"Gimme The Good Life" says the hook of this 1980 funk track from T.S. Monk, a band led by drummer/vocalist Thelonious Sphere Monk Jr., son of the other jazz legend - Thelonious Monk. This song was the biggest of several hits from the bands 1980 debut - House Of Music. The intro to the song features the infamous horn that was sampled and used by Public Enemy for Welcome To The Terrordrome. It's also been used by Above The Law, Blackstreet, Raekwon and others.
This is a intimate 1981 clip of Marvin Gate rehearsing I Want You with his band from the couch of his hotel room in Belgium before a show. This song has been covered by Madonna, Diana Ross and others, and it has been sampled numerous times by artists including EPMD, Mary J Blidge and Three Six Mafia. The song is from the legendary musicians 13th studio album I Want You, which he recorded and mixed at his brand new recording studio - Marvin's Room Studios. The spacious recording studio, on Sunset Boulvard in Hollwood, was part studio, part apartment, and part dance club - it was even called "Studio 54 of the West Coast" because of the notorious parties.
This is the official video for jazz singer/bandleader Cab Calloway's historical Minnie The Moocher. Calloway and his amusing song were memorably featured in Betty Boop's Minnie The Moocher short released in 1932. The introduction in the Fleischer Studios produced cartoon features Calloway in live-action for 30 seconds - it is the earliest known footage of the performer. Calloway is known for popularizing call-and-response singing, as is seen here. This song, with it's drug-laced lyrics, was heavily based on Ernest Rodger's 1927 rendition of Willie The Weeper - a very early 1900's song about drug addiction.
The powerful 1935 O Fortuna by German composer Carl Orff is the definition of timeless. The song is actually a midevil Latin Galic poem from the 13th century put to music. This is one of the most played songs from classical music, and it has been and will be covered endless times. It also has been used so much in film and TV that it has been called "the most overused piece of music in film history." The piece, not surprisingly, has been sampled dozens of times by artist such as Enigma, Nas, KMFDM, Lil Kim and others. In 1991 Belgium group Apotheosis had a huge club hit with their techno remake, Carl Orff's estate triumphantly sued and stopped distribution of the unlicensed record. O Fortuna is the opening and the closing of the larger composition Carmina Burana, which is presented here in full in a one-hour German TV production from 1975.
This funky outfit from Dayton, Ohio had a huge hit in 1980 with Fantastic Voyage, the title track off their most successful album. In the late 1970's the struggling Lakeside turned down Whitefield Records and Motown Records to sign with Solar Records, where they released a solid streak of hit records throughout the 1980's. In 1994, Coolio sampled and rapped over Fantastic Voyage on his song of the same name, once again taking this groove to the top of the charts.
In the late 1980's British jazz funk band Incognito was at the forefront of the acid jazz movement. In 1990 they had a big hit with this uplifting remake of Herbert Law's Always There featuring hit-maker Jocelyn Brown on vocals. The same year that this track came out Brown's vocals were commanding dance floors worldwide on Snap's 1990 club smash The Power, which had sampled vocals from her 1986 hit Love's Gonna Get You - a song that was also famously sampled by Boogie Down Productions the same year.
This 1975 song written and performed by the gifted Minnie Riperton, and produced by Stevie Wonder, was one of the first songs lacking percussion to soar to number one on the pop charts. The year after releasing her defining hit she was diagnosed with breast cancer and given six months to live. She had a radical mastectomy and continued recording and touring, and she was one of the first celebrities to be open with the public about her battle with breast cancer. Ultimately, she died in 1979 at the age of 31. Riperton's daughter, who the song was written for, is actress/ comedian/Saturday Night Live alumni Maya Rudolph, also know from Bridesmaids.
The highly decorated actress/singer Eartha Kitt is best known for her peculiar singing style on songs like this. I agree with the title of this popular French song from the late 1940's - "It's So Good." Eartha Kitt popularized this song in the 1954 movie New Faces Of 1952, but it had been covered many times by then including a memorable Louis Armstrong version in 1950. The song continues to to be covered regularly, and has appeared numerous times in movies and television.
"Look For The Woman" says the title of this 1976 gem, an old school Chicago classic by Dr. Buzzard's Original Savannah Band - the most successful track from their self-titled first album. The big-band and swing influenced song was covered by Gloria Estefan in 1995, and in 2000 Ghostface Killah had one of his greatest hits rapping over the song on his second album. The phrase Cherchez La Femme has been traced back to a 1864 novel, and it has become a figure of speech heard in countless movies including: Hopscotch, Chinatown, Dr No, Mallrats and others. The phrase is also part of the lyrics to the theme music of TV's La Femme Nikita.
This track from the legendary Grace Jones is off her 1982 Living My Life album. The Jamaican singer/actress wrote the song about Tyrone Downie, the keyboarder from Bob Marley & The Wailers, whom she claims to have never been involved with. Before the well-known opening sequence was sampled by LL Cool J for 1996's Doin It, it had already been used by Donald D, Kid'n'Play and Naughty By Nature.
"If you like to lounge