Tag: Soul

Saturday 2/27/21 7pm ET: Groove Line with Ryan Doran

Saturday 2/27/21 6pm ET: Motown Hour with L Paul Martin

Monday 2/15/21 5pm ET: The Chain with Ron Kovacs

Monday 1/25/2021 5pm ET: The Chain with Ron Kovacs

All genres – we feature all types as we chain together song titles.

Thursday 1/7/2021 12am ET: Feature LP: Michael Jackson – Off The Wall (1979 / 2001)

Off the Wall is the fifth solo studio album by American singer Michael Jackson, released on August 10, 1979, by Epic Records. It was Jackson’s first album released through Epic Records, the label he recorded under until his death in 2009, and the first produced by Quincy Jones, whom he met while working on the 1978 film The Wiz. Several critics observed that Off the Wall was crafted from disco, pop, funk, R&B, soft rock and Broadway ballads. Its lyrical themes include escapism, liberation, loneliness, hedonism and romance. The album features songwriting contributions from Stevie Wonder, Paul McCartney, Rod Temperton, Tom Bahler, and David Foster, alongside three tracks penned by Jackson himself.

Between 1972 and 1975, Jackson released a total of four solo studio albums with Motown as part of The Jackson 5 franchise; Got to Be There (1972), Ben (1972), Music & Me (1973) and Forever, Michael (1975). Before recording his next album, which came to be Off the Wall, Jackson desired to create a record not sounding like a Jacksons record, but rather showcasing creative freedom and individualism.

Off the Wall peaked at number three on the Billboard Top LPs & Tapes chart and number one on the Top Black Albums chart, staying at number one on the latter for 16 weeks, and was an enormous critical success. Five singles were released from the album. Jackson wrote three songs himself, including the Billboard Hot 100 number one single “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough”, which was Jackson’s first solo number-one single since “Ben”, seven years prior. The second single from the album, “Rock with You” also peaked atop the chart. With the title track and “She’s Out of My Life” reaching the top 10 of the chart, Jackson became the first solo artist to have four singles from the same album peak inside the top 10 of the Billboard Hot 100.

Off the Wall was a significant departure from Jackson’s previous work for Motown and was hailed as a major breakthrough for him. In retrospect, writers have hailed it a landmark of the disco era and one of the greatest albums of all time. Critics often debate whether it or Thriller is Jackson’s best album. It has sold over 20 million copies worldwide, making it one of the best-selling albums of all time. In August 2009, it was certified 8× platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). At the 1980 Grammy Awards, it was nominated for two Grammy Awards, with Jackson winning Best R&B Vocal Performance, Male for “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough”. In 2008, Off the Wall was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame.

1. “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough” 6:02
2. “Rock with You” 3:38
3. “Working Day and Night” 5:10
4. “Get on the Floor” 4:42
5. “Off the Wall” 4:11
6. “Girlfriend” 3:08
7. “She’s Out of My Life” 3:41
8. “I Can’t Help It” 4:28
9. “It’s the Falling in Love” 3:52
10. “Burn This Disco Out” 3:39
11. “Quincy Jones Interview #1” 0:37
12. “Introduction to Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough Demo” 0:13
13. “Don’t Stop ‘Til You Get Enough” (Original Demo from 1978) 4:48
14. “Quincy Jones Interview #2” 0:30
15. “Introduction to Workin’ Day and Night Demo” 0:10
16. “Working Day and Night” (Original Demo from 1978) 4:19
17. “Quincy Jones Interview #3” 0:48
18. “Rod Temperton Interview” 4:57
19. “Quincy Jones Interview #4” 1:32

Tuesday 12/29/2020 12pm ET: Sounds of The 80’s

The Sounds of The 80’s return.  Check it out every Tuesday at 12pm ET.

Monday 12/28/2020 7pm ET: Across The Tracks

Part III of Tunes with Baby in the Title.

Monday 12/28/2020 4pm ET: Across The Tracks

Part II of Tunes with Baby in The Title

Monday 12/28/2020 12pm ET: Sounds of The 70’s

Join us Mondays a12pm ET for a new installment of the Sounds of The 70s. 

Sunday 12/27/20 2am ET: Feature LP: Chic – Risqué (1979)

Risqué is the third studio album by American disco band Chic, released on Atlantic Records on July 30, 1979. One of the records that defined the disco era, the album became highly influential not only within the movement, but also in other styles such as hip hop, art rock and new wave. In 2020, Rolling Stone ranked the album at number 414 on their list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.

1. “Good Times” 8:08
2. “A Warm Summer Night” 6:10
3. “My Feet Keep Dancing” 6:38
4. “My Forbidden Lover” 4:39
5. “Can’t Stand to Love You” 2:56
6. “Will You Cry (When You Hear This Song)” 4:06
7. “What About Me?” 4:09


In Memoriam: John Fletcher (1964 – 2020)

John ‘Ecstasy’ Fletcher, of influential hip-hop group Whodini, dies at 56

Whodini is an American hip hop group that was formed in 1982. The Brooklyn, New York-based trio consisted of vocalist and main lyricist Jalil Hutchins; co-vocalist John Fletcher, a.k.a. Ecstasy (who wore a Zorro-style hat as his trademark); and turntable artist DJ Drew Carter, a.k.a. Grandmaster Dee.

Coming out of the fertile New York rap scene of the early 80s, Whodini was one of the first rap groups to add R&B twist to their music, thus laying the foundation for a new genre – new jack swing. The group made its name with good-humored songs such as “Magic’s Wand” (the first rap song accompanied by a video), “The Haunted House of Rock”, “Friends”, “Five Minutes Of Funk” and “Freaks Come Out at Night”. Live performances of the group were the first rap concerts with the participation of breakdance dancers from the group UTFO. Russell Simmons was the manager of the group in the 80s.

The group has released six studio albums. 14 singles of the group hit the charts of the American magazine Billboard. 4 albums of the group were certified Platinum by RIAA, due to their loud single “Friends” that hit Billboard Hot 100.

On December 23, 2020, Fletcher died at the age of 56.

The group’s Grandmaster Dee confirmed the news to Variety after the Roots’ Questlove first announced Fletcher’s death on social media on Wednesday. No cause of death has been given.

A Brooklyn native known for his trademark Zorro hat, Fletcher formed Whodini with fellow rapper Jalil Hutchins in 1982, quickly rising to prominence in the early ’80s New York hip-hop scene. Pioneering from the start — their debut single “Magic’s Wand” was among the first rap songs with an accompanying music video — the duo was later joined by DJ Grandmaster Dee, and saw a breakthrough with their second album, Escape, in 1984. Featuring the tracks “Five Minutes of Funk,” “Freaks Come Out at Night,” and “Friends” — the latter of which would be sampled by Nas and Tupac Shakur, among others — the album received critical praise and would later be ranked among the best of the 1980s.

Pioneering from the start — their debut single “Magic’s Wand” was among the first rap songs with an accompanying music video — the duo was later joined by DJ Grandmaster Dee, and saw a breakthrough with their second album, Escape, in 1984. Featuring the tracks “Five Minutes of Funk,” “Freaks Come Out at Night,” and “Friends” — the latter of which would be sampled by Nas and Tupac Shakur, among others — the album received critical praise and would later be ranked among the best of the 1980s.

Though lesser-known than other early rap groups such as Run-DMC and Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, Whodini are considered pioneers of the genre, cited as an influence by such rappers as Jermaine Dupri. In a tribute to Fletcher posted to Twitter, Dupri wrote, “My God, this one hurts me so bad, I can’t even believe I’m posting this, Ex you know I love you. Thank you for every word, every conversation, every good time, may your soul Rest In Power.”

Other musicians posted tributes to social media as well, including Questlove, who broke the news of Fletcher’s death. “One Love to Ecstasy of the Legendary #Whodini,” the drummer and Tonight Show bandleader wrote. “This man was legendary and a pivotal member of one of the most legendary groups in hip hop. This is sad man.”

(Combined multiple reports)

Thursday 12/17/2020 2am ET: Feature LP: Wilson Pickett – Don’t Knock My Love (1971)

Wilson Pickett / Don’t Knock My Love / December 1, 1971

1 Fire and Water 3:38
2 A Mighty Long Way 3:08
3 Covering the Same Old Ground 3:13
4 Don’t Knock My Love, Pt. 1 (2006 Remaster) [Single Version] 2:16
5 Don’t Knock My Love, Pt. 2 (2007 Remaster) [Single Version] 4:05
6 Call My Name, I’ll Be There 2:25
7 Hot Love 3:11
8 Not Enough Love to Satisfy 2:59
9 You Can’t Judge a Book by It’s Cover 2:51
10 Pledging My Love 3:20
11 Mama Told Me Not to Come 2:51
12 Woman Let Me Down Home 2:59

Tuesday 12/15/2020 4pm ET: Feature Artist: The Temptations

The Temptations are an American vocal group who released a series of successful singles and albums with Motown Records during the 1960s and 1970s. The group’s work with producer Norman Whitfield, beginning with the Top 10 hit single “Cloud Nine” in October 1968, pioneered psychedelic soul, and was significant in the evolution of R&B and soul music. The band members are known for their choreography, distinct harmonies, and dress style. Having sold tens of millions of albums, the Temptations are among the most successful groups in popular music.

Featuring five male vocalists and dancers (save for brief periods with fewer or more members), the group formed in 1960 in Detroit, Michigan, under the name The Elgins. The founding members came from two rival Detroit vocal groups: Otis Williams, Elbridge “Al” Bryant, and Melvin Franklin of Otis Williams & the Distants, and Eddie Kendricks and Paul Williams of the Primes. In 1964, Bryant was replaced by David Ruffin, who was the lead vocalist on a number of the group’s biggest hits, including “My Girl” (1964), “Ain’t Too Proud to Beg” (1966), and “I Wish It Would Rain” (1967). Ruffin was replaced in 1968 by Dennis Edwards, with whom the group continued to record hit records such as “Cloud Nine” (1969) and “Ball of Confusion (That’s What the World Is Today)” (1970). The group’s lineup has changed frequently since the departures of Kendricks and Paul Williams from the act in 1971. Later members of the group have included singers such as Richard Street, Damon Harris, Ron Tyson, and Ali-Ollie Woodson, with whom the group scored a late-period hit in 1984 with “Treat Her Like a Lady”.

Over the course of their career, the Temptations released four Billboard Hot 100 number-one singles and fourteen R&B number-one singles. Their music has earned three Grammy Awards. The Temptations were the first Motown recording act to win a Grammy Award – for “Cloud Nine” in 1969 – and in 2013 received the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. Six of the Temptations (Edwards, Franklin, Kendricks, Ruffin, Otis Williams and Paul Williams) were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1989. Three classic Temptations songs, “My Girl”, “Just My Imagination (Running Away with Me)”, and “Papa Was a Rollin’ Stone”, are among The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s 500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll. The Temptations were ranked at number 68 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 100 Greatest Artists of all time.

As of 2020, the Temptations continue to perform with founder Otis Williams in the lineup (Williams owns the rights to the Temptations name).

Thursday 12/10/2020 2pm ET: Feature Artist – Dionne Warwick

Marie Dionne Warwick (born December 12, 1940) is an American singer, actress, television host, and former Goodwill Ambassador for the Food and Agriculture Organization.

Warwick ranks among the 40 biggest hit makers between 1955 and 1999, based on her chart history on Billboard’s Hot 100 pop singles chart. She is one of the most-charted female vocalists of all time, with 56 of her singles making the Hot 100 between 1962 and 1998 (12 of them Top Ten), and 80 singles in total – either solo or collaboratively – making the Hot 100, R&B and/or adult contemporary charts.

In 2020, she appeared as the Mouse on season 3 of The Masked Singer. Despite being eliminated in the second round, Warwick came back during the first part of the season three finale to sing “What the World Needs Now is Love” with the finalists Night Angel, Frog and Turtle as a tribute to the healthcare workers working on the front lines during the coronavirus pandemic. This performance was created after the season wrapped production in March. Warwick made a guest appearance during Gladys Knight’s and Patti Labelle’s Verzuz battle. Together they performed Warick’s song, That’s What Friends Are For. They closed with their collaborative song Superwoman (Karyn White song).


Monday 12/7/2020 6pm ET: Feature Artist / Writer – Linda Creed

Linda Diane Creed (December 6, 1948 – April 10, 1986), also known by her married name Linda Epstein, was an American singer-songwriter and lyricist who teamed up with songwriter-producer Thom Bell to produce some of the most successful Philadelphia soul groups of the 1970s.

Born in the Mount Airy section of Philadelphia in December 1948, Creed was active in music at Germantown High School. After graduation, Creed decided against college and devoted her energies to writing and producing music. Her career was launched in 1970 when singer Dusty Springfield recorded her song “Free Girl.” That same year, Creed teamed with Bell, a staff writer, producer, and arranger at Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff’s record label Philadelphia International Records.

Their first songwriting collaboration, “Stop, Look, Listen (To Your Heart)”, became a Top 40 pop hit for the Stylistics, beginning an extended collaboration that also yielded the group’s most successful recordings, including “You Are Everything”, “Betcha by Golly, Wow”, “Break Up to Make Up”, “People Make the World Go Round”, “You Make Me Feel Brand New,” and “I’m Stone in Love with You” (the latter with Anthony Bell). Creed and Bell also paired on a number of hits for the Spinners, including “Ghetto Child”, “I’m Coming Home”, “Living a Little, Laughing a Little”, and “The Rubberband Man.” Linda Creed also worked with fellow Pennsylvania native Phyllis Hyman on many of her songs, most notably “Old Friend.”

Though diagnosed with breast cancer at 26, Creed kept on working, teaming with composer Michael Masser and writing the lyrics to the song “The Greatest Love of All”, the main theme of the film “The Greatest”, a biopic of the great boxer Muhammad Ali, launched in 1977. The song was originally recorded by George Benson and released as a single in 1977, becoming a big hit, peaked at #2 on the R&B chart. The lyrics of the song were written in the midst of her struggle with breast cancer. The words describe her feelings about coping with great challenges that one must face in life, being strong during those challenges whether you succeed or fail, and passing that strength on to children to carry with them into their adult lives. In December of 1984, the song was recorded by Whitney Houston for her 1985 self-titled debut album and it would top the charts in May of 1986. Weeks before Houston reached number one, Creed died of breast cancer on April 10, 1986, at the age of 37. She was survived by her husband, Stephen “Eppy” Epstein, a longtime music promoter around Philadelphia, and their two daughters, Roni Lee and Dana Creed.

The following year, her family and friends established the Linda Creed Breast Cancer Foundation. In 1992 she was posthumously inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.