On this day in music history: November 6, 1983 – “Break…

On this day in music history: November 6, 1983 – “Break Out”, the tenth studio album by the Pointer Sisters is released. Produced by Richard Perry, it is recorded at Studio 55, Baby ‘O Recorders, The Music Grinder and Brian Elliot Studios in Los Angeles, CA from March 1982, Spring – Fall 1983. After the muted response to their previous album “So Excited” in 1982, The Pointer Sisters and their long time producer Richard Perry, decide a change up is necessary for their next album. The sisters and Perry are conscious of the group’s original fan base and support from R&B radio slipping away, in favor of the mainstream pop audience they have gained since hitting with their cover of Bruce Springsteen’s “Fire” in early 1979. They decide the next album should feature more R&B flavored material that is also accessible to wide listening audience. The tenth release for the R&B vocal family trio features a number of top L.A. studio musicians including John Robinson (drums), Nate Watts and Louis Johnson (bass), Lee Ritenour (guitar), and Howie Rice (drum programming, guitar). Rather than going for a sure fire crossover hit to lead the album, the first single chosen for release is the mid tempo R&B song “I Need You” (#13 R&B, #43 Pop). The strategy works, giving The Pointer Sisters their first sizable hit on the R&B chart since “Slow Hand” two years before. They then follow it with  “Automatic” (#2 R&B, #5 Pop) in January of 1984, not only giving them an even bigger R&B smash, but also crashes the top five on the pop chart. From there, the record is unstoppable, becoming the most successful album of the Oakland, CA family group’s career. It spins off six hit singles including “Jump (For My Love)” (#3 R&B, #3 Pop), “Neutron Dance” (#13 R&B, #6 Pop), and “Baby Come And Get It” (#24 R&B, #44 Pop). Later pressings of the album replace the track “Nightline” with a remixed version of the previously released “I’m So Excited” (#9 Pop, #46 R&B), originally peaking at #30 on the pop chart in 1982, re-charts on the Hot 100 in October 1984. “Automatic” and “Jump (For My Love)” earn the sisters Grammy Awards for Best R&B Vocal Performance By A Duo Or Group and Best Pop Vocal Performance By A Duo Or Group respectively in 1985. In 2012, the album is remastered and reissued by UK label BBR Records as a deluxe two CD edition, featuring both versions of the album with the original 12″ remixes and 7″ single edits included as bonus tracks. “Break Out” peaks at number eight on the Billboard Top 200, number six on the R&B album chart, and is certified 3x Platinum in the US by the RIAA.