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History Of The Disco Sound You Didn’t Know About

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History Of The Disco Sound You Didn't Know About
The classic Disco sound can be defined by a prominent drum machine beat, funky bassline and itchy ‘chicken scratch’ rhythm, played tautly and close to the neck of an electric guitar. Sumptuous string arrangements, generally high vocals and a jangle of hi-hat cymbals add a theatricality befitting the glittering environments and colorfully dressed patrons of the discos themselves, as do dramatic piano glissandi that tend to come sweeping out of nowhere. Upbeat lyrics almost exclusively about love, empowerment or disco dancing complete a heady mix.

The roots of Disco can be heard in the dance rhythms, punchy vocals and jingly hi-hat of Motown records in the 60s, and the smoother, string-laden Philadelphia Sound that began to challenge Detroit as the dominant force in soul music on the cusp of the 60s and 70s.

history disco
A lot of the inspiration for Disco can be attributed to MFSB, the house band at Philadelphia’s Sigma Sound Studios, which played on one of the first hits with a recognizable Disco sound: “Love Train” by vocal harmony group The O’Jays. MFSB stood for Mother Father Sister Brother, if you want the clean version, or Mother-Fucking Sons of Bitches if you want to know how hot they played. Either way, “Love Train” had most of what you could want from a Disco song, including its call for unity and inclusion – People all over the world,  join hands – that was central to New York’s club ethos.

It came out in 1972 and topped the US charts early the following year. Other contenders for Disco’s first big hit include “Rock The Boat” by the Hues Corporation and the orchestral instrumental “Love’s Theme” by Barry White’s Love Unlimited Orchestra.

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Arguably the record that really nailed down the sound of Disco, though, was “Rock Your Baby” by George McCrae, which became a worldwide chart-topper in the summer of 1974. The song was written by Harry Wayne Casey – the ‘KC’ from KC and the Sunshine Band – and his bandmate Richard Finch. They cut the backing track as a Sunshine Band record at TK Records in Miami but Casey couldn’t manage the song’s high notes. McCrae happened to be on hand to stand in and went on to sell 11 million copies. As well as McCrae’s sky-high Ah-AHHs and calls for his Woooo-man to hold me in your arms and rock your baby, the record was one of the first to feature a drum machine.

KC and the Sunshine band weren’t left on the sidelines by McCrae’s success. With Casey on vocals and keyboards, the group went on to enjoy a string of Disco hits, including “Get Down Tonight”, “(Shake, Shake, Shake) Shake Your Booty”, and “That’s The Way (I Like It)”. As the white leader of a large band of predominantly black musicians and backing singers, Casey epitomised Disco’s multiculturalism.

disco sound history
Gloria Gaynor, meanwhile, became the music’s first female diva with an album specially made for the dance clubs. Produced by Jay Ellis, Meco Monardo, Tony Bongiovi and Harold Wheeler – collectively known as the Disco Corporation of America – the first side of her 1974 long-player “Never Can Say Goodbye” comprised just three songs, “Honey Bee”, the title track and “Reach Out, I’ll Be There”, run together into a continuous 19-minute swathe of music, characterised by a thumping beat, swirling strings and Gaynor’s soaring vocals. It was an industry first and Gaynor, who had been singing in clubs since the mid- 60s, was initially unsure about the extended format, observing that there were large stretches of music when she wasn’t singing. The producers told her: “You better learn to disco dance, then!”

The risk paid off when the disc took the dancefloors by storm and DJs played the whole 19 minutes. The extracted single, a cover of the Jackson 5’s “Never Can Say Goodbye”, was the first song to top the Disco Action chart when it was introduced by music trade paper Billboard to chronicle the emerging New York scene. It also made the Top 10 of the US pop charts and took Gaynor around the world, hitting No.3 in Canada and No.2 in the UK.

Hi, my name is Erick Ycaza. I have a BA in Advertising & Graphic Design. This blog is to provide you with daily music news and share my personal style.

Disco

Sinful Nuns Go Wild In “Religion” Music Video By Shura

Shura stars a lesbian version of the Pope in her recent video for “Religion”.

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Shura
stars a lesbian version of the Pope in her recent video for “Religion (U Can Lay Your Hands On Me)”. Definitely, she knows how to create controversy. In the clip, you will see two sinful nuns making out for the first time. So, if you wonder how nuns deal with sexual urges, these funny visuals might give you a clue, LOL. Moreover, the song itself is a catchy Disco gem. It sounds so sexy that I swear I’m listening to the whole track on repeat. Undoubtedly, Shura is a new artist to watch in 2019.

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Disco

This Heartbreaking Music Video From Madonna Will Make You Cry

Madonna has written her deepest song ever! “God Control” forms part of her 14th studio album, ‘Madame X’.

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Madonna
has written her deepest song ever! “God Control” forms part of her 14th studio album, ‘Madame X’. I would dare to say it’s innovating as this is the first time I hear a political song under the Disco genre. In addition, you can expect a heartbreaking music video about gun violence. Trust me, if you are a highly emotional person like myself, this clip will make you cry.

Somehow, visuals remind me of the tragic shooting massacre at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando, Florida (2016). This horrible incident must not happen again, and I really hope we can become aware that violence won’t solve anything. The Queen Of Pop has stated that she would like to see changes in the American legislation. Indeed, sooner or later we have to wake up!

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Get Your Dancing Shoes For Disco, Madonna Teases “God Control” Visuals

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Madonna
is making her return to the D.I.S.C.O. game with a brand new single called “God Control”. In my opinion, this is the best track off her latest album, ‘Madame X’. Recently, The Queen of Pop teased the upcoming “God Control” visuals via Instagram. If I’m not mistaken, the song is a critique of America’s gun laws. Certainly, this subject got people’s attention and without a doubt, it already smells like a BIG funky hit. I think it was filmed in New York City and it’s also inspired by the legendary Studio 54 club. Can’t wait to watch the full video this Friday. Stay tuned!

 

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GOD CONTROL is coming…………… …………Madame ❌ #wakeup #guncontrol #godcontrol

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You Can Relive The 70s With A Wonderful Disco-Infused Track From Mark Ronson

If you were lucky enough to live in the 70s, then this music video from Mark Ronson & Lykke Li will bring you good memories.

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Mark Ronson
If you were lucky enough to live in the 70s, then this music video from Mark Ronson & Lykke Li will bring you good memories. In fact, you are about to love their nice collaborative single called “Late Night Feelings”. A wonderful Disco-infused track featuring sexy vocals that sound sexy and seducing.  Somehow, it reminds me of Roisin Murphy’s good old classics. On the other hand, the vintage-looking clip stars Li alone at home thinking desperately about that special one… So take a glass of wine, play this song on repeat and dance all night long. Ronson’s forthcoming album will feature more funky-esque anthems, plus, he has confessed this record is inspired by his recent divorce.

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Best Groovy Dance Song Of 2019, “Casio” By Jungle

Everybody seems to love this song, even my father has danced to its four-on-the-floor beat.

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Everybody seems to love this song, even my father has danced to its four-on-the-floor beat. “Casio” by Jungle is the best groovy dance song of 2019. With an Earth, Wind, & Fire vibe, you can feel its amazing energy. On the other hand, the London-based band released a vintage-looking video, which is already a hit, surpassing 13 million YouTube views. In the clip, dancers are absolutely precise with their moves on the dancefloor. Somehow, this choreography is contagious as it invites you to imitate a fantastic sequence of movements. “Casio” is a piece of work that deserves so many more eyes, ears, and clicks.

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