In 1976, Max Romeo released his War Ina Babylon album, featuring the reggae classic Chase The Devil. The album was recorded with the backing of The Upsettere - house band at Lee Perry's Upsetter Studio's. The same year, another version of the song was released on a record by the Upsetters - with different lyrics. The other version is called Croaking Lizard, and it was released on a dub album by The Upsetters titled Super Ape. Chase The Devil has been sampled numerous times, such as by The Prodigy for 1992's Out Of Space.
Rocco Granata was born in Italy in 1938, he is the son of an coal miner. When he was ten years old his parents immigrated to Belgium, where he later took up the accordion and began touring around the country performing. In 1959 he released his first record, a single with the songs Manuela and Marina. The b-side, Marina, became a huge international hit song. Because of the success of the song, Granata toured the world performing, and eventually became a producer - owning two labels - Cardinal Records and Granata Records. In 1989, Marina topped the charts again with dance and club remixes commissioned by Granata. In 2013 a film about him was released in Belgium titled Marina.
Piano boogie king Meade Lux Lewis is best known for his 1927 recording debut, his rendition of Honky Tonk Train Blues. Over the years he re-recorded the song numerous times. By the end of the 1930's Lewis had personally sparked a decade-long boogie boogie craze. Lewis also inspired the 1939 creation of Blue Note Records. In 1944 he recorded Low Down Dog alongside blues shouter Big Joe Turner. see more on Turner HERE.
In 1990, Carleen Anderson, the daughter of American soul singer Vicki Anderson and step-daughter of Bobby Byrd, relocated to the UK. In the UK, Anderson met Marco Nelson and Femi Williams. The three formed an acid jazz group - Young Disciples - and signed to Talkin' Loud Records. After the success their 1990 debut single Get Together, the Young Disciples released Apparently Nothin' in 1991 - their most famous hit. It wasn't long before the group was recording and releasing their first and only album Road To Freedom, the heavily praised album featured Fred Wesley, Maceo Parker and others. The Young Disciples instantly soared to the forefront of the exploding acid jazz scene. The following year the group broke up after Anderson used the success of Apparently Nothin' to score a solo recording contract with Virgin Records.
In 1982 George Clinton released his Computer Games album. After recording dozens of Funkadelic and Parliament albums, this was his first solo album. This was also the final album Clinton recorded with the official P-Funk Collective. The album features Atomic Dog - The final P-Funk single to hit number one on the R&B charts. When the song was recorded, Clinton add-libbed most of the lyrics spontaneously during the song's recording session, he has admitted that he was in an "enhanced" state at the time. The song has been sampled in over 200 songs, including Stezo's 1989 classic It's My Turn, Dr Dre's 1992 hit Dre Day, Ice Cube's 1995 song Friday. In 1993, Snoop Doggy sampled Atomic Dog on his highly acclaimed debut single - Snoop Doggy Dogg. The single was produced by Dr Dre, who also sampled from Funkadelic's (Not Just) Knee Deep and Parliament's Give Up The Funk (Tear The Roof Off The Sucker).
See more about Clinton and Parliament/Funkadelic HERE.
In 1983, Mutume released their third album Juicy Fruit. The album was titled after it's lead single, the song the R&B funk group is best known for. Juicy Fruit had been sampled several times before rapper Notorious B.I.G. immortalized the song with his 1994 debut single single Juicy - allegedly produced by Sean "Puffy" Combs. Pete Rock has argued that he deserves proper credit on producing the original version of Juicy. Rock had been asked to do a remix of the song, he claims that Puffy heard his remix when visiting his crib - and stole it. The original version was released with the Pete Rock's beat, but it was credited to Puffy and Poke of the Trackmasters. The song hit number one on the charts, and it has been called one of the top 100 hip-hop songs ever.
In 1978 Bobby Caldwell recorded his self-titled debut album on Miami's notorious disco soul label TK Records. The album featured his only top 40 hit, his quiet storm classic What You Won't Do For Love. In an effort to ensure airplay of the R&B format album, the label intentionally portrayed Caldwell in Silhouette on the album cover and in promotions. In 1979, Billboard Magazine nominated Caldwell for best new black R&B artist of the year, he didn't win after they - and the rest of the world - discovered he isn't black. Caldwell has built a 35 year career on the popularity of this song, which has been sampled over 50 times, including by rapper 2Pac on 1997's Do For Love. Caldwell is hugely popular with legendary status in Japan, and he continues to tour the world performing. Check out this performance from 1998 in Washington DC's BET Studio's HERE.
Louis Jordan was the most successful R&B artist of the 1940's. In 1945 Jordan had his fifth number one hit of the decade with his jump blues classic Caldonia. The song was number one on the R&B chart for seven weeks, and it peaked at number six on the pop charts under the name Caldonia Boogie. The was written by Jordan, although the writing credits name his wife at the time - Fleecie Moore. Years later the two divorced after she stabbed Jordan with a knife. Caldonia was also recorded by two others in 1945 - Erskine Hawkins and Woody Herman. A 1945 Billboard review of the Hawkins version described the song as "right rhythmic rock & roll music" - this is considered to be the first time the term "rock and roll" was used to describe a style of music. In the following years the song has been covered numerous times by artist including James Brown, Muddy Waters, The Band, and many others.
In 1930 four brothers from Ohio, known as the Mills Brothers, got their big break - they were granted an audition with a CBS radio executive. The youngsters had been performing as a barbershop quartet, with unique imitations of musical instruments. After their fantastic audition they were immediately put on the air. The next day the brothers were offered a three year contract with CBS radio, and they co-starred on the beloved show The Fleischmann's Yeast Hour from 1930-31. In 1932, they were given their own radio series - they were the first African Americans to have a network show of their own. In 1931, they released their first recording, a cover of the jazz standard Tiger Rag. The recording, on Brunswick Records, soared to number one. Tiger Rag, one of the most covered jazz songs of all time, was originally recorded and copyrighted by the Original Dixieland Jass Band in 1917. By the 1920's there had already been hundreds of recordings of the song. By the 1930's the song had appeared in over a dozen films and cartoons - including Max Fleischer's Betty Boop & Grampy in 1935. (see HERE) The Mills Brothers re-recorded the song for the cartoon, and they also recorded songs for two other Fleischer cartoons.
When Billboard published it's first chart in July 1940, In The Mood by popular band leader Glenn Miller topped the charts for thirteen weeks straight. In The Mood is one of the most popular big band songs of all-time. It was written by Joe Garland and and Andy Razaf - a team of Tin Pan Alley composers. The song was originally sold to bandleader Artie Shaw - who ended up rejecting the song. At eight minutes long, the song arrangement was too long for recordings at the time. The song was then offered to Glen Miller, an arranger himself, who bought the song and shortened the arrangement to record it. The song is heavily based on the song Tar Paper Stomp, which was recorded by New Orleans bandleader Joeseph "Wingy" Manone in 1930. In The Mood uses Marone's melody, which Marone had failed to properly copyright protect. When In The Mood became a big hit, Miller and his record label paid Manone off to not contest their copyright. This clip from the 1954 film The Glenn Miller Story stars Jimmy Stewart as Glenn Miller.
"If you like to lounge