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American Re-interpretation

Isn't It A Shame by Tracy Hamilton / Pieces Of A Dream - SpotifyThrowbacks.com

Have any of my readers heard of Tracy Hamlin? Speaking for myself, I have never heard of her until recently. According to my research, she’s been around for quite some time. She started out performing in a modern jazz band called “Pieces Of A Dream.” The band has been around since 1976, however, Hamlin didn’t join the band until the mid 80s. The group was best known for their hit “Fo-Fi-Fo.” The song reached #15 on the R&B charts in 1984.

The Best Remix I Heard In A Really Long Time!




Well, Miss Thing came out with a new dance remix this year. It’s a cover of Randy Edelman’s song called “Isn’t It A Shame (1975).” Now, I didn’t know who the hell Randy was either. I discovered that he’s a composer for a lot of movie soundtracks such as Anaconda, and TV Shows, such as MacGyver. Unless I’m mistaken, this song really wasn’t well known until girl group Labelle covered it in their album Chameleon (1976).

Isn't It A Shame by Tracy Hamilton / Pieces Of A Dream - SpotifyThrowbacks.com

Well guys, I found an unexpected gem. Tracy’s version of “Isn’t It A Shame,” released this year in 2019, blew my socks off!! The song was mixed by DJ Spen & Thommy Davis. Girl friend hit those notes like it was absolutely nobody’s business. ­čĄú A dance mix that was very nicely done. I really appreciate her not trying hard to sing like Patti Labelle. She sang the song beautifully using her own style. Please do check out her single. Spotify only seem to have Randy Edelman’s movie scores available. But here’s a YouTube video performing his own original song “Isn’t It A Shame,” published in 1975.

SpotifyThrowbacks.com

Ralfi Pagán was truly a phenomenal musician. Has any of my readers heard about him? As we walk through music history and our heritage, the late Ralfi Pagán is one musician that is worthy of remembering. Pagán was a bilingual salsa performer, born in Bronx, NY of Cuban and Puerto Rican Parents. Not only was Ralfi an amazing artist, he was one of the very few artists I heard growing up, who was fluent in both languages on all his albums.

He Was Signed To Fania Records




Unfortunately, Ralfi died very early in his career; we never got a chance to witness his full potential. Although they say he performed traditional salsa music; I heard a lot more Cuban influence in his albums. Perhaps Cuban mixed in with in with blues rhythms. That I’m aware of, he only completed a total of 4 albums. Out of those 4 albums, only one song actually made the charts. 

Ralfi Pagán - SpotifyThrowbacks.com

The one song that registered @ #32 on The Billboard Charts was “Make It With You (1971).” This song was a beautiful cover of Bread’s 1970 original, written by David Gates. Oh my goodness, listening to Ralfi sing this song, was like listening to a very mellow Little Anthony. Honestly, the only two vocal versions of Bread’s song I really loved, were from the late Nancy Wilson and from the late Ralfi Pag├ín.

Ralfi Pagán - SpotifyThrowbacks.com

Even though Ralfi never had a hit #1 record, the fact that he made it on the charts was a huge accomplishment. Here are some songs I recommend that you check out. “Up On The Roof,” which by the way, is another cover from a group called “The Drifters.” “Don’t Stop Now” is another smooth romantic song. He sang a cover of Smokey Robinson and The Miracles’ “Ooh Baby, Baby.” Also check out a song I know was popular enough I actually remember hearing it. It’s called “Pelao.”

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Bohemian Rhapsody by Marc Martel

Oh, my goodness! Have you guys heard of Marc Martel? Holy sh*t! He did cover of Queen’s legendary classic Bohemian Rhapsody very recently. I never even heard of this guy until I found him by accident yesterday. I saw so many people posting photos of the late Freddie Mercury all over twitter, and I said to myself WTF? It must be his birthday or something. Come to find out, they have a new movie out called “Bohemian Rhapsody,” starring Rami Malek as Freddie Mercury. You remember Rami? The one from that TV show Mr. Robot? Ok. Let me tell you guys something….. To be fair, I have not seen the movie yet…. But…… Girrrrrrrrlllllllllllllsssssss After I heard Marc Martel sing his version of Bohemian Rhapsody, I said to myself HE should have been casted to play Freddie Mercury instead. However, at the same time, I guess it doesn’t matter, because with Marc’s new cover, it’s perfect timing. When interested fans search for either Bohemian Rhapsody or Queen, Marc will probably show up in the results somewhere! Guys, the song sent chills through my spine! It was like Freddie Mercury rose from the dead…. I’m telling you…. Very rare have I ever heard a song where it laterally left me speechless. I’m sure with a good makeup artist, they could have made Marc in to Mercury. I think that would have frightened a lot of people, cause damn if it didn’t freak me out. I’m hearing mixed messages about the movie documentary. I think I’ll wait a bit before I see it (depending on what more people say). Or maybe I’ll wait for Netflix. OMG!!!!

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