Early 80s Black Underground Ingredients

Some Retrospective Record Lists

FOR KEEP ON MAGAZINE ISSUE #3 – 2004

1. Q – THE VOICE OF Q (PHILLY WORLD)
2. SANDY KERR – THUG ROCK (CATAWBA)
3. VAUGHAN MASON – ROCKIN’ BIG GUITAR (BRUNSWICK)
4. RUSSELL BROTHERS – THE PARTY SCENE (PORTRAIT)
5. RJ’S LATEST ARRIVAL – ULTIMATE MASTERPIECE (VR)
6. CAPTAIN RAPP – BAD TIMES (I CAN’T STAND IT) (SATURN)
7. THE WEBBOES – UNDER THE WEAR (SAM)
8. MIKE T – DO IT ANYWAY YOU WANNA (GOLDEN PYRAMID)
9. EDDIE MURPHY – BOOGIE IN YOUR BUTT (COLUMBIA)
10. WARP 9 – NUNK (PRISM)

FOR KEEP ON MAGAZINE ISSUE #4 – 2004

1. THE LOVE UNLIMITED ORCHESTRA PRESENTS MR WEBSTER LEWIS – WELCOME ABOARD (UNLIMITED GOLD)
2. THE GUNCHBACK BOOGIE BAND – FUNN (PRELUDE)
3. RAFAEL CAMERON – BOOGIE’S GONNA GET YA (FRANÇOIS KEVORKIAN MIX) (SALSOUL)
4. WEST PHILLIPS – (I’M JUST A) SUCKER FOR A PRETTY FACE (QUALITY)
5. P-FUNK ALL STARS –HYDRAULIC PUMP PT III (HUMP)
6. DR JECKYLL & MR HYDE – THE CHALLENGE (PROFILE)
7. AURRA – SUCH A FEELING – PARTS 2 & 3 (SALSOUL)
8. JAZZY DEE – GET ON UP (LAURIE)
9. EXTRA T’S – E.T. BOOGIE (SUNNYVIEW)
10. SLYCK – BUSH BEAT (SOLID PLATINUM)

FOR GRANDSLAM MAGAZINE ISSUE #3 – 2003
ELECTRO-FUNK REVISITED

Twenty years ago I was about to leave the club scene. My ego had decided I was going out at the top, my main club nights, at Legend in Manchester and Wigan Pier, having been voted the top 2 in the North by readers of Blues & Soul, while I was named Best DJ. I’d also kicked-off the Haçienda’s first full-on Dance night (the forerunner to ‘Nude’). During my final months as a professional DJ here’s a selection of underground Electro-Funk tunes I was playing at these 3 great venues (in alphabetical order):

  • DJ DIVINE – Get Into The Mix (US West End)
  • DOLBY’S CUBE – Get Out Of My Mix (US Capital)
  • FORMULA V – Killer Groove (US Write On)
  • G FORCE – Feel The Force (US SMI)
  • MAGIC MIKE CREW – Magic Mike Theme (US Rappers Rapp)
  • STOCKINGCAP – Wave Craze (US Strut)
  • RICHIE SCOTTI – Breaker (US Radar Rap)
  • TREACHEROUS THREE – Get Up (US Sugarhill)
  • VERYCHERI – 69 Cancer Sign (US Zakia)
  • X-RAY CONNECTION – Replay (US Dance Sing)

FOR “OUT OF YOUR BOX” / HOT PRESS – NOV 04 ISSUE

I was asked to submit a list of 15 tunes, plus some words about each of the tracks. I decided to go for a list of Early 80’s Essentials (mainly definitive releases of the period).

Hot Press narrowed it down to 10 tracks and edited out some of the accompanying info, so, for those of you who are interested, here’s the full list I submitted:

AFRIKA BAMBAATAA & THE SOUL SONIC FORCE – “Planet Rock” (Tommy Boy 1982)

The record that changed everything! “Planet Rock” literally re-defined dance music. Dismissed by the Soul purists at the time, due to its obvious Kraftwerk blueprint, but nowadays acknowledged as one of the pivotal releases of the 20th Century.

CYBOTRON – “Clear” (Fantasy 1983)

Regarded as the first Techno single, this Juan Atkins / Rick Davis track might have come out of Detroit, but what’s not often mentioned is that its remixer, Jose ‘Animal’ Diaz, was immersed in New York Electro and, as such, this was originally played as an Electro release.

D TRAIN – “You’re The One For Me” (Prelude 1981)

Nowadays viewed as a Disco standard, when this 12” first came over on import it stood apart from all the other club tunes of the time, heralding a new, and soon to be much imitated, direction for dance music.

GRANDMASTER FLASH & THE FURIOUS FIVE – “The Adventures Of Grandmaster Flash On the Wheels Of Steel” (Sugarhill 1981)

What can you say? Simply one of the most influential records ever committed to vinyl! As a masterclass of cut and scratch it’s still unparalleled.

GRANDMASTER FLASH & THE FURIOUS FIVE – “The Message” (Sugarhill 1982)

Rap music well and truly came of age with this release. This time Flash only played a supporting role, with rapper Melle Mel to the fore, setting new standards for a genre that had previously been more concerned with rocking the party than poignant social commentary.

KLIEN & MBO – “Dirty Talk” (Zanza 1982)

The groove around which New Order based their classic “Blue Monday”. Nowadays revived as Italo Disco, but back then it was very much regarded as pure raw Electro and first played in clubs like Manchester’s Legend and Wigan Pier.

LEAGUE UNLIMITED ORCHESTRA – “Hard Times / Love Action” (Virgin 1981)

From the brilliant Human League “Dare” remix album, “Love And Dancing”, producer Martin Rushent at his creative best. Perfectly illustrates how the British Futurist movement would help inspire the oncoming Electro era.

NORTHEND – “Tee’s Happy” (Emergency 1981)

An Early Arthur Baker co-production. Throughout the following year, Baker would become one of the biggest names on the scene, producing truly revolutionary tracks like “Planet Rock” and “Walking On Sunshine” by Rockers Revenge. The vocal side was called “Happy Days”, but the instrumental was renamed in homage to New York Better Days DJ, Tee Scott, who mixed the track.

PEECH BOYS – “Don’t Make Me Wait” (West End 1982)

A seminal Larry Levan recording, which inspired a new dub-based approach to dance music. Vocal by Bernard Fowler, who later became a member of Tackhead. The US 7” version also included what’s been cited as the first acappella pressed specifically for DJ use.

RAFAEL CAMERON – “Boogie’s Gonna Get Ya” (Salsoul 1981)

Shep Pettibione is generally associated with Salsoul mixes of the period, but this was done by another legendary name, François Kevorkian, who, alongside people like Pettibone, Larry Levan, Tony Humphries, Tee Scott and ‘Jellybean’ Benitez, took remixing to new levels of innovation during this hybrid age.

RYUICHI SAKAMOTO – “Riot In Lagos” (Island 1980)

Way ahead of the game! Sakamoto, formerly of the Yellow Magic Orchestra, released this unique record in 1980, but it wasn’t until the Electro scene began to emerge a few years later that it really came into its own, having been revived in the black clubs.

SANDY KERR – “Thug Rock” (Catawba 1982)

Nowadays ultra-rare, this sublime groove was an underground classic back in the day and is now achieving cult status all over again, over two decades on. Based around a Brit-Funk release called “Give Me” by I Level, which was remixed in the US by John Luongo.

SINNAMON – “Thanks To You” (Becket 1982)

From the prolific production and songwriting partnership of Eric Matthew and Darryl Payne, this Shep Pettibone mixed dance opus was huge in the specialist clubs. The duo were also behind other influential tracks, including Electrik Funk’s “On A Journey (I Sing The Funk Electric)” and Sharon Redd’s “Beat The Street”.

TW FUNKMASTERS – “Love Money” (Champagne 1981)

A British release, originally issued in 1980 on the Tania label, that would provide something of a missing link in the evolution of both New York and Chicago dance music. The Champagne version, from the label’s “Re-Mixture – The Best Of UK Jazz-Funk” EP, is the definitive one.

VISUAL – “The Music Got Me” (Prelude 1983)

A perfect example of Proto-House from 1983. The term ‘House’ might have derived from The Warehouse in Chicago, but New York provided the inspiration. Co-Produced by Timmy Regisford and Mixed by Tony Humphries.

FOR CERYSMATIC FACTORY 2005
GREG WILSON / HACIENDA
Friday / Saturday: Aug – Dec 1983

  • Arkade Funk – search and destroy
  • Art Of Noise – beat box
  • B Boys – cuttin’ herbie / rock the house
  • B Boys – two, three, break
  • Brian & Zan – pump your body
  • Candido – jingo breakdown
  • Captain Rapp – bad times (I can’t stand it)
  • Captain Rock – the return of captain rock
  • Chilltown – rock the beat
  • Curtis Hairston – I want you
  • Cybotron – clear
  • Dimples D – sucker djs (I will survive)
  • DJ Divine – get into the mix
  • G.L.O.B.E & Whiz Kid – play that beat mr dj
  • Gary’s Gang – makin’ music
  • Grandmaster & Melle Mel – white lines (don’t don’t do it)
  • Grandmaster Flash & The Furious Five – wheels of steel (oldie)
  • Hashim – al-naafiysh (the soul)
  • Herbie Hancock – rockit
  • Hot Streak – body work
  • Instant Funk – (just because) you’ll be mine
  • K-9 Corp – dog talk
  • Lafleur – boogie nights
  • Leroy Burgess – heartbreaker
  • Liquid Liquid – cavern
  • Major Harris – all my life
  • Malcolm X / Keith LeBlanc – no sell out
  • Newcleus – jam on revenge (the wikki wikki song)
  • New Order – confused beats
  • Planet Patrol – cheap thrills
  • Project Future – ray-gun-omics
  • Quando Quango – love tempo (us remix)
  • Radiance – you’re my number 1
  • Russell Brothers – the party scene
  • Shannon – let the music play
  • Sharon Redd – love how you feel
  • S.O.S Band – just be good to me
  • Stockingcap – wave craze
  • The Packman – I’m the packman (eat everything I can)
  • The Rake – street justice
  • Time Zone – the wildstyle
  • Tom Browne – rockin’ radio
  • Twilight 22 – electric kingdom
  • Two Sisters – b boys beware
  • Two Sisters – high noon
  • Unique – what I got is what you need
  • West Street Mob – break dancin’ – electric boogie
  • Wuf Ticket – the key
  • Xena – on the upside
  • X-Ray Connection – replay

http://www.cerysmaticfactory.info/greg_wilson.html


© Greg Wilson

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Comments are closed.