Blues and Soul Music Magazine

Issue 1101

Welcome To B&S



Back In The Day - November 1980 Issue's 315/316

Back In The Day with Sharon Davis
Back In The Day with Sharon Davis

I very nearly killed myself balancing on a ladder in my garage to pull out one of the boxes holding my back copies of B&S. Anyway, the very fact that I’m writing this proves St Jude was looking out for me. So, let’s return to 1980….

Aretha Franklin graced the magazine cover to advertise David Nathan’s B&S exclusive under the heading 'Lady Soul Cooks'. The pictures accompanying the interview showed her in The Blues Brothers movie where, playing a waitress, she erupted into Think . A slice of film history indeed…. after 14 years with Atlantic, she switched to Arista to release her finest album in years. Titled Aretha, she shone brightest on Come To Me….. B&S Newsbeat included news that Kool & The Gang were due to tour the UK. The group’s Celebration album had just been released, from which the title track had been lifted as a single. It was their first product since Ladies Night the previous year…..Eddy Grant, who had recently hit the charts with Living On The Front Line, resigned with Ensign Records. Do You Feel My Love was scheduled for release…...

A gold album was awarded to George Benson for his Give Me The Night, while The O’Jays, after 23 years since their formation, had sold a staggering total of over 10 million albums during their prolific career……Betty Everett signed to 20th Century to release Hungry For You…..the top UK soul album was Randy Crawford’s Now We May Begin, with George Benson’s Give Me The Night and Bob Marley’s Uprising as follow-ups…..Stevie Wonder’s Masterblaster (Jammin’) was the top soul single; Ms Crawford’s One Day I’ll Fly Away at two, and Odyssey’s If You’re Looking For A Way Out at three….New US albums included The Jacksons’ Triumph... where the five brothers excelled on the album’s only true ballad Time Waits For No One…..Following his brief flirtation with Euro disco artist Amii Stewart, Johnny Bristol reverts to solo status with his next single Love No Longer..…Jimmy Cliff signed to MCA (US) with the initial album release I Am The Living…..The trio Coffee and their chat with Mr Nathan was spread across the centre pages. The girls’ De-Lite album Slippin’ And Dippin’ had just been released. The trio’s recording career began in 1976 when they recorded a single for Lovelite Records titled Your Lovin’ Ain’t As Good As Mine produced by Clarence Johnson, who co-produced the ladies’ current album with Riccardo Williams....

The Detroit Spinners cancelled their planned British tour because they had fallen behind with their recording commitments. They hoped to re-schedule for the New Year….Have already mentioned Bob Marley but this time it’s about rumours within the music industry regarding his health. It was announced that he was suffering from severe exhaustion and not cancer as had been rumoured following treatment in New York’s Sloan Kettering Hospital…..ah, and I wrote a piece about 400 Pounds Of Soul – getting to grips with the Two Tons Of Fun, later The Weather Girls. As the Tons they supported Sylvester on record and stage – an explosive combination to say the least, but it was in the air that the two would part company to enable Izora and Martha to enjoy their own career…..Teena Marie’s album Irons In The Fire had just been issued, from which I Need Your Lovin’ was extracted as a single….High Inergy’s Make Me Yours single prompted reviewer Mick Clark to write – “Motown have high hopes that High Inergy will turn out to be the Supremes of this decade. (the single) is really a very average song with a slight sixties feel to it that makes the comparison with Diana etc easier”…..Of the Commodores’ Heroes single, he penned – “About a year ago I voiced the opinion, in these very pages, that the Commodores should no longer be seriously considered as a soul group and that the quality of their releases had been steadily declining over the last four albums. The release of their ‘Heroes’ album did nothing but enhance that opinion”……

The Crusaders were featured in the magazine’s regular Hall Of Fame column …In Checkin’ It Out, Frank Elson caught up with Eddie Floyd who was in the UK to promote his current single The Beat Song and to check out the possibilities of touring with a sixties show….John Abbey, on the other hand, in his New American Singles column wrote that a new Jermaine Jackson album was due with the imaginative title of Jermaine. He wrote – “And though the prodigal Jackson is going to have a job trying to emulate Let’s Get Serious, the new single Little Girl, Don’t You Worry is a far stronger bet than ‘You’re Supposed To Keep Your Love For Me’…… Of Evelyn “Champagne” King’s new release, he opined - “It’ll be tough (for her) to ever outdo Shame but, together with her producer, T Life, she bubbles brightly enough at times on her third RCA set Call Me. ….John also came ‘Face To Face’ with Maurice and Verdine White from Earth Wind & Fire. They chatted about the new album Faces and a whole lot more…..

Reporting from New York, Mr Nathan mentioned in his American Boogie page that he saw Nina Simone at NY’s chic Grand Finale – “whose musical policy has expanded to include such attractions as Dusty Springfield and Nancy Wilson. ..(Nina) sounded hoarse and so there seemed to be a good deal of effort involved with her performance: however, miraculously, she seemed to grab the audience’s attention and mysteriously created a magic in the room which belied her obvious vocal problems.”.. …And in an advertisement for his dj-ing skills, Mr Chris Hill sat in a chair while a lady dressed in a basque, stockings and suspenders stood behind him. What the hell has this to do with spinning discs? Or have I missed out on something!


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