Posted by Billyjam, January 8, 2009 10:48am | Post a Comment

Of all genres of popular music from the 1950's up til the present day, disco is perhaps the most discrimated against and unfairly hated upon Ironically, the hate is oft times spewed by the very same people who will be the first to dance to or sing along with said disco hits. Of course, karaoke nights and wedding DJs have only helped make some songs less enjoyable than perhaps they should be due to over exposure and bad sing alongs. A prime example would be Gloria Gaynor's "I Will Survive," which is still a great song even 31 years later but might be more enjoyable if we had only heard 3 million fewer times in our lives. The video for that song, along with nine other disco classics, is below. 

The videos include Lipps Inc.'s "Funkytown" from 1979, A Taste Of Honey's "Boogie Oogie Oogie" from '78, Anita Ward's "Ring My Bell" from '79 and, from that same year, Sister Sledge's second biggest hit "He's The Greatest Dancer" (their biggest hit was the eternally popular "We Are Family," which was also released that same year). 

Also included is what I consider to be the greatest and most influential disco record of all time, the Giorgio Moroder-produced Donna Summer song "I Feel Love" from her 1977 album I Remember Yesterday (Casablanca) and released as a single. So innovative was Moroder's futuristic production on this track, according to the liner notes of his Sound + VIsion box set, that, in 1977 while David Bowie was recording with Brian Eno in Berlin, "Eno came running in and said, 'I have heard the sound of the future'...he puts on 'I Feel Love' by Donna Summer…He said, 'This is it, look no further. This single is going to change the sound of club music for the next fifteen years.'"

What made Donna Summer unique in disco was that she was as much an album artist as she was a singles artist. Most other disco acts (like early hip-hop and a lot of house music) were primarily singles acts who released incredible 12" singles (many one-off hits) but didn't release albums or if they did the records were not always worth buying. Hence, if you are looking to buy disco music at Amoeba Music, the best place to head is the compilations section where there are many hit-packed (as well the more obscure non-radio disco hit) disco (and funk) CD collections released by labels such as Rhino, Thump, Flashback, and Robbins Entertainment, to name but a few.

                 Anita Ward "RIng My Bell" (1979)

A Taste of Honey "Boogie Oogie Oogie" (1978)

Sister Sledge "He's The Greatest Dancer" (1979)

Evelyn Champagne King "Shame" (1978)

The Emotions "Best of my Love" (1977)

Lipps Inc "Funkytown" (1979)

Cheryl Lynn "To Be Real" (1979)

Donna Summer "I Feel Love" (1977)

                                                       The Tramps "Disco Inferno" (1976)

                                              Gloria Gaynor "I Will Survive" (1978)

Relevant Tags

Disco (44), Donna Summer (19), Gloria Gaynor (1), 1970's (33)