnily enough I freaked on first hearing this but then tempered my original import review with caution, thinking “Nah, it’s too carefully controlled.” Doo-wop acappella introed insistently rolling smooth 113bpm 12in smacker with great vocal work by the ex-Niteflyte singer, officially flip here to the creamily jogging “new soul” slow aching 102bpm ‘Keepin’ Love New‘.

EVELYN KING: ‘Get Loose’ LP (RCA RCALP 3093).
From the production team who bring you Howard Johnson and Melba Moore (joke!), this beautifully packaged set is out here ahead of the States and is full of immediately familiar stuff at a tempo you know and love. Best possibly are the steadily smacking 114-115bpm ‘I Can’t Stand It’, sinuously weaving 115bpm ‘Back To Love‘ and 114bpm title track, plus there’s the 113½bpm ‘Stop That‘, 117bpm ‘Get Up Off Your Love‘, 108bpm ‘Betcha She Don’t Love You‘. Continue reading “August 21, 1982: Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five, Howard Johnson, Evelyn King, Mike & Brenda Sutton, Melba Moore”

August 14, 1982: Rockers Revenge, Afrika Bambaataa & The Soul Sonic Force, Galaxy, Wanda, Jay W. McGee

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

IMAGINATION, after doing backing vocals for Kelly Marie’s Crusaders- produced track, hint they weren’t exactly impressed despite the Crusaders’ twenty years of musical experience — “the guys are fantastic but they need to utilize what’s happening now, though we did learn a lot from them,” hastily adds Leee . . . Leee also says, “I can’t wait to get a flop, then we’ll know who the real people are in the music business” . . . Italy meanwhile has Imagination’s ‘Just An Illusion’ at 4 and ‘Body Talk’ at 10 in the chart, Belgium has ‘Music And Lights’ at 12, and in Canada ‘Just An Illusion’ has sold enough to go “double gold” . . . Dartford’s futuristically revamped Flicks reopens next week with a preview night party on Thursday (19) and a fireman’s fancy dress ball on Friday (20), when Chris Hill joins Colin Hood, and already the enquiries have been so heavy that the club has had to install an answerphone to handle reopening details on Dartford 25520 . . . Canvey’s Goldmine, on the first week of its tenth anniversary celebrations, had kids queueing outside at 10 in the morning last Saturday! . . . Orin Cozier is now deservedly the Streetwave label’s full time national radio plugger and artist liaison manager, Morgan Khan meanwhile is now hyping himself up on new singings, the Hudson Brothers . . . Howard Johnson ‘So Fine‘, which hasn’t stopped climbing since the news got about it wouldn’t be on UK release, will be out here after all, but as flip to ‘Keepin’ Love New’ (now watch the hipper than hip drop it fast!), spearheading the relaunch next week A&M’s Funk A&Merica series along with Magic Lady ‘Sexy Body’ / ‘Get Off’ (wot not ‘Give It Up’?), Jeffrey Osborne ‘Eenie Meenie’ / ‘You Were Made To Love’, Atlantic Starr ‘Love Me Down’ / ‘You’re The One’ . . . Britain’s first video pool, A. B. SEE provides a monthly one hour compilation of current hot promotional videos at £50 + VAT per month, initially sending two tapes so that the older one can be replaced after the first month thus leaving you always with two to rotate, and the service is already much used by London Clubs (I can vouch for the videos at Le Beat Route) although A. B. SEE’s Roz Bea would like to hear from more provincial clubs with video facilities — contact her at Albion Leisure Services, 147 Oxford Street, London W1 (01-734 9072) . . . Peter Powell’s Steppin’ Out soul show on Radio One (Mondays 6.10pm) would surely be of most benefit if it left all the brand new pre-release exclusives to the local radio specialist shows, which have more time available, and instead concentrated its 50 minutes on consolidating those soul disco hits which, with just a little bit more national airplay, could possibly cross over into the pop chart . . . Industry sources estimate that 5000 sales are needed to break even on a disco hit, many not getting anywhere near that despite apparent chart popularity, while with luck an average disco chart topper which also hits the bottom end of the pop chart can possibly sell around 30,000 after a lot of hard graft . . . Froggy’s Steppin’ Out mixes really should be more ambitious and busier — its no fun waiting right through a record just to hear one segue, especially now that young Alan Coulthard on Radio Luxembourg zaps you with something incredible every few seconds on his megamix masterworks (provided radio reception lets you hear it) . . . Martin Collins Soul Seekin’ show on Chiltern Radio (c.792 MW) every Sunday 3-6pm can be picked up in London, and I’m glad to hear he’s more than lived up to his earlier praised potential . . . Jeff Young is sitting in for Robbie Vincent on Radio London’s Saturday lunchtime soul show for the next few weeks . . . Capital’s recently absent reggae jock David Rodigan has grown a muff around his mouth, to go with the second star lead role he’s been off filming in Greenland for BBC TV’s ‘Shackleton’ series, due on our screens next spring . . . Tony Jenkins Soul On Sound cassette magazine got off to a great start, shops already reporting that my preview mix medley has brought people back in to buy records featured — remember, I can’t use more than a short excerpt (to comply with copyright laws) and so will never be able to do an ideal mix by waiting for all the optimum mix points, but I think you’ll find this week’s edition is even neater . . . Ambiance drummer Mike Parkinson stuck it out giving helpful nods while Tony Jenkins dozed off during the marathon all night session it took to end up with the new medley! . . . Technics digital readout adjustments to achieve the Rockers Revenge/Sharon Redd ‘Beat The Street’/Bobby “O” mix (during which I’m still not sure what bits belong to what records!) are +2.1/0.0/–3.7 . . . Bobby “O” (for Orlando) produced the Flirts ‘Passion‘ gay synth hit, a c.120bpm 12in remix of which is now on Canadian Unidisc (UNI-1086) . . . Graham Gold moves downstairs on Friday nights at Mayfair’s Gullivers in Down Street, leaving me to funk the whole night upstairs on my own (no hardship in itself!) . . . Wham’s glamorous platinum blonde dancer Shirlie Holliman gets nothing from gigs and so earns her keep, not working as a waitress in a cocktail bar, but as one of the remarkably friendly girls at Watford’s Ponderosa — the UK’s first truly authentic American restaurant which is so good I’ve travelled there from London twice in four days to gorge on dirt cheap steak with shrimp, unlimited help yourself salad, unlimited soft drink refills, unlimited um-yum! . . . Harringay Bolts national gay disco dancing championship was won by 20 year old masseur David Beard . . . Ian Levine (Charing Cross Heaven) has Sharon Redd ‘In The Name Of Love‘ at the top of the gay venue’s chart and reminds me that Stephanie Mills ‘I Can’t Give Back The Love I Feel For You‘ was of course originally Syreeta’s debut single when called Rita Wright . . . CBS conned a lot of jocks by disguising the Goombay Dance Band as the GD Band on white label 12in promos of ‘Rain’ . . . Marvin Howell’s ERC label (hot with the Boys Town Gang, whose ‘Signed Sealed And Delivered‘ revival will be the next single pulled off their September-issued LP) is now clarified as being the outlet for product licensed from the US, with acts going on Marvin’s Project label System being phased out (Pino D’Angio possibly being transferred to ERC later in the summer) . . . Adrian reports from Bournemouth’s gay Adams Disco in the Maison Royale complex that Carol Jiani ‘Hit ‘N Run Lover’ megamix is still Bournemouth’s biggest hit, the Fri/Sat/Sun/Tuesday club being busiest on the cabaret Tuesday nights . . . Tony St Michael’s nights at Islington’s Hemingford Arms pub have changed from funk to gay, Sundays for women, Mondays for men . . . Tony de Vit compiles a gay disco chart at Birmingham’s Nightingale Club which he then features on his Beacon Radio show, without identifying the fact that it’s gay, and supplies to listeners by post . . . Paul Parker ‘Right On Target‘ (US Megatone 12in) is top of the US Dance/Disco chart, although Ian Levine prefers the ‘Pushin’ Too Hard‘ flip . . . Laura Branigan ‘Gloria’ is now on UK 12in (Atlantic K 11759T) . . . Gibbo is playing so much material normally associated only with gay discos that I had difficulty in stopping our chart compiler Alan Jones from classifying Edgbaston Faces French Club Jardine as gay! . . . Tricky Dicky Richard Scanes in his Disco Music shop at 391C Mile End Road, London E3, offers UK 12in at £1.90 and US 12in at £3.50 to our gay chart readers, the same discount as for DJs, adding “If you’re gay and a DJ you get an extra special kiss!” . . . yeuchh! . . . Eddie Murphy, whose ‘Boogie In Your Butt‘ was intended as a disco parody but is in fact one of the best funk cuts this year, is a sort of American equivalent to Lenny Henry on TV there . . . Keni Burke, selling well on UK 12in, appears to have been around too long for jocks to stick with him . . . I don’t understand the evident rush to buy Glass — the girls are out of tune, dammit! — nor the surprisingly short lived peak reached by the incredibly good Redd Hott ‘Ecstasy‘ . . . A&M in America have started an AyM label series for strictly Latin music (of the ethnic Mexican/South American variety) . . . Gunch appears probably to be some new illegally ingested substance . . . Al Green is taking time off from his Memphis church to play the type-cast role of a minister alongside Patti LaBelle on Broadway in a new adaptation of the gospel musical ‘Your Arm’s Too Short To Box With God’, set for an eight week run starting in a month at the Alvin Theatre . . . Teddy P, many doctors agree, may never walk again — so I’m sorry about last week’s comment, based on earlier more optimistic reports — although he is already in other respects more mobile than the even more unfortunate Johnnie Wilder . . . Nigel Halkes (Portishead) reminds us that the flip of Shalamar’s ‘Make That Move’ was ‘The Pop Along Kid‘, all about body popping . . . Teesside jocks Cleveland Area DJ Association is now affiliated with the DJF, details from Graham Murray, 7 Crossbeck Way, Ormesby, Middlesbrough, Cleveland . . . Theo Loyla has returned to Mecca after 12 years, joining Dave Munday on Saturday’s at Guildford’s Cinderella Rockerfellas . . . Suzie Halls, remembered by many DJs as Fred Dove’s assistant a while back, now works just along the road from me in Willesden at Jive . . . Brian ‘Bazzer’ Mason jocks Mon/Tues/Wednesday upstairs at Southgate’s Pink Elephant (ex-Royalty) . . . Dion Schoun of Copenhagen’s Tattersall (Tatters Disco) recommends the Ding Dong record shop at Silkegade 3, behind the Illum warehouse, in Copenhagen as a hot source of imported US and UK material . . . Kev James is now permanently based in Denmark (this month at Skagen’s Disco Admiralen), where he says Rick James is king and Falco’s original ‘Der Kommisar‘ is classed as funk . . . Mark Clark (Bracknell) on a recent return to Rotterdam spent a weekend coaching Blue Feather to speaka de English, so now you know who to blame if you encounter them here . . . Rob Harknett (Roydon 027979 2329) had an expensive narrow escape (literally) from Czechoslovakia after his young son came out with measles (silly taking him there really), Rob only managing one gig behind the Iron Curtain but at least he was greeted by the crowd like a superstar — now he needs a copy of the 24.4.82 Record Mirror as the copy he sent his Czech chum was lost . . . Tom Wilson (Edinburgh) writes from Salou near Tarragona that Kasso ‘Kasso‘ seems big in Spain . . . Nick Ratcliffe (Winkfield) says the taverns in Corfu all wind up with a selection of terrible Eurodisco, the ‘Stars On 45’ singles and ‘Disco Bouzouki’, but it’s all good fun (apart from the other bloody foreigners)! . . . Mark Summers, resident at Hackney’s recently opened luxurious 1920s-styled Flappers in Temple Mills Lane, regularly gets visited by local tribe the Hymen Bursters! . . . Donna Summer’s recording sessions with Quincy Jones were more of a strain than originally anticipated, according to a good report in the LA Times, Donna being preoccupied by her unexpected pregnancy — and did you spot it on TV, but because of this her current video makes extensive use of a slimline cardboard cutout of her! . . . Mike Page (Shifnal Nell Gwynn), who’s always being told he’s too expensive, asks on behalf of himself and several other local jocks, who the hell is Trevor Hughes? (OK guys, meet at noon on main street) . . . Frenchie’s sweat dripped onto his close talk mike while he was fiddling with the badly earthed lighting controller the other Wednesday at Kirkham Charlie Max’s and — ZAPP! – instant hair straightener . . . Chris Cole (Cranleigh Cranley Hotel), please note that although provincial reaction comes via the mail, London’s contribution to the Disco 90 includes bang up to date verbal reports . . . Eddy James (Walthamstow Royal Standard) reckons BPM should now become CPM, for Claps Per Minute . . . WEA’s Fred Dove opines “There are too many DJs asking for free records because they can’t afford to buy them, not because they want to promote them” (think about it, there’s a subtle difference!) . . . Alfred McCrarys says “Absolutely!” . . . Delbert says “KEEP IT CRUCIAL!”


UK NEWIES

ROCKERS REVENGE featuring DONNIE CALVIN: ‘Walking On Sunshine ’82’ (London LONX 11).
Along with “D” Train’s ‘You’re The One For Me’, likely in retrospect to be 1982’s most influential disco record, this brilliant 115bpm 4-track 12in restructuring of the Eddy Grant song is already deservedly the hottest sound in the nation and an absolute delight for mixers. Try overdubbing its own acappella version (get two copies!). Aretha Franklin’s acappella intro, the US ‘Keep On’ B-side’s acappella intro, the Peech Boys acappella 7in, or synch for sensational effect as much of Sharon Redd’s ‘Beat The Street’ as you can manage. If you’re one of the few who haven’t yet heard it, look out for all the sneaky bits nicked from “D” Train and others. It’s a hit-bound cross fertilisation of culture, owing as much to the Human League as to funk. What a blast!

AFRIKA BAMBAATAA & THE SOUL SONIC FORCE: ‘Planet Rock’ (21 Records POPX 497, via Polydor).
People either love or loathe this blatant pinch of Kraftwerk’s ‘Trans Europe Express’ speeded up on 126bpm 12in as either an instrumental flip (big for many) or with a freaky US smash rap as the main side. Either way it’s big and getting bigger all the time, with lots of pop appeal.

GALAXY: ‘Head Over Heels’ (Ensign ENYT 229, via RCA).
Not widely available just yet but already eagerly sought on red label promo following weeks of teasing radio play by Robbie Vincent, this Phil (Kandidate) Fearon-penned/sung Quincy Jones-ish slick creamy 117bpm 12in roller was produced by the currently hot Pete Wingfield, whose own gorgeous piano playing on the jazzier instrumental flip is making that the most danced to side, although both develop beautifully as they flow along. Continue reading “August 14, 1982: Rockers Revenge, Afrika Bambaataa & The Soul Sonic Force, Galaxy, Wanda, Jay W. McGee”

August 7, 1982: Aretha Franklin, Dunn & Bruce Street, Teddy Pendergrass, Grandmaster Flash, Jermaine Jackson

ODDS ‘N’ BODS

SHOWSTOPPER PROMOTIONS next year will keep a huge marquee disco running for three months right through the summer season at St Tropez after their return ten day jazz-funk special has finished . . . Southgate Royalty meanwhile is packing ’em in six nights a week in its new guise of the Pink Elephant Fun House, with two separate discos, lotsa fun and sideshows, dirt cheap admission . . . Canvey Island’s legendary Goldmine celebrates its tenth anniversary all this month with a different musical theme each Saturday, this week’s finding Chris Hill and Jeff Young reviving ten years of jazz (including Chris’s “swing thing”) . . . Chris Hill, if he and Carol have been to the movies recently, is doubtless saying “MISTER Porky, to you!” . . . Capital Radio’s bright young blood, Gary Crowley starts a weekly Saturday lunchtime shindig this week (7) at London’s Charing Cross Road Busbys, 11.30am-2.30pm, soft drinks only, aided by ‘Motorway Mick’ Brown and PA’s by Buzz and Wham . . . ‘Reggae On It’ is indeed by Freddie McGregor and will be out here on Erskine Thompson’s new Intense label segued out of ‘Follow This Ya Sound’ as a 3-track 12in flipped by the ‘Big Ship’ remix . . . Narada Michael Walden’s US 12in of ‘Summer Lady’ is a new improved remix and will be out here imminently . . . ‘Chanson D’Llegance‘ in an 11½ minute remix is on the new Disconet . . . Sharon Redd’s ‘Can You Handle It’ in probably the KISS remix version (although it seems slower at c.109bpm) is on US Prelude 12in (PRD-1005) flipped by Muslque ’82 ‘Keep On Jumpin’ (remixed) and ‘In The Bush’ (one version or another), both c.132bpm . . . Holland’s enterprising Rams Horn label is sadly reported to be going broke, which will dry up a strong source of remixes . . . Soul Sonic Force may soon come here on Polydor-distributed 21 Records, Fatback ‘She’s My Shining Star’ is evidently now on UK 12in, Zapp ‘Dance Floor is due too . . . MCA are re-releasing the Crusaders ‘Street Life’ on 12in (MCAT 513), Motown revive Smokey Robinson’s 1979 US smash ‘Cruisin’ . . . Patrick Boothe had a close encounter with a paint sprayer, or is his new hairstyle the “badger” look?! . . . ‘School’s Out’, huh, David and Ji? . . . KEEP IT TIGHT!


Laura ‘n’ Order

LAURA BRANIGAN is shooting up the gay charts in the States and now here with her version of Umberto Tozzi’s storming Euro-hit of 1979 (covered by Jonathan King), the Donna Summer-ish driving 130½bpm ‘Gloria‘ (US Atlantic DM 4835) which is already getting so much pop radio play in Britain that the import 12in has been joined by a UK 7in (K 11759). Born and bread in Brewater, a small upstate New York town, Laura moved to New York City for a drama school course before singing behind Leonard Cohen on his 1977 European tour as part of The Army.


Level Crossing

I LEVEL, whose now released ‘Give Me‘ debut on Virgin has got everyone talking, are Duncan Bridgeman, Sam Jones and Joe Dworniak. Lead vocalist Sam, who used to sing with reggae group Brimstone, wrote the record while Duncan and Joe are co-owners of the Moody demo studios which they financed from past involvements, Duncan with Shake Shake and bassist Joe with BEF. Both have backed John Foxx. This variety of backgrounds is obvious in their work now, giving ‘Give Me’ a very strong wide appeal and freshness of approach which should make it a monster crossover hit.


UK NEWIES

ARETHA FRANKLIN: ‘Jump To It’ (Arista ARIST 12479).
Luther Vandross-produced/co-penned feminist angering (0-)119-120-120½bpm 12in bumper starts with some skippable acappella wailing and a bit of talking before the beat bubbles up and Lady Soul gets down to moaning and searing her way through the supporting chix with some incredible soaring “shabadoodledaweeda” scatting that’ll make your neck hairs bristle!

DUNN & BRUCE STREET: ‘Shout For Joy’ (Satril 12SAT 5OO).
With a name play on Dun & Bradstreet, the guys chuckle in Terry Wogan style and tell us to “have a good time” as this quietly infectious languidly smacking 111(start)-113bpm 12in bumper winds along to an effective gap in the backing rhythm towards the end. An immediate monster for those few jocks initially on it, it’s been surprisingly slow to spread considering how good it is (especially with Howard Johnson, and try A Taste of Honey out of it).

TEDDY PENDERGRASS: ‘Now Tell Me That You Love Me’ (LP ‘This One’s For You’ Philadelphia PIR 85937).
Gamble & Huff-prod/penned absolutely gorgeous familiar 37bpm smoocher with a Dexter Wansel-arranged catchy little twiddle in the backing (did he sing this at Hammersmith?), while other nice slowies on a typical set are the Ashford & Simpson-prod/penned 37-75bpm ‘Only To You‘ and synthetically burbling steadily rolling 0-98-101bpm ‘I Can’t Win For Losing‘. If he had a funny way of walking before his accident, what’ll it be like now? Continue reading “August 7, 1982: Aretha Franklin, Dunn & Bruce Street, Teddy Pendergrass, Grandmaster Flash, Jermaine Jackson”