April 2, 1977: TK label launch – Ralph MacDonald, Timmy Thomas, Latimore, KC & The Sunshine Band.

RCA’s first product on their new TK label – British outlet for Florida’s complex of TK, Glades, Alston, Dash, Marlin, etc – is a set of four albums and two singles.  However, the big news is what’s yet to come!  At the beginning of May, RCA will be launching the TK Disco 12-inch series in this country, selling the highly-prized “big 45’s” at an economical price.

Their plan is to press the first 10,000 copies of all the TK releases in 12-inch form, making 7-inch two-parters for radio and subsequent commercial release.

Slated to lead the 12-inch assault are T-CONNECTION ‘Do What You Wanna Do’, an insistently rattling stormer that’s rightly the States’ biggest disco hit of the moment, FUNK MACHINE ‘Funk Machine’ and JIMMY BO HORNE ‘Get Happy’.

Meanwhile, the initial release of albums sees the influential percussionist RALPH MACDONALD finally out on his own.  As a supersession accompanist he’s been largely responsible for the current percussion trend in disco music.  His ‘Sound Of A Drum‘ (TK XL 14030) has his big hit dancer, the happy ‘Calypso Breakdown’, as well as the lovely ‘Where Is The Love‘ and Latin-type ‘Mr. Magic‘.

TIMMY THOMAS ‘The Magician‘ (XL 14044) has his big ‘Stone To The Bone’, a light and airy instrumental with chix, but the title-track single (XB 9052) is a more forceful and less effective vocal.  Continue reading “April 2, 1977: TK label launch – Ralph MacDonald, Timmy Thomas, Latimore, KC & The Sunshine Band.”

March 26, 1977: Rose Royce, Tavares, Peter Gabriel, Santana, George Hamilton IV

Florida’s TK label is now distributed here on its own logo by RCA, who hosted a big launching party last week that was attended by several of the TK stars.  Full details next week.

New Spins

ROSE ROYCE: ‘I Wanna Get Next To You’ (MCA 278)
’60s-type soul slowie, atmospheric and lovely, with edited ‘Sunrise‘ flip.

TAVARES: ‘Whodunit’ (Capitol CL 15914)
‘Dragnet’-type intro to a good but slow rhythm swayer with catchy lyrics.

PETER GABRIEL: ‘Solsbury Hill’ (Charisma CB 301)
Haunting yet jaunty modern rock monster.  Continue reading “March 26, 1977: Rose Royce, Tavares, Peter Gabriel, Santana, George Hamilton IV”

March 19, 1977: D.C. Larue, Graham Parker & The Rumour, Gary Wright, Bugatti & Musker, Smokey Robinson

New Spins

D.C. LARUE: ‘Overture (All We Need Is Love)’ (Pye 7N 25740) (Billboard chart debut 12/4/76)
Chugging funky snorter with old Stax touches even, rather strong.

GRAHAM PARKER & THE RUMOUR: ‘Hold Back The Night’ (from EP ‘The Pink Panther’, Vertigo PARK 001)
Long a Parker stage fave, the Trammps classic’ll hold them back no more.  Dy-na-mite!

GARY WRIGHT: ‘Are You Weepin” (Warner Bros. K 16908)
Another similar ’60s-style soul chugger, modern in sound only.  Continue reading “March 19, 1977: D.C. Larue, Graham Parker & The Rumour, Gary Wright, Bugatti & Musker, Smokey Robinson”

March 12, 1977: Steve Gibbons Band, J.A.L.N. Band, Blue Magic, Frank Sinatra, Boney M

New Spins

STEVE GIBBONS BAND: ‘Tulane’ (Polydor 2058855)
Great choogling Chuck Berry rocker that I’ve been mixing out of ZZ Top’s ‘Arrested For Driving’ and Queen.

J.A.L.N. BAND: ‘Street Dance’ / ‘Nija Walk’ (Magnet MAG 901)
Good “live” medley of the old Fatback biggies.

BLUE MAGIC: ‘Three Ring Circus’ / ‘Sideshow’ (Atlantic K 10910)
Crafty, as Barry Biggs has recorded both – yes, both – these original sweet slowies, and his ‘Circus’ has yet to come!  Continue reading “March 12, 1977: Steve Gibbons Band, J.A.L.N. Band, Blue Magic, Frank Sinatra, Boney M”

March 5, 1977: import tips from Chris Hill & Tony Clark

Hot Vinyl!

Imports set the trends for the future and are much used by the hipper club jocks.  This page hasn’t reviewed many imports as I think that most DJ’s find it hard enough getting ordinary domestic releases, let alone US hot wax!

However, there is now such interest in twelve-inch disco pressings that imports are becoming more widely accepted.

To help give an ahead-of-the-minute guide to the Stateside vinyl that’s likely to be big here, I’ve recruited a regular panel of top funky club DJ’s to give their current top tips.  This week we hear from Chris Hill of Ilford’s Lacy Lady fame, and from Tony Clark of Newcastle’s Julie’s – Tony also works at Callers Record Shop in Newcastle, supplying everyone from Ian Levine on down.

Tony’s tips are:

LA EXPRESS: ‘Dancing The Night Away’ (Caribou)

TIMMY THOMAS: ‘Stone To The Bone‘ (Glades) (Billboard chart debut 3/12/77)

ARTHUR PRYSOCK: ‘I Wantcha Baby‘ (Old Town LP cut) (mentioned in Billboard column 1/15/77, Billboard chart debut 1/29/77)

LATIMORE: ‘It Ain’t Where You Been‘ (Glades LP cut)

DOOLEY SILVERSPOON & JEANNE BURTON: ‘Am I Losing You‘ (Cotton 12″)

MILLIE JACKSON: ‘There’s Something About You‘ (Spring LP cut)

and, one that Chris has been on for a long time too, BO KIRKLAND & RUTH DAVIS: ‘You’re Gonna Get Next To Me‘ (Claridge LP cut), currently vied for by several UK record labels, it’s so hot!

Chris tips:

URBIE GREEN: ‘Another Star’ (CTI LP cut)

JOE THOMAS: ‘Funky Fever‘ (Groove Merchant 12″) (mentioned in Billboard column 12/25/76)

GARY BARTZ: ‘Mother Nature‘ (Prestige LP cut)

BOOKER T & THE MGS: ‘Sticky Stuff‘ (Asylum LP cut)

CROWN HEIGHTS AFFAIR: ‘Far Out‘ (De-Lite LP cut) (Billboard chart debut 11/6/76)

LAKESIDE: ‘Taboo‘ (ABC LP cut)

JIMMY SMITH: ‘Can’t Hide Love‘ (Mercury LP cut)

CHAPLIN BAND: ‘Let’s Have A Party‘ (EMI 12″)  Continue reading “March 5, 1977: import tips from Chris Hill & Tony Clark”

February 26, 1977: Non-Stop Disco Chartbusters, Sons Of Robin Stone, Arthur Prysock, Mexicano, Deodato

Are you a DJ on Creole’s mailing list?  If so, you’d better check out their new ‘Non-Stop Disco Chartbusters’ album (CRLP 508), as your name is likely to be on the back of it!

Creole have listed all 500 or so DJ’s that were on their books at the end of last year – but, here’s the rub, they’re not sending the album out to them even though they’re thanked for their “continued support”.

How long that support remains forthcoming we must now wait and see, while for those who are interested the album itself really is non-stop, with every track mixing fairly intelligently into the next without even the tiniest gap.

Basically instrumental and decidedly hustling, it contains tracks like CRISPY & CO ‘Brazil’, CHEQUERS ‘Undecided Love’, HOT BLOOD ‘Soul Dracula’, BONEY M ‘Baby Do You Wanna Bump’, BOBBY AZEFF ‘My Way’, LAFAYETTE STREET ‘Chariot’ and SOUL AFFAIR ORCHESTRA ‘Amor Amor’, all in a flurry of sizzling cymbals.


New Spins

SONS OF ROBIN STONE: ‘Got To Get You Back’ (Atlantic K 10723) (Billboard chart debut 10/26/74)
Near legendary 1974 New York disco hit, a cool vocal group thudder, recently released along with other better-known old Warner/Atlantic hits.

ARTHUR PRYSOCK: ‘When Love Is New’ (Polydor 2058842) (mentioned in Billboard column 10/30/76, Billboard chart debut 11/20/76)
Lovely jaunty mellow hustler in Lou Rawls style, big in US and a chart chance here.

MEXICANO: ‘Move Up Starsky’ (Baal BDN 38037)
Strong reggae skanker with definite hit prospects, now out through Pye.  Continue reading “February 26, 1977: Non-Stop Disco Chartbusters, Sons Of Robin Stone, Arthur Prysock, Mexicano, Deodato”

February 19, 1977: Supercharge, King Floyd, The Mexicano, Chaplin Band, Cerrone

New Spins

SUPERCHARGE: ‘Get Up And Dance’ (Virgin VS 170)
Extremely catchy big and busy-sounding happy chanter, bound to smash.

KING FLOYD: ‘Body English’ (Contempo CS 2103) (mentioned in Billboard column 10/30/76)
Powerful simple bouncy funker, hot.

THE MEXICANO: ‘Move Up Starsky’ (Pioneer PION 3)
Rock steady reggae with DJ toasting, big in Midlands.  Continue reading “February 19, 1977: Supercharge, King Floyd, The Mexicano, Chaplin Band, Cerrone”