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Sunday, May 26, 2013


This is another example of Italo disco perfection in my book.  Super catchy chorus, fun loving music and that real mid 80's European sound.  It's a great example of how some of the best italo disco was not even made in Italy. 
Hans Joachim Werner, Kalle Trapp, Klaus Stoltefuss, Lothar Thorwesten, Rolf Köhler are Solid Stranger and as you can see they are all German.
Music in the Night by Solid Strangers was released in 1985.  It was the second of four twelve inch by the band.  ZYX records was one of the most prolific italo disco labels in the 80's.  They did a lot to promote the sound and distribute it throughout the world.  Italo Disco owes a lot of respect to this label.


In 1990 Rammellzee was my downstairs neighbor in Tribeca.  I'd almost say we were friends.  We definitely had a mutual respect for each other.  He even made me a graffiti painting of my name.  I have it in storage.  I've never gotten it appraised and don't really know anything about art anyway.

I never had this original pressing of Beat Bop which came out in 1983 on Tartown Records.  Apparently it's ultra rare because it came out as a 500 copy only limited edition with artwork by his friend Jean Michel Basquait who not long after died of a heroin overdose.  According to a copy actually went for $1500 a few year back.  Basquait actually produced and arranged the tune.
I had this Profile records white label promo and it too is valuable.  The track is now considered an Electro Hip Hop classic.  It's definitely creative!  BEAT BOP is JUST OVER TEN MINUTES LONG

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Still In Love extended version Rose Royce

From the time they were introduced to us in 1976 on the hugely successful Car Wash soundtrack Rose Royce were a force to be reckoned with.  Just the fact that such great music came out of a flop film is a case in point.

They were deeply talented musicians and those Gwen Dickey vocals were nothing short of amazing.  Her voice became an iconic part of the late seventies and into the early eighties.

There were really so many songs I could have chosen for this blog post.  But I chose Still in Love because it's one of the best boogie tracks from 1982 and yet made no dent on the pop charts so Rose Royce is in no way remembered for this track in particular.  It's a sizzler all the way through.  Clinging to all the best elements of disco yet funkin' out in an early 80's way.  Rose Royce was a band often able to refresh their sound but rarely able to take it up high on the charts.  Though certainly they did a bit better on the R&B charts and ironically for an L.A. based band they found some decent success on the U.K. charts.  In any case they were responsible for one of the definitive songs of the disco era with Car Wash.  There is no mistaking that hand clap intro. that shot it straight up to number 1 in the U.S. and Canada and Top 5 in several others.  Their songs were later covered by artists as prominent as Mary J. Blige and Madonna.

As an example of how huge Rose Royce were in the U.K. their greatest hits album released in 1980 actually made it to number 1, while in the States it didn't even chart.  1980 was of course the year that the word disco went out of style and suddenly anything with the label got the kiss of death.  In Europe they were not quite as cruel to the genre and disco or what many called boogie still had a couple good years.

Christina Aguilera also re-made Car Wash but let's not go there.

Saturday, May 11, 2013


Instinctual was Imagination's only #1 hit on the U.S. dance charts.  It was not among their bigger hits in Europe however.  Released in 1987 it tore up the dance floors in New York City clubs and featured the sound that David Morales and Frankie Knuckles would increasingly pump in their DEF MIX productions and remixes.

Arthur Baker productions often gave me a certain sense of joy at the time.  Instinctual reminds me of a very happy time.  I was fresh out of University and trying to break into the New York scene and I truly lived to go out.  It was huge on the dancefloor at clubs like Boy Bar on St. Marks Place and Whispers at The Pyramid on Sunday nights. 
Leee John's ferocious vocals and super flamboyance will always be one of my favorite musical memories of the 80's.
His 2009 comeback single was called Sensuality.  It was a remixed version of an earlier released single.


Documentary charting the success of Mike Stock Matt Aitken and Pete Waterman the songwriting and record-producing trio who scored more than 100 top 40 hits in the 1980s and 90s including a string of number ones with acts including Kylie Minogue Jason Donovan and Rick Astley. Featuring contributions by Waterman Simon Cowell Sinitta Pete Burns Sonia Steps and many more.

Send my Heart by The Adventures

Send my Heart is a favorite sweet new wave song.  I believe it deserves attention and it is in .wav so I am going to put it out there for you.   send my heart  It was actually their debut single back in 1984.
Songs like this remind me so much of the dorms back when I was at American University.   And styling my hair very floppy a la flock of seagulls or robert smith. 

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Let's Go Round Again (one more time) Average White Band

Average White Band had a worldwide massive funky jazz hit with Pick up the Pieces.  Later in their career they came up with Let's Go Round Again.  In 1980 it became a hit in the U.K. and in the U.S. a favorite at The Saint and Fire Island.  But It didn't have the huge commercial success of some of their earlier hits.  Co-Produced by the Genius David Foster  The recent edit by DJ Meme gives it more of a house feeling and an extra long introduction.  A solid piece of work that respects the original while spicing it up for punters in this day and age.  Meme Bootleg
This Scottish group had it's first release in 1973 and were prolific for quite a bit longer, over twenty years.  But the hits were few and far between, not that that is what makes a band.  They are a solid act that will be remembered for sheer talent, they were no flash in the pan.  

Monday, May 6, 2013

Tamiko Jones more then just Can't Live Without Your Love

Barbara Tamiko Ferguson was born in Kyle, West Virginia in 1945.  She started recording in the mid sixties.  By the late 70's she had a few floor stompers of disco dance.
1976's Let if Flow was a major release for T.K. but in 1979 Polydor's Can't Live Without Your Love was the one that made her disco legendary.  It's a real Loft classic.  It always sounds great to me.  CAN'T LIVE  Her release from 1975 I'm Spell Bound is much less known but well worth checking out I'm Spell Bound

Her 1986 remake of Marvin Gaye's classic I Want You was also known as Tamiko's Groove.  It was mixed by Timmy Regisford & Merlin Bobb and it's just about the last I've heard from her. Tamiko's Groove