Ode to Disco
Forget people. Why not fall in love with a music genre this Valentine’s Day?
Once again, Fever this Thursday promises to be its usual soulful self, spaffing all sorts of disco-orientated tunes over Fez’s Moroccan-themed walls.
It soon being Valentine’s Day however, there may be some not too keen on indulging themselves on a night out. You may be expecting it to be filled with a load of loved-up couples, whispering sugar-coated one-liners into one another’s orifices.
Of course, in reality, that’s never gonna happen. The idea of having a conversation in Fez is simply a fragment of one’s (pretty boresville) imagination. Also, even if the RAG Blind Date didn’t quite go to plan, or your favourite sock/electric toothbrush has bitten the dust, a wondrous night out may still be on the cards. You Sir/Madam have nothing to worry about, cause I have a plan.
Why not, this Thursday, make a date with the sexiest thing since beaded-y-fronts? Why not make a date with a superb little thing called Disco?
Not interested? Maybe I could try and tempt you by describing what sort of thing Disco really is…
“Disco music in the ’70s was just a call to go wild and party and dance with no thought or conscience or regard for tomorrow.” Coke in the air-conditioning, sex on the dance floor, Disco knew little or no bounds in the 70s. Name me another music genre that had one of its biggest hits sang by a porn star, containing the lyrics “get the cameras rollin, get the action goin.” Go on. I dare you.
Indeed, many would argue that if Disco lacks anything, it’s meaningful lyrics. No doubt, when listening to something like I Feel Love by Donna Summer, by looking just at the lyrics – all about feeling good and feeling love – you’d hardly think that such a song could be considered in anyway revolutionary. But produced by Giorgio Morodor, this song in particular would later represent the birth of the electronic dance genre, with its entirely synthesised backing track. How prophetic was the song musically? When Brian Eno heard the song, he told David Bowie, “I’ve heard the sound of the future.”
To many, Disco should be treated as ‘objectively’ much more than simply a style of music, distinctive in its 4-to-the-floor beat or orchestral production. Back in the 70s after all, Disco was arguably a movement, somewhat responsible for the progression of gay rights and racial integration in the US and beyond. Most of the music we hear in Cindoza or Life – ie. mainstream club tunage – wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t born from gay black people sweating their asses off at 5 AM in a Chicago warehouse.
Chic in name, chic in nature, Nile Rodgers and the gang arrived on the 70s Disco scene pretty late. It wouldn’t be until 1979 that they released Le Freak and Good Times, the songs that would propel them into the musical history books. Below is the French-house track Lady by Modjo, sampling Chic’s Soup For One’s luscious hook…
The D got the music rule book, covered it in glitter, replaced the bigoted lyrics, and left it for all of us to have a read. From Hip-Hop to Pop, Disco has influenced our lives in a way that no other genre possibly could have, providing the youth of the 70s – and arguably the youth of the 10s – with a desire to dance. No wonder then that even today, some of us will turn to Disco to help lift us up from that cold, muddy puddle called life.
All is not lost. If relationships are getting you down this Valentine’s, why not hit up the D instead?