High School Yearbook Photo

"More than a place, the Shady Dell was and will forever remain a state of mind." - Shady Del Knight

"More than a place, the Shady Dell was and will forever remain a state of mind." - Shady Del Knight

Monday, June 14, 2010

The D-Team: Episode 8

In 1972, a crack Dell Rat unit was sent to prison by the Unific Court of Love for a crime they didn't commit..... (Death by Disco).

These men promptly escaped from a maximum security stockade to the York, PA underground. Today, still wanted by the government, they survive as soldiers of soul and revivers of rock ‘n roll.

If you have a problem (with hip hop divas and gangsta rap)...

if no one else can help...

and if you can find them...

maybe you can hire...

The D-Team!

I pity the fool
who don't like these songs!

"Rhymes" O.V. Wright (September 1976)

In the 1970's some of the coolest sounds to be found anywhere on the planet were coming out of the Memphis studios of Hi Records. "Rhymes," co-written by Al Green and performed by R&B great O.V. Wright, made only a brief chart appearance in September and October of 1976, but the silky smooth southern style soul song made a lasting impression on me.

"You Hurt Me for the Last Time" Inez Foxx (September 1972)

There were Stax Sirens and there were Volt Vamps.
Inez Foxx was my favorite Volt Vamp!

A few years after achieving a major hit with "Mockingbird,"
a classic soul duet that she sang with her brother Charlie, Carolina songbird Inez Foxx embarked on a solo career.

Inez went to Memphis where she recorded for Stax during the legendary record company's final years. Inez released an album of fine R&B material called At Memphis but it failed to catch on. In 1972 Inez released a single that is nothing less than a dynamite doublesider. Side A is one of the greatest and funkiest R&B girl power anthems ever - "You Hurt Me for the Last Time."

"You Hurt Me for the Last Time" is my Pick to Click. This Stax sizzler cooks! It's funkier than a mosquito's tweeter!
Yet it came and went virtually unnoticed.

It should come as no surprise therefore that this Inez Foxx stormer is the latest inductee into my Shady's Law Hall of Shame, a special place reserved for underachieving songs that coulda been, woulda been, and shoulda been hits!

On the B side is another southern fried R&B classic by Inez... the cautionary "Watch the Dog (That Brings the Bone)."


"Circuit's Overloaded" - Inez Foxx (July 1974)

The gifted Inez Foxx made a curtain call in the summer of 1974 with an early disco sound.

Inez had the joint jumpin' and the jukebox blowin' a fuse with "Circuit's Overloaded."

"Only the Strong Survive" - Darrell Banks (1969)

In the spring of 1969 Jerry Butler scored a Top 5 hit with "Only the Strong Survive."

Darrell Banks, the church trained secular singer that many considered Soul's finest voice...the man who gave the Dell and northern soul dance clubs in the UK two colossal hits

on one 45 when he waxed "Open the Door to Your Heart" b/w "Our Love (is in the Pocket)" - covered the Ice Man's hit with aplomb on his Stax/Volt album Here to Stay.

Darrell Banks' entire Here to Stay album is contained on the excellent other Motown soul compilation CD Rare Stamps, which includes fine tracks by soul mates J.J. Barnes and Steve Mancha. Highly recommended!

Unfortunately, Darrell Banks was not here to stay. In March of 1970 Darrell was gunned down and killed by an off duty police officer in a love triangle gone bad.

"Hollywood Hot" - Eleventh Hour (November 1975)

Saw 'em on Bandstand. They rocked. IIRC they had blinking lights on their costumes and embedded in their afros. They were Eleventh Hour, a mid-70s disco funk group assembled by veteran producer Bob Crewe.

Crewe, who a decade earlier co-wrote a string of hits for the Four Seasons with Bob Gaudio, wrote and produced "Hollywood Hot" and "Bumper to Bumper" for Eleventh Hour. Both became dance club hits. "Hollywood Hot" spent an impressive 16 weeks on the R&B Singles chart but somehow never managed to rise above #45.

Eleventh Hour was most likely inspired by George Clinton's
P-Funk dynasty and groups like Earth Wind & Fire, Average White Band and Kool and the Gang. Listen now as Eleventh Hour gives up the funk, beginning with "Hollywood Hot."

Eleventh Hour was a studio aggregation rather than an actual touring ensemble, but when Bob Crewe trotted his creation in front of the cameras on Bandstand that day,
I'm sure the group's edgy look helped to sell records.
I bought their act hook, line and sinker. Before Dick Clark could say "so long" I was out the door and up the street at Two Guys grabbing a copy of the album which contained the full length versions of these two gems plus several other funky dance tracks.

"Bumper to Bumper" Eleventh Hour (November 1975)

I highly recommend the Hollywood Hot album because it's early disco funk done right! 45 minutes of Eleventh Hour is time well spent!

Back in the day I loved the nightlife.
I loved to boogie on the disco 'round, oh yea.

There was just one problem. I was shy, insecure and immature. To my detriment I overcompensated by becoming a poser and a pretender. Let's face it... I was a jive turkey. When I went out clubbin' I called myself Vanilla Shake. John Revolta was more like it! I carried a funky ole jumbo giant toothbrush so that I could look cool brushing my teeth out on the dance floor.
Boy, could I clear a room! In retrospect, I realize that I was essentially hiding behind that oversized prop. Now that I'm older and wiser I can see that I would have been much more of a hit with the ladies if I had worn a genuine disco fever medallion around my neck!

Yeah, that's the ticket! They's babe magnets, sho 'nuff!
Oh, if I only knew then what I know now!

Don't miss the next thrill-packed episode of The D-Team, coming soon!

I love it
when a plan comes together!

Have a Shady day!

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