Little Sister – Ry Cooder – 1979

August 26, 2015

Ry cooder little sister cover 1979Supremely talented but not overly commercially successful, Ry Cooder’s biggest hit was in 1979, an Elvis cover called Little Sister.

Ry cooder 1ry cooder fax

  • From Santa Monica, California, Ryland “Ry” Cooder is an American musician, songwriter, film score composer, and record producer.
  • Known for his slide guitar work, Ry is a multi-instrumentalist and an exponent of most stringed instruments.
  • Ry has tended to leap between genres and embraced many different ethnic styles.
  • Ry has worked with a number of musicians, including: Captain Beefheart, Eric Clapton, The Rolling Stones, Van Morrison, Neil Young, Randy Newman, David Lindley, The Chieftains, and The Doobie Brothers.
  • Ry Cooder 2As a producer he was responsible for the Buena Vista Social Club album (1997), which became a worldwide hit.
  • In 2003, Ry was ranked 8th on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of “The 100 Greatest Guitarists of All Time”.
  • Ry has won six Grammy awards including one for Best Recording for Children, and a couple in the Latin American genre.
  • Ry’s 8th album, Bop Till You Drop, was the first major-label digitally recorded album of Pop music.
  • Ry has been playing the guitar when he was three years old, and has had a glass eye since he was four, when he accidentally stuck a knife in his left eye.

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  • Little Sister was written by Doc Pomus and Mort Shuman.
  • Little Sister was originally released as a single in 1961 by Elvis Presley.
  • Ry Cooder’s version is the first track on his 1979 album, Bop Till You Drop.
  • Little Sister lyrics.

little sister – ry cooder – 1979 – video

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Celebration – Kool and the Gang – 1980

August 9, 2015

Kool and the Gang - Celebration cover - 1980Recorded in 1979, released in October 1980, Kool and the Gang’s Celebration continues to be a party dance favourite (depending on what type of parties you go to!).

kOOL AND THE GANG 1kool and the gang fax

  • Formed in 1964 as the Jazziacs, Kool and the Gang continue to perform today.
  • In the past 51 years Kool and the Gang have morphed several times; from jazz, to funk and R&B, to electro-pop.
  • The changes have worked, the band has sold over 70 million albums.
  • Kool and the Gang 2The band formed around the musical talents of brothers Robert “Kool” Bell and Ronald Bell, often known by their Arabic names, Muhammad Bayyan and Khalis Bayyan.
  • Robert’s godfather was Thelonious Monk.
  • Kool and the Gang’s hits included; Jungle Boogie, Hollywood Swinging and Get Down on It.

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  • Celebration was written by the members of Kool and the Gang and recorded in 1979. It was released as a single in October 1980.
  • Kool and the Gang 3Celebration is Kool and the Gang’s only #1 US singles hit. It reached the top of the US charts on February 7, 1981. It peaked at #7 on the UK charts on November 29, 1980.
  • Celebration was covered by Kylie Minogue in 1992 – her version peaked at #20 on the UK singles chart. It was also covered in 1987 by New Zealand band Dragon.
  • Celebration lyrics – Kool and the Gang.

celebration – kool and the gang – 1980

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Hocus Pocus – Focus – 1973

August 5, 2015

Focus Hocus Pocus single cover

Remember the days of prog. rock with bands like Yes, Pink Floyd, Genesis and Rush? Well, stuck in the middle there somewhere was Dutch band, Focus, who had a 1973 hit with Hocus Pocus.

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  • Focus formed in The Netherlands in 1969.
  • Founding member Thijs van Leer was a classically trained organist and flautist.
  • With four breaks and reunions along the way, Focus continues to tour today.
  • Focus 3Past line ups have included, guitarist Jan Akkerman (a founding member) and American singer, PJ Proby.

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  • Hocus Pocus was recorded in 1971, released on the band Focus’s second album, Focus II (aka Moving Waves), in 1972 and hit the charts in 1973.
  • Hocus Pocus was written by Focus guitarist Jan Akkerman and flautist-keyboardist Thijs van Leer.
  • Focus 1Hocus Pocus peaked at #9 on the US singles charts and #20 on the UK singles charts. In 2010 it was featured in a Nike ad shown during the FIFA World Cup causing it to again enter the UK charts where it peaked at #57.
  • The original recording of Hocus Pocus was slower than the faster radio version which was, in turn, slower than the live version.
  • The song is often heard at sporting events, was featured in the 2014 remake of the movie Robocop, and has featured in television shows, Top Gear and My Name is Earl.
  • Hocus Pocus lyrics.

hocus pocus – focus – 1973

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Cilla Black | 1943 – 2015

August 3, 2015

Cilla Black

British music icon Cilla Black passed away on August 1st 2015.

Read the full news report here.