I breezed into Spindizzy Records in the Georges St Arcade yesterday whereupon a copy of 'Police Officer' by Smiley Culture was thrust into my hands. I don't know how they knew I wanted it but they were right. I've been looking for it on seven inch for years. Forgot your Dizzee Rascal and your Lethal Bizzle, Smiley Culture is the original. The tune itself, although pretty hilarious, also treats the serious subject of police harassment as experienced by many black Londoners. It was released in 1984 and it charted in the UK. This tune will definitely be on the next podcast.
Whilst in Spindizzy, I also found a picture disc copy of 'Cult of Personality' by Living Colour, a band that had brief success in the late eighties and early nineties. Living Colour were a less commercial Red Hot Chili Peppers who could play their instruments much better than the RHCP and found brief exposure on MTV when it was at its height. This tune was probably their biggest hit and featured on their 'Vivid' album. I was always impressed by their brilliant drummer William Calhoun. Calhoun has played with some of the greats over the years including Pharoah Saunders and one of my favourite bass players, Jaco Pastorius (Weather Report). I've just done a quick search and found that he's also received the Buddy Rich Jazz Masters Award for drumming. He's the business. He also wrote quite a few of the tunes for Living Colour which is kind of unusual for a drummer (unless you're churning out shit like Phil Collins).
The chaps in All City Records had a copy of the 'Ultimate Breaks and Beats' 7x7" Box Set on the shelf when I popped in to them. These kind of box sets sell themselves. It features some brilliant tunes from which various breaks have been sampled over the years and the seven 7's have all been repressed on their original labels. The artists featured on the seven inches are All The People, Banbarra, Melvin Bliss, Brother Soul, Dynamic Corvettes, The Mohawks, and The Village Callers and each tune is a stormer. I'm made up.