On this day in music history: January 7, 1978 …

On this day in music history: January 7, 1978 – “Ffun” by Con Funk Shun hits #1 on the Billboard R&B singles chart for 2 weeks, also peaking at #23 on the Hot 100 on February 18, 1978. Written by Michael Cooper, it is the biggest hit for the R&B/Funk septet from Vallejo, CA. Cooper writes the song while the band is traveling to a gig in Little Rock, AR, recording his ideas on a portable four track tape recorder. The initial inspiration for the song comes after hearing Brick’s recent crossover smash “Dazz” on the radio, using it as the structural template for “Ffun”, including the songs’ signature flute solo during the break. For the chorus, Cooper also gives tongue in cheek nods to The Beach Boys surf classic “Fun, Fun, Fun” as well as the stuttering hook from Bachman Turner Overdrive’s “You Ain’t Seen Nothin’ Yet” when giving the song the title “Ffun” with a double “f”. The band work with producer Skip Scarborough (Earth Wind & Fire, Bill Withers, Anita Baker), who is instrumental in helping them fine tune the song and putting all of the elements in place. Released as the first single from their second Mercury album “Secrets” in October of 1977, it is Con Funk Shun’s biggest chart single on both the pop and R&B charts. Along with the edited 45 and full length LP versions, Mercury Records also issues “Ffun” as a promotional only 12" single. Re-edited to extend its running time, the track is lengthened to 6:08, exactly two minutes longer than the album version’s original 4:08 timing.