About Me

My photo
London, United Kingdom
DENIM DISCO is a blog dedicated to the pop music and culture of the 1970's. ~ Glam Pop and Discotheque Rock ~ The Sound Of The 70's ~ Contact:denimdisco@hotmail.co.uk

Thursday, 17 December 2015

PUBLIC ENEMY NUMBER 1-2-3


THE COPS ARE OUT,THEY'RE RUNNING ABOUT
DON'T KNOW IF THEY'LL EVER BE ABLE TO BLOCK BUSTER OUT
HE'S GOTTA BE CAUGHT,HE'S GOTTA BE TAUGHT
'CAUSE HE'S MORE EVIL THAN ANYONE HERE EVER THOUGHT


''BLOCK BUSTER'' by SWEET was arguably the best CHINICHAP song and one that helped to define the UK GLAM ROCK sound.The record was released at the start of 1973 and spent 5 weeks at number one.Little wonder that the records producer PHIL WAINMAN wanted to re-use some of the elements of the record to replicate that success.



Later the same year WAINMAN co-wrote and produced ''PUBLIC ENEMY NO.1'' for the vocal harmony group BROTHERLY LOVE.The record resembled ''BLOCK BUSTER'' in a number of ways.The song also concerns a super criminal being hunted by the law.It opens with a SIREN SOUND and features both a chugging ''I'M A MAN'' riff and undulating TOM TOM drum pattern

HEY YOU,YOU BETTER COME OUT
YOU BETTER GIVE IN,YOU'RE SURROUNDED
SHOTGUN,THE MUSIC HE HEARS
WHEN IT RINGS IN HIS EARS
WE ALL RUN,FROM PUBLIC ENEMY NO.1

The song was completed with a 'cop show' brass/spoken word breakdown reminiscent of ''ARMED AND EXTREMELY DANGEROUS'' by FIRST CHOICE,another hit song from the same year.The record sounds like a smash,but seems to have made little impact.Perhaps the elements were a little too familiar to pop fans at the time?



WAINMAN seems to have been quite fond of the recording as a couple of years later he dusted it off and re-recorded the vocals with the band SON OF A GUN.It was released as the B-SIDE of their 45 ''MAN OF MY WORD''



Jumping forward to 1977 we find a record by CHILD that shares the same title and many hallmarks of the last two : SIREN SOUND intro {played on a synth},chugging SPIKY GUITAR and a TRIBAL REVERB-LADEN tom tom beat.The lyrics also concern a wanted criminal,but were sung from the perspective of the protagonist this time!



I'm PUBLIC ENEMY NUMBER ONE
MY ONLY FRIEND IS MY GUN
THE WAY I GOT MY NAME
I OUGHT TO DIE OF SHAME


CHILD would have a UK hit the following year with a cover of the CONWAY TWITTY/BILLY FURY standard ''IT's ONLY MAKE BELIEVE''.That and other releases present the image of a mannered SOFT ROCK act,but this German only 45 shows a heavier side of the band.It's not clear if the record was influenced by WAINMAN's ''PUBLIC ENEMY NO.1'' or by ''BLOCK BUSTER'' itself.Pure coincidence or knowing plagiarism?I don't think we will ever have the answer,but the recording is there for Glam Rock archivists and Junkshop Glam aficionados to enjoy!


Tuesday, 15 December 2015

RAY BURGESS - LOVE FEVER





An AUSTRALIAN GLAM ROCK 45 that owed much to the UK GLITTER sound of ALVIN STARDUST.The song was written and arranged by VANDA & YOUNG who were also doing good business with the likes of STEVIE WRIGHT,WILLIAN SHAKESPEAR and AC/DC



Ray promoted the single with appearances on the TV POP SHOW 'COUNTDOWN' and it gave him a TOP 10 hit in 75'

Monday, 14 December 2015

GONE BUT NOT FORGOTTEN - VERSION TO VERSION



KRISTINE SPARKLE began her recording career in the mid 1960's and experienced minor fame as part of the group FAMILY DOG at the turn of the decade. By the start of the 70's she was establishing herself on the UK CABARET CIRCUIT and appeared on TV SHOWS like BBC TV's CRACKERJACK {in which she sang and performed in sketches}


During this time she released a number of 45's for the DECCA label and in 1974 was offered ''GONE BUT NOT FORGOTTEN'' a song written by PAUL CURTIS.The recording was a step on from the GLAM POP novelty style of her previous Decca releases,being a well crafted and deftly orchestrated POP SOUL number.The song seemed perfectly placed to make headway at a time when SOPHISTI-SOUL from the likes of BARRY WHITE and PHILADELPHIA INTERNATIONAL recording artists were showing good sales in the UK




Sales proved to be thin despite the quality of the record and it was to be Kristine's last recording for DECCA.She switched to the POWER EXCHANGE label,dropping her surname and increasing sales with ''PUSSYCAT TIGER'' and the self penned ''DEVIL WOMAN'',a song which CLIFF RICHARD would later cover and earn a huge hit with

Meanwhile DECCA were intent on getting a hit with ''GONE BUT NOT FORGOTTEN'' and a further version was recorded and released in 1976.This time the song was given a stonger backbeat and a more upfront feel in keeping with the early DISCO productions that were enticing feet onto the dancefloor. The vocals were handled by CISSY STONE who led a hardworking band on the BIRMINGHAM club scene.The band appeared on the TV talent show NEW FACES and at one time included future SPECIALS keyboard man JERRY DAMMERS



This version seems to have done better business.It was spun at the leading NORTHERN SOUL venue THE WIGAN CASINO and receives plays on that scene to this day



Thursday, 10 December 2015

PATHE NEWS REPORTS ON PLATFORMS


A 1970's UK news report from THE KING'S ROAD on a trend that threatened to cripple the nation: PLATFORM SHOES!

Monday, 7 December 2015

DOOLEY BOPPERS





THE DOOLEYS started out as a family showband in the late 60's and spent many years working in the VARIETY CLUBS of the UK.By 1975 they had added a couple of non family members,gained a recording contract and attracted some attention through performing the theme tune for the TV show ON THE MOVE.

The years of hard work finally paid off when they hooked up with the songwriting/production team of BEN FINDON and MIKE MYERS in 1977.Their breezy uplifting pop sound began to find it's way into the UK TOP 20 in the same year

The band were never a hip name to drop but it was odds on that their records would get the crowd bopping at DANCE HALLS and FUNCTION ROOMS back in the day.DENIM DISCO has four examples cued up,so roll back the rug and let the Dooley Hooley commence!

First up is ''THINK I'M GOING TO FALL IN LOVE WITH YOU''.Their first hit from the summer of 77'.A mid paced PHILLY DISCO styled shuffler with a catchy vocal melody,spot on harmonies and sweeping strings


''LOVE OF MY LIFE'' picked up where their first hit left off.Even more dizzy and exuberant than it's predecessor and their first TOP 10 entry in the same year


Their first 45 of 1978 ''DON'T Take IT LYIN' DOWN''.Even more DISCO punch was added to this one.It's an infectious dose of SUPER POP,but surprisingly it failed to shift units on the scale of the previous two


The band pulled out all the stops on ''WANTED''.A hook laden tour de force which sounds like ABBA mixing it up with ''THE SONG OF THE VOLGA BOATMEN''! They were rewarded with their highest chart placing when the record reached the number 3 spot in 1979

Monday, 30 November 2015

THE BAY CITY ROLLERS - YOU MADE ME BELIEVE IN MAGIC




Three years on from the first flush of 'ROLLERMAINIA' in the UK,THE BAY CITY ROLLERS were keen to build upon their NORTH AMERICAN success and enlisted producer HARRY HASLIN to work on their next LP ''THE GAME''.Haslin was born in PHILADELPHIA and had helped to swing DAVID BOWIE in the direction of SOUL/FUNK music when he worked on the song ''FAME'' {which became Bowie's first US hit}




The rollers had also dabbled in this direction with ''THE DISCO KID'' and ''DON'T STOP THE MUSIC'' that same year,but ''YOU MADE ME BELIEVE IN MAGIC'' would prove to be their but their big DISCO moment in 1977

Another figure from the Philly music scene LEN BOOTH was brought on board to provide the song which gave them a US #10 in Billboard in August of that year.





Len Booth was certainly a talented songwriter and released some worthy singles under his own name during the following couple of years.His 1978 release ''LOVE WON'T BE DENIED'' received a fair number of 'DISCO SPINS' in the UK and is still fondly remembered

Thursday, 12 November 2015

THE HUSH - GET FLARED!

''Come On,Get Em' On
A Pair Of Flares,Long And Strong
Far Out,Look Just Right
Wear Em' Everyday And Night''

''GET FLARED'' was issued as a one sided promo record for the AUSTRALIAN jeans company COLONIAL in 1974.The Hush were from SYDNEY and played in a HARD ROCK/GLAM BOOGIE style that another local band:AC/DC would later conquer the world with


The band were starting to hit big down under and their first studio LP ''GET ROCKED'' had just been released.This promo single contained a reworked version of the albums title track


The Hush went from strength to strength after this.Their version of LARRY WILLIAMS ''BONY MARONIE'' hit the No.1 spot in Australia the following year and the group established themselves as a major live draw with a string of top selling LP's


Thursday, 5 November 2015

DENIM DISCO MIXCLOUD PAGE


All of the Denim Disco Mixes are now available on MIXCLOUD:
https://www.mixcloud.com/DenimDisco/

ZENDA JACKS ON TOPPOP

TopPop was a Dutch TV Show which ran weekly from 1970 untill 1988.A number of performances are now available on their YouTube channel including this one by ZENDA JACKS.
''RUB MY TUMMY'' was her debut 45.It picked up a decent amount of radio spins in the UK and was a minor hit in '74



Click this link to see more performances from the TopPop archive:

https://www.youtube.com/user/webportalavro?feature=watch

Wednesday, 25 March 2015

IT'S CRUNCH TIME!

I never thought I would see footage of the super obscure UK glam rockers CRUNCH powering their way through the BOVVER STOMPIN' classic ''LET'S DO IT AGAIN,but look what's just turned up on YouTube! Stare in wonder as the boys clad in pastel leather and silver platforms give it their all for an exuberant audience on the SWISS TV SHOW ''HITS A GO GO''

THIN LIZZY - NIGHTLIFE




NIGHTLIFE was the forth LP by Irish Rockers THIN LIZZY,released in 1974 and the first to feature guitarists BRIAN ROBERTSON and SCOT GORMAN.It's worthy of closer inspection despite the fact that it contains none of their hits and tracks from it are rarely included on 'best of' CD's.The cover art by JIM FITZPATRICK depicting a BLACK PANTHER in front of a US CITY SKYLINE give a clue to the contents:A Lizzy LP that shows the influence of R 'n' B,SOUL and FUNK more than any before or after it

The LP kicks off with ''MOTHER MARY'' a classic melodic lizzy song,followed by a CHICAGO BLUES influenced number in the form of NIGHT LIFE.Third up is the hard riffing killer''IT'S ONLY MONEY''



The tempo drops down for Track 4:''STILL IN LOVE WITH YOU'',PHIL LYNOTT singing a duet version with Scottish soul singer FRANKIE MILLER.The next ''FRANKIE CARROLL'' clocks in at just over 2mins and it's a shame the song wasn't expanded and built upon a bit more.Turn the record over and you have a genuine highlight in the form of ''SHOWDOWN'' a FUNK ROCK track that features an awesome BASSLINE,slick WAH-WAH GUITAR parts and SOULFUL FEMALE BACKING VOCALS



The instrumental ''BANSHEE'' could have been great if it had gone beyond the fade at 1.25.Perhaps it was left that way deliberately as the CELTIC MELODY works as an introduction to the next track ''PHILOMENA'',a song Phil penned for his mother.''SHA-LA-LA'' rocks hard and includes some great string bending guitar lines and dynamic drum fills from BRIAN DOWNEY.The icing on the cake for this fine album comes in the form of ''DEAR HEART''.SOUL influences to the fore again:A CURTIS MAYFIELD like GROOVE from the BASS and DRUMS ,topped with a masterful Lynot vocal and SWEET STRINGS



Track List:
1. She Knows 00:04
2. Night Life 05:20
3. It's Only Money 09:18
4. Still in Love with You 12:07
5. Frankie Carroll 17:51
6. Showdown 19:56
7. Banshee 24:31
8. Philomena 26:00
9. Sha La La 29:43
10. Dear Heart 33:12

Released - 8 November 1974
Produced by - Phil Lynott, Ron Nevison