Alright! Black American Dance Music From The Disco Era Various Artists (BGP Various)


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So this album means a lot to me. Well I mixed one of the tracks - the first time I've ever got into any of that sort of thing. So of course you'll all go out and buy it.... Well perhaps not - let's give you some hard facts instead. This is BGP's look at what happened to black American music in the late 70s, a period that the whole world once looked back on with the kind of embarrassment reserved for when your mother wants to show your baby pictures to your girlfriend (or possibly anyone you know). But recently there has been a re-appraisal, and don't you just know it, there was a hell of a lot of good stuff just waiting for re-discovery. Of course we knew that all the time but just lied and called the music by other names. It worked for a while, but it sure feels good to be able to go beyond that and acknowledge, as so many do now, the legacy of New York's legendary 70s club scene and the DJs that helped create it.

But let's give credit too to the labels and the producers and particularly in this case the Motor City mastery of Westbound Records who provide eight of our 12 tracks, often produced or mixed by either Mike Theodore and Dennis Coffey, or disco legion Tom Moulton. My favourite two tracks are the previously unreleased Latin Disco by the Counts and the awesome (and for the first time on vinyl) Everything's Gonna Be Alright by the Clark Sisters. The latter track is the sort of disco groove that was to become the blueprint for house music - but this one comes with an inspirational message too. Further unreleased tracks are here in the form of Joe Bataan's Sadie a re-write of his earlier boogaloo arrangement of Gypsy Woman and Melvin Sparks with a bunch of Funkadelics who have some Disco Booty.

Both the Sylvester and the South Shore Commission tracks are classics that always bear rediscovery - and if you don't know them already - what a treat, whilst the New Jersey Connection outing is a late but much-loved piece of dance-floor fodder. And then we have the killer-diller combination of Mike Theodore and Dennis Coffey (see the present issue of Big Daddy" for an interview with Dennis). They both provide killer tracks of their own and then provide the production on King Errisson voodoo dancer Magic Man and the very special Sure Can't Go To The Moon by CJ and Co - a stomping disco masterpiece of the first order.

And I could go on, but why when the subtitle says it all...this is essential black dance music from ANY era.

By Dean Rudland"


Track listing


Side 1

  • 01 Preview Everything Is Gonna Be Alright - Clark Sisters

  • 02 Preview Free Man - Southshore Commission

  • 03 Preview Sure Can't Go To The Moon - C J And Co

  • 04 Preview Latin Disco - The Counts

  • 05 Preview The Magic Man - King Errisson

  • 06 Preview Alvin Stone - Fantastic Four

  • 07 Preview Moon Trek - The Mike Theodore Orchestra

  • 08 Preview Some Like It Hot - Dennis Coffey

  • 09 Preview Disco Booty - Melvin Sparks

  • 10 Preview Love Don't Come Easy - New Jersey Connection

  • 11 Preview Sadie - Joe Bataan

  • 12 Preview I Need Somebody To Love Tonight - Sylvester

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