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26
May

Yvonne Elliman – Love Me (1977) Lp

Yvonne Marianne Elliman (born December 29, 1951) is an American singer who performed for four years in the first cast of Jesus Christ Superstar. She scored a number of hits in the 1970s.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Artist:  Yvonne Elliman
Title:  Love Me
Year:  1977
Format:  LP
Label: RSO Records
Catalog# 2394182

Love Me is the fourth album by American pop star Yvonne Elliman produced by Freddie Perren and released by RSO Records in 1977.

In 1971 Elliman moved to New York City for the Broadway production of Jesus Christ, Superstar, where she met her first husband,[11] Bill Oakes, who worked with Robert Stigwood as President of RSO Records. She was asked to sing backing vocals on Eric Clapton‘s version of the Bob Marley song “I Shot the Sheriff” in 1974. She then went on tour as part of Clapton’s band, and soon afterwards got her own recording contract with RSO Records. She would continue to work with Clapton, performing on his albums from 1974 to 1977, including 461 Ocean Boulevard, There’s One in Every Crowd, E. C. Was Here, No Reason to Cry, and Slowhand. A first album for the RSO label (her third in all), Rising Sun, produced by Steve Cropper, produced no hit singles, but her next album, Love Me, produced by Freddie Perren, gave her two top-20 hits, “Love Me” (written by Barry and Robin Gibb), and a Barbara Lewis cover, “Hello Stranger“.

 

Side one
1.  Love Me (3:22)
2.  Hello Stranger (3:09)
3.  I Can’t Get You Outa My Mind (3:05)
4.  I Know (3:30)
5.  Without You (There Ain’t No Love At All) (4:07)

Side two
1.  Good Sign (2:56)
2.  She’ll Be The Home (3:14)
3.  (I Don’t Know Why) I Keep Hangin’ On (3:01)
4.  I’d Do It Again (3:02)
5.  Uphill (Peace Of Mind) (4:31)

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26
May

Rose Royce – Stronger Than Ever (1982)

Rose Royce is an American soul and R&B group. The group began in the early 1970s, when members of several backup bands from the Watts and Inglewood areas of Los Angeles united under the name Total Concept Unlimited.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Artist:  Rose Royce
Title:  Stronger Than Ever
Year:  1982
Format:  LP
Label:  Epic Records
Catalog#  85634

Rose Royce was QUITE the R&B band in the 70’s with seemingly hit after hit after hit. Pigeonholed into the “Disco” category (and unfairly so,) they jammed the charts for weeks with the now CLASSIC, “Car Wash” and other strong R&B/Funk contenders such as “I Wanna Get Next to You,” “I’m Going Down,” the ever classic, “Wishing on A Star” and “Love Don’t Live Here Anymore.”

Come the end of the 70’s, the hits began to taper off and after two failed albums on Warner Brothers (“Golden Touch” and “Jump Street,”) they were signed to Epic/CBS with “Stronger Than Ever,” which found them in peak form. Sadly, they were no longer the household name they once were and it, too, failed in returning them to R&B greatness.

“Stronger Than Ever” boasted a couple of excellent songs that SHOULD HAVE BEEN hits and that were NOT (except in the U.K.,) despite the fact that the vocals (Ricci Benson) as well as the arrangements were spot on. Also here are a couple of tender, melodic ballads that are reminiscent of say, Lionel Richie. My favorites include the first single, “Best Love” and the aMAZING, Still in Love” which features one of the most impressive piano solos ever heard in (then) contemporary R&B coupled with Benson’s fiery, Chaka Khan-ish vocal delivery.

Also noteworthy are “You Blew It,” a nice, tight little funk jam similar to what bands of the day were doing like Skyy or Con Funk Shun. The latter’s “Too Tight” comes to mind specifically. “Dance With Me” perks along nicely TOO.

 

Side one
1. Dance With Me  (3:58)
2. Sometimesy Lady  (2:24)
3. Best Love  (3:54)
4. Still In Love  (5:39)

Side two
1. You Blew It  (4:14)
2. Somehow We Made It Through The Rain  (4:39)
3. Fire In The Funk  (5:37)
4. Talk To Me  (4:32)

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23
May

Gary U.S. Bonds – Dedication (1981) – Lp

Gary U.S. Bonds (born Gary Levone Anderson, June 6, 1939, in Jacksonville, Florida) is an American rhythm and blues and rock and roll singer.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Artist:  Gary U.S. Bonds
Title:  Dedication
Year: 1981
Format:  LP
Label:  EMI Records
Catalog#  1A 062-400007

Dedication is an album released by Gary U.S. Bonds in 1981, the first of two on which he collaborated with Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band, the second being On the Line, released the following year, 1982. The musicians accompanying Bonds on the album include many members of the E Street Band and the Asbury Jukes. The album includes three songs written by Bruce Springsteen, one written by Steve Van Zandt, and several covers of songs from the Beatles, Bob Dylan, Jackson Browne, and others. It also features a duet between Bonds and Springsteen on the track “Jole Blon“. Bonds’ early 1960s sound had been a major influence on both Springsteen and Van Zandt. The songs written by Springsteen, including the cover of “Jole Blon”, were originally intended for his 1980 album, The River, but he felt they fitted better with Bonds and his versions of them have never been released although he has performed most of them live, often featuring Bonds as a special guest.

The album produced several singles. The Springsteen-penned “This Little Girl” was a major success,  as well as the Cajun traditional “Jole Blon”, which garnered some album-oriented rock Airplay.

 

Side one
1.  Jole Blon  (3:25)
2.  This Little Girl  (3:42)
3.  Your Love  (3:26)
4.  Dedication  (3:11)
5.  Daddy’s Come Home  (6:22)

Side two
1.  It’s Only Love  (3:03)
2.  The Pretender  (6:12)
3.  Way Back When  (4:03)
4.  From A Buick 6  (4:24)
5.  Just Like A Child  (3:40)

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23
May

The Human League – Hysteria (1984) – Lp

The Human League are an English synthpop band formed in Sheffield in 1977. The band began as an avant-garde all-male synthesizer group. The only constant band member since 1977 has been lead singer and songwriter Philip Oakey. Keyboard players Martyn Ware and Ian Craig Marsh both left the band in 1980 to form Heaven 17. Under Oakey’s leadership, The Human League then evolved into a commercially successful New Pop band with a new line-up including female vocalists Joanne Catherall and Susan Ann Sulley.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Artist:  The Human League
Title:  Hysteria
Year:  1984
Format:  LP
Label:  Virgin Records
Catalog# 206307

The Human League followed Dare! with more success, at least when it came to singles. The Motown-inspired “Mirror Man” and the frivolous (in a borderline-genius way) “(Keep Feeling) Fascination” maintained the group’s momentum. When recording commenced for the full-length successor to Dare!, however, things got ugly. Martin Rushent, the producer who either receives all or no credit for the Human League’s mainstream breakthrough, left the sessions. The slate was wiped clean, but the process was halted once more when another producer, Chris Thomas (Roxy Music, Sex Pistols), also split. Full of indecision and doubt, the group took forever to finish Hysteria. (Two and a half years in the ’80s were, in fact, equal to forever, and U.S. label A&M intervened with the Fascination! EP, which contained the post-Dare! singles that did not appear on this album.) Hysteria is mediocre and easily the least of the group’s albums to that point. Conscious not to repeat themselves and unable to do it without sacrificing their personality, most of the changes sound forced and fussily mulled over. It was one thing to get political and introduce some uncharacteristic guitar lines on “The Lebanon” (alienating your fanbase should always be encouraged, especially when it’s done with a single that looks atrocious on paper but sounds fantastic), but “Rock Me Again” is the kind of thing the group once worked against, with Philip Oakey adopting an awkward, straining rock voice. The melodies are often flat, the arrangements are frequently bloodless. With only a couple exceptions, Hysteria sounds exactly like an album made under extreme post-platinum pressure. If you were to replace your pick of two tracks with “Mirror Man” and “(Keep Feeling) Fascination” — which really wouldn’t sound any more out of place than “The Lebanon” — you’d at least have something resembling the group’s old standard. Fun fact: it was released three years before a very different Sheffield band’s Hysteria.

 

Side one
1.  I’m Coming Back  (4:11)
2.  I Love You Too Much  (3:26)
3.  Rock Me Again & Again & Again & Again & Again & Again (Six Times)  (3:31)
4.  Louise  (4:57)
5.  The Lebanon  (5:04)

Side two
1.  Betrayed  (4:06)
2.  The Sign (3:48)
3.  So Hurt  (3:52)
4.  Life On Your Own  (4:07)
5.  Don’t You Know I Want You  (3:10)

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21
May

New Order – Power, Corruption & Lies (1983) – Lp

New Order are an English rock band formed in 1980, currently comprising Bernard Sumner, Stephen Morris, Gillian Gilbert, Phil Cunningham and Tom Chapman. The band was formed in 1980 by Sumner, Morris, and Peter Hook, who were the remaining members of post-punk group Joy Division.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Artist:  New Order
Title:  Power, Corruption & Lies
Year:  1983
Format:  LP
Label:  Base Record
Catalog#  FACT 75

Power, Corruption & Lies is the second studio album by the English rock band New Order, released in May 1983 on Factory Records. The album features more electronic-based tracks than their previous album Movement, with heavier use of synthesizers. It was included in the top 100 albums of the 1980s lists.

A great leap forward from their funereal debut album, Power, Corruption & Lies cemented New Order‘s place as the most exciting dance-rock hybrid in music (and it didn’t even include the massive “Blue Monday” single, released earlier that year). Confident and invigorating where Movement had sounded disconsolate and lost, the record simply pops with energy from the beginning “Age of Consent,” an alternative pop song with only a smattering of synthesizers overlaying an assured Bernard Sumner, who took his best vocal turn yet. Unlike the hordes of synth pop acts then active, New Order experimented heavily with their synthesizers and sequencers. What’s more, while most synth pop acts kept an eye on the charts when writing and recording, if New Order were looking anywhere (aside from within), it was the clubs — “The Village” and “586” had most of the technological firepower of the mighty “Blue Monday.” But whenever the electronics threatened to take over, Peter Hook‘s grubby basslines, Bernard Sumner‘s plaintive vocals, and Stephen Morris‘ point-perfect drum fills reintroduced the human element. Granted, they still had the will for moodiness; the second track was “We All Stand,” over five minutes of dubbed-out melancholia. Aside from all the bright dance music and production on display, Power, Corruption & Lies also portrayed New Order‘s growing penchant for beauty: “Your Silent Face” is a sublime piece of electronic balladry.

 

Side one
1.  Age of Consent  (5:16)
2.  We All Stand  (5:14)
3.  The Village  (4:37)
4.  586  (7:31)

Side two
1.  Your Silent Face  (6:00)
2.  Ultraviolence  (4:52)
3.  Ecstasy  (4:25)
4.  Leave Me Alone  (4:40)

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21
May

The Clash – Combat Rock (1982) – Lp

The Clash were an English punk rock band that formed in 1976 as part of the original wave of British punk. Along with punk, their music incorporated elements of reggae, dub, funk, ska and rockabilly. For most of their recording career the Clash consisted of Joe Strummer (lead vocals, rhythm guitar), Mick Jones (lead guitar, lead vocals), Paul Simonon (bass guitar, vocals) and Nicky “Topper” Headon (drums, percussion). The group disbanded in early 1986.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Artist:  The Clash
Title:  Combat Rock
Year:  1982
Format:  LP
Label:  CBS Records
Catalog# CBS 85570

Combat Rock is the fifth studio album by the English rock band The Clash. It was released on 14 May 1982 through CBS Records.  It contained two of The Clash’s most popular songs, the singles “Rock the Casbah” and “Should I Stay or Should I Go“. Combat Rock was the last Clash album featuring the classic lineup before Topper Headon and Mick Jones were fired from the band.

On the surface of things, Combat Rock appears to be a retreat from the sprawling stylistic explorations of London Calling and Sandinista! The pounding arena rock of “Should I Stay or Should I Go” makes the Clash sound like an arena rock band, and much of the album boasts a muscular, heavy sound courtesy of producer Glyn Johns. But things aren’t quite that simple. Combat Rock contains heavy flirtations with rap, funk, and reggae, and it even has a cameo by poet Allen Ginsberg — if this album is, as it has often been claimed, the Clash‘s sellout effort, it’s a very strange way to sell out. Even with the infectious, dance-inflected new wave pop of “Rock the Casbah” leading the way, there aren’t many overt attempts at crossover success, mainly because the group is tearing in two separate directions. Mick Jones wants the Clash to inherit the Who‘s righteous arena rock stance, and Joe Strummer wants to forge ahead into black music. The result is an album that is nearly as inconsistent as Sandinista!, even though its finest moments — “Should I Stay or Should I Go,” “Rock the Casbah,” “Straight to Hell” — illustrate why the Clash were able to reach a larger audience than ever before with the record.

 

Side one
1.  Know Your Rights  (3:40)
2.  Car Jamming  (3:58)
3.  Should I Stay Or Should I Go  (3:06)
4.  Rock The Casbah  (3:42)
5.  Red Angel Dragnet  (3:46)
6.  Straight To Hell  (5:26)

Side two
1.  Overpowered By Funk  (feat. Futura 2000)  (4:52)
2.  Atom Tan  (2:27)
3.  Sean Flynn  (4:30)
4.  Ghetto Defendant  (4:43)
5.  Inoculated City  (2:40)
6.  Death Is A Star  (3:08)

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18
May

The Rolling Stones – Black And Blue (1976)

The Rolling Stones are an English rock band formed in London in 1962. Line-up Mick Jagger (lead vocals), Keith Richards (lead guitar, backing vocals), Bill Wyman (bass), Charlie Watts (drums), and Ronnie Wood (lead electric guitar).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Artist:  The Rolling Stones
Title:  Black And Blue
Year:  1976
Format:  LP
Label:  Rolling Stones Records
Catalog#  COC 59106

Black and Blue is the 13th British and 15th American studio album by the band the Rolling Stones, released in 1976.

It was the band’s first studio album released with Ronnie Wood as the replacement for Mick Taylor. Wood had played twelve-string acoustic guitar on the track “It’s Only Rock ‘n Roll (But I Like It)” from the It’s Only Rock ‘n Roll album and appears on half of the Black and Blue album tracks (mostly backing vocals) with Wayne Perkins and Harvey Mandel playing guitar on the remaining titles. Keith Richards would later comment “Rehearsing guitar players, that’s what that one was about”.

The album showed the band incorporating its traditional rock and roll style with heavy influences from reggae and funk music.

Yes, the two songs that are undeniable highlights are “Memory Motel” and “Fool to Cry,” the album’s two ballads and, therefore, the two that had to be written and arranged, not knocked out in the studio; they’re also the ones that don’t quite make as much sense, though they still work in the context of the record. No, this is all about groove and sound, as the Stones work Ron Wood into their fabric. And the remarkable thing is, apart from “Hand of Fate” and “Crazy Mama,” there’s little straight-ahead rock & roll here. They play with reggae extensively, funk and disco less so, making both sound like integral parts of the Stones‘ lifeblood. Apart from the ballads, there might not be many memorable tunes, but there are times that you listen to the Stones just to hear them play, and this is one of them.

 

Side one
1. Hot Stuff  5:21
2. Hand Of Fate  4:28
3. Cherry Oh Baby  3:54
4. Memory Motel  7:06

Side two
1. Hey Negrita  4:58
2. Melody  5:48
3. Fool To Cry  5:02
4. Crazy Mama  4:32

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18
May

Janice Marie Johnson – One Taste Of Honey (1984) – Lp

Singer/bassist/guitarist/songwriter Janice Marie Johnson, as a founding member of A Taste of Honey.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Artist:  Janice Marie Johnson
Title:  One Taste Of Honey
Year:  1984
Format:  LP
Label:  Capitol Records
Catalog# 1A 064-2401641

One Taste of Honey is the debut solo album by Janice Marie Johnson of the American rhythm and blues group A Taste of Honey. It was produced by Mike Piccirillo and Gary Goetzman for Goetzman/Piccirillo Productions in association with Janice Marie Enterprises Inc. and included the minor R&B hit Love Me Tonight. The album was recorded following the departure of Hazel Payne from A Taste of Honey in 1983 and after the commercial disappointment of their 1982 album, Ladies of the Eighties.

The album was recorded and released due to contractual obligations made with Capitol Records. One Taste of Honey was released in the summer of 1984, but was a huge commercial disappointment. Jim Mazza, president of Capitol Records at the time, was very supportive of the album, although he was removed by the time the album was released. As a result, there were problems between Johnson and Capitol Records, including promotion and the lead single choice. Two singles were released, Love Me Tonight and She’s So Popular. Love Me Tonight reached #67 on the then-called Hot Black Singles chart in the United States, while She’s So Popular was released internationally in an extended version and failed to chart.

 

Side one
1.   Who’s It Gonna Be?   (4:19)
2.   Baby Sister   (3:54)
3.   Last Chance Romeo   (3:20)
4.   Beverly Hills   (3:50)
5.   She’s So Popular   (4:30)

Side two
1.   Back With My Boogie   (4:13)
2.   Love Me Tonite   (3:20)
3.   Givin’ It Up   (4:09)
4.   Catch 22   (3:19)
5.   I’ll Be There   (3:49)

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18
May

Orchestral Manouvres In The Dark – Junk Culture (1984) – Lp

Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark (OMD) are an English electronic music band formed in Wirral, Merseyside in 1978. Spawned by earlier group The Id, the outfit was founded by Andy McCluskey and Paul Humphreys.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Artist:  Orchestral Manouvres In The Dark
Title:  Junk Culture
Year:  1984
Format:  LP
Label:  Virgin Records
Catalog#  206257

Smarting from Dazzle Ships‘ commercial failure, the band had a bit of a rethink when it came to their fifth album — happily, the end result showed that the group was still firing on all fours. While very much a pop-oriented album and a clear retreat from the exploratory reaches of previous work, Junk Culture was no sacrifice of ideals in pursuit of cash. In comparison to the group’s late-’80s work, when it seemed commercial success was all that mattered, Junk Culture exhibits all the best qualities of OMD at their most accessible — instantly memorable melodies and McCluskey‘s distinct singing voice, clever but emotional lyrics, and fine playing all around. A string of winning singles didn’t hurt, to be sure; indeed, opening number “Tesla Girls” is easily the group’s high point when it comes to sheer sprightly pop, as perfect a tribute to obvious OMD inspirational source Sparks as any — witty lines about science and romance wedded to a great melody (prefaced by a brilliant, hyperactive intro). “Locomotion” takes a slightly slower but equally entertaining turn, sneaking in a bit of steel drum to the appropriately chugging rhythm and letting the guest horn section take a prominent role, its sunny blasts offsetting the deceptively downcast lines McCluskey sings. Meanwhile, “Talking Loud and Clear” ends the record on a reflective note — Cooper‘s intra-verse sax lines and mock harp snaking through the quiet groove of the song. As for the remainder of the album, if there are hints here and there of the less-successful late-’80s period, at other points the more adventurous side of the band steps up. The instrumental title track smoothly blends reggae rhythms with the haunting mock choirs familiar from earlier efforts, while the elegiac, Humphreys-sung “Never Turn Away” and McCluskey‘s “Hard Day” both make for lower-key highlights.

 

Side one
1.  Junk Culture  (4:04)
2.  Tesla Girls  (3:50)
3.  Locomotion  (3:49)
4.  Apollo  (3:38)
5.  Never Turn Away  (3:54)

Side two
1.  Love And Violence  (4:39)
2.  Hard Day  (5:36)
3.  All Wrapped Up  (4:21)
4.  White Trash  (4:34)
5.  Talking Loud And Clear  (4:19)

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18
May

Jean Michel Jarre – The Concerts In China (1982) – 2Lp

Jean-Michel André Jarre (born 24 August 1948) is a French composer, performer, and record producer. He is a pioneer in the electronic, ambient, and new-age genres, and known as an organiser of outdoor spectacles of his music featuring lights, laser displays, and fireworks.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Artist:  Jean Michel Jarre
Title:  The Concerts In China
Year:  1982
Format:  2LP
Label:  Polydor Records
Catalog#  2335261

Les Concerts en Chine (English title: The Concerts in China) is a live album by Jean Michel Jarre, recorded in 1981 and released in 1982 on Disques Dreyfus. It was recorded during Jarre’s Concerts in China tour of Autumn 1981, which consisted of five Beijing and Shanghai concerts in China; this was the first time a Western pop artist performed in China after the Cultural Revolution.

The album is a balance of previously released tracks by Jarre, new compositions inspired by Chinese culture, and one rearranged traditional Chinese track (“Jonques de pêcheurs au crépuscule”). The album consists mainly of live material, plus ambient sound recordings and one new studio track “Souvenir of China”. Other new compositions recorded live include “Nuit à Shanghai”, “Harpe Laser”, “Arpégiateur” and “Orient Express”. “Jonques de pêcheurs au crépuscule” (“Fishing Junks at Sunset”) is a new arrangement of a very old traditional Chinese song known as the “Fisherman’s Chant at Dusk”, which was performed and recorded with The Peking Conservatoire Symphony Orchestra and is often wrongly attributed as being composed by Jean Michel Jarre, misled by the album inlay.

The album was originally released as a double-disc LP, then as a double-disc CD. There was also a CD release in two separate volumes, with the cover color changed to blue (Vol. 1) and yellow (Vol. 2). In 1997, a one-disc remastered CD was released, made possible by reducing the total running time to 78:17 by reducing the gaps and audience noise between tracks. The remastering was done by Scott Hull at Masterdisk to the 96 kHz, 24 bit standard.

One of the album’s original tracks – “Arpégiateur” – was used in the soundtrack of the film 9½ Weeks as well as in several mid-1980s episodes of the American soap opera Santa Barbara. Opening track “The Overture” is the first movement of “Magnetic Fields Part 1” slowed down.

 

Side one
1. The Overture (4:47)
2. Arpegiator (6:54)
3. Equinoxe IV (7:49)

Side two
1. Fishing Junks at Sunset (9:38)
2. Band in the Rain (1:29)
3. Equinoxe VII (9:55)

Side three
1. Orient Express (4:22)
2. Magnetic Fields I (0:21)
3. Magnetic Fields III (3:49)
4. Magnetic Fields IV (6:49)
5. Laser Harp (3:37)

Side four
1. Night in Shanghai (7:02)
2. The Last Rumba (2:11)
3. Magnetic Fields II (6:26)
4. Souvenir of China (3:54)

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