Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Baby's Got Another  


South African born singer Richard Jon Smith put out a host of 12 inches and a self titled LP on Jive Records in the early 80's. With his over the top vocal delivery and super slick production, it seems to me that Jive's A & R department had optioned him to be their breakout success story. Of course he never did blow up all that hard but amidst the flurry of releases was a single called "Baby's Got Another". I feel this track due in no small part to the production work of frequent Jive collaborator Darryl Payne. The tasty guitar stabs and dirty vocoder bits gave an otherwise decent tune that much needed edge. Now go find yourself a copy on discogs for $5.00.

Richard Jon Smith - Baby's Got Another (Extended Mix)
Richard Jon Smith - Baby's Got Another Dub

Posted by Magnum | 1 comments

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Saturday, June 27, 2009

The Rock  


Thanks to everyone who read my rant last week and sent in their weird, newly discovered disco joints. It meant a lot and I will contact you individually to see if it's cool to repost them. Please send more in, if they are new on me (as they mostly are) I will put them all in a post and give you the credits. I think I worked out that there must be some electro blog haus mailing list floating around and we got on it somehow, but if you read my post and decided to send me your bedroom produced electro banger despite me calling you all out as fame hungry spammers then more power to you, keep hustling.

Speaking of remixes, many of the Europeans amongst you may recognize East Coast's The Rock as the origin of the main sample used in a mainstream dance hit in the late nineties, I know I do at least, but for the life of me I can't remember what it was. It had a male vocal over the top and got tons of radio play. Anyone have less damage to their long term memory centers than me?

This is the 12" mix, with beautiful extended percussive sections, and the phased out bass line is perhaps I think one of the most standout in all disco. It was produced by a then young Charles Wallert, who went on to become successful with artists such as Dione Warrick and George Benson, and was originally released on the small indy Family Records, but after the DJ's responded to it RSO picked it up just weeks later.

Posted by Black Shag | 12 comments

Friday, June 26, 2009

Hot To Trot  


Have you ever wondered about Latin Disco? New York was the Disco & Latin HQ for america, it only makes sense there would be some unstoppable latin disco joints made. I can't think of any latin disco songs that were hits, and I'm definitely not counting Yambu's version of "Sunny".

Many NYC Latin groups did decide to go disco, and in turn definitely made their own niche in the disco world. Groups like Charanga 76, Eastcoast Connection, as well as giants like Joe Bataan & Eddie Palmieri went there as well.

Here we are checking out an edit from the music of Alfredo De La Fe. He is a classically trained violin player from NY (via Cuba), who played with too many legends to mention. He recorded his own solo LP, "Alfredo" on Criollo records and his tune "Hot To Trot" is the only disco song on this record. Scorching hot breaks and "first time ever talking into a microphone" vocals make this a winner.

I recently found a copy and made a quick edit hi-lighting the druggy vocals and strings.

Alfredo De La Fe - Hot 2 Trot (Disco Tom Edit)

Posted by DISCO TOM | 2 comments

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Thursday, June 25, 2009

Sting  


Right. So, at first I was all excited thinking I had found some Sting record that was all obscure. Through various misinformations, I believed this to be true for far too long (as in up 'til earlier today). Turns out this is not Sting as in Gordon Sumner of The Police Sting. I was far too hopeful I suppose thinking he had made something like this, and shame on me for not doing more research.
This is made by a far lesser known Sting, a female and male trio on ABC Records with a penchant for falsetto. "Pleasure" is not an all out stormer but one of those summer type grooves that sits back just enough and invites the listener to either tap their foot or get up and shake it. The falsetto and backed by the strings and the solid rhythm section, it just works. One thing I really enjoy about this track is the breakdown. There are so many intricate little pieces nestled in the background that really give it a laid back party feel. Produced by Jay Ellis and written by C. Spencer, C. Blandon, E. Pitt and J. Ellis, "Pleasure" is a sure fire song for the summer (not Sumner).

Sting - Pleasure

Posted by T. Preston | 4 comments

R.I.P. Michael Jackson  

Michael Jackson died today, June 25th 2009. In tribute, here are a couple of our favorite tracks. Also included is a rare Mizell brothers production with young Michael singing.

Michael Jackson - Don't Stop 'Til You Get Enough
Michael Jackson - Off The Wall
Michael Jackson - Rock With You
Michael Jackson - Call On Me (w/ Mizell Brothers)

Posted by Beat Electric | 8 comments

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Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Happy Days  


I've never found the bay area to be a record digger's paradise but as of late have been enjoying some good medium rare scores. I have been thinking about this record for some time now and was quite pleased when it turned up recently in an east bay dollar bin. Northend was a studio project consisting of Tony Carbone, Russell Presto and the insanely prolific producer Arthur Baker. The trio was also responsible for a few other twelve inches on Emergency Records featuring vocalist Michelle Wallace. Her Jazzy Rhythm single is well sweated but this one seems to be the record most are looking out for. Michael Jonzun of the Jonzun Crew handled co-production and Tee Scott gave the final touches on the mix making this flawless blend of boogie and proto house an all star collaboration.

Northend - Happy Days

Northend - Tee's Happy

Posted by Magnum | 8 comments

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Monday, June 22, 2009

1150 cc's of Numark  


Crusty rap jamz like this really make we wonder how things would have turned out if the rap scene didn't become plagued by violence. Here we have Dr. Dre in 1984 being as un-hardcore as you could ever imagine. It is hard to put the pieces together how just two years later he would co-form N.WA. and change the face of rap for eternity.

The Wreckin' Cru was an LA electro rap group that had alternating members, including, Dr Dre and DJ Yella, among others. The group as fronted by the veteran DJ Lonzo Williams who also owned the LA old school hip-hop hangout Eve After Dark. The Wreckin' Cru' changed thier name slightly a couple of times through the 80's and drop the electro for a musical baby making gravy sound.

The Wreckin' Cru' - Surgery

Posted by Joel Brüt | 12 comments

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Sunday, June 21, 2009

Preludes  



Please send more electro nu rave banger fidget remixes, we love them, and when I open the mail box and see thirty odd emails from teenagers trying to make it big with nothing more than a dream and a stolen ableton live serial number it brings a smile to my face and warmth to my heart. Then I delete them without listening to a single one and continue digging through to see if someone sent us something related to some deep disco joint they found, but alas, more electro promo. Not to criticise a genre, I'm not Beethoven or anything, what do I know, but still..

Anyhow, Prelude is good, what a great label:

Sharon Redd - Never Give You Up
Rochelle Fleming - Love Itch
D Train - Tryin' to Get Over
Vicki Sue Robinson - Hot Summer Night
Weeks & Co - Go With the Flow [Edit]
Sharon Redd - Love How You Feel
Bobby Thurston - Check Out the Groove [Edit]
Gayle Adams - Your Love Is a Lifesaver
Unique - What I Got Is What You Need
Visual - Somehow, Someway
D Train - "D" Train [Dub]


Speaking of nu rave, I'm a hypocrite as here is a heavy edit I did of some new wave dollar bin jam that doesn't sound far off. Loop it for five minutes, stick your name on it, don't give anyone credit and get internet famous kid. Prepare for my promo email in your inbox very shortly:

Black Shag - Factory

Posted by Black Shag | 10 comments

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Friday, June 19, 2009

HAVING IT SO BAD  



FAMILY OF EVE: modern soul gold from Pittsburgh, PA. Most people know about this group from either Kenny or Keb's long out of print singles BBE. Most people play the other tune "I Wanna Be Loved By You", originally released on Jeree Records (see photo for real Jeree letterhead). Excellent studio, was also the same studio and engineer (Don Garvin!!!) where Wild Cherry's "Play That Funky Music Whiteboy" was recorded. Nile Rogers allegedly visited the studio seeking the next unsigned talent, and Family of Eve was NOT mentioned to him. Classic tale of white devilism? I'd say not, as studio head Don Garvin released many of Pittsburgh's finest underground black records of the late 70's (satin whip, steel city connection, etc).

About one year later local indie label Full Sail re-released "I Want To Be Loved By You" on blue vinyl, and cut one more single for the group, "Having It So Bad For You".

"Having It So Bad For You" is the group's completely slept on follow up to "I Want To Be Loved By You". Strong beat, infectious hooks. I've been itching to surgically remove one section of this tune, last night finally did it. Here is the unofficial extended dance edit below:


FAMILY OF EVE - Having It So Bad For You (Disco Tom Edit)

Posted by DISCO TOM | 7 comments

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Thursday, June 18, 2009

I'm Going To Go  


"I'm Going To Go" by Jago is a synth masterpiece. The simple yet effective bass line stands out in front as the rest of the song grows around it. It's not a terribly complex song, each piece has its moment to shine and then sort of ducks back into the arrangement. What it is for me is just a wonderful display of melody and structure that really grooves on the dance floor. I prefer the instrumental to the vocal, which I feel is less over the top Italo. The 12" recorded here was released in 1983 on Full Time Records.

Jago - I'm Going To Go

Posted by T. Preston | 8 comments

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Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Let's Do It  


In contrast to its musical
predecessor, boogie was defined by slower rhythms and more of a bouncy, dirty and synth oriented groove. But really who came up with this sound? The true answer is Prince, P-Funk and the Gap Band. These were the guys that were playing the gritty, synthy funk tracks in the late 70's. That's not to say that Leroy Burgess and his writing partners Sonny T. Davenport and James Calloway were not on the forefront, they were indeed. Thing is, I like to think of boogie as a sort of indie genre and to the people that have the tasteful hindsight to appreciate it, it is quite arcane. Overall, most of us like to hunt down the rarest records on esoteric and private labels. But these obscure bands that were popping up all across the country in the early 80's were most likely not taking their cues from Convertion or Logg songs, they were doing their best to emulate artists on the level of Prince.

At the end of the day, Leroy Burgess and his Convertion producer Greg Carmichael were very deep in the game, many of their projects were groundbreaking and definitive.
Recorded and released in 1980 Let's Do It was one of the very first tracks that clearly defined the "Boogie-Funk" sound of the 1980's. It's also an amazing fucking record.

Both Convertion and Logg performed live shows at the Paradise Garage in the early 80's. Need that damn time machine again.

Convertion - Let's Do It

Posted by Magnum | 6 comments

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Monday, June 15, 2009

Party!  


Harari was a soul group from Johannesburg South Africa. They were originally called The Beaters. Party, produced by Michael Stokes was released in 1980. The track became a pretty big club hit in 1982 and soon after, the group broke up with it's members pursuing solo acts. Band leader, Sipho Mabusse went on to put out a cool electro track called Burn Out in 1985 (which I will cover in the future).

Party is a Loft classic that is loaded with feel good party energy.

Harari- Party (LeBaron Edit)

Posted by Joel Brüt | 6 comments

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Saturday, June 13, 2009

Benny Golson  


I had to go to LA last minute for a couple of days and don't have access to my records, but I have a laptop with me that has some recordings and some edits buried on it, and so I'm going to post one those. Don't be scared off, I'm putting up something that is fairly faithful to the original, Benny Golson's 'I'm Always Dancin to the Music' is a great tune in it's own right, but some of the bridges and passages make it difficult to play for a modern, mixed crowd dancefloor (I think at least, hence the edit).

Benny Golson is a legend of the jazz scene, I think he plays tenor, but I would imagine his best known piece is the theme tune from M.A.S.H. He came back after a ten year hiatus from the music industry with this disco dance single, to much derision from the jazz heads, the snobby indie rockers of their day.

Its 90bpm, and has a willfully difficult to mix intro (that I left in) but it has more punch and energy than any peak hour disco banger I have in my bag.

Posted by Black Shag | 5 comments

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Cathedrals  


D.C. LaRue's "Cathedrals" was released on Pyramid Records in 1976 as a 12" thrusting D.C LaRue onto the disco scene and straight to the top of the R&B charts. In England he became the first white male to attain the #1 position on this chart. This song is so amazing...the lyrics are pretty bizarre and the track itself, musically, is also rather unique. It has loads of interesting sounds and a really solid groove. It's one of those tracks I always pack in my bag when playing out, perfect for bringing people out onto the floor.

D.C. LaRue - Cathedrals

Posted by T. Preston | 5 comments

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Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Night Shift II  


In the last several years we have seen the San Francisco boogie-funk scene grow exponentially thanks in small part to Beat Electric but most of the credit is due to the excellent weekly Sweater Funk party at Li Po Lounge. That being said, many of the tracks on Night Shift 2 (including an edit by our very own LeBaron) have been covered on Beat Electric at some point and we take that as quite a compliment. Enjoy this exclusive mix by two of SF's best Disc Jockey's, Proof and Renmin, both members of the extended Sweater Funk crew.

Also, do not miss this Sundays installment of Sweater Funk. It's Jon's Birthday and they expect to have some very special guests up from LA.

NIGHT SHIFT II
a choice mix of early 80's funk and soulful boogie flavor
mixed and compiled by PROOF & RENMIN

1. world premiere - share the night (club version)
2. shannon - sweet somebody (12" mix)
3. orlando johnson & trance - turn the music on
4. aurra - such a feeling (lebaron edit)
5. dayton - sound of music
6. first love - party lights
7. fonda rae - over like a fat rat
8. howard johnson - say you wanna
9. trilark - check it out
10. starpoint - it's all yours (special dance mix)
11. first touch - it's yours
12. toney lee - love so deep (instrumental)
13. toney lee - reach up
14. komiko - feel all right
15. the ritchie family - i'll do my best (for you baby)
16. the nick straker band - a little bit of jazz
17. samson & delilah - i can feel your love
18. midnight express - danger zone
19. midnight star - midas touch
20. steve harvey - something special
21. take three - tonight's the night
22. aretha franklin - jump to it
23. the walkers - (whatever happened to) the party groove
24. the chi-lites - stop what you're doin
25. katie kissoon - you're the one (you're my number one)
26. yvette cason - cash play (dub mix)
27. manhattan transfer - spice of life


Proof & Renmin - Night Shift II

Posted by Magnum | 14 comments

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Monday, June 08, 2009

Desperate in Miami  


This is a self produced track by Miami artist Michael Sterling. It was released by Success Records in 1983. This track combines a pop lock'n beat, great modern soul vocals, and a little garage house flavor to create a really unique sound. The cop sirens would become a theme later in his career as he played bass in Inner Circle, who is responsible for the pseudo reggae track Bad Boys (What Cha Gonna Do). Sterling is still making music, but his output seems to be strictly limited to smooth jamz.

I have been interested in the pre-Miami Bass sound from this region for a while, and this track makes me to dive deeper to see what else is out there. Also, a portion of this cut sounds pretty good as a ringtone.

Michael Sterling - Desperate
Ringtone

Posted by Joel Brüt | 4 comments

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Saturday, June 06, 2009

New York Apple Jack  


Hey look, its Pele back when he played for the New York Cosmos, back when you could go to the Paradise Garage all night, nap for a couple of hours, then go across town to see Pele and Franz Beckenbauer kick a ball around, half assed and in the twightlight of their careers and probably both with hangovers comparable to your own, if not worse.

New York Apple Jack is a fast paced, deep, soulful disco funk crowd pleaser from the P&P stable, and I think the best disco funk track P&P ever put out, they don't let themselves go too far down the analog synth freakout path but its still a little abstract and dusty. Apply this one to the dancefloor wisely and with great care..timing is everything.

Scott Davis And The Movements - New York Apple Jack

Posted by Black Shag | 1 comments

Thursday, June 04, 2009

Love Machine  


Supermax are an Austrian band founded by Kurt Hauenstein in 1977. In 1978, Supermax released the album "World of Today" which bears the bands biggest hit, "Love Machine". The version posted here is from the 12" on Atlantic released in 1977 as a precursory track to the album in 1978. This track is not an in your face disco track, but more dark and seedy. There are definite qualities of being ethereal and almost ambient in a way, with of course, a strong beat. The vocals are sung with a sleezy quality that really takes this track to the next level. The long synth breakdown with the percussion and the "ahh-ooga's" is just unreal. Honestly, this track for me is one that really will always sound ahead of it's time...dark, lascivious and driving whilst feeling a bit blasé.
(Interesting side note, Supermax were the first multiracial band to tour South Africa. Despite near constant death threats, they played 21 shows causing quite a political scene and earned Kurt "no-entry" status to several countries.)

Supermax - Love Machine

Posted by T. Preston | 6 comments

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Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Happy Is The Only Way  


Admittedly, I have a very soft spot for mid 70's jazz/funk. Places and Spaces by Donald Byrd with the Mizell Brothers production team has been in my top five favorite LP's for a good ten years now. When I first heard this record several weeks ago, I was instantly brought back to the period of my life when I salivated over this kind of crap.

In his time, Patrick Adams produced many, many records of varying styles under a myriad of aliases. Sine was Adam's first of several collaborations with a very young label known as Prelude Records in 1977. Prelude was still trying to find its footing at this juncture basically hiring Adams to produce a jazzy cosmic record released under the guise of disco. Don't get me wrong, this album completely blows me away but only in the loosest terms would I categorize it as disco.

Armed with his signature 70's (see Cloud One) Arp 2600 synth sound, it feels as if Adams and co. wrote the entire record in the studio and jammed it out in a few sessions. The end result is a very raw yet cohesive LP.

This album cover absolutely kills me. Need a time machine now, damnit.

Sine - Chimi
Sine - Keep It Coming
Sine - Just Let Me Do My Thing

Posted by Magnum | 4 comments

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Monday, June 01, 2009

I Gotta Feeling  


Here are are nice pair of lazer soul tracks by the modern soul group Khemisty that hailed out of Washington DC. Band members Marie Council, Shirl Hayes, Kimus Knight put out a couple of rare 12 inches and a well sought after LP that BT Magnum picked up at a thrift store recently. Each of these tracks have an entirely different feel from one another. I Can't Win For Losing has a really killer synth line and an infectious modern sound that makes you want to do a Kevin Baconesque bicycle dance routine.

Khemistry - I Got A Feeling 12"
Khemistry - I Can't Win For Losing 12"

And from the Khemistry LP:

Khemistry - Can You Feel My Love

Posted by Joel Brüt | 4 comments

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