I want to switch gears a little bit. As some of my long time followers may have already figured out, I also love listening to music of different cultures. I’d like to introduce to you a talented group named The Hygrades, from Nigeria. You know, as a whole, I normally don’t listen to a lot of Nigerian music, but when I do, I usually enjoy it very much. However, this group did not create traditional Nigerian music. From the 70s, 80s, and even perhaps the 90s popular Nigerian music had a unique sound that was unmistakably Nigerian. But, The Hygrades did not produce traditional Nigerian music. They made what they called Afro-rock.
Although, in my opinion, I hear more of funk infused with blues than anything else. Then again, 50s/60s rock wasn’t the same rock it is today; it was as though rock from that era deserved it’s own genre. The Hygrades made some good sh*t! Also, let me say, when it comes to music, I think every country/culture has their own specialty. Having said that, I always thought to myself, if you ever wanted to learn how to pick a stringed instrument, let a Nigerian teach you. Those guys can pick them some guitar, as though that guitar was a body part 🤣. It is extremely rare that we see American artists with this level of talent today. All the ones I can think of are all gone now! Like, the late Prince? Jimmy Hendrix? Or perhaps Bo Diddley? Not even them really, ’cause with the exception of Diddley, Prince & Jimmy strung a lot of long notes, whereas Nigerian strings are usually a consistent barrage of quick & complicated high pitched notes at the base of the guitar arm.
The Hygrades were put together by a producer named Goddy Oku, based in Enugu, Nigeria. They were eventually signed to HMV/EMI records, and produced many popular hits. “Keep On Moving,” “Rough Rider,” and one of my hot favorites “In The Jungle (instrumental version).” Unless you’re already familiar with their music, you’d never guess where these guys were from. If it were not for Spotify (not YouTube), I would have never rediscovered this group.
You know, at first impression, looking at a photo of these two guys I’d bet most people don’t think much. You’d probably think that these were the typical 70s men who loved to go to bars and drink all night. However, England Dan & John Ford Coley are musicians who managed to produce one of the most popular romantic songs of the 70s! I can’t exactly call them a “one hit wonder,” but, unfortunately, there was only one song I liked, and it became one of my most favorite easy listening songs!
That song was called “I’d Really Love To See You Tonight (1976),” which shot up to #2 on the Top 100 Charts. Now, as I’ve said, they’ve managed to produce several other hits such as, “We’ll Never Have To Say Goodbye Again (1978),” and “Love Is The Answer (1979).” But, hands don’t “I’d Really Love To See You Tonight,” is what they’re remembered for (at least those of us who are old enough to remember). England Dan passed away at the age of 61.Pure Silk Contour 6 Premium Disposable Razor Value Pack Bundle (3 Packs/9 Total Razors)
😄 New group, new group!! Ok, I was listening to one of my mobile radio apps and discovered this awesome group! They call themselves Brother Zulu, and they’re from London. The band members are Lawrence Ajadi, Max Tuohy, Yousef Abdelkhalek, Noah Nelson, & Alex Hillman. You can’t get a more diverse band than this one here! This appears to be a very new band just starting out. In fact their so new, I can’t even find a full album. From 2016, 2018, and now 2019 have all been single releases. That’s quite interesting, considering the age of music streaming.
I’m not quite sure of all the different nationalities within this band; however within the band itself, there’s a beautiful mixture of eclectic taste. The first song I heard from them is called “Fine (2019).” This is a great song! But the song is so unique, I’m not even sure what category this falls under. I guess for the sake of simplicity we can just throw it in R&B; however, I hear so much more than that. The lead singer’s voice texture is almost reminiscent of the late Prince, and sometimes I even hear a little Michael Jackson, yet it’s still his own style. The have a Facebook page, check them out! This song is definitely getting saved to my playlists.
I guess it’s safe to say that the late Bob Welch’s music has fill in to the obscure category by now. I don’t think anybody listens to him anymore, that includes myself. The last time I heard anything from him was when I was a teenager. Welch only had one major hit in his career, which happened to be my only favorite from him. The song was called “Sentimental Lady (1977),” off his album “French Kiss.” Listening to this song was almost like listening to a mellow version of the Beach Boys (in my opinion). It was a nice song though.
You couldn’t get more easy listening than this song. It reached #8 on The Billboard Charts, and as far as I can tell, it was the biggest hit of his career. His second popular song from the same album was “Ebony Eyes.” I didn’t particularly care for this song, but a lot of people liked it. Before Welch took off on his solo career, he was a former member of the legendary band Fleetwood Mac as a guitarist/vocalist from 1971-1974. Sadly, at the age of 66, Welch died from a self inflicted gunshot.
One of my favorite songs from whom I consider a reggae legend, his name is Freddie McGregor, and the song is called “Just Don’t Want To Be Lonely (1987).” This was actually a cover of “The Main Ingredient’s” 1974 release. I couldn’t find this particular song on the billboard charts, but I know this was a significant hit because I heard it everywhere. Then again, I have to remember the community I was in. Growing up, we had a LOT of West-Indian & Jamaican people residing in my neighborhood. I loved the way he did this song.
Maybe I should point out that McGregor does have about 3 whole albums that registered on the charts. The problem is with music streaming, you’re not always guaranteed that all the songs from the original album would be on that album (largely because of licensing). That makes it tougher to gauge what the hits are. Anyway, another beautiful song McGregor has done is a song called “I Was Born A Winner (1992).” Indeed another brilliant love song from a talented artist. Despite not having more detailed chart information, I happened to stumble upon an article in the Jamaican Observer, that said McGregor is one of a small group of artists who are over 50 years of age, who has made it on the Top 10 Billboard Charts.Shop vegan shoes
I just wanted to take the time to personally say thank you for your support, and interest in reading my blog. The thousands of unique monthly visitors I receive every month, validates the desperate need to reconnect with both Black and Puerto Rican American music culture. Never forget that our history and life experiences are also told through our music. Music has always been in our blood since our existence. I deeply hope that new readers who may not use Spotify; make that as an excuse not to see value in what I’m doing. There are so many services that are ALSO FREE you can use to listen to the historic songs I post. All it cost is a few extra keystrokes of your time. Stop being so lazy & unwavering. You should know most music bloggers use Spotify and SoundCloud anyway.
Starting next week, my articles will get a little shorter. Writing blog articles is a lot of work, especially when you’re factoring in coding, gathering images, researching, deciding, spell correcting, grammar, and a host of other background stuff. I want to give you the best quality possible. Therefore to try and keep the 5 day consistency, I’ll write smaller articles. This will give me more time to do other things, and keep fans what they expect at the same time. Hope you guys are enjoying the diversity that my blog offers! Once again, thank you.
Alright! This is probably the shortest blog post I’ve ever written 😂. Yesterday, I’ve discovered an artist by the name of Joey Quinones. It appears that he only released one single this year, it’s called “Don’t Tell Me (2019).” I absolutely LOVE this song! I love the classic feel of the song, I love his falsetto, and I love the classic art he chose for the album cover. Unfortunately, I can’t find any information about him. He doesn’t even appear to be on Bandcamp. Sucks! But check this song out tho, the sh*t is boss!!
Ok, guys, I decided to give you a treat this weekend. I put together a hand picked playlist (by yours truly as always) of 20 of what I consider some of the BEST Latino club mixes of the 80s and 90s! This playlist will not only make you go down memory lane, it will make you sweat by the time you finish playing it. Like many other types of music, I am saddened that we don’t hear this kind of music anymore. It’s as tho all Latin dance music was replaced with either EDM or Reggaeton. I guess Boricua club music follows the same path that disco did, a once thriving genre now considered defunct by the younger Latino generation.
You many not care about that, but I see it as a huge problem. Because 80s Latin club music was listened to by everyone. It didn’t matter if it was in English or Spanish. I don’t give a sh*t what you think, when I was growing up, if you really wanted to party hard, we’d go to a Latin club. Also, the kinds of people Latin music attracted was different. It was very rare I heard fights, gun fire, or any of that sh*t in a Latin club. When people came to Latin clubs, people moved every inch of their bodies, and perhaps forget about their stresses for the night, and just let go. Today, it seems the only thing people interested in doin’ is reggaeton, and twerking their ass region until their ass claps. Sorry…. Let me get off my soap box.
The songs in this playlist has been either produced by Latinos, or Latinos strongly had influence! So, what’s in this playlist? How about “Sume Sigh Sey” by Todd Terry. Or How about “Funkete” by The General. I’ll give you one more. How about personal huge favorite “You & You & You (Mambo Mix).” I don’t know what it is, Latin musicians have a way of taking strange and unusual sounds that people don’t hear every day, and turning it in to a club hit. Listen to my full playlist on Spotify. Enjoy!