Thursday, November 11, 2010

Disco Knockouts!

Two songs inspired me to make this mix. One of them is a recent track from Duck Sauce. The repetition of the female vocals reminded me of Stars On 45. The other one is from Dutch singer Dee Dee. I heard ‘I put a spell on you’ on a recent episode of Tim Sweeney’s ‘Beats in space’. In this You Tube video she looks a little bit like a sex doll, but I love the song! I like the closing track from soul veterans the Drifters, but isn’t it strange to hear guys who were in their thirties at the time sing about schoolgirls? Different times, I guess, when no one had heard of R. Kelly yet...

One of my personal favourites is ‘Night time’ from Maggie MacNeal. I bought the 7” which was produced by Michael Lloyd (known for his work for the Osmonds, Lou Rawls and Solomon Burke) way back in 1979. Maggie MacNeal was one half of the successful Dutch duo Mouth & MacNeal. Their biggest hit was ‘How do you do?’ that peaked at number 8 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1972. Two years later they became third in the Eurovision Song Contest (which was won by Abba). After a quarrel Maggie MacNeal went solo in 1975.

Dutch singers (although born in South Africa) Rob and Ferdi Bolland are best known for their work with Austrian singer Falco. They wrote, produced and sang on the Billboard number one 'Rock me Amadeus' in 1986. In the 1970s they started as a folk duo, sounding like Seals & Crofts, but by the end of the decade they jumped on the disco bandwagon, as so many others at the time. Their single 'Hold on' (1978) is an interesting combination of soft rock and disco (with a Moroder-esk synthesizer and 'Staying alive'-alike vocal harmonies). The same year they produced the very nice 'Late night show' for Dutch soul band Tiffany (not to be confused with the American singer of the 1980s). After their success with Falco Bolland & Bolland disappeared from the international pop radar.

Another Dutch number one on the Billboard Hot 100 were Stars On 45 (Star Sound in the U.K.) in 1981. It was a reproduction of a bootleg medley done by producer Jaap Eggermont, the former drummer of Dutch rock band Golden Earring. Normally I'm not that much into medleys, but there are exceptions, like this one and 'The best disco in town' from Ritchie Family (1976). When Stars on 45 hit the big time soon afterwards many medleys terrorised the charts for a short period of time. Probably the worst one was 'Hooked on classics' played by Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. It still sounds dreadful today...

Enjoy these disco knockouts:

Milton Hamilton – We Have All The Time [Mr. K. Edit] (2010)
Heaven ‘N’ Hell – Watcha Gonna Do [A Tom Moulton Mix] (2010)
Maggie MacNeal – (I Want The) Night Time (1979)
Stars On 45 – Stars On 45 (1981)
Lipps Inc – Funkytown (1979)
Dee Dee – I Put A Spell On You (1978)
Bionic Boogie – Dance Little Dreamer (1977)
Bolland & Bolland – Hold On (1978)
Luther Vandross – Give Me The Reason (1986)
Unique – What I Got Is What You Need (1983)
Manujothi – Shake Your Body (1980)
Margie Joseph – Knockout (1982)
Glenda McLeod – No Stranger To Love [Eddy’s Extended Edit] (2010)
Gary Toms Empire – 7-6-5-4-3-2-1 (Blow Your Whistle) (1975)
Tom Tom Club – Wordy Rappinghood (1981)
Raymond Harris – 60-40 Love (1985)
The Drifters – Kissin' In The Back Row Of The Movies (1974)

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