93030

    Let the Music Play How R&B fell in love with 80s SynthsBy Steven Vass


    Let The Music Play by Steven Vass is a detailed look at how artists and producers used synths and other new music tech to reinvent R&B, concentrating on the period from 1978-86. Covering a wide range of artists, genres and scenes, including disco, LA/Solar Records, Minneapolis/Prince, boogie, New York electro/post-disco, Britfunk, Jam & Lewis, movie/promo influence and mid-80s pop. As well as covering big stars like Prince, Sade and Janet Jackson, it looks at many great artists who are often forgotten, such as Skyy, Loose Ends, Imagination, Colonel Abrams, Princess, Gwen Guthrie, Lillo Thomas, Zapp, Jonzun Crew and Yarbrough & Peoples.

    “When anybody talks about 80s synth, they’re usually talking about British invaders like The Human League and Soft Cell, the beginnings of Detroit techno/Chicago house, or early hip-hop,” says the author

    “Now, these are all fantastic, but so much has been written about them already! We tend to ignore that generation of mainly black stars in America and the UK who used synths, drum machines and sequencers to bombard the charts with a new futuristic R&B. Sure, you can read books about Prince or Janet Jackson. Or you can read about how some of these R&B songs shaped techno or hip-hop. But what’s missing is a book about this music in its own right.”

    Quotes

    “Between about ’75 and ’85, maybe 80% of black music used synths, but it was not really noticed. With a Heaven 17 or a Human League, writers focused on the synths and they often seemed like the originators. But you look back at Stevie Wonder, Prince, Loose Ends, Jam & Lewis – did anybody credit them?” Junior Giscombe

    “A lot of synth came out of jazz and evolved into pop and R&B. Guys like Kashif and Hubert Eaves were innovators. Guys like Leon Sylvers, Gil Scott-Heron, Ray Parker Jr – they absolutely need more recognition.” James ‘D-Train’ Williams

    “The boom in music technology was like AI for the early 80s. Synthesizers highlighted the sub-rhythms of R&B. Particularly when MIDI and sequencers came along, it was such an exciting time.” Paul Laurence

    Other Releases on

    Cableknit jumperOriginal Clothing
      • Original Clothing£10.00
        Label size L
        Pit to pit measurement 45cm
        In stockAdd to Bag
      Cableknit jumperOriginal clothing
        • Original Clothing£10.00
          Label size M
          Pit to pit measurement 50cm
          In stockAdd to Bag
        Cableknit jumperOriginal clothing
          • Original Clothing£15.00
            Lable size S
            Pit to pit measurement 43 cm
            In stockAdd to Bag
          Cableknit jumperOriginal clothing
            • Original Clothing£20.00
              Label size s
              Pit to pit measurement 47cm
              In stockAdd to Bag
            Cableknit jumperOriginal clothing
              • Original Clothing£10.00
                Label size m
                pit to pit measurement 36cm
                In stockAdd to Bag
              Cableknit jumperOriginal clothing
                • Original Clothing£10.00
                  Label size m
                  pit to pit measurement 42cm
                  In stockAdd to Bag
                Cableknit jumperOriginal clothing
                  • Original Clothing£15.00
                    Label size m
                    pit to pit measurement 52cm
                    In stockAdd to Bag
                  Cableknit jumperOriginal clothing
                    • Original Clothing£12.00
                      Label size s
                      pit to pit measurement 40cm
                      In stockAdd to Bag
                    Cableknit jumperOriginal clothing
                      • Original Clothing£20.00
                        Label size xl
                        pit to pit measurement 50cm
                        In stockAdd to Bag
                      Cableknit jumperOriginal clothing
                        • Original Clothing£12.00
                          Label size m
                          pit to pit measurement 40cm
                          In stockAdd to Bag
                        Cableknit jumperOriginal clothing
                          • Original Clothing£15.00
                            Label size L
                            pit to pit measurement 45cm
                            In stockAdd to Bag
                          Cableknit jumperOriginal clothing
                            • Original Clothing£10.00
                              Label size XL
                              pit to pit measurement 43cm
                              In stockAdd to Bag
                            Cableknit jumperOriginal clothing
                              • Original Clothing£10.00
                                Label size L
                                pit to pit measurement 41cm
                                In stockAdd to Bag
                              Cableknit jumperOriginal clothing
                                • Original Clothing£10.00
                                  Label size xl
                                  pit to pit measurement 56cm
                                  In stockAdd to Bag
                                Cableknit jumperOriginal clothing
                                  • Original Clothing£20.00
                                    Label size m
                                    pit to pit measurement 41cm
                                    In stockAdd to Bag
                                  My Rock 'n' Roll Friendby Tracey Thorn
                                  In 1983, backstage at the Lyceum in London, Tracey Thorn and Lindy Morrison first met. Tracey's music career was just beginning, while Lindy, drummer for...
                                    Re-make/Re-model:The Art School Roots of Roxy Music
                                    Re-make/Re-model tells the little known and fascinating story of the individuals and circumstances which combined to form the groundbreaking band Roxy...
                                      A Scene In Between:Tripping Through the Fashions of UK Indie Music 1980-1988
                                      A Scene In Between sets out to excavate the sartorial treasures of the UK’s 1980s guitar scenes. Using original archive photography from scenesters,...
                                        Nothing But the BluesLarry Cohn
                                        At root, the blues is rich in its simplicity, but it has flowered across the years in a variety of rare complexity. Perhaps no form of popular art is more...
                                          • Original Book (350g)£15.00
                                            Original Pre-Owned USA paperback
                                            In stockAdd to Bag
                                          The World of Duke EllingtonStanley Dance
                                          "The ultimate in art is self-expression, not escape."-Duke Ellington In this fascinating portrait of one of America's greatest musical legends, longtime...
                                            • Original Book (350g)£12.00
                                              Original Pre-Owned 1st Edn USA paperback
                                              In stockAdd to Bag
                                            USA Varsity JacketOriginal Clothing
                                            Leather collar and arms. Excellent jacket! Excellent logo/name on front (Master Batter!)
                                              • Original Clothing (Jacket)£75.00
                                                Label Size - M
                                                Pit to Pit measure 60cm
                                                In stockAdd to Bag
                                              LEVIS Jacket (beige)Original Clothing
                                                • Original Clothing£40.00
                                                  Label Size S
                                                  Pit to Pit measure 48cm
                                                  In stockAdd to Bag
                                                ADIDAS Tracksuit TopOriginal Clothing
                                                  • Original Clothing£30.00
                                                    Label Size NO SIZE
                                                    Pit to pit measurement 56cm
                                                    445g
                                                    In stockAdd to Bag
                                                  New York, Philadelphia, Jazz 1988-1993 PHOTOZINEPhotographs by Chris Bierlein
                                                  Sun Rz, Pharoah, Milford Graves, Roy Ayers, Amiri Baraka + more Awesome small and beautiful photo-zine. 36 pages, staple-bound, 14x20 cm 100% ESSENTIAL! Ships...
                                                    New York 1978 PHOTOZINEPhotographs by George Wright
                                                    Wicked street shots from NYC 1978 Awesome small and beautiful photo-zine. 36 pages, staple-bound, 14x20 cm 100% ESSENTIAL! Ships in about a week
                                                      New York 1970s PHOTOZINEPhotographs by John Claridge
                                                      New Yoik, New Yoiik Awesome small and beautiful photo-zine. 36 pages, staple-bound, 14x20 cm 100% ESSENTIAL! Ships in about a week
                                                        New York 1980.2 PHOTOZINEPhotographs by Lionel Derimais
                                                        Awesome small and beautiful photo-zine. 36 pages, staple-bound, 14x20 cm 100% ESSENTIAL! Ships in about a week
                                                          Louisiana CajunsTurner Browne
                                                          Excellent book - stunning black and white photography. Highly recommended
                                                            • Original Book (350g)£35.00
                                                              Out of print Pre-Owned Original USA hardback book ex-library w/stamps
                                                              In stockAdd to Bag
                                                            The Best of Woman Fashion KnittingMelody Griffiths
                                                            Very groovy 70s knitwear innnit
                                                              • Original Book (400g)£10.00
                                                                Original Pre-Owned Hardback book
                                                                In stockAdd to Bag
                                                              A Blues BibliographyRobert Ford
                                                              The most exhaustive bibliography of articles and books on African American Blues artists ever attempted, 770 pages, 20,000 entries, with a comprehensive...
                                                                • Original Book (1.4kg)£50.00
                                                                  Original Pre-Owned 1st Edn USA hardback book
                                                                  In stockAdd to Bag
                                                                USA Baseball JacketOriginal Clothing
                                                                  • Original Clothing (Jacket)£70.00
                                                                    Label size M
                                                                    Pit to pit 59cm
                                                                    1050g
                                                                    In stockAdd to Bag
                                                                  USA WindbreakerOriginal Clothing
                                                                    • Original Clothing (Jacket)£20.00
                                                                      Label size S
                                                                      Pit to pit 53cm
                                                                      250g
                                                                      In stockAdd to Bag
                                                                    USA WindbreakerOriginal Clothing
                                                                      • Original Clothing (Jacket)£20.00
                                                                        Label size M
                                                                        Pit to pit 59cm
                                                                        250g
                                                                        1050g
                                                                        In stockAdd to Bag
                                                                      Ski JacketOriginal Clothing
                                                                        • Original Clothing (Jacket)£70.00
                                                                          Label size M
                                                                          Pit to pit measurement 48cm
                                                                          270g
                                                                          In stockAdd to Bag
                                                                        Italian Cycle TopOriginal Clothing
                                                                          • Original Clothing£30.00
                                                                            Label size M
                                                                            Pit to pit measurement 45cm
                                                                            170g
                                                                            In stockAdd to Bag

                                                                          People also bought

                                                                          Pat MethenyMoonDialModern Recordings
                                                                          MoonDial is a captivating album by the renowned jazz guitarist Pat Metheny, released by Modern Recordings. This album showcases Metheny's signature blend...
                                                                            DJ QuikRhythm-al-ismBe With Records
                                                                            DJ Quik is a giant of West Coast hip-hop. With his fourth album Rhythm-Al-Ism he created his masterpiece, a perfect hip-hop album. As Quik explains, “the...
                                                                              Sam MortonDaffodils & DirtXL Recordings
                                                                              Sam Morton, the musical duo comprised of singer, songwriter and acclaimed actor and director Samantha Morton and music producer and co-songwriter Richard...
                                                                                Will Gregory Moog EnsembleHeat Ray: The Archimedes ProjectMute
                                                                                Will Gregory Moog Ensemble present their debut album, Heat Ray: The Archimedes Project, made in collaboration with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales.This...
                                                                                  David BowieRock ‘n’ Roll Star! (Half-Speed Master)Parlophone
                                                                                  David Bowie’s Rock ‘n’ Roll Star! Charts Bowie’s journey to Ziggy Stardust. Starting with early home demos, through radio sessions and live performances,...
                                                                                    Arthur Baker presentsBreaker's RevengeSoul Jazz Records
                                                                                    Compiled by legendary producer Arthur Baker, ‘Breakers Revenge’ is a near-definitive collection of original Funk, Soul, Latin, Disco and Electro...
                                                                                    • Dennis Coffey and The Detroit Guitar Band – Scorpio
                                                                                    • The Jimmy Castor Bunch – It's Just Begun
                                                                                    • B.T. Express – Energy Level
                                                                                    • James Brown – Get On The Good Foot
                                                                                    • Afrika Bambaataa & The Soul Sonic Force – Planet Rock
                                                                                    • Manu Dibango – Soul Makossa
                                                                                    • Esther Williams – Last Night Changed It All
                                                                                    • The Mohawks – The Champ
                                                                                    • Herman Kelly & Life – Dance To The Drummer’s Beat
                                                                                    • Spanky Wilson – Sunshine of Your Love
                                                                                    • James Brown – Give it Up Or Turnit A Loose
                                                                                    • Candido – Soulwanco
                                                                                    • Arthur Baker – Breaker's Revenge
                                                                                    • Manu Dibango – The Panther
                                                                                    • Abaco Dream – Life and Death in G & A
                                                                                    • The Jackson 5 – Dancing Machine
                                                                                    • Mongo Santamaria – Cloud Nine
                                                                                    • Edwin Starr – I Just Wanna Do My Thing
                                                                                    • Badder Than Evil – Hot Wheels
                                                                                    • Johnny Bristol – Lusty Lady
                                                                                    • 1. Dennis Coffey and The Detroit Guitar Band – Scorpio
                                                                                    • 2. The Jimmy Castor Bunch – It's Just Begun
                                                                                    • 3. B.T. Express – Energy Level
                                                                                    • View full info and tracklisting
                                                                                    Kenny Wheeler, Lee Konitz, Dave Holland & Bill FrisellAngel SongECM
                                                                                    'Angel Song' is among the apexes of the label's catalogue, uniting four master improvisers - each with a unique artistic identity - in an intimate, drummer-less...
                                                                                      Amon TobinPermutation (25 Year Anniversary)Ninja Tune
                                                                                      Amon Tobin’s critically acclaimed 3rd album, the modern classic Permutation celebrates its 25th anniversary with this special edition, featuring a revamped...
                                                                                        Paul Weller66Polydor
                                                                                        In the ever-evolving landscape of contemporary music, few artists possess the enduring influence and innovative spirit of Paul Weller. A recording career...
                                                                                          Sugar MinottBitter SweetMusic On Vinyl
                                                                                          Sugar Minott was a Jamaican reggae star who was a pioneer of the dancehall style. Minott was a producer, label head, and sound system operator. He collaborated...
                                                                                            Lonnie SmithFunk ReactionMr Bongo
                                                                                            Dripping with groove and swagger, this album skates between jazz-funk, cosmic disco radiance, beat-laden slow-jams and conscious psychedelic soul.Having...
                                                                                              Danger Mouse & JeminiGhetto Pop LifeLex Records
                                                                                              Originally released on Lex Records in 2003 it has been out of print for a number of years and is now being reissued to coincide with the release of Born...
                                                                                                Beth GibbonsLives OutgrownDomino Records
                                                                                                Beth Gibbons releases her debut solo album Lives Outgrown on Friday the 17th of May 2024. Featuring 10 beautiful new songs recorded over a period of 10...
                                                                                                  Kings of LeonCan We Please Have FunCaptiol US
                                                                                                  GRAMMY award-winning, multi-platinum rock band Kings of Leon are coming back big with their 9th full-length studio album, Can We Please Have Fun. As the...
                                                                                                    Ghana Special 2Soundway
                                                                                                    Highlighting a time when the burgeoning Ghanaian diaspora across Europe and North America was utilising new music technology and recording techniques....
                                                                                                      Kenny BurrellGuitar Forms (Acoustic Sounds)Decca (UMO) / Jazz / Verve
                                                                                                      One of the true masterpieces in the Verve catalogue, Kenny Burrell’s Guitar Forms features unforgettable arrangements by Gil Evans. Nominated for three...
                                                                                                        In The Beginning There Was RhythmSoul Jazz Records
                                                                                                        Unavailable for over 20 years, In The Beginning There Was Rhythm was Soul Jazz Records first foray into post-punk and punk-funk in the UK and captures...
                                                                                                        • A Certain Ratio – Shack Up
                                                                                                        • 23 Skidoo – Coup
                                                                                                        • Gang Of Four – To Hell With Poverty
                                                                                                        • The Human League – Being Boiled
                                                                                                        • The Slits – In The Beginning There Was Rhythm
                                                                                                        • This Heat – 24 Track Loop
                                                                                                        • Throbbing Gristle – 20 Jazz Funk Greats
                                                                                                        • The Pop Group – She Is Beyond Good and Evil
                                                                                                        • Cabaret Voltaire – Sluggin For Jesus
                                                                                                        • 23 Skidoo – Vegas El Bandito
                                                                                                        • A Certain Ratio – Knife Slits Water
                                                                                                        Jordan RakeiThe LoopDecca
                                                                                                        The Loop is by far Rakei’s most cohesive and evolutionary work to date following an impressive career of previous releases, each of which have demonstrated...
                                                                                                          Group ListeningWalksPRAH Recordings
                                                                                                          Opt for the path less trodden — allow yourself to stray from it, even — and you might find, buried in the bracken, deep in the trees, a shining...
                                                                                                            Goma LacaCala Boca MeninoJazz Room Records
                                                                                                            Two fabulous funky tracks originally released on the award winning album Goma-Laca – Afrobrasilidades in 78 rpm which updated Brazilian Music originally...
                                                                                                              Fontaines DC / Massive Attack / Young FathersCeasefireBattle Box
                                                                                                              Despite repeated deadly attacks on its staff, medics, surgeons, and aid conveys, Doctors Without Borders volunteers continue to offer critical support...
                                                                                                                Eccentric Soul: The Tammy LabelNumero Group
                                                                                                                Lost in the soot and fallout from Youngstown, Ohio’s infamous Black Monday steel industry collapse was Tony March’s cross-generational Tammy label....
                                                                                                                  Kamasi WashingtonFearless MovementYoung
                                                                                                                  Washington calls Fearless Movement his dance album. “It’s not literal,” Washington says. “Dance is movement and expression, and in a way it’s...
                                                                                                                    Kleenex / LiliputFirst SongsKill Rock Stars
                                                                                                                    A definitive double LP of Kleenex / Liliput's pre-1982 material. All three Kleenex singles - originally released by Sunrise and Rough Trade; the first...
                                                                                                                    • – Ain’t You
                                                                                                                    • – Madness
                                                                                                                    • – Hedi’s Head
                                                                                                                    • – Ü
                                                                                                                    • – You
                                                                                                                    • – Nice
                                                                                                                    • – DC-10
                                                                                                                    • – Die Matrosen
                                                                                                                    • – Split
                                                                                                                    • – Hitch Hike
                                                                                                                    • – Eisiger Wind
                                                                                                                    • – Igel
                                                                                                                    • – Türk
                                                                                                                    • – Wig-Wam
                                                                                                                    • – Tisko
                                                                                                                    • – Turn The Table
                                                                                                                    • – Dolly Dollar
                                                                                                                    • – I Had A Dream
                                                                                                                    • – When The Cat’s Away
                                                                                                                    Dua LipaRadical OptimismWarner Records
                                                                                                                    Inspired by Dua’s own self-discovery, Radical Optimism is an album that taps into the pure joy and happiness of having clarity in situations that once...
                                                                                                                      Delta 5Singles & Sessions 1979-1981Kill Rock Stars
                                                                                                                      The original members of Delta 5, Julz Sale (vocals/guitar), Ros Allen (bass) and Bethan Peters (bass), formed the band "on a lark", but soon became a part...
                                                                                                                      • – Mind Your Own Business
                                                                                                                      • – Now That You've Gone
                                                                                                                      • – Anticipation
                                                                                                                      • – You
                                                                                                                      • – Try
                                                                                                                      • – Colour
                                                                                                                      • – Delta 5
                                                                                                                      • – Make Up
                                                                                                                      • – Triangle
                                                                                                                      • – Innocenti
                                                                                                                      • – Train Song
                                                                                                                      • – Final Scene
                                                                                                                      • – Singing the Praises
                                                                                                                      • – Shadow
                                                                                                                      • – Circuit
                                                                                                                      • – Journey
                                                                                                                      Bobby HutchersonTotal Eclipse (Tone Poet)Decca (UMO) / Blue Note
                                                                                                                      Killer deep jazz from vibist Bobby Hutcherson on Blue Note, 1970. With Harold Land, Chick Corea, Reggie Johnson and Joe Chambers. Bobby Hutcherson’s...
                                                                                                                      • – Herzog
                                                                                                                      William DevaughnBe Thankful For What You GotDemon
                                                                                                                      William DeVaughn’s 1974 masterpiece Be Thankful For What You Got is one of the most widely recognised soul releases of the twentieth century, a seminal...
                                                                                                                        Earth, Wind & FireGreatest HitsMusic On Vinyl
                                                                                                                        Featuring 17 chart-topping hits from the legendary band Earth Wind & Fire, this album is a must for any collector. Earth Wind & Fire's Greatest Hits is...
                                                                                                                          Dr. JohnGris-Gris Gumbo Ya Ya: Singles 1968-1974Omnivore Recordings
                                                                                                                          26 of the Good Dr.’s A & B-Sides from 1968–1974Produced in full cooperation with the Dr. John Estate Dr. John has proven to be one of music’s...
                                                                                                                            Marlena ShawMarlena Shaw EPJazzman Special Products
                                                                                                                            Four absolute CLASSICS from jazz and soul legend, Marlena Shaw, who made several LPs for respected labels such as Cadet and Blue Note in the 60s and 70s....
                                                                                                                            • – California Soul
                                                                                                                            • – Liberation Conversation
                                                                                                                            • – Let's Wade in the Water
                                                                                                                            • – Woman of the Ghetto
                                                                                                                            Gerry MulliganNight Lights (Acoustic Sounds)Decca (UMO) / Jazz / Verve
                                                                                                                            On his 1963 debut release for the Phillips label, baritone saxophonist Gerry Mulligan is joined by familiar friends, including Art Farmer, Bob Brookmeyer...
                                                                                                                              Mo KoloursOriginal FlowWe Release JAZZ
                                                                                                                              ‘Original Flow’ is an album of UK street-soul nouveau, future indigenous jazz fusion, Rasta Segga, Nyahbinghi jazz, Malagasy Hebrew hip hop. While...
                                                                                                                                ParliamentOsmiumEdsel
                                                                                                                                Classic George Clinton produced 1970 debut album from Parliament! 
                                                                                                                                • – I Call My Baby Pussycat
                                                                                                                                • – Put Love In Your Life
                                                                                                                                • – Little Ole Country Boy
                                                                                                                                • – Moonshine Heather
                                                                                                                                • – Oh Lord, Why Lord / Prayer
                                                                                                                                Mixmaster Morris, Jonah Sharp, Haruomi HosonoQuiet LogicWRWTFWW Records
                                                                                                                                Quiet Logic invites listeners to embark on a capbvabng sonic odyssey, blending intricate rhythms and celesbal environments that push the boundaries of...