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El Coco

Of all the disco "bands", El Coco (Rinder and Lewis) had the best designed sleeves, many of which showed a retro Art Deco-ish look.

Cocomotion (1977) - El Coco

Dancing in Paradise (1978) - El Coco

Related: disco - music


El Coco was the most successful of the acts from the fertile minds of Michael Lewis and Lauren Rinder. They guys wrote, produced, and arranged the material, using anyone they could find for singers. They were good for a couple of disco classics, the eternal "Let's Get It Together" in 1976 and 1978's "Cocomotion" and "Dancing In Paradise," before they retired the name. --http://www.allthingsdeep.com/dge/el_coco.htm [Oct 2005]

El Coco was the best-known of several projects by cult disco favorites W. Michael Lewis and Laurin Rinder, who produced, arranged, wrote, and played all the instruments on the vast majority of their material. Their distinctive sound was partly a result of their jazz training, which showed up not only in their arrangements and chord progressions, but in the overall musicality and sonic imagination. Rinder had been a longtime session and touring drummer for rock and soul artists, and played on sessions at Motown and Muscle Shoals. He met keyboardist Lewis in Los Angeles during the late '60s at an audition for the Standells; the two went on to play in a rock band called Joshua, and in 1973 were hired by the AVI label to play on some extended RB remixes geared for danceclub play. Thus hooked into the emerging disco sound, Rinder and Lewis began producing and recording their own tracks in 1975, issuing the LP Caravan under the fictitious group name El Coco (a drug reference). Mondo Disco followed in 1976, as did Let's Get It Together, the point where they really hit their stride. The title cut was co-written by singer Merria Ross and was a substantial club hit, breaking El Coco on the disco scene. The title tracks on 1977's Cocomotion and 1978's Dancing Paradise were also successful, with the former (again co-written by Ross) ranking as El Coco's best-remembered outing. By this time, Rinder and Lewis were producing TV theme music as well, and began issuing side projects on the Butterfly label as well; these alternate guises included Tuxedo Junction, Saint Tropez, le Pamplemousse, Rinder Lewis, and the Rinlew Allstars. Following 1979's Dance Man, the duo retired the El Coco name to concentrate on their other projects; in the wake of the anti-disco backlash, they remained in television for a time during the early '80s before retiring from music. --http://www.discogs.com/artist/El+Coco [Oct 2005]

El Coco - Greatest Disco Hits

  • El Coco - Greatest Disco Hits [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]
    I moved last week, to a bigger place a couple of streets from where I lived. I had to put all my records in boxes and it's hard for me to find out where is which record. Dominique visited me over the weekend and one of the first records that I pulled out of the boxes was the 1977 El Coco's Cocomotion album. There is a track on that album by the name of "Mad as Hell" and today it popped into my head. So I look it up now on the internet and I found this quite good site from the UK. http://www.geocities.com/funk41uk/el_coco.htm

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