Get your broom sticks out, and your Dracula caps on because the jack o’ lantern is on the prowl. The GLOBAL 2000 Freestyle Renaissance is here. Starting this month our website we will have direct links to order the music that we mention in our columns. If you see a link either on the albums, artists, labels pictures or on the written information that we provide for you, don’t be scared just click on it.
It’s only the month of All-Hallows Eve. It might be interesting to some of you that in this month which we mark as the beginning of the Global 2000 Freestyle Renaissance, 2000 years ago the celebration of the dead and All-Hallows Eve was born.
Halloween came about by a group of people called the Celts who lived in Scotland, Ireland, and Wales. Their new year did not begin on January 1, but rather on November 1. Thus October 31 was their New Year’s Eve. They believed that witches, ghosts and goblins walked the earth on this day. The Celts were very terrified of these spirits, so they would dress up in costumes so that these spirits would not recognize them.
Once the Romans conquered the Celts, the traditions of the two civilizations were mixed together to form a combination of cultures. For the Romans, November 1 was an important holy day called All Hallows. Eventually October 31, the day before All Hallows, became known as All Hallows E’en (evening). And that is the day we celebrate as Halloween. Information provided by: www.bconnex.net/~mbuchana/realms/halloween/index.html
In order to understand the meaning of Freestyle music (Latin Hip-Hop) we must first have a clear understanding of the genre’s culture. A world of electronic funk, B-boys and B-girls, DJ’s, graffiti and MC’s. In the beginning it was a time when creativity was the key purpose of the scene. The music that the community was releasing was made for dancing. The DJ’s spinning at that time were all about making people dance, playing a variety of styles and not concerned on it’s category.
This drive for creativity in music, dancing and graphic art would soon become a main factor again today. Currently we celebrate a day in time where we find a hunger for the truth and in this quest, we re-discover our roots.
The time has come for universal peace in music and focus on the one important factor that will unite this nation of electronica, our craving for knowledge and love for the Freestyle genre.
This month we continue with the Electro-Funk compilation set that contains true tracks that fostered the development of our Freestyle genre. The “Perfect Beats” Volume 1 & 2 and now 3 & 4 on Tommy Boy/Timber records is a big part of Freestyle’s soul. It portrays a time when unity and experimentation was the key focus of creating the music.
The first three tracks on volume 3 are produced by Mark Liggett and Chriss Barbosa which were one of the best production teams. All three tracks come from the Emergency record label. The first song is “Give Me Tonight” by Shannon. It was written by C. Barbosa, E. Chisholm. “Give Me Tonight” (1983) was the follow up to one of the most successful Freestyle tracks ever, “Let The Music Play”. This song was also a huge success for Shannon.
Track two is by Jay Novell (Hurley Johnson JR.), “If This Ain’t Love” (1984), written by T. Mitchell, Jr.. Track three is Xena (Lisa Fischer) with ” On The Upside”(1983), written by C. Josephs and A. Godwin. Both records are considered to be the best in Freestyle.
The next track “99 1/ 2 ” (1984) by Carol Lynn Townes comes from the breakdancing movie Breakin, which spawned a couple of hits. This song is reminiscent of the Shannon sound, but with it’s own unique flavor. The record label is Polygram records and the song is produced by R. Hui, and written by Anderson and Footman.
Next you have the Electro-funk track “Release Yourself”(1981) by The Aleems. The track comes from Nia records and was produced by the Aleems and is written by T. Aleem and T.Z. Aleem.
George Kranz delivers is powerful chants on the classic mixing track “Din Daa Daa”(1983). Produced by C. Frankie and George Kranz and written by G. Kranz. “Din Daa Daa” was a record that demonstrated the diversity of Dance music at that time.
The next tracks on the compilation are “Emotional Disguise” (1982) by Peter Godwin, produced by G. Kajamus ,written by P. Godwin and “Let Me Go” (1985) by Heaven 17 produced by B.E.F. and G. Walsh, written by Gregory, Marsh and Ware.
Arika Bambaataa & the Soul Sonic Force delivers their futuristic funk jam with African chants, “Renegades of Funk”(1983), produced by the gurus of the Electro funk movement Arthur Baker and John Robie. Written by A. Baker, J. Robie, A. Bambaataa, J. Miller, E. Williams, and R. Allen.
The man Afrika Bambaataa was one of the main pioneers of this movement. The forming of the Universal Zulu Nation in 1973, in Bronx, New York was their way of spreading the word of a music community which believes in freedom, justice, equality, knowledge, wisdom and understanding. The UZN members come from all races, cultures, nationalities, countries and religion. They dislike division and want to see peace and unity with all races. Afrika Bambaataa’s mission was to spread the message of the UZN through their music.
Their principle of putting away with all negative activities and focusing on ways to survive positively in this society should be adopted by many. We need to unite as a community in order to be strong in this Music Industry. Let’s support one another, starting today. Let’s develop peace and inspire creativity in our music. For this reason is why we present to you the true “Renegades of Funk”, Afrika Bambaataa & the Soul Sonic Force.
The next track “Al Naafiysh”(The Soul 1983) by Hashim is considered to be a classic breakdancing Electro-funk jam that launched the success of Cutting records. The philosophy of staying in touch with the streets through music has made Aldo & Amado Marin’s dream a reality. Cutting records continues to spread the jam. Produced by Aldo Marin and Hashim, written by G. Calliste Jr.
The next four songs on volume 3 are early Freestyle tracks that are considered to be untouchable classics. “Remember What I Like”(1983) was an Electro dance classic that contained the soulful vocals of Jenny Burton. This was her first solo project to be released. It was produced and written by John Robie. The track was originally released on Atlantic records.
“Honey To A Be”(1985) by Tina B was another of Arthur Baker and John Robie’s fierce productions. This time using the editing talents of Albert Cabrera and Tony Moran formerly known as the Latin Rascals. The song was released on Elektra records and was written by Arthur Baker and his wife Tina Baker.
From the Vanguard records camp you have Alisha with “All Night Passion” (1985). This was more of a dance, energy track but with the Freestyle flavor. It’s drops within the breaks, bass line, emulation’s, and vocals were clearly Freestyle oriented. The song was produced by Mark Berry and written by R. Tarbix. Alisha’s vocal talents would continue to influence many artists. (For example: Madonna)
The last track on volume 3 is “Do You Want It Right Now”(1985) by Seidah Garrett. This song was produced by John “Jellybean” Benitez ,written by Burton & Straker and comes from the Warner Brother label. Even though it was a dance track this song manage to hit number 63 in the R&B charts. NOW FOR VOLUME 4.
The “Perfect Beats” Volume 4 (Timber/ Tommy Boy)
Electro Hip Hop + Underground Dance Classics 1980-1985
The last of the complete compilation set delivers the rest of the Perfect Beats.
The first track is “One More Shot”(1984) by C-Bank featuring Jenny Burton. John Robie displays the best of his Electro production with influences from “Looking From The Perfect Beat” by Afrika Bambaataa which is also found in this CD. This time instead of adding the rap elements, the vocalists takes over with Jenny Burton leading the way. This record still continues to be one of the most played tracks in the mix shows of today.
Another Jon Robie production is “Body Mechanic”(1982) by Quadrant Six. This track is more of a musical breaking track. The song should be taken as an example on how the use of all styles of music came together to form a classic jam. The song was written by E. Innocenti and it’s original release was on Atlantic records.
The Jonzun Crew is featured here with their future Funk track “Pack Jam”(1982). This was one of the tracks that popularized the use of the vocoder in dance music. Originally the song was brought to the attention of Arthur Baker for his Streetwise label, but was released on Tommy Boy records and achieved number 13 in the R&B charts. Produced by Michael Jonzun, Maurice Starr, and Tom Silverman. Written by Michael Jonzun, and Maurice Starr. The Jonzun Crew also released other hits like “Space Is The Place”, “Space Cowboy” “Electro Boogie” and “We Are The Jonzun Crew”.
Track number four is a Deep Space jam by Cybotron entitled “Clear”(1983), which was originally released on Fantasy records. This song is one of the most popular tracks sampled to provide ideas for today’s up tempo Bass records. Produced by 3070 and Juan Atkins, mixed by Jose “Animal” Diaz and written by 3070, Juan Atkins and R. Davis.
The Wiki Wiki Wiki Wiki boys provide the the next Electro classic “Automan” (1984) by Newcleus. Produced by Joe Webb and Frank Fair and written by M.B. Cenac. Released on the Sunny View record label. You can find more of Newcleus hits on their Jam On This! Best Of album linked here.
The next tracks provide the best of the Funk, R&B, Disco and Jazz essentials found in the classic dance music of yesterday. “Stone Fox Chase” by Area Code 615,
“It’s Just Begun” (1972) by the Jimmy Castor Bunch (written by: Castor, Pruitt & Thomas)this track is also found in the breaking scene in the movie “Flashdance”.
Also found here is James Brown with “Give It Up Turn It Loose”(1971), written by C. Bobbit. You can check out more of James Brown’s steaming, hypnotic, groove-driven style on the album Foundations of Funk – A Brand New Bag 1964-1969.
Candido with “Jingo”(1978) originally from Salsoul records. Written by M.Olatunji.
Barrabas with “Woman”, written and produced by Fernando Arbex.
Next on the list is “Dance To The Drummer’s Beat” by Herman Kelly + Life. The “Drummers Beat” is another popular track which has been sampled in Miami Bass songs.(For example: 2-Live Crews “Throw The D”).
The last track of the CD is by Afrika Bambaataa. Bambaataa’s powerful Electro-funk track has producers today “Looking For The Perfect Beat”. “Looking For The Perfect Beat” is produced by Arthur Baker, and written by A. Baker, John Robie, Afrika Bambaataa, J. Miller, E. Williams and R. Allen. A PERFECT way to end a “Perfect Beats” four volume set, compilation.
The”Perfect Beats” has been compiled and produced for release by Joey Gardner.
Project Manager: P.J. Salas
Special liner notes provided by Brian Chin.
Art Direction: Chris Woehrle
A special thanks goes out to Jeff D. from Tommy Boy records for providing us with the compilation for review. Thanks Jeff.
The “Perfect Beats” Vol. 1, 2, 3,4 should be an add to everyone’s collection. If you want to hold on to a part of history that represents the true meaning of Freestyle a.k.a Latin Hip Hop then you better go out and get a copy. DJ’s remember there will be a limited edition three vinyl set. This is the PERFECT COMPILATION, a one of a kind. A great way for the community to learn about it’s roots and enjoy a JAM PACKED CD SET. I highly recommend it. ***** 5 Stars
“Without You” 1998
The Freestyle classic track is out with ten hot new mixes on CD ready to make noise in Clubland for 1998. In addition George Lamond is ready to explode with two new albums in progress on Timber records. His Freestyle album Without You – George Lamond’s Greatest Hits is specially made for his core fans. And also on works is his full length Latin album, with top name producers such as Sergio George and Ricky Gonzalez. It will be something for everyone to look forward to.
“It’s a whole new world for me and I’m ready for it now” he says. “I feel like I’ve just gotten my first recording contract all over again.”
The mixes for “Without You” 1998 includes a variety of dance music styles and sounds. On the Freestyle tip you got the Old School Mix, which is a new mixed version of the Old School. The Slammin Sam’s Ultra Coast Mix provided by Slammin Sam Maxion is a pumping acidic mix, with a funky analog bass line sound and planet beats. The Cibola Mix provided by Charles & Steve Chavez and Albert Castillo is my favorite mix. A funky underground Electro sound, that transcends with tweaking hits and riding keys.
The Valentin Bass Mix provided by Willie Valentin Rivera is another good mix with a pulsating pitch changing 808 kick drum, backed up with planet beats. The Radio Mix is basically a short Valentin Bass Mix. On the house tip you got the BK Dano’s Raise The Roof Mix provided by Brian Kierulf and Sal Dano is more of a Euro-House sound with funky vocal tweaks which give it a trip style feel at the end. The Krash Mix provided by Mike Cruz rocks the Yamaha RX-5 timbales, giving it that Latin-House flavor. The Roc & Presta’s Vocal Mix provided by Ray Roc Checo and Peter Presta are doing what they do best. This funky House track which also includes a dub mix and a Prestapella mix on the 12″ makes it perfect for DJ’s to spin with. J.J. Flores provides the J.J. Flores Club Mix which is more of a happy R&B style house version. He also provides a slower paced (PM Dawn style)mix called J.J’s Smooth Mix. *****5 Stars
The release of Lamond’s new album will no doubt bring more fans and packed clubs, as George knowingly says “these albums are going to make some serious noise!” He has his sights set on evolving into new levels of his career, attaining new triumphs with his upcoming collections of dance and Spanish tunes. And at the same time, he wants to be sure his fans know that all of this is for them, to repay the fans for all the love throughout the years, as he exclaims ” I couldn’t have done it Without You!”
Additional information provided by Timber and Tommy Boy Records.
Another album that is slamming for the month of October is Thump Records “Old School Jams”. This album is a must for the true Funk purists. It contains classics such as, The Average White Band with “Pick Up The Pieces”, AL B. Sure with “Off On Your Own”, Tower of Power with “Down To The Nightclub”, Zapp with “Doo Wa Ditty” and much more.
01. Pick Up The Pieces
02. Off On Your Own
03. Down To The Nightclub
04. Doo Wa Ditty
05. Cheap Thrills
06. Beat Box (Diversion One)
07. Jungle Love
08. Haven’t You Heard
09. I Feel For You
10. The Glamorous Life
11. White Horse
12. Object Of My Desire
13. Why Leave Us Alone
14. You Are In My System
This month we have an exclusive interview from one of Freestyle’s legendary divas the beautiful Nayobe Gomez. “Please Don’t Go” released in 1985 was one of her successful tracks, which is considered today as one of the best Freestyle anthems. Find out what’s going on in her recording career as our columnist Ivan Diller takes you up close and personal with Nayobe. From Freestyle to R&B to Salsa, La Negrita Cubana has Done It All. Just click on this direct link to the interview.
54 (Soundtrack) – Vol. 2 – Tommy Boy
The second part of the Studio 54 Soundtrack is jam packed with the original “DISCO CLASSICS” which were a big influence to this entire dance revelation. The album contains Gonzalez with “Haven’t Stopped Dancing Yet”, Bonnie Pointer with “Heaven Must Have Sent You”, Brainstorm with “Loving Is Really My Game”, GQ with “Disco Nights (Rock-Freak) and much more disco magic. In addition, you have a modern remake of the 1970’s hit “If You Could Read My Mind” by the Canadian artist Gordon Lightfoot.
This time Stars on 54 which is comprised of Ultra Nate, Amber, and our very own Neo-Freestyle Princess Jocelyn Enriquez give us their rendition of the track. A must for all DJ’s and collectors everywhere.
01. If You Could Read My Mind
02. Haven’t Stopped Dancing Yet
03. Heaven Must Have Sent You
04. Loving Is Really My Game
05. Disco Nights (Rock-Freak)
06. Found A Cure
07. Don’t Leave Me This Way
08. Come To Me
09. Take Your Time (Do It Right)
10. Please Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood
13. I Need A Man
14. Heart Of Glass
15. Cherchez La Femme/ Se Si Bon
16. Fly Robin Fly
Originally Miramax Films had another label to come out with a soundtrack for the movie, but they backed out from the project. It was a last minute thing that Tommy Boy Records put together this solid album. So a well deserved special thanks goes out to Tommy Boy’s, Tom Silverman and Victor Lee for putting this great two volume soundtrack out.
Look out for Tito Puente Jr. making noise with is new slamming Latin-House track AZUCAR. If your into Latin-House or you just love good dance music this is a must for your DJ collection.Keep it locked here at Freestyle Music.Com, for the Tito Puente Jr. interview coming soon!!!!
Also coming soon is the exclusive interview with Frank Lords (formerly from Secret Society) with his hot new group Latin X press. From what I hear Frank has been a very busy man in the studio, working with new artists like Alegra and Rene featured in last months Community report. Thanks to Joe Blanco (Road Manager) for the pictures of Latin X press performing in the LA Billboard Showcase, and Peter Robles (Manager) for his help & support. Thank You
The long awaited single release “Go With It” by Tory Beatty is finally out and making noise. Currently the Hi-NRG single is beginning to chart on several charts across the country. Mixes on the 12″ record are provided by Miami Freestyle legend Lewis Martinee, The Syndicate, Germany and Michael Baskt, USA. This record is full of energy and a perfect add for all DJ’s. For more information regarding the track you can e-mail District Records at: firstname.lastname@example.org
A thanks goes out to Ken Garrett, Managing Director for the label, for providing us with a copy. Thanks
Jorge A. Ojeda / Publisher – Webmaster