Category: dance

On this day in music history: July 14, 1979 – …

On this day in music history: July 14, 1979 – “Bad Girls” by Donna Summer hits #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for 5 weeks, also topping the R&B singles chart for 1 week on July 21, 1979. Written by Donna Summer, Eddie Hokenson, Bruce Sudano and Joe Esposito, it is the third pop chart topper and biggest hit for the Boston, MA born singer and songwriter. Summer is inspired to write the song (collaborating with the group Brooklyn Dreams) when her personal assistant is mistaken as being a street prostitute by a police officer, while walking down Sunset Blvd near Casablanca’s offices. Upon hearing her demo recording, Casablanca Records president Neil Bogart suggests that Donna give the song to Cher. Summer refuses to give the song away, and files the tape away until engineer Steve Smith discovers the demo during recording sessions for the “Bad Girls” album in early 1979. His enthusiasm for the song encourages Donna to record it herself. Due to intense public demand, Casablanca Records rush releases “Bad Girls” as a single on May 14, 1979, just one month after the first single “Hot Stuff”. The two singles are released so closely together, that both reside in the top five on the pop chart for six consecutive weeks. Entering the Hot 100 at #55 on May 26, 1979, it climbs to the top of the chart seven weeks later. The success of the single helps drive sales of the album to over 3x Platinum status in the US. The huge success of the singles and album, lead the ABC television network to offering Summer the opportunity to host her own television special. “The Donna Summer Special” directed by Don Mischer (The Academy Awards) airs on January 27, 1980. “Bad Girls” is certified Platinum in the US by the RIAA.

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On this day in music history: July 12, 1979 – …

On this day in music history: July 12, 1979 – WLUP radio DJ’s Steve Dahl and Gerry Meier stage a “Disco Demolition” rally at Comiskey Park in Chicago. The event takes place during a White Sox/Detroit Tigers doubleheader blowing up a bin with thousands of disco records, and it quickly spirals out of control. 50,000 plus fans attend the event which degenerates into a full scale riot, with people storming the field, setting bonfires to the debris littering the field and vandalizing the ball park. Chicago Cubs public announcer Harry Caray attempts to bring calm to the crowd by singing “Take Me Out To The Ball Game”, but it does not quell the mayhem as the mob goes unabated. Thirty nine people are arrested, and the second ball game are forfeited. The event goes down in infamy, and signals beginning of the end of the Disco Era in popular music.

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On this day in music history: July 12, 1975 – …

On this day in music history: July 12, 1975 – “The Hustle” by Van McCoy & The Soul City Symphony hits #1 on the Billboard R&B singles chart for 1 week, also topping the Hot 100 on July 26, 1975 for 1 week. Written by Van McCoy, it is the biggest hit for the Washington D.C. born and raised producer, arranger and composer. McCoy composes the instrumental after seeing couple do the dance in a New York disco. Working with famed producers Hugo Peretti and Luigi Creatore (Sam Cooke, The Stylistics), the track is recorded at Media Sound Studios in New York City. The sessions feature a number of top notch studio musicians performing on the track including Steve Gadd and Rick Marotta (drums), Eric Gale and John Tropea (guitars), Richard Tee (electric piano), Gordon Edwards (bass), and piccolo player Philip Bodner playing the song’s signature melody line. The strings are arranged by famed New York concertmaster Gene Orloff. Released on Hugo & Luigi’s (co-owned with film producer Joseph E. Levine) Avco Records in March of 1975, the song quickly becomes a smash on the dance floor, making its way on to pop and R&B radio. The single wins Van McCoy a Grammy Award for Best Pop Instrumental Performance in 1976. “The Hustle” is certified Gold in the US by the RIAA.

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On this day in music history: July 8, 1989 – &…

On this day in music history: July 8, 1989 – “Keep On Movin’” by Soul II Soul hits #1 on the Billboard R&B singles chart for 2 weeks, also peaking at #11 on the Hot 100 on September 9, 1989. Written by Beresford Romeo, it is first US chart topper for the British sound system/musical collective. Led by Jazzie B. (birth name Trevor Beresford Romeo) and Nellee Hooper, the duo meet four years earlier in 1985 when Hooper’s group Massive Attack hires Jazzie B’s DJ sound system for a gig in London. A misunderstanding over who will be spinning causes the two to argue, but they soon settle their differences and decide to join forces. Gathering together a loose group of musicians and singers, they begin to record as Soul II Soul. Signed to Virgin’s 10 Records subsidiary in the UK, they quickly score two club hits with the singles “Fairplay” (featuring Rose Windross) and “Feel Free” (featuring Do’reen). “Keep On Movin’” is the bands third single release in the UK, with former background vocalist Caron Wheeler (Afrodizak) featured on lead vocals. After reaching #5 on the UK singles chart, it rapidly becomes a dance floor sensation in the US as an import release, prompting Virgin Records to release it domestically. Issued in tandem with their debut album “Club Classics Volume One” (re-titled “Keep On Movin’” for its US release), it becomes a staple on R&B radio stations, following suit on Top 40 pop radio. The songs down tempo, Hip Hop flavored rhythm (said to be inspired by Biz Markie’s 1986 rap hit “Pickin’ Boogers”) augmented with lush strings and piano, revolutionizing and changing the face of dance and R&B music for the next several years. “Keep On Movin’” is certified Platinum in the US by the RIAA.

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On this day in music history: July 6, 1974 – &…

On this day in music history: July 6, 1974 – “Rock The Boat” by The Hues Corporation hits #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for 1 week, also peaking at #3 on the R&B singles chart on the same date. Written by Wally Holmes, it is the biggest hit for the Santa Monica, CA based R&B vocal trio. Originally calling themselves “Brothers And Sisters” then “Children Of Howard Hughes”, the group is put together by songwriter Wally Holmes in 1968. After playing high profile gigs in Las Vegas, they amend their name to The Hues Corporation, to avoid legal action from the eccentric multi-billionaire. The group originally consists of vocalists Bernard St. Clair Lee, Fleming Williams and H. Ann Kelly. The Hues Corporation record three songs, for the soundtrack to the blaxploitation classic “Blacula” in 1972, also appearing in the film. They are then signed as artists to RCA Records, off the back of the soundtrack. Working with RCA staff producer John Florez (The Friends Of Distinction), The Hues Corporation record their debut album “Freedom For The Stallion” released in December of 1973. The title track is issued as their first single, but fails to chart. The mid tempo groove “Rock The Boat” is released as the follow up in February 1974. Sung by Fleming Williams, he departs the group before the album is released and is replaced by Karl Russell. The track features Joe Sample (keyboards), Wilton Felder (bass) and Larry Carlton (guitar) of The Crusaders and studio drummer Jim Gordon (The Wrecking Crew, Derek & The Dominos) playing on it. The single initially goes unnoticed by the public, until club DJ’s in New York City discover the song and begin playing it. It immediately becomes a dance floor favorite and sells over 50,000 copies in New York alone without any radio airplay. RCA Records, realizing they have a hit on their hands finally begin promoting the song to radio which sets it on the path to number one. Entering the Hot 100 at #83 on May 25, 1974, it rockets to the top of the chart six weeks later. “Rock The Boat” crosses the million mark in sales on June 24, 1974, two weeks before it reaches the top of the pop singles chart. It eventually sells in excess of over two million copies and spending eighteen weeks on the chart. The song is later covered by Inner Circle and Yo La Tengo, and sampled by De La Soul, Jurassic 5, and Grand Puba. In a unique twist of fate, KC and Richard Finch of KC & The Sunshine Band are inspired in part by “Rock The Boat”, when writing the chart topping smash “Rock Your Baby” for singer George McCrae. Both songs are also in the top ten on the pop and R&B charts at the same time, with McCrae’s record replacing The Hues Corporation at the top of the Hot 100 on July 13, 1974. “Rock The Boat” is certified Gold in the US by the RIAA.

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On this day in music history: July 6, 1974 – &…

On this day in music history: July 6, 1974 – “Rock Your Baby” by George McCrae hits #1 on the Billboard R&B singles chart for 2 weeks, also topping the Hot 100 for 2 weeks on July 13, 1974. Written and produced by Harry Wayne Casey and Richard Finch, it is the biggest hit for the Florida born and raised R&B vocalist. Casey and Finch initially record “Rock Your Baby” as demo during off hours at TK Records studio in Miami, where they are working doing odd jobs. With the two playing all of the instruments (except guitar, played by KC & The Sunshine Band guitarist Jerome Smith), and using scrap tape from the studio, they record the track in only forty five minutes. It costs them only $15, the fee paid to Smith to play on the track. KC and Rick play the finished recording for execs at the label, who declare it “a smash” and to “not change a thing”. The song is originally slated for KC & The Sunshine Band, but do not put it on their record, when KC realizes that the song is in a key much higher than he usually sings in. By coincidence, McCrae walks into the studio the next day and hears the track. Casey and Finch invite him to have a go at recording the song. McCrae completes his vocal in only two takes. “Rock Your Baby” is a massive hit, not only in the US but internationally as well, also topping the UK singles chart and selling over eleven million copies worldwide. “Rock Your Baby” is also significant in being one of the first “disco” songs to break into the pop music mainstream, kicking off the Disco Era. Also issued in extended form on McCrae’s album, also titled “Rock Your Baby”, two different mixes of the song are released. The original hit single version of the song features a prominent snare drum beat on the track, that is mixed out the LP version. Other than the original pressing of the 45, this mix only surfaces on a 12″ single reissue on Sunnyview Records in 1985, and the Priority Records compilation CD titled “Mega Hits Disco: Volume 7″ in 1989. In later years, when the master tape with the hit single mix cannot be located, an alternate master using the LP mix edited down to match the timing of the single, is used in its place. This latter version becomes the common version most often used on compilations featuring the song.

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behindthegrooves: When I started this blog her…

behindthegrooves:

When I started this blog here in October of 2011, it was to indulge and share my passion for music with others. In just a few years, “Behind The Grooves” has grown from just a handful of followers to over 21,000 here on Tumblr alone. These posts require extensive research and many hours to write and edit, and are the product of my own personal diligence and dedication.

Presently, I’m unemployed and struggling to keep myself afloat financially. I am making an appeal to my followers for donations. I’m also looking to publish my writing (in hard copy and or in e-book form), and am trying to raise the funds to make that happen.

Any help would be greatly appreciated. Anyone that can make a donation, can do so by clicking on the link at: PayPal.Me/jharris1228

I greatly appreciate any support you can give. Every bit helps!! Thank you!!

On this day in music history: July 5, 1986 – &…

On this day in music history: July 5, 1986 – “Control” by Janet Jackson hits #1 on the Billboard Top 200 for 2 weeks. Produced by Jimmy Jam, Terry Lewis and Janet Jackson, it is recorded at Flyte Time Studios in Minneapolis, MN from August – October 1985. After Janet Jackson’s first two albums (released in 1982 and 1984), only achieve modest sales, A&M Records executive John McClain suggests that she work with songwriter and producers Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis. Formerly members of the R&B/Funk band The Time, the pair establish themselves as major up and coming producers after their initial success with acts including The S.O.S. Band, Change, and Thelma Houston. Jam and Lewis meet with Jackson, and develop an instant rapport. With Jackson eager to establish herself apart from her famous musical family, and wanting greater independence, she travels to the producers home base in Minneapolis, MN to work with them. “Control” proves to be Jackson’s breakthrough release, spinning off five top five singles each reaching a different chart position within the pop top five, with five of the albums six singles reaching #1 on the R&B singles chart, “What Have You Done For Me Lately” (#4 Pop, #1 R&B), “Nasty” (#3 Pop, #1 R&B), “When I Think Of You” (#1 Pop, #3 R&B), “Control” (#5 Pop, #1 R&B), “Let’s Wait Awhile” (#2 Pop, #1 R&B) and “The Pleasure Principle” (#14 Pop, #1 R&B). “Control” is certified 6x Platinum in the US by the RIAA.

Help support the Behind The Grooves music blog with a donation by clicking on the link at: PayPal.Me/jharris1228

When I started this blog here in October of 20…

When I started this blog here in October of 2011, it was to indulge and share my passion for music with others. In just a few years, “Behind The Grooves” has grown from just a handful of followers to over 21,000 here on Tumblr alone. These posts require extensive research and many hours to write and edit, and are the product of my own personal diligence and dedication.

Presently, I’m unemployed and struggling to keep myself afloat financially. I am making an appeal to my followers for donations. I’m also looking to publish my writing (in hard copy and or in e-book form), and am trying to raise the funds to make that happen.

Any help would be greatly appreciated. Anyone that can make a donation, can do so by clicking on the link at: PayPal.Me/jharris1228

I greatly appreciate any support you can give. Every bit helps!! Thank you!!

On this day in music history: July 3, 1982 – &…

On this day in music history: July 3, 1982 – “Don’t You Want Me” by The Human League hits #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 for 3 weeks, also peaking at #3 on the Club Play chart on May 15, 1982. Written by Philip Oakey, Jo Callis and Philip Adrian Wright, it is the biggest hit for the Sheffield, UK based synth-pop band. Lead singer Phil Oakley comes up with the initial idea for the song, taking inspiration from a story he reads in a magazine and also by the film “A Star Is Born”. First issued in the UK in late 1981 as the fourth single from the bands third album “Dare”, the band are initially hesitant to release it as a single, especially lead singer Phil Oakey. In fact it causes a huge argument between Oakey and producer Martin Rushent over including the song on the album, after Rushent changes the bands original arrangement. Finally, Oakey agrees, but only if it is inserted into the album as the final track. Oakey’s fears are unfounded, as the single quickly becomes a smash. “Don’t You Want Me” tops the UK singles chart for 5 weeks, selling over 1.4 million copies, and becoming the top selling single of 1981. A&M Records picks up the record for the US, releasing it in January of 1982. Entering the chart at #86 on March 6, 1982, it begins a long, slow climb up the Hot 100, finally topping the chart seventeen weeks later. The track is groundbreaking in the States, being the first synthesizer driven single to top the US pop charts. It also is the first major hit record to utilize the newly introduced Linn LM-1 drum machine, which becomes a staple of pop, R&B, and dance music throughout the decade and beyond. The US chart success of “Don’t You Want Me” also marks the beginning of the second British Invasion of the American record charts with acts like Soft Cell, ABC, A Flock Of Seagulls, Duran Duran, Culture Club, Wham! and numerous others following in their wake. “Don’t You Want Me” is certified Gold in the US by the RIAA.

Help support the Behind The Grooves music blog with a donation by clicking on the link at: PayPal.Me/jharris1228