Donna Summer sings "Bad Girls" a capella

Enjoy disco diva Donna Summer's incredible isolated vocal track from "Bad Girls" (1979). Toot toot, beep BEEP. The song is about sex work and the police. From Gavin Edwards' book "Is Tiny Dancer Really Elton’s Little John?":

“I was in my office in the old Casablanca [records] building,” Summer told me. “I was the only artist allowed to have an office there -- [Casablanca head] Neil didn’t want me too far away. I sent out my secretary to do something, and the police stopped her on Sunset Boulevard. She was dressed in business attire, but they were trying to pick her up. That ticked me off. All day, I pondered why that would happen to innocent people–and then I developed compassion for the girls working on the street.” And the “toot-toot, beep-beep” that concluded the track? “I figured, what do guys do when they pick up girls? I had to emulate them tooting their horns.”

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Groovy synth Star Wars soundtrack from Japan (1978)

In 1978, Japanese electronic music maestro Osamu Shoji (1932-2018) released this killer analog synth reimagining of the Star Wars soundtrack. I find Shoji's take on the familiar themes to be far groovier than the disco exploitation of Meco's US chart-topping "Star Wars and Other Galactic Funk" released the previous year.

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Florida band sings awesome love song

Love was so much easier in the 80s.

KC and The Sunshine Band will always and forever be a favorite. Read the rest

Hungry Like The Wolf on a Solton Ketron Programmer 24

The Solton Ketron Programmer 24 is a 1985 sample-based synthesizer described as "The Italo Disco machine". They used to be on eBay, but good luck finding one nowawadays for much less than $2,000.

Hungry Like The Wolf is Duran Duran's breakthrough hit, which reached #3 in the US in 1982.

The above video is a remix of Hungry Like The Wolf performed on a Solton Ketron Programmer 24. Jump to 3:20 if you don't want to watch it being programmed.

Following is some more Programmer 24 action and a link to its dry, ripped samples. Musicians in the audience will purchase this sample pack and further reimagine the 1980s as if Giorgio Moroder was personally responsible for all of it.

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Disco cover of Lou Reed's "Walk on the Wild Side" from 1979

In 1979, jazz flautist Herbie Mann's album Yellow Fever featured this disco cover of Lou Reed's "Walk on the Wild Side." As Lou once advised, "Pervert your sense of decorum."

(via Weird Universe)

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1979 Disco World Championship

Note the early tastes of breakdancing, here and there. The exaggerated fraternity of nations is nice, too!

The event took place at the Empire Ballroom in London; the winner was Julie Brown [citation needed]. This appears to be the UK TV broadcast of the same highlights, with the original audio:

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YMCA to promote self with famous disco song it once reviled

After 40 years of trademark threats and general grousing, the Y.M.C.A. (or at least one international branch of it) is embracing the eponymous Village People song, Y.M.C.A.: it's commissioned a cover version from singer and D.J. Boy George to promote the organization.

The decision to embrace the song – along with queerness and marriage equality – came from speaking to young people. “It was a challenging conversation for us as leaders – the baby boomers and Gen X,” Crole says. “We have to let go – it wasn’t about what we thought. It was about the young people.”

Crole says she didn’t consult with Christian organisations who oppose marriage equality. “Research shows an overwhelming link between marriage equality and mental health – we are prepared to stand up for that,” she says. The organisation itself, while based on Christian values, is not associated with any one church group.

Note how even at the point of acceptance, the proverbial "baby boomers and Gen X" still have to tell themselves ever-so-slightly delusional stories about the abstract meanings of things. At least they got there! Read the rest

You could own the light-up dance floor from Saturday Night Fever

The fantastic light-up dance floor from Saturday Night Fever (1977) will go up for auction in a couple of weeks. The 24' x 36' floor, outfitted with more than 250 lights, was built and installed at Brooklyn's 2001 Odyssey nightclub specifically for the film. When the place closed in 2005, former employee Vito Bruno bought it. Auction house Profiles in History expects it to fetch $1 to $1.5 million.

Can you dig it? I knew that you could.

(Reuters)

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The World Disco Finals of 1980 are the distraction you need today

They’re almost crazy enough to distract from the election. Almost.

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Cat ballet, 1970s-style

I find to my amazement that we haven't posted the legendary Ballet Zoom Cats, spotted doing the viral rounds again lately. Consider the omission rectified! This is, for the record, the second-best cat video ever.

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Disco remix of Infinite Yul

They put Infinite Yul on proper TV and the inevitable has happened: is has been improved. Enjoy this disco remix, courtesy of Dean Caldicott.

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Electra's disco classic "Feels Good (Carrots & Beets)" (1982)

Lost and found. Read the rest

Dig this Star Wars Disco from 1977, and May the Fourth be with you

From the classic Meco album, Star Wars and Other Galactic Funk (1977).

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Dig this incredible Italian disco TV show from 1979

Get your groove on with the incredible opening sequence to Tilt, a 1979 Italian disco TV show hosted by Stefania Rotolo. Can you dig it? I knew that you could.

(via r/ObscureMedia, thanks UPSO!)

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Heatwave helps leave your worries behind

Including a fine example of the disco call. The Groove Line by Heatwave. Read the rest

Disco Beethoven, in honor of his birthday!

In honor of Ludwig van Beethoven's 245th birthday today, here is Walter Murphy's "A Fifth of Beethoven" (1976). Can you dig it? I knew that you could.

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Photos of Studio 54 (1978-1980)

Photographer Tod Papageorge's new book Studio 54 documents the infamous 1970s New York City disco during its coke and boogie-fueled heyday. See a sampling of the photos over at Paper and buy a copy from publisher Stanley/Barker here.

Papageorge writes:

“The 66 photographs in this book were made between 1978-80 in Studio 54, a New York discothèque that, for a handful of years, was the place where celebrities, partygoers, and those crazy for dancing most wanted to be and be seen. Because of this, it was difficult to get into: the imperturbable doormen who doled out access according to rules that only they seemed to know made sure of it. The most evident way of winning them over was to be beautiful, but only the famous or socially connected could assume that they’d be shooed around the flock of hopefuls milling on the street side of the entrance rope and through the door. Once inside, though, everyone there seemed thrilled by the fact, no matter how they managed to accomplish it, a feeling fed by the throbbing music and the brilliantly designed interior, which, from night to night, could suggest anything from Caliban’s cave to a harem.”

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