Disco Fridays: CLASSIC DISCO (2009) and DISCO LADIES (2009)

We've featured a glittery mess of disco compilations here on The Hideaway through the years, from Rhino's The Disco Years and Rebound's Disco Nights through Priority's Mega Hits Dance Classics and several Time-Life disco collections.  But we've never featured anything quite like the sixteen albums that make up Demon/Harmless's Disco Discharge series of disco compilations.  Conceived by Dave Akerman aka Mr. Pinks, who is too young to have frequented the clubs in their decadent heyday - he admits to beginning his club experience in 1983 - was schooled in all the music thanks to his older partner Steve.  The goal was to create albums that would appeal to seasoned disco aficionados as well as the younger generation just getting into the scene. He would accomplish this by licensing tracks heretofore unlicensed and only in their full length album or twelve inch disco lengths.  And finally, each double CD album would be packaged attractively with extensive liner notes and simple photos on the covers.  The first fruit of his efforts was 2009's Classic Disco and it is the first album we'll be featuring on today's special double wide post here on the first of thirteen consecutive Disco Fridays here at The Hideaway.
Classic Disco serves as a perfect introduction to the unfortunately named Disco Discharge series as it has a variety of disco sub-genres that would see the spotlight on future volumes such as gay disco, Euro and Hi NRG, with Cheryl Lynn's "Got To Be Real" being undoubtedly the biggest pop hit in the collection.  The tracks range from 1975-1984 with the average year falling around disco's post-Saturday Night Fever peak of 1978 before the backlash set in amongst the easily bored and homophobic.  While the three tracks running about five minutes apiece clock in as the shortest tracks, thanks to an abundance of longer tracks the average song on Classic Disco runs a respectable 7:09.  Playing both discs will be the quickest two and a half hours you will spend all day.  Best of all, all songs are unmixed (they don't fade in and out of one another) making them perfect for DJ play or mixtape making.

yeartitleartistBillboard Disco Chart
1976Cherchez La Femme / Se Si BonDr. Buzzard's Original Savannah Band5:471
1982Thanks For Loving MeDouble Discovery8:43-
1978Got To Be RealCheryl Lynn5:0611
1977Do Your DanceRose Royce9:1720
1978Funk EncounterThe Constellation Orchestra6:36-
1977Could Heaven Ever Be Like ThisIdris Muhammed8:342
1979Love MagicJohn Davis & The Monster Orchestra7:395
1979Keep On Dancin'Gary's Gang7:081
1975What A Diff'rence A Day MakesEsther Phillips4:292
1980Gone Gone GoneJohnny Mathis6:32-
1980Counting On Love (One Two Three)Peter Jacques Band6:0857
1976Makes You Blind (Re-edit)The Glitter Band5:584
1979Turn The Music Up!The Players Association6:5156
1979(Everybody) Get Dancin'Bombers9:263
1979Dancin'Grey & Hanks7:0421
1984It Burns Me UpChange5:04-
1978Just A GrooveGlen Adams Affair6:17-
1978Look For LoveCerrone10:147
1983Living Up To LoveCompanion9:08-
1978Got To Have LovingDon Ray8:174
1980Twilight Zone / Twilight ToneThe Manhattan Transfer6:054
white-colored song titles are not on Spotify - YouTube links provided

Northern Soul DJ legend and Harmless label head Ian Dewhirst interviews Mr. Pinks and Alan Jones, author of the liner notes for the Disco Discharge series in the video below, Part One of a series.

As I mentioned at the start, we're kicking off a thirteen consecutive week run of Disco Fridays here at The Hideaway (Lord willing and the creek don't rise) with a double wide post today and the first Fridays of November and December as well.  Today's second featured album is the second in the Disco Discharge series, catalog #HURTCD085 aka Disco Ladies.
Disco Ladies serves up twenty-two songs, all sung by disco sirens not named Donna Summer. The oldest songs are from 1976 while the newest tune is a Shep Pettibone Remix of "I Like You" a Number One Disco song from 1985 that only hit #65 on the R&B chart and #61 on the Pop chart.  It's a toss-up which is most well-known pop song on the album; either "More, More, More" (#4) or "Boogie Oogie Oogie" (#1) or maybe even "Get Up And Boogie (That's Right)" (#2). Disco Ladies features more shorter songs overall with the average track clocking in at 6:30.  
Slipped onto the second disc are two songs from motion picture soundtrack albums released on the Casablanca label: Janis Ian's "Fly Too High" from Foxes (1979) and The Ritchie Family's "Give Me A Break" from Can't Stop The Music (1980).  (Both tracks also appeared on albums by their respective artists.)  For five years, Disco Ladies was my only CD source for Nona Hendryx's beautiful "Keep It Confidential" (aside from this off-pitch Hot Tracks remix on their 15th Anniversary Collection) before her Nona album was re-released on compact disc at an affordable price by the fine folks at Funky Town Grooves.

yeartitleartistBillboard Disco Chart
1979Groove MeFern Kinney8:536
1976More, More, MoreAndrea True Connection6:142
1980You Fooled AroundSister Sledge4:25-
1980Love At First NightKim Hart3:20-
1978Bring On The Love (Why Can't We Be Friends Again)Gloria Jones6:57-
1980Jump To The BeatStacy Lattisaw5:081
1978Boogie Oogie Oogie (LP Remix Version)A Taste Of Honey7:301
1978Gotta Get Out Of HereLucy Hawkins5:4634
1981Get On Up & Do It AgainSuzy Q5:544
1981Shake It Up TonightCheryl Lynn5:405
1981This Beat Is MineVicky D5:5211
1983Keep It ConfidentialNona Hendryx5:5525
1976Get Up & Boogie (That's Right)Silver Convention7:525
1976Blood & HoneyAmanda Lear8:56-
1979Come On And Do ItPoussez9:5115
1980SpacerSheila & B. Devotion5:5444
1979Fly Too HighJanis Ian6:4830
1979HarmonySuzi Lane6:571
1979Instant LoveSylvia Love4:42-
1979Pick Me Up I'll DanceMelba Moore6:5622
1980Give Me A BreakThe Ritchie Family6:2525
1985I Like You (Shep Pettibone Remix)Phyllis Nelson7:201
white-colored song titles are not on Spotify - YouTube links provided

Here's the second part of the eight part Disco Discharge interview:
Have a great weekend!

Disco Friday will return next Friday 
with the next album in 
the Disco Discharge series:


  1. I like the deep cuts listed in this set. That would make it an attractive purchase for me. The interviews are also very informative. Looking forward to more since I have always lived disco.

    1. You probably meant to type I have always loved disco but either way, I know you have always been a clubbin' and dancin' fool.

    2. Yes, I meant "loved" but "lived" works too.

  2. Disco Fridays? APPROVED! Bonus points for the glittery logo.

    The choice of "Disco Discharge" as a series title? Rejected.