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Eighties groove (music)

Word connections: 1980s - groove

Related: soul mafia - electro funk - Uno Melodic record label - Patrick Adams - Roy Ayers


80's Groove is a term used to describe soul and rhythm and blues music popular in nightclubs in the United Kingdom in the early to mid-1980s, after the demise of disco but before the emergence of house music. Another term used is 80's Soul.

The term appears to have been first used by the specialist dance music label Mastercuts for their 1993 compilation album "Classic 80's Groove". Two more volumes followed in 1995 and 1997 with an anthems compilation in 1999. The term has subsequently been adopted by other UK record labels wishing to reissue early 1980s dance music on compact disc.

The style is largely producer-led, often with a prevalence of drum machines and synthesizers. It is a loose term that embraces other music genres such as disco (with Indeep's "Last Night a DJ Saved My Life") and electro (such as Lisa Lisa and Cult Jam's "I Wonder If I Take You Home"). There is a notable lack of commercial artists such as Michael Jackson or Lionel Richie. However, some acts associated with the term who enjoyed commercial success are Imagination, Loose Ends, Shalamar, Cameo, Luther Vandross and The SOS Band.

Other tracks often associated with the term are D Train's "You're the One for Me" from 1981, Raw Silk's "Do It to the Music" from 1982 and Patrice Rushen's "Forget Me Nots" also from 1982.

1980s DJs associated with the scene were Steve Walsh (who enjoyed success with his own version of the Fatback Band's "I Found Lovin'"), Robbie Vincent (who had a Sunday evening show on BBC Radio 1), Greg Edwards and Jeff Young [some of which belonged to the so-called "soul mafia". --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/80%27s_Groove [Nov 2005]

The early eighties acceptance of electronic soul music

Midnight Love (1982) - Marvin Gaye
[FR] [DE] [UK]

Marvin Gaye’s Sexual Healing [YouTube] is built around the Roland; many mid-eighties soul records would be largely empty had the Roland TR-808 not been made available. ...

In the opinion of jazz funk purists, electro funk was ‘not real music’ due to its technological nature. The old school, dubbed the 'soul mafia' on the UK club scene, eventually mellowed, but it would take releases like "Just Be Good To Me" [YouTube] (1983) by the SOS Band and Marvin Gay's "Sexual Healing" to convince them.

"Sexual Healing" was a 1982 blockbuster hit single for American soul music legend Marvin Gaye.The single is notable for what is perhaps the first use of the Roland TR-808 drum machine.

The Jam/Lewis produced SOS Band hits are notable for popularizing the use of the Roland TR-808 drum machine (and its distinctive cowbell sound) in popular music. The song "Just Be Good to Me" was remixed by Fatboy Slim and made its way to UK number one single as "Dub Be Good to Me" [YouTube] (1990). The song was reworked with the bassline to the Clash's "Guns of Brixton" [YouTube]. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_SOS_Band [Sept 2006]

By the time of his death in 1984, at the hands of his father while living in Oostende, Belgium, Gaye had become one of the most influential artists of the soul music era.

--http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marvin_Gaye [Sept 2006]

See also: Roland - soul music - 1980s groove

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