New York, 1977. It’s New Year’s Eve and Nile Rodgers and fellow co-founder of Chic, Bernard Edwards, have just received a phone call from Grace Jones. With only a couple of records to their name, the duo have caught her attention. From the other end of the line, a voice, that Nile describes as a cross between Marlene Dietrich and a pot pourri of every major star, purrs, ‘Hello darling, this is Grace Jones’.
Before collaborating, Jones insists the pair come see her perform at Studio 54 that very night, so they can understand who she is artistically. They are to tell the bouncer that they are ‘personal friends of Grace Jones’. A few hours later and a 25 year old Nile Rodgers and Bernard Edwards inch their way towards the back door of Studio 54, as per Jones’ instructions.
Assuming that Jones had adopted some kind of rock n roll voice over the phone, one which they had not recognised from her records, Nile announces to the bouncer, in that same Dietrich pot pourri register, that he and Edwards are ‘personal friends of Grace Jones’. The bouncer takes one look and cries, ‘Aaahhh fuck off!’
After several failed attempts, the pair head back to Nile’s apartment which is just around the corner. Nile grabs his guitar and the pair jam a song which they call ‘Aaahhh, fuck off!’, a musical retort to the bouncers who refused them entry at the club. Suddenly realising the song has potential but that their title wouldn't get it on the radio, they first change the lyrics to ‘Freak Off’ before Nile has a lightbulb moment and remembers that there’s a new dance spreading through New York called ‘The Freak’. He suggests they change it from a negative song to a positive song about the dance. So the pair write a song about a dance they don’t know how to do after getting the Studio 54 door slammed in their face and ‘Le Freak’ is born.
Hot Digits head honcho Fingerman has launched Wax Digits, bringing his killer re-edits to the vinyl format. This second instalment featured 4 great disco cuts, but the one that stuck out to us was this fantastic Chic edit that is held together by Nile and Bernard's hypnotic guitar blend rising and falling of seven energetic minutes...full marks Chewy. Originally clocked on @gregwilson 's amazing set at Electric Elephant, Coratia 2016: Gregwilson – Barbarellas-electric-elephant-croatia-110716-greg-wilson-live-mix
Todd Terje's version of Neşe Karaböcek has become one of his signature editsFirst Heard on Todd Terje's BBC Essential Mix, now available on Gouranga!
Toddterje – Todd-terje-essential-mix-2013
You have to hand it to Psychemagik. The duo is renowned for their crate-digging skills, as showcased on the various must-have compilations they've curated for Leng and Eskimo Recordings.
Those digging skills come to the fore on their re-edit releases, too. In truth, few would be able to name the source material for "Gotta Hold On Me", an undulating, dubbed-out chunk of peak-time disco-soul built around spacey synth-bass, rising horn lines - judiciously smothered in space echo - and impassioned male vocals.
@flash-atkins is back with a loved-up end of nighter that takes Empire’s Of The Sun’s 'Walking On A Dream' and flips it for the loved up generation. It’s been filtered through the cosmic machine with added arps, bass and space dust for maximum hands-in-the-air action and is guaranteed to bring the sun and smiles.