Friday, January 28, 2011

Raydio - Still In the Groove (1981)

Still working through my recent stack from the Carrboro PTA. I knew this Raydio record (A Woman Needs Love, from 1981) was going to yield some previously unknown eargasms, and it didn't disappoint. Still In the Groove reminds me of this other Raydio track from '78 that I only have on 45 – Get Down.



Turns out that was the b-side to Jack and Jill, which was their first big hit, landing at #8 on the Billboard Hot 100 charts (#11 in the UK) and going gold. Jack and Jill is a classic slice of soul, no doubt, but I'll bet just as many peeps were digging Get Down on the flip, and that propelled the single's chart success.

- Dyn-O-Mite

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Pointer Sisters - Hot Together (1986)

As featured in the Mel Brooks flick Spaceballs, this joint came to me as the title track of a Pointer Sisters LP I picked up at the Carrboro PTA last weekend for $.20, and I would have thrown it back had I noticed it was from 1986. Becuz in my yet-to-be-educated mind, that was past the Pointer Sisters' prime. Now I'm psyched it ended up in my pile.



On a side note, if the foxy lady who raises hens in Graham and was shopping for a used drum kit ever reads this, e-mail me! Bona fide missed connection after our conversation got interrupted by a very inopportunely-timed incoming phone call that I should have let go to voicemail.

The whole side B of this record is pretty good (other standouts being Sexual Power and Eyes Don't Lie), as opposed to Side A, which flat out sucks. How did that happen?

Although not the original LP versions, the YouTube remixes featured (and linked to) here are all true to the originals' spirit. They come courtesy of a dude from the UK who loves the Pointer Sisters, and the high-quality videos he's put together to go with these great remixes prove it.

- Dyn-O-Mite

Tony Camillo's Bazuka - Dynomite (1975)

Straight off the Music Express K-Tel comp (ALL TOP 10 HITS!), and I bought it largely on the strength of this track, which looked like another potential personal DJ theme for my bad self. Although I wasn't sure how anything could compare to Stacy Lattisaw's similarly-titled smash from 1980. But it had me convinced to spend the ridiculous thrift store amount of $1.99 on the LP at the newly-relocated, corporate-looking Savers in East Prov, RI, before the helpful cashier hooked me up at a dollar per disc. Thanx alot, hon.



When I finally got around to checking it out back home in NC, I flipped! Bazuka was a disco one-hit wonder, they dropped one album on A&M and vanished. True to its billing, Dynomite went Top 10 in 1975, and hit #6 on the Hot Dance Club Play charts. Like the amazing footage that resulted when this hit Soul Train proves (which will undoubtedly soon be removed from YouTube - WTF, Don Cornelius!), it also inspired some truly funky dancefloor motion. There was also a Part 2, and the extended mix of both clocks in at 7:19.

- Dyn-O-Mite

Monday, January 24, 2011

Dimitri From Paris - Free Ton Style (Monsieur D's Unreleased Full Length Extension) (1996)

From Monsieur Dimitri's De-Luxe House of Funk, disc #3 (sides E & F) of a three-record set, a random record that popped up at the Carrboro PTA on Saturday. Looking suspiciously like a vinyl artifact that was retailed long ago at a spot called the Lost City, similar to yesterday's JOTD, but unlike the Jellybean Records joint sold new in '99, this record was already used when it passed through our hands and may have been originally bargain-priced at two bones.



I don't care if it's now 15 years later from when the track dropped, or twelve+ years since we sold it to some vinyl junkie. Why anyone would have given up this record at any point, for any reason, it's beyond me, because all four cuts are dope. This one's my favorite. Disco house in the house, with a strong sample of the Young & Company classic I Like What You're Doing To Me.

- Dyn-O-Mite

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Shaft - (Mucho Mambo) Sway (1999)

Yesterday, I was unexpectedly in Carrboro during the middle of the afternoon. So I swung by the PTA on Jones Ferry for the first time in literally, several years. Back when Shaun & Leslie lived on Carr Street circa the late 90s, one of them would truck over to the spot every day like clockwork, leaving slim pickings for the rest of the unhappy crate diggers around here. Of course, they only could choose from what was left over after another infamous cat who WORKED there (who I ran into just last month when he started honking at me in the Rams Plaza parking lot) got through choosing what 12" treasures he wanted to add to his huge personal collection. So eventually, I was like, f- it, I'm never gonna find anything worthwhile under those circumstances, and quit going.

But clearly times have changed, because there was a giant wall of vinyl to dig through, and I amassed a fat stack of goodies at the extended holiday sale rate of twenny cents per. I hope they extend that sale a little longer, because that much vinyl in one place is likely to spontaneously combust at some point, maybe. A freaking dusty groove fire hazard.

The thing that initially caught my eye about (Mucho Mambo) Sway by Shaft was that it looked really familiar, like I'd seen it before. And sure enough, it turned out to be a record that we sold new at the Lost City for $10-$12 when it was first released on Jellybean Recordings in 1999. Right after we'd moved to 402 West Rosemary Street, the second and final Lost City location. I could tell by the remnants of our original price tag. So that was kinda cool, to be buying it back twelve years later for $.20 at the Carrboro PTA.



Then I listened to it, and got into the latin house groove. The 6:16 Extended Mix is the real deal, but good luck finding it YouTube amidst the hundreds of different videos out there that name-check this track. Probably a result of the Pussycat Dolls having covered it. The remix featured here (supposedly from 2009) sounds as close as I could find. But the promo video from the original '99 release is funny, especially when the mambo crew evicts the lame DJ from his booth and takes over the dancefloor. Actually, there was also a super-funny alternate video shot that had me mad laffing when I saw it, featuring a guy with a tail.

- Dyn-O-Mite

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Fat Larry's Band - Here Comes The Sun (1979)

Today's JOTD is courtesy of Fat Larry's Band, preaching a positive message for the New Year with Here Comes The Sun.

"Now is the time for you to be somebody...be anything you want to be...this is your chance to become someone...here comes your opportunity!"


Off their Lookin' For Love LP, this track cracked the US Dance Top-40 when it charted at #39 on release. (I prefer the 6:51 Club Mix to the 5:28 Radio Mix featured here, which is the only mix available on YouTube). The band broke up when leader "Fat" Larry James died from a heart attack on December 5, 1987, way too young at the age of 38.

FLB are the bomb, pure and simple. The first time DJ Old-Time Granny and I tag-teamed together, we were both suspended in time while soaking up the vibes from their amazing cover of Fascination, co-written by Luther Vandross and David Bowie, off their debut Feel It LP (incorrectly noted on Wikipedia as released in '77 on Stax, it actually dropped on WMOT Records in '76). And who could forget Act Like You Know, especially since it was resurrected for a whole new generation of funk addicts after being included in GTA: Vice City.

So imagine my surprise when I stumbled onto this wack YouTube clip, featuring two ignorant British shock jocks named Mark and Lard dissing Fat Larry's Band! Goofing like their name alone qualifies them as the silliest band ever, and riffing on the absurd, racist notion that their mega-smash, heartfelt and beautiful ballad Zoom, which hit #2 on the UK charts in '82, was somehow a wack tune. Totally back-ass-wards and uncalled for, but not surprising from a couple of melanin-challenged boneheads who have managed to prove once again that some people just can't fake the funk.

- Dyn-O-Mite

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Herbie Hancock - Hang Up Your Hang Ups (1975)

I thought maybe 2011's first Joint Of The Day was going to be a little blue-eyed soul from No Parlez, Paul Young's 1983 debut solo LP. Because the whole album was on my rotation early this morning, and I was digging a few tracks that never charted, like the title track, Oh Women, and Sex (the latter two both written by Jack Lee, lead guitarist and songwriter for West Coast power pop trio The Nerves in the 70s. Lee also wrote Hanging On The Telephone, made famous when it was covered by Blondie).

Another contender was Don't You Worry 'Bout a Thing, by Stevie Wonder, because last night PBS aired a really excellent live concert performance he gave in October '08 at London's O2 Arena, shortly before Barack Obama's election, and the vibe was strong.

But then I dug back into a couple of records that we spun on last weekend's Choice Sides, checking out some cuts I was planning to play but passed over at the last minute in favor of something else.

One of these records was Herbie Hancock's Man-Child (1975), the final album Herbie did with the Headhunters, which coincidentally featured Stevie guesting on harmonica. In the studio during the show, Obliveon was like, "Is this mine?" Back at the crib, he pulled out his own copy, passed down to him by his granddad Al, who left him an extensive jazz, soul, and funk vinyl collection that he accumulated during his many decades of life in New York City.

As soon as the needle hit the groove, the title went to Herbie in a KO blow. So all hail the lead cut, a fitting New Year's Day soundtrack, the super-funky Hang Up Your Hang Ups. With accompanying amazing video footage of 70s NYC edited from Scorsese's Taxi Driver. And let's heed Herbie's message by resolving to spread love, not hate in 2011!



- Dyn-O-Mite

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From 2000-2008, Ringside in Durham, NC was the South's coolest nightspot, a decadent refuge for queers and straights alike. Ringside may be gone, but memories of the best damn party in town live on!