JOEY NEGRO + SEAN P PRESENT THE BEST OF DISCO SPECTRUM.

Joey Negro + Sean P Present The Best Of Disco Spectrum.

Label: BBE.

Nearly eighteen years ago, BBE released the first volume in their critically acclaimed Disco Spectrum series. It was compiled by DJ, remixer and crate digger extraordinaire Joey Negro. He was responsible for a compilation that stood head and shoulders above the competition in the crowded compilation market. The question on many people’s lips was what about a followup?

Just over five months later, and their wish was granted when Disco Spectrum 2: Real Disco For Real People;Compiled By Joey Negro was released in April 2000. Again, it was quality all the way on a compilation crammed full of classics that had inspired house. It looked as if BBE had a successful compilation series on their hands.

That proved to be the case when Disco Spectrum Volume 3 was released in May 2002. It was well worth the two-year wait and featured a mixture of classics and hidden gems. Joey Negro and Sean P had chosen well. The two top DJs were responsible for what many felt was the best instalment in the Disco Spectrum series, which seemed to be maturing like a fine wine. Music fans awaited the next instalment in the Disco Spectrum.

Sadly, there was no fourth instalment in the Disco Spectrum series. This was a brave decision, as BBE could’ve continued to release an instalment of the Disco Spectrum series every years or two. Instead, BBE moved on to other series, which went on to enjoy the same success as the Disco Spectrum series. 

Meanwhile, the tracks on the Disco Spectrum series were being remixed and sampled by producers and DJs. They also found their way onto a plethora of other compilations. However, it was Joey Negro and Sean P that got their first and introduced the tracks to a new audience. This was part of their musical education.

Since then, eighteen years have passed since the last instalment in Disco Spectrum Volume 3 was released. Even now, many people still miss the Disco Spectrum series. Some optimists thought there would be a fourth instalment in the series. However, they also think that Glen Miller is just running late. It looked as if the Disco Spectrum series was gone for good.

That was until recently, when BBE announced that the Disco Spectrum series was dusting of its white suit one last time, and heading for the dance-floor. This isn’t a fourth instalment in the series though. Instead, it’s Joey Negro + Sean P Present The Best Of Disco Spectrum, a two CD set released by BBE. Joey Negro take and  Sean P choose their twenty-one favourite tracks from the Disco Spectrum series. This is fitting, as 2017 is the twenty-first anniversary of BBE.

Much has changed since the release of Disco Spectrum Volume 3 in 2002. Nowadays, Joey Negro is DJ, remixer, producer and label head hone. He’s also approaching the veteran stage in terms of compilations. If he was a footballer, Joey Negro would be about to receive a testimonial and would be thinking about opening a sport’s shop or pub near the group. However, Joey Negro is a globetrotting DJ and is much in demand when  it comes to curating compilations. Joey Negro knows what’s called in modern parlance “a good tune.” It’s a similar case with Sean P.

Just like Joey Negro, Sean P has many strings to his bow.  London-based Sean Pennycook is an audio engineer, DJ, remixer and record collector. He’s also a veteran compiler, and has curated many a compilation, including two volumes of The Soul Of Disco for BBE and Under The Influence Volume Five for Joey Negro’s ZR Records. Recently, though, Sean P and Joey Negro travelled back in time to their Disco Spectrum days and chose twenty-one tracks from the three volumes in the series. They became Joey Negro + Sean P Present The Best Of Disco Spectrum.

Disc One.

For disc one of Joey Negro + Sean P Present The Best Of Disco Spectrum, the two veteran DJs dig deep, and combine classics aplenty with the occasional hidden gem. This includes Al Hudson and The Soul Partners, The Love Symphony Orchestra, Rare Pleasure, The Brothers, Exodus, Alfredo De La Fe, Cloud One, Blair and George Duke.

Straight away, Joey Negro + Sean P make an impression by dropping Al Hudson and The Soul Partners’ disco classic Spread Love. It was written and produced by Gary Glenn and released on ABC Records. Spread Love which also incorporates elements of proto-boogie and soul, featured on  Al Hudson and The Soul Partners’ third album Spreading Love. This disco classic is the perfect way to open disc one and indeed, Joey Negro + Sean P Present The Best Of Disco Spectrum.

Anthemic and instantly recognisable describes Rare Pleasure’s Let Me Down Easy, which was released as a single on Cheri Records in 1976. It was penned by the Andrew Louis Smith and David Jordan songwriting partnership. David Jordan also takes charge of production on this soulful, funky dance-floor filler that is a reminder of the glory days of disco.

By 1976, The Brothers were signed to RCA and released a 12” single Brothers Theme, which featured a trio of tracks that also featured on their album Don’t Stop Now. The highlight of Brothers Theme was the instrumental Under The Skin, where dancing strings, braying horns and myriad of percussion are part of an irresistible call to dance.

By 1981, disco was dead, and many DJs were now playing boogie in clubs. As a result, some disco groups were forced to reinvent their music. That was the case with Cloud One whose music moved in the direction of boogie. They were joined by Margo Williams on Don’t Let My Rainbow Pass Me By. It was penned and produced by Patrick Adam and Peter Brown, and was released on Golden Flamingo Records in 1981. Don’t Let My Rainbow Pass Me By was a memorable fusion of boogie, disco and soul, and showed DJs and dancers that there was life after disco. Later, tracks like Don’t Let My Rainbow Pass Me By would influence and influence a generation of house producers.

Much had changed for fusion pioneer George Duke by 1979. His music had evolved throughout the seventies, and fusion gave way to jazz-funk. However, it wasn’t as popular as it had been and disco was at the peak of its popularity. Everyone was jumping on the disco bandwagon before the wheels came off. This included  George Duke George Duke who joined forces with Lynn Davis on I Want You for Myself. It was written and produced by George Duke and combined elements of jazz-funk and disco with Lynn Davis soulful and sultry vocal. This was a winning combination and is the perfect way to close disc one of Joey Negro + Sean P Present The Best Of Disco Spectrum.

Disc Two.

Disc Two opens with Idris Muhammad’s dance-floor filler Could Heaven Ever Be Like This which was written by David Matthews and Tony Sarafino. It’s a track from his 1977 album Turn This Mutha Out, which was arranged and produced by David Matthews. When it came time to choose a single on the Kudu label. one track stood head and shoulders above the Could Heaven Ever Be Like,  a near nine minute Magnus Opus, which forty years later, is one of the highlights of Joey Negro + Sean P Present The Best Of Disco Spectrum.

So is John Davis and the Monster Orchestra’s cover of Ashford and Simpson’s Bourgie Bourgie, which was released as a single on SAM Records in 1979. It’s a track from The Monster Strikes Again which was released in 1979 and was John Davis and the Monster Orchestra’s swan-song. For the Philly based bandleader, producer, songwriter and musician, Bourgie Bourgie was one of John Davis and the Monster Orchestra’s finest moments of the disco era.

In 1979, Chantal Curtis released Get Another Love on Key Records. It was also the title-track to the Tunisian born singer’s one and only album Get Another Love which was released in 1979. Sadly, there was no followup to Get Another Love and six years later, Chantal Curtis passed away in Israel. She will always be remembered for Get Another Love, which eventually features a sultry vocal. Get Another Love may be something of a slow burner, but once it starts to reveal its secrets, it’s guaranteed to fill any dance-floor.

Fresh Band only ever released the one single, Come Back Lover in 1984, on the New York based Are ‘n Be Records. It was a short-lived label, and it’s finest release is Come Back Lover where the Fresh Band fuse funk and soul with boogie and disco to create a memorable dance-floor filler.

Jo.Boyer’s best known song is Isabelle and the Rain, which was released on Job Records in 1978. It was written and arranged by Jo.Boyer, while Mike Lang takes charge of the keyboards and synths on this carefully crafted dance track. It’s a fusion of disco, funk, jazz-funk and proto-boogie that has stood the test of time and sounds just as good in 2017, as it did in 1978.

Closing disc two of Joey Negro + Sean P Present The Best Of Disco Spectrum is the disco funk of Universe City’s Can You Get Down which was released in 1976 on Bob Reno’s Midland International. It was taken from the album Universe City which produced by John Davis and was also released in 1976. Backing Universe City were many Philly based musicians including producer John Davis, Craig Snyder and the legendary Don Renaldo. They play their part on the type of slick, soulful, funky and dance-floor friendly single that has made in Philly written all over it.

After twenty-one tracks Joey Negro + Sean P Present The Best Of Disco Spectrum is over. That marks an end of the long-awaited and much-anticipated Disco Spectrum comeback. It’s been a long tine coming. Fifteen years, but hey whose counting when the music is as good as that on Joey Negro + Sean P Present The Best Of Disco Spectrum. Quite simply, this is the creme de la creme of the Disco Spectrum series. 

The two veteran DJs have cherry picked the best of the three instalments in the Disco Spectrum series. Fittingly, this new compilation is entitled Joey Negro + Sean P Present The Best Of Disco Spectrum. It finds classics aplenty rubbing shoulders with oft-overlooked dance-floor fillers. They were discovered by compilers Joey Negro and Sean P between 1999 and 2002, when they were compiling the much missed Disco Spectrum series. It makes a welcome return on the ‘8th’ of September 2017, when Joey Negro + Sean P Present The Best Of Disco Spectrum will be released. 

Now that the Disco Spectrum series is about to make a welcome comeback with Joey Negro + Sean P Present The Best Of Disco Spectrum, it seems that anything is possible. Maybe even Glen Miller is still out there, and is just running late?

Joey Negro + Sean P Present The Best Of Disco Spectrum.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: