It's Instant Replay for Cherry Red's SoulMusic Records imprint with the recent reissue of Dan Hartman's 1978 disco classic of the same name. The album featuring the Disco chart-topper has been expanded with four bonus singles for this new edition. It's difficult to pigeonhole Dan Hartman. The late musician-songwriter-producer-artist had begun his musical career as a member of psychedelic rock outfit The Legends before backing Johnny Winter and then, crucially, Johnny's brother Edgar. As a
You Bet Your Love: Robinsongs Reissues Funky Sets From Herbie Hancock, Zapp
Today, we're spotlighting a pair of funk-drenched new releases from Cherry Red's Robinsongs imprint! When Herbie Hancock's The Joni Letters received an Album of the Year Grammy Award in 2008, it became the first jazz album to take the trophy since 1965 - underscoring the legendary pianist's enduring relevance in his fifth decade as a recording artist. Since Takin' Off in 1962 with his Blue Note debut of the same name, Hancock had pushed the envelope of jazz, including a period in the late
Rhino, Omnivore Plan Black Friday Gold For Record Store Day
That chill in the air and the buzz in your favorite record store can only mean one thing: Record Store Day Black Friday is nearly upon us! On November 25, indie record retailers and labels great and small will partner together to issue dozens of exclusive packages you can't get anywhere else (except maybe eBay, after the fact, though we're not happy about that.) The vinyl boom refuses to end, but owing to the lesser size of the event in general, there don't seem to be as many titles as usual.
Doin' the Do: Cherry Pop Reissues, Expands Betty Boo's "Boomania"
Boomania is back! Earlier this year, Cherry Red's Cherry Pop imprint reissued GRRR! It's Betty Boo, the 1992 sophomore album by Alison Clarkson, a.k.a. pop/dance/hip-hop chanteuse Betty Boo. Now, the label has turned the clock back to Boomania, the infectious 1991 debut album by the stylish and genre-bending multiple hyphenate rapper-singer-songwriter-producer. The Beatmasters' 1989 U.K. No. 7 hit "Hey DJ/I Can't Dance (To That Music You're Playing)" – based on Martha and the Vandellas' 1968
Release Round-Up: Week of October 7
Welcome to this week's Release Round-Up which just might be the biggest slate of the year to date! Lou Reed, The RCA and Arista Album Collection (RCA/Legacy) (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.) Legacy brings together 16 Lou Reed albums from his RCA and Arista years on 17 CDs, all remastered directly under Reed's supervision before his untimely passing in 2013. An 80-page hardbound booklet with detailed liner notes, five art prints and a poster round out this limited edition package. Read
One Way Ticket: BBR Reissues Disco Hits From Coffee, Eruption
Big Break Records has dug into the vaults of De-Lite Records for a heady brew. The 1980 album Slippin' and Dippin' from the trio known as Coffee ("hot, black and sweet," per group founder Elaine Sims!) has newly arrived on CD in an expanded edition boasting five bonus tracks. Elaine Sims, Gwen Hester and Dee Dee Bryant got their start on the streets of Chicago. Though they initially comprised a line-up of the quartet Portraits of Black, the departure of Portraits member Betty Caldwell left
Disco Nights: Big Break Gives GQ a "Standing Ovation" on New Anthology
"The feeling's right, and the music's tight, on the disco nights..." With the irresistible rhythms of 1979's "Disco Nights (Rock Freak)," the members of GQ established themselves as premier artists at Arista Records and indeed of the disco generation. Between 1979 and 1981, the band notched seven successes on the U.S. R&B chart, with three crossing over to the Pop survey. All of those hits, and more, are collected on Big Break Records' definitive new anthology Standing Ovation: The Story
Knock On Wood: Cherry Pop Collects Amii Stewart's "The Hits: Remixed"
Cherry Pop is knocking on wood with the new reissue of Amii Stewart's 1985 remix collection The Hits: Remixed. Though often characterized as a one-hit wonder for her storming 1979 disco cover of Eddie Floyd's "Knock on Wood," there was much more to the talented disco chanteuse's career, as this vibrant set so aptly proves. Washington, DC-born Amy Paulette Stewart was performing in a London company of the musical Bubbling Brown Sugar when she was spotted by Hansa Records' Barry Leng. The
Towering Twosome: Robinsongs Reissues Jazz-Disco Classics From Lalo Schifrin, Brick
In a career now in its seventh decade, there's little that Lalo Schifrin hasn't accomplished. The four-time Grammy-winning Argentinean composer-arranger-conductor created one of the most memorable television themes of all time with his "Mission: Impossible," worked with Count Basie, Cannonball Adderley and Sarah Vaughan, scored innumerable films (racking up six Oscar nominations in the process) and released a variety of solo albums for labels including Verve, Tabu and CTI. Two of his LPs for
Shake It Up: Hot Shot Offers Hi-NRG On "Shoot Your Shot: The Divine Anthology"
John Waters once called the late Divine his "fearless muse." The so-called Pope of Trash and People's Pervert noted when speaking of the documentary film about his friend's life, "Who else could convincingly turn from teenage delinquent to mugger, prostitute, unwed mother, child abuser, fashion model, nightclub entertainer, murderess and jailbird, all in the same movie?" Indeed, Divine's career was an extraordinary, and extraordinarily unlikely, one. Divine's musical side has been celebrated
People of the World, Rise: BBR Reissues "The Trammps III" and Gaynor's "Glorious"
Today, we're looking at two recent releases on Cherry Red's Big Break Records label from two legends of disco (and so much more): The Trammps and Gloria Gaynor! "Where were you when the lights went out in New York City?" asked The Trammps in song on the opening track of 1977's Trammps III. (The answer? Everyone was making love, naturally!) The urgent, atypically topical track by Allan Felder, Ron Tyson and arranger-producer Norman Harris is just one highlight on this underrated album,
What'cha Gonna Do: Big Break Reissues Chaka Khan, Brenda Russell, Stargard
Big Break Records has unveiled its an exciting slate of releases from The Emotions, Kool and the Gang, Gloria Gaynor, and more! But first we'd like to turn our attention to a trio of recent releases from the Cherry Red imprint that you might have missed! First up, BBR has an expanded edition of the third solo album from the one and only Chaka Khan. What'cha Gonna Do for Me was named for the infectious title song (an R&B No. 1 hit) co-written by Ned Doheny, the underrated
The Second Disc's 2016 Record Store Day Must-Haves
Tomorrow, Saturday, April 16, music fans and collectors will flock to their local independent record stores worldwide to celebrate both the sounds on those familiar round black platters and the cherished opportunity to shop for music in a physical retail environment. To many of us, both are a way of life. Each year around this time, we here at Second Disc HQ take a few moments to count down the titles to which we're most looking forward to picking up! Our very own Mike Duquette kicks things
Release Round-Up: Week of March 25
Welcome to this week's Release Round-Up! Bob Dylan, The Bootleg Series Vol. 6 - Live 1964: Concert at Philharmonic Hall (Audio Fidelity) (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K. / Amazon Canada) Bob Dylan's The Bootleg Series Vol. 6 - Live 1964: Concert at Philharmonic Hall comes to hybrid 5.0 multichannel SACD for the first time. Audio Fidelity's release will boast a full booklet (as on the original standard CD release) and is playable in stereo on all CD players. Read more here! Various
Ain't No Stoppin' Them Now: The Three Degrees Return With Philly Soul Tribute "Strategy"
For more than fifty years, The Three Degrees have been synonymous with the sound of Philadelphia R&B. The group was formed in Philly in 1963 and released its first album on the Roulette label in 1970. Over the course of the decades, the trio's membership has fluctuated considerably, but The Three Degrees' harmonious sound has remained a constant. SoulMusic Records and Cherry Red have teamed up for the March 4 release of the group's thirteenth studio album, and first since 2009. Strategy:
Butt Of Course: Cherry Red, Robinsongs Reissue Three By The Jimmy Castor Bunch
Over the course of a five-decade career, Jimmy Castor did it all. The multi-instrumentalist, singer and songwriter got his start singing doo-wop in the 1950s, inspired by his school friend Frankie Lymon. Frankie gave Jimmy a big break when he recorded his song "I Promise to Remember." Soon, Jimmy was singing with Frankie's brother Lewis Lymon, playing his trademark saxophone as a session musician, and recording his own sides for labels including Hull, Jet Set, Decca and Smash. Along the way,
Wishing On A Star: BBR Reissues, Expands Ashford and Simpson, Rose Royce On CD
Big Break Records has recently returned to the catalogues of Ashford and Simpson and Rose Royce for a trio of new, expanded and remastered reissues. Gimme Something Real (1973) and I Wanna Be Selfish (1974), Nickolas Ashford and Valerie Simpson's first two albums for Warner Bros. Records, concludes BBR's survey of the duo's WB years. Gimme Something Real introduced all but the most diehard fans to the already-famous songwriters as singer-songwriters. As "Valerie and Nick," they had released
They Are Family: BBR Reissues, Expands Sister Sledge's Debut "Circle of Love"
"We Are Family" catapulted Sister Sledge to stardom in 1979, but while the uplifting anthem was a breakthrough, it wasn't a beginning. Philadelphia-based Kathy Sledge and her three older sisters Debbie, Joni and Kim had been recording for Atlantic Records since 1973 when all four members were still teenagers. In 1975, Sister Sledge's first album, Circle of Love, was released. This lost gem has been previously released on CD in a bare-bones version, but Cherry Red's Big Break Records label has
Heat It Up: Groove Line Tells "The Salsoul Orchestra Story: 40th Anniversary Collection"
The title of The Salsoul Orchestra's second album said it all - Nice 'n' Naasty. The soul-disco orchestra, originally under the baton of MFSB alumnus Vincent Montana Jr., could serve up nice, shimmering and lushly elegant soundscapes...and naasty floor-filling grooves that practically demanded you hit the dancefloor! Happily, the group has recently received a lavish tribute in the form of a sizzling 3-CD collection from Groove Line Records (the label responsible for the recent, definitive
Release Round-Up: Week of January 29
Welcome to this week's Release Round-Up featuring a host of deluxe reissues, box sets, and more! Phil Collins, Face Value: Deluxe Edition (Atlantic/Rhino) CD: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K. / Amazon Canada LP: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K. / Amazon Canada Phil Collins' 1981 classic featuring "In the Air Tonight" gets expanded to two CDs or DD with the addition of eight live tracks and four demos (plus a new, modern cover photograph echoing the original). Ten of the twelve bonuses are new
Shoot Me (With Your Love): Tasha Thomas' Disco "Rendezvous" Is Expanded By SoulMusic Records
In recent weeks, SoulMusic Records has kept up its busy slate. Through the Caroline label, SMR has offered up reissues of The Dells' Charles Stepney-produced Cadet album Freedom Means (featuring classics like "One Less Bell to Answer," "If You Go Away" and "Make It with You"), The Dramatics' ABC release Shake It Well (featuring the hit R&B title track) and Evelyn "Champagne" King's 1988 RCA album Flirt. Through Cherry Red Group, SoulMusic has also reissued Tasha Thomas' 1979 Midnight
Big Break Records "Breaks Away" with Al Jarreau, Rose Royce
Accompanying the recent releases from The Spinners and Frantique, Big Break Records rounded out its 2015 slate with a pair of titles from Al Jarreau and Rose Royce. Renowned vocalist Al Jarreau made his album debut in 1975 with the Reprise Records release We Got By, a collection of original songs from the jazz-rooted singer. He followed that effort with Glow, incorporating tracks by a wide range of writers including Elton John, James Taylor and Antonio Carlos Jobim. Jarreau was slowly but
The Glow of Love: Groove Line Records Compiles The Music of Change, Featuring Luther Vandross, More
If ever a group lived up to its name, that group was Change. The brainchild of French-Italian music impresario and producer Jacques Fred Petrus, in collaboration with Italian-based producer/arranger Mauro Malavasi and bassist Davide Romani, Change released six albums between 1980 and 1985. Built on infectiously danceable rhythms, melodic hooks and sublimely soulful vocals, the sound of Change was primarily created by a rotating cast of Italian-based musicians and America-based vocalists.
Strut Your Funky Stuff: Philadelphia International's "Frantique" Comes to CD
Everything about Philadelphia International Records' 1979 release of the self-titled album from Frantique was unexpected. The cradle of Philly soul wasn't exactly a typical home for an LP of Eurodisco. Nor was Frantique's benefactor someone particularly associated with disco, Euro- or otherwise - the legendary maestro of elegant and silky soul, Thom Bell. But Bell had taken an interest in songwriter-producer Jack Robinson and his collaborator David Christie, enlisting them for projects by The
Raven Has Folk and Funk With Melanie and Mother's Finest
Raven Records' most recent pair of CDs certainly showcase the label's eclectic leanings! From singer-songwriter Melanie Safka, the label has a three-for-one release of her much-loved albums Candles in the Rain, Leftover Wine and Gather Me. The Melanie release is joined by a four-for-one title from pioneering funk-rockers Mother's Finest collecting the band's self-titled LP plus Mother's Finest Live, Another Mother Further and Mother Factor. Raven's release from Melanie follows the Morello