Ah, now here is a track that holds a lot of memories for me, the B.B&Q Band – Dreamer.
The Brooklyn, Bronx and Queens band was a studio group set up by Fred Jacques Petrus, the man behind the super soul group Change, in 1980. Petrus was originally a business man who made the move into in house producer for the legendary GMB Italo-disco label, he'd kicked around a few projects before he landed the gargantuan Change, and the next year introduced the world to the BB&Q band, a group of studio musicians he'd pretty much collected over the years.
Like Change the band was a huge success, producing 4 albums and 12 singles before disbanding in 86 after Petrus was murdered in Guadeloupe.
The bands final album was "Genie", of which the two biggest hits from it were Genie, and Dreamer. I always felt Dreamer got less attention than Genie, but it was actually a bigger chart success than Genie and tapped into the popular 80's Boogie scene perfectly. Similar in popularity to the Jam and Lewis produced work at the time Dreamer was a big club hit, especially when Shep Pettibone got his hands on it and did an extended edit that is a must have if you are into soul music.
The track is pretty typical of the times, programmed Linn Drum beats, heavy detuned synths and a lovely walking bass line all underpin a quite capturing vocal. The tracks lyrics are pretty cheesy, but the chorus and delivery really get you past that, and with the Pettibone rework the energy of the track is taken up a notch with heavier club style drums, shot gun edits and delay.
In fact it was pretty much the first track i heard and understood shotgun edits on, check the repeats on the opening drums around 20 seconds in, and the vocal chop up at and following synth and drum stutters at 3.30seconds on wards. Now granted that stuff is pretty standard in this day and age of edit heavy production, but back then that was all done with tape splices. Remember when you were little and you used to tape a record off the radio? and you'd try and catch the first beat? or if you had a twin deck you'd sometimes repeat record a bit of the track? Same principle but done with reel to reel tape and done so well it holds time to the point it sounds computerised.
Anyway, I was talking about this track just the other day with two good friends, one of them had posted a re-edit of Dreamer by the Parisian slo-mo disco team Kartel, and as fantastic as that is it's this 12" vocal edit of the track that has always been my favourite and inspired me in a lot of my own musical projects.
check it out, i think it's sublime.
Playlist Friday 6th July 2012
Very easy playlist today, i woke up late for work having had to stay till the small hours yesterday, and in a rush and dog tird i couldn't really contemplate picking my own music.
instead i settled on the train to listen to the Amazing "The State of Hip Hop 2012" a brilliant, brilliant hip hop mix by Glasgows Mixkngs member Jose Bee, grab it if you like pass the mic hip hop ala Wu-Tang and Gangstarr.
That took me pretty much all the way into work, but I had time to listen to the chosen track, BB&Q – Dreamer, t finished just in time for me to collapse in my chair.
Playlist: Jose Bee – The State of Hip Hop in 2012, BB&Q – Dreamer