Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Songs of 2010 by Glamjack


Here are my favorite songs of 2010.  In no particular order, these are the songs that meant a lot this year.  Some songs were released this year and some were not.  These songs were simply beautiful to dance to and brought a smile to my face.  This list is composed of edits, re-works and re-interpretations and some originals. Happy Holidays and a Happy and prosperous 2011! Enjoy!

Click below to listen:

And I'm (In Love With You) - Andy Butler, Jason Kending
My House - Hercules and Love Affair
I Can't Help It (Dj Mad Mats)
Straight Ahead - Stupid Human
Ol' Dirty Vinyl (U Usded To Know) - Moodymann
Call Me - Mark E
Black Magic Feat. Rebolledo - Superpitcher
Pass It On - Eddie Hooper
Mary Hartman, Mary Hartman - Sounds Of Inner City
The Sea and the Sky (Padded Cell Remix) - Future Loop Foundation
Spend The Day Without You - Crue-L Grand Orchestra
Stay Free (Dimitri's Re-Edit) - Ashford & Simpson
Lost In Music (The Revenge Re-edit) - Sister Sledge
Easy Money (Todd Terje Rekutt) - Dee Dee Sharp Gamble
There'll Come A Time, There'll Come A Day - Basic Black & Pearl
This Is It (Mad Mats Remix) Kenny Loggins

Monday, December 20, 2010

Deep Space Orchestra

Here is a very interesting and amazing edit I recently discovered by Deep Space Orchestra.  This song is featured on Part 1 of a 3 part series called We Get By With A Little Help... to commemorate their third House is The Cure release.  Part 1 is a limited, vinyl only release by deep house imprint, Kolour.  They came up with a concept where producers pitch in a free track and all proceeds are donated to charity, "helping out someone in need one track at a time".  A sweet idea.  Aside from this amazing concept, it's a great record with some of the biggest names in beatdown edits.  "Dollar"  is a brilliant edit of Steve Spacek's classic tune that takes the listener into new terrains. The other songs are brilliant delivering some great vocal disco by Nicholas and a great edit from Dexter Wansel by OOFT and a very poignant song by Dead Rose Music Company titled "The World Is An Uproar".  This a must have for all you new disco lovers. So please support this great concept and purchase this amazing record.  


Sunday, December 19, 2010

December Mix


Wishing you all a Happy Holidays filled with love, beauty, family and peace.  Here is the latest mix from the monthly series by Dj Glamjack.  The "December Mix" is a tour de force of uncharted territory with as wide a spectrum of songs that borderline on the left field side of dance, world and house music.  Lately I have been exploring some mid '70s and mid to late '80s Chicago house as the inspiration for this mix.   The overall feel is very '80s with a few exceptions.  It has very percussive/world music feel as well with some great dubs, accapellas and reworks of some well known songs.  Also, there is a very intense and poignant speech from Charlie Chaplin's movie "The Great Dictator" which is mixed with some interesting beats and has the potential of being the next great house speech for the dance floor.  Enjoy!




Playlist:
  1.  Tico Tico (Live) -  Urzula Dudziak & Bobby McFerrlin  
  2.  Dancing Machine (Henrik Schwarz Remix ) - The Jackson Five
  3.  For The People by The People -  Ron Basejam
  4.  Time (Clock Of The Heart) (Drumhead Remix) - Culture Club
  5.   Zakir Husain's Masters of Percussion (Live excerpt) - Zakir Husain
  6.   The Unexplained - Ataraxia
  7.   Sangandongo/Speech from "Great Dictator - Niagara/Charlie Chaplin
  8.   It's A Man's World (House Your Body Girl ) - Jackmaster Curt
  9.   It's A Man's World (Club House Mix) - Jackmaster Curt
10.  Love Can Do Anything - Nancy Wilson
11.  And I'm (In Love With You) (Original Version) Andy Butler, Jason Kendig
12.  I Am Dead (Hercules And Love Affair Remix) - Jori Hulkkonen
13.  Your Love (Dub Rodapella Mix) - Jamie Principle

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Stay Free

It is time to post not one but three timeless classics to start off the weekend.  Starting with one of my old time favorite dance songs that never seem to tire my ears, "Stay Free".  The message here is simple and powerful.  Loving someone and let them stay free.   Created by legendary husband and wife songwriting/production team simply know as Ashford and Simpson.  Nickolas Ashford and Valerie Simpson have written, produced and performed some of the most amazing, most compelling and deep timeless songs ranging from R&B, Soul, Disco, Motown and Gospel from the 20th Century.   I am loving the new re-edited treatment Dimitri From Paris has done to this amazing song. Stripping it down to it's essence giving it almost an instrumental feel without loosing the song's integrity taking the listener to pure bliss.   Also,  here is another dance classic, the disco 12" mix of  "Over and Over".  Released as a dance single in 1977, this song inspired Sylvester to make his own version which is also featured here.  All amazing dance classics that are high on my list of all time favorites to enjoy!  Speaking of lists, stay tune for my list of favorite songs from 2010 coming soon!

Stay Free (Dimitri's Re-Edit) - Ashford & Simpson - Warner Bros. Records



Over And Over (12" Disco Mix) - Ashford And Simpson - Warner Bros. Records



Over And Over (Special 12" Disco Mix) - Sylvester - Fantasy

Monday, December 6, 2010

Sweet Sixteen

Here is a recent discovery called "Sweet Sixteen" by an amazing '70s group called Diga Rhythm Band.   This is the brain child of legendary drummer from the Grateful Dead, Mickey Hart.  Initially inspired by Native American tribal beats and the thumping sound of a hand-turned water pump, Hart teamed with legendary Indian tabla player Zakir Hussain creating the Diga Rhythm Band in 1975.   This was considered a groundbreaking album at the time which introduced percussion driven, globally minded grooves to an entirely new audience.  It was a drum freak's wet dream. The LP was considered ahead of its time by blending rhythms from different cultures by adding a jazzy/latin flair that took the listener to hypnotic heights making this a left field disco favorite.  This song was perfect for the early in the evening warm up designed to jump start people's temperature on the dance floor.    I have been a fan of Zakir's  music for quite sometime and was pleasantly surprised to learn about his side project of his. Simply brilliant! Enjoy


My House

Here is a  sneak peak titled "My House" from the amazing Hercules and Love Affair for all you disco enthusiast to embrace on this earth.  Hercules and Love Affair is a musical project from New York based DJ Andrew Butler.  Their first single "Blind" released in 2008 featured the brilliant voice of Antony Hegarty (lead vocalist from Antony & The Johnsons) from their self-titled debut album and made the top ten list in several countries that same year.  I was fortunate to witness their first live show at the now defunct Studio B in Williamsburg that same year.   Their live sets are pure magic capturing the fusion of synth and live instruments delivering the pure elements of dance music while infusing them with smart and haunting vocals with such a passion never heard before.  Even though their sound makes direct references and inspirations that are deeply rooted on the foundations of classic disco and house songs from the mid to late 70's, late 80's and early '90s from New York and Chicago, they have managed to capture a new fresh outlook delivering a totally fresh sound that is both innovating, new and unique.  Their  new sophomore album entitled Blue Songs will be released January 2011 featuring Bloc Paty's Kele Okereke, transgender Venezuelan singer Aerea Negrot who is clearly evoking the fabulous Sylvester doing 80's house amazingly, Shaun J. Wright, and Hercules regular Kim Ann Foxman who has grown tremendously as a singer.   I have previewed some of the tracks and it's obvious this is less disco focused and take us forward to a more house sound that is clearly inspired from the golden era of house music from 1986-1992.  "My House" is a testament to that brilliant period.   Thank you Hercules from saving and reinvigorating dance music.  Enjoy!

My House - Hercules and Love Affair   

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

I'm Afraid Of Me

Here is rare 12" remix by '80s legendary band Culture Club, "I'm Afraid Of Me" which is featured on the Volume 2 of the Methods Of Dance collection.  "I'm Afraid Of Me" was originally released on their debut 1982 LP titled Kissing To Be Clever.  This was the album that shot them to the top of the charts spanning the classic '80s hits "Do You Really Want To Hurt Me" and "Time" to name a few.  Also released in 1982,  Methods of Dance Volume 2 contains a compilation of era defining underground club tracks which marked the point at which Post Punk collided with the dance floor.  There are several hard to find early songs and remixes from amazing bands that defined the music of that era.  Lately, I have been listening to Mark Ronson's brilliant song "Somebody To Love Me" featuring vocals by the legendary Boy George which has made me nostalgic for this sound again.  This is a truly unique gem of a song. Enjoy!



Saturday, November 27, 2010

Stop Bajon (Primavera)

Happy Thanksgiving holiday is here and what a lovely time it has been spending time with my beloved extended family of friends.  Due to the social demands of the season around this time of year,  it is expected not to have any time to post here.  Now I'm happy to feature a great song from Tullio De Piscopo called "Stop Bajon (Primavera)".  According to dear friend wikipedia, De Piscopo was born in Naples, the son of a drummer in an orchestra.  In 1969 he moved to Turin, where he began a successful career as drummer for several popular artists including Gerry Mulligan, Astor Piazzolla, Gato Barbieri, Lucio Dalla, Pino Daniele, Manu Chau and others.  In 1974-1975 he was a member of New Trolls Atomic System.  He also wrote scores for several movies.  His most successful song is "Andamento lento", which won Festivalbar in 1988.  Outside Italy he became famous with this song which was released in 1983 and spearheaded the early Italo House/Disco movement.  It was a also favorite during the early days of house music in Chicago and it was on heavy rotation at the clubs there around that time.  It is a fairly new discovery to my ears and  loving it!  The hooks are amazing and the breaks are sweet. Enjoy!





Stop Bajon-Best of

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Walking In Rhythm

Wow....I have been neglecting all of you wonderful readers and listeners.  This is a time of the year when thinks get hectic and combined with hosts staying over making difficult to find time to post here.  This a song that I heard today while walking the Williamsburg bridge with a majestic full moon on the horizon combined with the crisp Autumn air and a gorgeous sunset.   As one can imagine the song says it all.  The Blackbyrds was an American rhythm and blues and jazz-funk fusion group, formed in Washington D.C. in 1973.  They released eight successful albums for Fantasy Records from 1974 to 1980.  They have become an inspiration  for countless acts for the past 30 years including  hip pop greats De La Soul, Ice Cube, Heavy D, Nas and Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five.  The song "Rock Creek Park" has been sample by all of these acts including Massive Attack.  "Walking in Rhythm" is an undisputed Disco classic and it was featured on their 1974 gorgeous sounding LP Flying Start.  The inspiration lives on!  Enjoy




Monday, November 8, 2010

Remembering A Legend: Larry Levan

Larry Levan at Paradise Garage

Today marks the 18th year of legendary Dj Larry Levan's passing.  He revolutionized dance music and the art of mixing records.  Larry introduced the dub aesthetic into dance music.   He experimented with drum machines and synthesizers in his productions and live sets, ushering in an electronic, post-disco sound that presage the ascendancy of house music.  His sets were never short of drama and took the dancer on a emotional journey rightly described as "Saturday Mass".  All of his sets during the legendary decade long residency at the New York City night club Paradise Garage told a story and took the dancers on a sonic journey filled with bliss,  joy and redemption.  Also,  his productions and remixes were filled with his magical genius touch that changed dance music forever. There has never been anyone of his caliber and he is truly missed!  Here is a favorite among the many of his incredible remixes.  Mann Friday's gorgeous "Love Honey, Love Heartache".  Simply brilliant!  Enjoy

Love Honey, Love Heartache (Larry Levan's Vocal Mix) - Man Friday - Vinylmania


Sunday, November 7, 2010

Blend III

It is about that time to deliver a new mix from Dj Glamjack.  The blend series have been one of the  most popular ones on this site so here is the third installment for your listening pleasure.   Most of the songs are all stand along making it challenging to create a cohesive "blend".   The songs featured comprise an eclectic mix of old, new, local and international flavors.  The mix comprises of artists that has been exciting  and stimulating my ears as of recently and yes, a lot of them happen to be from the '80s and of course the '70s.  Crue-L Grand Orchestra who could have easily been from the '70s jump start this mix and specially blended with Maximum Joy's classic "Silent Street" whom is evident they took the sample from for their "Cynmopeide No. 1" lullaby of a song.  Followed by an amazing band recently discovered called Dan Boadi and the African Internationals performing a simple yet satisfying number about the evils of money.  Then the drama gets even more intense with Lalo Schifrin's disco rendition of the theme of Jaws. Followed by an interesting song by recently discovered rare and brilliant find from an '80s German band called Oppenheimer Analysis singing about "The Devil's Dancers". Lalo Schifrin resurfaces here with a stunning song called "Dragonfly" exploring a playful 70's spirit with a Van McCoy classic "Party".  One of my favorite songs from the '80s gets revisited here with an extended mix of "Promises, Promises" from Naked Eyes followed by Section 25's  sweet "Inspiration".  The mix moves along to 2010 with a gorgeous song from  Hercules Love Affair's own  Kim Ann Foxman called "Creature" which recalls an amazing late '80s house song from Project 86 called "Legends".  This mix concludes with a great song from 1976 from Tommy Stewart's self-titled LP called "Fulton County Line" blending into an 1982 classic from Junior "Mama Used To Say".  If there is a theme on this mix, it could be that of self-reflection, associations, inspiration and metaphor.  Hope you enjoy it!

Blend III -  Dj Glamjack - A Dj Glamjack Mix



Track Listing:


  1.  Cynmopeide No. 1 - Crue- L Grand Orchestra
  2.  Silent Street/Silent Dub - Maximum Joy
  3.  Money is the Root of Evil - Dan Boadi and the African Internationals
  4.  Jaws - Lalo Schifrin
  5.  The Devil's Dancers - Oppenheimer Analysis
  6.  Dragonfly - Lalo Schifrin
  7.  Party - Van McCoy
  8.  Promises, Promises (Extended Version) - Naked Eyes
  9.  Inspiration - Section 25
10. Creature - Kim Ann Foxman
11. Legends - Project 86
12. Fulton County Line - Tommy Stewart
13, Mama Used To Say - Junior

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

El Gato Triste

Here is a wonderful song by the amazingly brilliant American composer Chuck Magione.  Although not a dance song, this timeless song has all the drama that could fill a dance floor either during the beginning or the end of a party.  Land Of Make Believe was released in 1973 and it contained many classic songs.  The title song performed by Esther Satterfield's amazing vocals made her famous at the time.   This concert LP released by the Mercury label is one the most successful of this kind with beautiful combination of tunes, grandiose orchestrations with right amount of jazz and a genuinely feeling of idealism.  Every song in this LP grabs you with it's positivity and endearing messages of love, hope and utopianism.  "El Gato Triste" begins slow implying classical elements and then changes elevating the listener taking you on a more tropical jazzy terrain.  It has been considered a Latin song.  I just simply love how the song takes you on a journey and back.  Enjoy!

El Gato Triste - Chuck Mangione - Mercury



Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Goin' To A Showdown

Today I'm posting a song that has not been able to leave my mind as of recently.  I'm not sure if is the repetitive aspect, the beats or just simply the kitsch quality this song.   I stumbled across this LP at Academy Records around the neighborhood and could not resist purchasing it.   Spooks In Space has plenty of catchy tunes and this is the one that stands out the most to me.  The most popular single from this LP was "Spooks In Space" which I happen to like as well.   Aural Exciters was created by legendary disco producer Bob Blank in 1979 who recruited Kid Creole & The Coconuts, James White & The Blacks, The Contortions, Lizzy Mercier Descloux and Lydia Lunch for this project.  August Darnel and Andy "Coati mundi" Hernandez from Kid Creole & The Coconuts wrote almost all the songs.  This LP has been described as the perfect choice to use when looking for  classic avant garde Latin flavored P-Funk party music.   Also, to the disco connoisseur, this album exemplifies what became known the mutant disco sound.  Enjoy


Friday, October 29, 2010

Looking From A Hilltop

Here is a song that I haven't heard since 1985.  "Looking From A Hilltop" is undeniable one of my top 5 dance classic songs from the '80s.  Whenever I would hear this song which was usually mixed at the discos right after  Kraftwerk's "Music Nonstop", I would melt and become one with the song.  According to my friend Wikipedia, Section 25 was considered a post punk band when it formed in Blackpool, Lancashire in 1977 by  brothers Larry Cassidy (bass, vocals) and Vicent Cassidy (drums).  They were signed by Factory Records and initially produced by Ian Curtis and  Rob Gretton of Joy Division with their debut LP Always Now.   In 1983, joined by percussionist Lee Shallcorss, they gradually evolved a more electronic-dance direction, a process that culminated in the album From The Hip and the single featured here, released in 1984 and produced by Bernard Sumner of New Order featuring Angela Flowers  aka Angela Cassidy (vocals, keyboards) and Jenny Ross (vocals, keyboards).  Making this single their most popular song. They continued to record in 1988 with Love & Hate, then made a come back in 2007 with Part-Primitiv,  in 2009 with Nature + Degree and  in 2010 with Retrofit which featured some great remixes of their early work.   Sadly, Jenny Ross passed away in 2004 and recently founder member Larry Cassidy also passed away in  February of this year.  I truly enjoy listening and dancing to their music. There are several great mixes for this song around, however the Megamix version serves it right. Enjoy!






From the Hip


Check out the video of Version 2 here. It features one the first cell phones. It was gigantic! Love It!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Soul Dracula


Here is a song that I have been wanting to post since starting this blog but rather waited and deemed more appropriate to post around this time of the year even though I feel this song could probably do well anytime of the year.  "Soul Dracula" by Hot Blood was officially released in the US in December of 1975 and was extremely popular at the Discos as a French import first.  Hot Blood was actually a German disco production that featured many notable Munich session players such as Keith Forsey, Gary Unwin and Pepe Solera.  This was a very mysterious release that made a huge impact around dancers and DJs during that time.  The production was superb and rather unique full of lush electronic effects.  Specially the chorus part with the bongo section added making this song a disco and kitsch classic.  This was released as a single but was featured in their full length LP appropriately titled Disco Dracula in 1977 which also included the singles, "Sex Me" and "Terror On The Dancefloor".   This a great song and the entire LP is a must have if wanting  to kick start the spirit of Halloween on the disco dance floor.  Enjoy

Soul Dracula - Hot Blood Era

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Magia Negra (Black Magic)

October month brings such a myriad of feelings and in the same case could be said in musical tastes.  In the spirit of all things dark here is a song called "Black Magic feat. Rebolledo" by an amazing outfit that I recently discovered called Superpitcher.  This a fairly recent release from their full length LP Kilimanjaro.  Superpitcher is the stage name of German producer Aksel Schaufler who is affiliated with Cologne's Kompakt music label.  Superpitcher made his firs appearance in 2000 with the song "Shadows".  In 2001, he contributed a track called "Tomorrow", "Heroin" and a cover of Brian Eno's "Baby's On Fire".   Also, Superpitcher and Michael Mayer have collaborated  under the pseudonym Supermayer and did a brilliant remix of Rufus Wainwright's "Tiergarden" that I highly recommend to give it a listen .  Black Magic comes from Kilimanjaro, the latest offering by this amazing young producer who is very well in touch with the origins of cosmic disco, 80's electronic and early tech house.  The entire album is engaging from start to finish.  This song is one of my favorites.  Enjoy!

Black Magic feat. Rebolledo (Original Mix) - Superpitcher - Kompakt



Kilimanjaro

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Running Away

Here is a song from the late '80s that I always enjoy listening.  Lately, I have been noticing a re-hash of a sort of post New Romantic/London preppy look in terms of fashion.  Naturally, I must imagine that some re-birth of this music that went along with this "look" should have new consideration as well.  Think Spandau Ballet, Haircut 100, The Style Council and Echo & The Bunnyman.  All great bands that deserve their own posting for their great contributions to dance music.  Recently, I posted a song by Fun Boy Three and it awoke renewed enthusiasm for this era of dance music.  The Colourfield was a British band formed in 1984 in Manchester by former Specials and Fun Boy Three front man Terry Hall with ex-Swingin Cats members Toby Lyons and Karl Shale.  "Running Away" was from their 1987 album Deception and it was remake by Sly & The Family Stone and here it gets the Arthur Baker treatment to stunning effects .   I vividly recalled hearing and dancing to this song for the first time at a great New Wave club in Baton Rouge called Xantus.  Enjoy!


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Motherland

It has been a  hectic beginning of a week so I will be brief with this posting.   Here is a song that I've been thinking about for the past few days.  "Motherland" by Tribal House featuring Pierre Salandy and Karen Bernod.  Released in 1990 this was an underground house favorite.  Produced by Wiston Jones, this club classic was co-written by Karen Bernod.  Karen is best known for her unique vocal harmonies and as a background singer for Chaka Khan, Erykah Badu, C&C Music Factory and D'Angelo.  This is no exception, with such catchy rhythms and deep pounding beats that evoke the spirit of Africa.  I just love it  when I hear Pierre's chant..."A-fri-ca...A A A A-fri-ca"...."Mama Africa" and I am there.  Are you there? Enjoy.

Motherland A-fri-ca (Freedom Mix) - Tribal House featuring Pierre Salandy and Karen Bernod - Pow Wow Records

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Love Tempo

It has been a hectic week and did not get a chance to do any postings.  Here I am back with dance classic "Love Tempo" by Quando Quango.  This short lived British, Manchester based new wave and dance project, formed by The Hacienda DJ and Factory Records A&R man Mike Pickering, Hillengonda Rietveld and Reiner Rietveld brought a unique sound that influenced the underground music scenes in New York and Chicago in the 1980's.  Their first release was the "Go Exciting" twelve-inch single in 1982, and their last release of new music was the 1985 full length album Pigs & Battleships.  They are best known for "Love Tempo" which reached number four on the US Billboard Dance Chart, and "Atom Rock".  Their sound was the result of an eclectic mix of Latin, jazz, reggae and disco, all in pioneering New Wave context.  Hillegonda Rietveld said, describing the group's music, "...Fela Kuti meets Kraftwerk somewhere between Manchester and Rotterdam, part of a new wave of post-punk electronica, with a whole lot of Mike Pickering's admirably broad knowledge of soul, disco, reggae and pop to stuff the gaps".  Bernard Summer of Joy Division and New Order, who produced early Quando Quango recordings, was a major influence on the group also and you can actually witness this episode on the 2002 film 24 Hour Party People which managed to capture this period in music succesfully.  The group was originally formed in Rotterdam, The Netherlands in 1980 and after they released of Pigs & Battleships, they went on to collaborate with other acts such as Spasmodique,  A Certain Ratio's  Simon Toppin, Lisa Stansfield and M People under Pickering's tutelage.  This song was later included on the Disco Not Disco compilations albums. It is time for "Love Tempo" and hope you enjoy it!


Monday, October 11, 2010

Love So Special

Last night I went to Body & Soul held at Webster Hall and it was incredible.  Legendary trio Joaquin "Joe" Clausell, Francois K and Danny Krivit turned it out by playing a well balanced set filled with amazing classics.  The sound system was top notch this time and it literally blew my mind. The crowd was beautiful and positive. The song that kick started me was Mission Control's "Outta Limit". I haven't heard this song on a big sound system in ages and it was an incredible experience.  Other highlights were Sharon Brown's fierce "I Specialize In Love" and Ceybil's "Love So Special" featured here.   "Love So Special" is one of those passionate, timeless, and fluid house songs that always brings the house down and last night was no exception.  My body was sore from dancing by the end of the night but it was so worth it and "oohhh so special".  Enjoy!

Love So Special (Extended Original Underground Mix) - Ceybil - Atlantic



Love So Special (Tony's Funky Bass Mix) - Ceybil - Atlantic

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Our Lips Are Sealed


Happy Saturday.  It has been a glorious day today in the city.  Here is a song by short lived English New Wave band Fun Boy Three.  The band ran from 1981 to 1983 and was formed by Terry Hall, Neville Staple and Lynval Goldin after they left The Specials.  This was the trio's last UK hit from the album Waiting, co-written by Terry Hall and Jane Weilding of The Go-Go's, who had scored a U.S. hit with the song a year earlier.  These guys are also credited with helping launch the career of Bananarama.  I'm digging this song a lot, aside from the familiarity of the original version, the dance/reggae/ska flavor brings a smile to my face upon hearing it.  This is the special remix version and the Urdu version.  Enjoy.

Our Lips Are Sealed (Special Remix Version) Fun Boy Three - Chrystalis



Our Lips Are Sealed (Urdu Version) - Fun Boy Three - Chrystalis

Disco Photography

Refreshments at New York, NY  photo: Toby Old
I've decided to add a bit of photography to spice things up here.  It will be under the heading of Disco Photography.  It will be of photos that captured the spirit of the discos.  Enjoy

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Space

I have been listening to some '80s stuff lately from bands such as Naked Eyes self titled LP,  Orchestral Manoeuvers in the Dark's Architecture and Morality and It's Immanterial's Life's Hard And Then You Die.  All of them seminal '80s albums that have paved the way to some of this new keyboard/electronic
"folk" we have been hearing lately.  I am going to focus on the band It's Immanterial for this posting.  I happen to think their music has aged extremely well and still manage to sound so fresh.  I'm not sure what it is but every time I hear songs like "Driving Away from Home", "Ed's Funky Dinner" and "Washing The Air" to name a few, they bring such amazing joy and no matter how many times I listen to them, I always discover something new.  Hailing from Liverpool, England and formed in 1980 by three former members of  a band called Yacht, John Campbell (vocals), Martin Dempsey (guitar), and Henry Priestman (keyboards) in addition Paul Barlow (drums).  By 1984 the band had been reduced to a duo with Campbell and Jarvis Whitehead, (guitar and keyboards), who joined in 1982.  In 1985, "Space" was first released on one of their fourth and final  John Peel session.  In 1986, they released their first full length album, Life's Hard And Then You Die.  Their music is known for it's subdued, understated nature, with wry wit in the manner of an indie version of the Pet Shop Boys.  Their essence and brilliance lies not only in their eclecticism by mixing, new wave, country, blues, folk, and synth pop in order to keep a wide canvas keeping their albums fresh from beginning to end but also in the dance possibilities of most of their music catalogue.  During the early '90s, they released their last album called Song.  It wasn't a huge commercial success as their previous effort but nevertheless it receive positive reviews by the music press.  I heard the group also recorded a third full album with the working title of "House of Sale".  According to Campbell it is finished and still in the vault.  They shopped it around but could not find a label to release it.  He said they were told it was too "dark".  They were never dark for my taste! Enjoy.

Space (He Called From The Kitchen) Disco Mix - It's Immaterial - Siren



Life's Hard And Then You Die

Monday, October 4, 2010

Trouble Maker

I am ashamed to admit I had just discovered this amazing disco diva recently but it's never too late and what makes this more exiting than to keep discovering more disco brilliance.  Trouble Maker is an incredible LP.   It was produced by the team who transformed Donna Summer, Giorgio Moroder and Pete Bellotte.  Like Summer (who contributes backgrounds here) Kelly is an American (from Los Angeles) who was living in Germany and  had some level of success there before the States.  "Trouble Maker" at 8:48 wasn't quite the tour de force "Love To Love You Baby" was back then, it more than made up for what it lacks in minutes an seconds with an incredible, smoothly soaring drive and grace.  The song combines the spirit of '60s girl group nastiness ("Trouble maker, stop spreadin' all those bad lies/Trouble maker, 'cause you ain't gettin' my guy") with the delicious violin-laced production that became the trademark of German-made disco music.  The singing is vibrant, the break is superb and full of pounding drums and the overall affect is overwhelming in the best sense.  When Vince Aletti first heard of Roberta Kelly he wrote: "Flawless" is an overused word on the New York disco scene, but it's the right word here.  There are four other cuts on the Kelly album, three of them over six minutes,  two of them excellent disco material: 'Love Power' and 'The Family'.  Enjoy!


Sunday, October 3, 2010

Good To Me

Today was such a beautiful day with Fall weather in full force.  Here is a song that was mentioned by a nice commenter from  a previous posting.  "Good To Me" is a great late '70s full energy disco classic by THP.  The THP Orchestra as it was called before was a Euro-Disco outfit that recorded in Toronto, Canada.  Even though they were not based in Europe, their three albums produced by Ian Guenther and Willi Morrison,  reflected the type of sleek, hard pounding, high energy dance music that was coming out of Germany, France and other European countries at the time.  THP made its vinyl debut in 1977, when it recorded Two Hot for Love!.  The LP was ignored by pop/top 40 radio in the U.S., but that didn't prevent it from becoming a club hit.  THP, whose lineups varied from one album to the next then released Tender Is The Night in 1978.  In 1979 they switched record labels from Butterfly to Atlantic and released their third and final album Good To Me and that's when they dropped the "Orchestra" from the bands name and were simply going by THP.  By  1980, THP called it quits.  This a great song!  Enjoy