Saturday, 31 January 2009

Galliano - Frederic Lies Still 1987

Acid Jazz Records JAZID 1T

  • Frederic Lies Still
  • I Love You Baby (Jack, Jack, Jack Your Body)
  • Freddy's Revenge
Not for the feint-hearted. If you're not into Jazz, then you are unlikely to enjoy this? Think The Last Poets over a Curtis Mayfield break. It's a great moment though so I have to put it up.

It was 1987 and the Rare Groove thing was starting to happen. House Music was getting on its feet and the Brand New Heavies were still getting it together. I enjoyed dropping a track from the Superfly OST whenever I could, so many good tracks on that album and not enough time to play them all. I heard the break from Freddies Dead on the radio and flipped but it wasn't the song. Some guy is rapping over it, except it ain't rap.... it's poetry. Man, that's cool, it's retro, it's... Acid Jazz apparently.

This UK group enjoyed a fruitful period in the spotlight at the height of acid jazz's popularity in the late 80s and early 90s. The band was formed by new age rapper and jazz poet Rob Gallagher who retraced rap's origins to the Last Poets. Gallagher began broadcasting on pirate radio and got into the underground poetry scene. He performed at Gilles Peterson's Babylon club in Charing Cross, London. He loved the resident rare groove/jazz sounds, and incorporated them as his musical backing. He released this debut as a tribute to Curtis Mayfield and Last Poets' Jalal Nuridin, with Peterson. Galliano became an intrinsic component in the rise of Acid Jazz Records, building a fruitful relationship with producer Chris Bangs.

Frederic Lies Still is a new age play on Freddie's Dead from the Superfly soundtrack which is great but I Love You Baby is a gem with powerful lyrics and lots of angst. Freddy's Revenge is I Love You Baby played in reverse. No extras, no gimmicks, simply backwards, from finish to start!

The Download Link is here: Download
Filename: Galliano.rar Filesize: 24.33 MB

Gems For Jem - Time For Love 1993

E-Zee Records EZY 1204

  • Time For Love
  • Even When You're Gone
Gems For Jem is another project from Darren Pearce & Steve McCutcheon (Massivo) who both wrote, performed and produced this pair of gems. Daft name for a quality soul act but then it takes all sorts to make up a playlist. Even When You're Gone has been posted before as part of the Inside! collection but Time For Love is new here and what an inclusion it is. Enjoy!

The Download Link is here: Download
Filename: Gems For Jem.rar Filesize: 21.2 MB

90's, British, Dance, Funk, Groove, Nineties, Soul, UK, Urban,

Friday, 30 January 2009

Opaz - One On One 1992

Opaz Records OP003/SRH

A leading UK producer, songwriter, and artist, Ray Hayden was born in Dublin, Ireland, He moved to England at 4 years old, where he was raised in East London's multiracial borough of Hackney... where he still lives and works. Hayden began his successful jazz/funk DJ life playing with sound systems when he was a teenager, later establishing legendary status working at Dalston's Cubies Nightclub.
An integral part of the UK R&B scene, Hayden and his partners began Opaz Studios in 1996. It can be found on Mare Street between the Hackney Empire and Tops Caribbean Foods. He has also established his own label called Opaz Records. Featuring artists on Opaz Records include Martine Girault, Natasha Campbell and urban gospel vocalist Patrick Jean Paul Denis.
Ray Hayden teamed up with the sublime voice that is Mica Paris to make the most of her gospel background and romanticism. They recorded three tracks: the ballad Waiting For The Morning, the haunting gospel Bless The Day and this blistering duet One on One. Hayden's appreciation is engraved into the vinyl between track 1 and track 2 where "THANKS MICA" can clearly be seen, although a scan is hard to capture.

Also etched into the run out groove of the same side, is
The spine on this sleeve states OPAZ ONE ON ONE OP003 so I take that as confirmation that the artist name is Opaz.

Mica Paris does not feature on the epic B-side. The vocals are performed by Hayden himself. This epic soul anthem first came to my attention via Essex FM, courtesy of Denise Lasalle who released it as a 45 in 1992. When We're Making Love was written by Ray Hayden but I had moved out of London and was trusting John Leech for my soul sounds. He was good but not focused on the London thing.

I caught the Opaz version that same year, when I picked up the Inside! album. Four minutes 50 seconds of absolute heaven. Imagine how I felt when I was lucky enough to find a copy of this 12" up a few years later. Ten minutes plus guys! Ok, admittedly there's a break at the 7:11 and then 4 minutes of instrumental but who cares. It reminds me of the Lowrell - Mellow, Mellow (Right On) 12" where it changed from the Vocal Version to the Instrumental and you didn't bother taking it off.... or was I just lazy?

One On One
One On One (Brief Encounter Instrumental)
When We're Makin Love (Original Version)
The Download Link is here: Download
Filename: Opaz - One On One.rar Filesize: 54.81 MB

"I wanna say a special thanks to Mica Paris for helping me finish this song and for Julian Palmer for his encouragement. The result is its own reward."
Ray Hayden
When We're Makin' Love
(Ray Hayden)

Am I Dreaming, Am I
When We're Makin' Love, Yeah,
(With You)
Am I Dreaming
When We're Makin' Love, Yeah,
(With You)

I Like It When You Tease Me
When We're Makin' Love,
All Through The Night
You Know How To Please Me
Make Me Feel Right

I'll Wait Till You
You Couldn't Make It That Much Better
Even If You Tried, You Know
It Doesn't Matter What You Do
You Always Make The Right Move, On Me

Am I Dreaming, Am I
When We're Makin' Love, Yeah,
(With You)
Am I Dreaming
When We're Makin' Love, Yeah,
(With You)

Stay With Me Baby,
A Natural High, So High
When We Make Love
Stay With Me Baby,
A Natural High, So High
When We Make Love

I Think 'Bout Taking Over
When I'm Feeling Down
Your Always There For Me
You Know What I'm Needing
Your The Light
That Brightens My Day

When We're Alone
Nothing Else Really Matters
About The World Outside, We Say,
It Doesn't Matter What They Know
They Never Gonna Get Through
When We're Making Love

Am I Dreaming, Am I
When We're Makin' Love, Yeah,
(With You)
Am I Dreaming
When We're Makin' Love, Yeah,
(With You)

Sweet As Sweet Can Be
A Natural High, So High
Raining Down On Me
Sweet As Sweet Can Be
A Natural High, So High
Raining Down On Me

Am I Dreaming, Am I
When We're Makin' Love, Yeah,
With You
Am I Dreaming
When We're Makin' Love, Yeah,
With You

Am I Dreaming, Am I
When We're Makin' Love, Yeah,
Am I Dreaming
With You
When We're Makin' Love, Yeah,
With You

Thursday, 29 January 2009

Reach - Sooner Or Later 1991

Warner Music YZ601T

Featuring vocals by Lynieve Austin and a rap from Bryce 'Luvah' Wilson, this is Reach who debuted with That's The Way Life Is earlier in the year but I never got hold of a copy. I believe Kevin Osbourne is the mind behind Reach, he being responsible for the writing, production and editing, all in the name of Reach Unlimited. Cynthia Cherry gets a pop at the Executive Producer spot and all is good in the world.

Dancin' Danny D remixes both versions of Sooner or Later while the third track is a reasonable but unnecessary cover of Tom Browne's Funkin' For Jamaica (N.Y.). All in all, a good tune to have in the box but the A side is all you need. Shame they didn't cut a mix without the rap?

  • Sooner Or Later (Sooner Than Later Mix)
  • Jamaica Funk (Funkin Fo Jamaica)
  • Sooner Or Later (Dancin' Danny D's Mix)
The Download Link is here: Download
Filename: Reach.rar Filesize: 50.21 MB

I have added a couple of edits for your perusal. Please delete as required

Wednesday, 28 January 2009

Regina Belle - Good Lovin' 1989

CBS Records Promo XPR 1452

It was the second Summer Of Love and the UK was reeling from a plethora of musical dance genres that sat side by side across the nations dancefloors. Many of those dancefloors were green and muddy. The wonderful thing about that Era was that good music was hard to define. If it lacked soulful vocals but had a squelchy 808, it could still be considered good because Acid House was in. Onto the manic dancefloors of the M25 London Orbital Rave scene came the songstress that is Regina Belle, an unlikely candidate if ever there was one.

Written by Carl Bourelly and produced & arranged by Narada Michael Walden. This was a special dance remix by Frankie Foncett but it ended up the only version people recognised. Of course, it ended up being used in a 1999 UK Garage tune called The Way by F.U.N. (Future Underground Nation) and Regina was forgotten.

I might add, this is far from Regina Belle's best work, neither is it Frankie Foncett's but it's a classic track that should be heard. The album that it's taken from, Stay With Me, is a very worthy addition to the collection. Produced 40/40 by Narada Michael Walden & Nick Martinelli alongside two Barry Eastmond tracks, it had the unenviable task of following her 1987 debut, All By Myself. All the superstar producers money could buy managed to pull it out of the dark but it was still left in the shadows.

The Download Link is here: Download
Filename: Regina Belle.rar Filesize: 19.04 MB

Wednesday, 14 January 2009

Coldcut - Autumn Leaves 1993

BMG Records 74321171052

Coldcut are Jonathan More and Matt Black with vocals by Janis Alexander. So sayeth the credits. Taken from the forthcoming album Philosophy, which I never managed to get. It appears they recruited a top drawer vocalist and decided to produce some proper music. Those that shudder at the thought of a Coldcut joint, prepare for a surprise.

Autumn Leaves is a rework of the Nat King Cole classic performed wonderfully over an ambient orchestral and electronic backdrop. The atmosphere is spot on and the dub style ending is perfect. Unless I am mistaken, there are some extra lyrics at the beginning too. It is difficult to do this song justice with words though, I suggest you put Coldcut out of your mind. Download, unzip and press play, only then will you understand. I am not overly keen on the Nellee Hooper Mix personally because it pales against the original.

Janis even gets writing credits on Feeling Strong but unfortunately, on this Well Hung Parliament Mix, we only hear samples of her. Irresistible Force knock Autumn Leaves into a superb trippy portion of ambient dub that is well worth listening too.

  • Autumn Leaves (7" Version)
  • Autumn Leaves (Nellee Hooper Vocal Mix)
  • Feeling Strong (Leaving Home) The Well Hung Parliament Adventure
  • Autumn Leaves (Irresistible Force Mix Trip 2)
The Download Link is here: Download
Filename: Coldcut Leaves.rar Filesize: 36.32 MB

Autumn Leaves
(Kosma & Mercer)
Autumn leaves fall and are swept out of sight,
The words that you said have come true.
Autumn leaves fall and are swept out of sight,
So is the memory of love that we knew.

The wind of forgetfullness blows them
Into the night of regret.
The song we so often did sing,
Is echoing echoing yet.

The falling leaves,
Drift by the window.
The autumn leaves of red and gold.
I see your lips,
The summer kisses,
The sunburned hands I used to hold.

Since you went away,
The days grow long,
And soon I'll hear cold winter song.
But I miss you most of all, my darling,
When autumn leaves start to fall.

Monday, 12 January 2009

Diana Brown & Barrie K. Sharpe - Eating Me Alive 1993

ffrr Records FCD 190

I wanted to post Blind Faith for Zenn but I'm fairly sure that I loaned it out and never got it back, many years ago. I know I don't have Love Or Nothing but while I was looking for something else I came across this CDS. I have to say, I couldn't remember it until I gave it a spin. Check the credits for the list of players.

The Undisputed Mix is the commercial take. It has more hooks than a fishing tackle box, you'll be hard taxed trying to get it out of your head. Part 2 is the instrumental version and the Groundbeat House Ensemble doesn't really do it for me. Diana Brown doesn't sound right over a commercial house groove. The Original Version has it all going on, yeah baby, this is more like it but why bother when you have the Funky, Funky Super Heavy Groundbeat Mix to hand. Holy Cow, listen to that funky-arsed guitar drop. Seven and a half minutes of boombastic funk, this mix Rocks like a MF!

  • Undisputed Mix Part 1
  • Funky Funky Super Heavy Groundbeat Mix
  • Groundbeat House Ensemble
  • Original Groundbeat
  • Undisputed Mix Part 2
The Download Link is here: Download
Filename: Diana Brown - Eating Me.rar Filesize: 40.24 MB

Sunday, 11 January 2009

Donna Allen - Real 1994

Epic Records 661099 2

Hot on the heels of Basic Instinct came the news that Sharon Stone was doing a movie with Sylvester Stallone and they were doing a love scene in the shower. Expectation was high, Stallone worked out even more and Hollywood got the Johnson's Baby Oil out. I wouldn't say the movie disappointed, Shaz looked good enough and the film had a good story, plenty of action, etc. but the real memorable thing about 'The Specialist' was the soundtrack.

This little gem from Donna Allen, written by Jon Secada & Diane Warren, produced by Emilio Estefan Jnr. & Lawrence P. Dermer and mixed by Eric Schilling, stayed in the memory long after the film had been forgotten. David Morales took it into the Def Mix studios and gave it a damn good workout. The results were incredible, a mix for every occasion. I have a 12" somewhere with more mixes on it but the real surprise was this R&B Radio Edit which really is soulful, for me personally, improving on the Album Version.

The Remix Edit is by Mark C. Rooney and Mark Morales (remember the Fat Boys) is also an interesting take on the number. I don't believe Mark is a relation of David's but I'm not gonna put my £1 on it unless somebody twists my arm up my back?

  • Album Version
  • Remix Edit
  • R&B Radio Mix
  • Def House Mix
  • The Resurrection Part 1
The Download Link is here: Download
Filename: Donna Allen.rar Filesize: 37.57 MB

I must try to dig out Joy & Pain?

Saturday, 10 January 2009

Diana Brown & Barrie K. Sharpe - Sun Worshippers 1990

ffrr Records FCD 144

One for the Groundbeat lovers, Sun Worshippers is basically Masterplan part 2 so you'll probably like it but it aggravates. I find myself shouting out "Can You Dig That." without thinking. Produced and written in conjunction with Tim Lever & Mike Percy, better known as One World Productions, with a shout out to Acid Jazz poet/rapper, Rob Galliano, for inspiration. It makes a change from Masterplan in the playlist though, without sounding lame too. Hardly essential but certainly worth having in the collection.

Do That Funky Thing is straight out of the James Brown school of funk. I wouldn't be surprised to hear that they got sued but having said that, it's a great little number. Four and a half minutes of groovy 60's soul. Written (well, the lyrics are...) and produced by Di & Baz for Brothers International.

  • Sun Worshippers (Positive Thinking) 7-Inch
  • Sun Worshippers (Positive Thinking) Part 1
  • Sun Worshippers (Positive Thinking) Part 2
  • Do That Funky Thing
The Download Link is here: Download
Filename: DB & BKS.rar Filesize: 27.58 MB

Friday, 9 January 2009

Milira - Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology)

Motown Records ZD 43680

Milira won a singing competition at the legendary Apollo Theatre which led to a recording contract with Motown. Although a young singer in her twenties, Milira was influenced by jazz greats such as Sarah Vaughn; her warm vocals and scatting ability attest to the fact.

Mercy Mercy Me was produced by Donald Dee Bowden, with a guiding quartet in the shape of Percy Sutton, Oliver Sutton, Harold Jackson and Voza Rivers. Seems everybody wanted in on this one. Then they gave it to Timmy Regisford for the remix treatment.

In case you have been shipwrecked on an island for the past 40 years, I'll just mention that this is a cover of Marvin Gaye's own composition. This is the conclusion to his legendary What's Goin' On album, considered by many to be the all time greatest Soul album. Dangerous ground then but Milira does a very competent job thank you very much.

  • 12" Version
  • Radio Version
  • Instrumental
The Download Link is here: Download
Filename: Milira.rar Filesize: 23.28 MB

Thursday, 8 January 2009

Young Disciples - Move On EP 1992

Talkin' Loud Records TLKCD18

When the album Road to Freedom emerged in 1991, it blew most of the London Soul fans away. We had all heard Carleen's voice on Apparently Nothin' and the anticipation of what was to come was almost to much to bear.

The group formed in the summer of 1990 Marc Nelson (bass, guitar and organ) and Femi Williams (percussion and programming) after Carleen Anderson (vocals and keyboards) relocated from her native USA to London. She, of course, is the daughter of the singer Vicki Anderson and stepdaughter of Bobby Byrd, both leading lights in the 60's Soul scene with James Brown connections, etc. Safe to say, the girl had roots!

The group were part of the burgeoning Acid Jazz scene and they signed to Talkin' Loud records and getting involved with the UK hip hop scene, MC Mell'O' and Masta Ace cut their teeth with the Young Disciples. Despite Carleen's highly rated and very important involvement with the group, the Young Disciples were always Femi & Marco whenever they were discussed in my circles. When she left in 1992, it wasn't a surprise. The Road To Freedom had happened and it was time to move on. I remember getting a whisper from a friend:
"Ian is producing an album for Carleen"
And boy, didn't he just? While we were waiting for her album, any mention of Carleen was snapped at.

This then, was an absolute gem. Including the incredible epic mix of All I Have In Me (in which Carleen bares her soul) and another superb mix of Freedom. This beauty clocks in at 8 minutes which is almost half the duration of the album version. Freedom Suite on the album is legendary and the idea of a remix edit borders on blasphemy but rest assured people, this is the Young Disciples and they do no wrong. It is as good and the bonus is, you can listen to it when you only have 10 minutes to spare?

The Download Link is here: Download
Filename: Young Disciples.rar Filesize: 36.55 MB

Espiritu - Conquistador 1993

Heavenly HVN 28CD

This is a classic example from my collection. A strange CD by a band nobody's ever heard of? Conquistador isn't a bad tune at all but it's not something worth shouting about. The tracklist includes an Extended Instrumental that is the same timestamp as the 7" Radio Edit? The sticker on the front boldly proclaims the inclusion of an Andy Weatherall club mix and if you are a fan of the Sabres Of Paradise sound, you'll love it... all tweakin' acid 808's, etc. But what has that got to do with Soul?

OK, first off, I gotta 'fess up. I have a lot of club music too. When Soul & Dance spawned House with Steve 'Silk' Hurley, I followed that road too. I bought into the Rave scene, Jungle (a bit) and UK Garage. I am still very fond of US House & Uplifting Vocal Garage. Don't let it put you off, this little number has a beauty included. I bought this for No Creo Mas which is a beautiful piece of Brazilian lounge bar shuffle. Diversity my friends, embrace it with open arms. Enjoy!

  • Conquistador (7" Radio Edit)
  • Conquistador (Sabres Of Paradise Mix No. 1)
  • No Creo Mas
  • Conquistador (Extended Instrumental)
The Download Link is here: Download
Filename: Espiritu.rar Filesize: 31.12 MB

Wednesday, 7 January 2009

Coldcut & Hexstatic - Timber 1998

Ninja Tune ZEN CDS65A

My apologies the soulies but I have a diversion today. Sorry, This Just Isn't Music!

No, this is Coldcut (again) and this time they have teamed up with Hexstatic and their on a mission. Timber comes from the Let Us Play album and it has a purpose. The aim of the 'song' is to raise awareness to the disappearing rainforests around the globe. It's a good cause and its a good bit of music but you need to be open minded. Click on the graphics below and read more about the campaign and the project. It is interesting, honest!

Timber has been built from sound samples taken from a documentary about the deforestation of the rainforests around the world. Included in the rar are the Video Remixes also which explains why it's 285 MB. This is an incredible piece of experimental music harking way back to the Steinski & Mass Media project. A collection of rhythms and melodies built from media soundbytes and layered to form a song. The original Chopped Down Radio Edit is perfect and no amount of tinkering can improve it. It is what it is! The remixes are mostly Drum & Bass ventures Quant's Shaggy Dog Story being my fav. They are all well put together but unnecessary. Clifford Gilberto's Jazz trips are way out there. If your head can get around it, this is a great experience.

  • Chopped Down Radio Edit
  • Quant's Shaggy Dog Story
  • DK Recut
  • Future 3 Network
  • Clifford Gilberto Remix 2 "cracked timber"
  • Hexstatic Video
  • EBN Video
  • Clifford Gilberto "a different forest" Video
The Download Link is here: Download
Filename: Coldcut & Hexstatic.rar Filesize: 285.48 MB