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Beach Buzz November 2013

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Band of Oz Performs           

Crowd Loving Halloween

   

The party crowd was out in full force on Thursday, October 31st at TJ's Nightlife in Raleigh, NC. The Band of Oz hit the stage with their usual high energy show and the shaggers came dressed in their Halloween best. A great way to spend trick or treating!!

Photos courtesy of Rickie Lipscomb Photography – www.fotozbyrickie.com

 

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Duck's Beach Club

                  Looking Down Main Street At Ocean Drive

 
   

It is that time of year once again – the annual Carolina Beach Music Awards weekend at North Myrtle Beach begins on Wednesday Nov 6th and runs through Sunday November 10th . The upcoming weekend is dedicated to two of the great ones that we lost over the last year – Billy Scott and Charles Pope. Part of the Awards show will feature tributes to these two legends of Beach music as performed by Danny Woods & The Party Prophets and The Joe Pope Tams.

 One award category that has the best set of nominees in recent memory is the National Dance Song of the Year. All of these songs from artists outside of the genre have been very strong on the air and in the clubs this year.  Let's take a closer look at the five candidates:

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Blurred Lines, the hot as fire title track from Robin Thicke, features Pharrell Williams and Atlanta based rapper T.I., who has a Beach music connection. T.I. is married to Tameka Cottle, aka Tiny, a former member of the girl group Xscape who is also the late Tams co-founder Charles Pope's daughter. She and her husband had a recent VH-1 reality TV series entitled T.I. And Tiny: The Family Hustle. Blurred Lines, the third single to go to #1 for the thirty-six year old Thicke, has topped about every chart you can imagine including the Billboard Top 100,  Canadian Top 100, Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs, France Digital Songs and Germany Songs.

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Don't Rush by Kelly Clarkson, which features Vince Gill, has been on the Beach charts for most of 2013. Actually labeled as a County song, it was included on the first American Idol winners Greatest Hits, Chapter 1 album released in 2012 and also released as a single. The mega Pop star has outperformed all expectations from when she won the TV show contest in 2002, with her very first album, Thankful, going to #1 the next year. In the ten years since, the thirty-one year old Kelly has had thirty singles and eight albums make one or more music charts.

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In Between Disasters by Uncle Kracker, from his 2012 Midnight Special album, has had greater success so far on the beach than it has had nationally.  One thing that may hurt Kracker, as it does many artists, is that it is hard to pinpoint him to a music genre. Although his style is generally labeled as Pop/Rock, his biggest successes to date have been on the Country and Adult Contemporary charts. Kracker got his start as the DJ for Kid Rock, emerging from that job to release his first album, Double Wide, in 2001.  Follow Me, was the hit single from that release, going to #1 on the Adult Top 40 chart and to #19 on the year ending Beach music chart. He has had two additional songs hit #1 nationally, In A Little While in 2003 and Drift Away in 2004.

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Overnight by the Zac Brown Band has been a popular tune in the clubs this year, so much so that several of the Beach bands learned the song to perform in their live sets. A Country band with strong crossover tendencies, the Zac Brown assembled group played local gigs in and around Atlanta for several years until their single Chicken Fried hit it big in 2008. This success launched the exposure that landed the band a Grammy Award for Best New Artist in 2010. Overnight is on their 2012 album entitled Uncaged, which went to #1 on the overall Billboard Top 200 as well as the Top Country Albums chart.

 

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Still Strokin' by Ms. Jody has been at the top of the Smokin' Top 45 here at beachmusic45.com for several months. It is the second straight tune to hit #1 on the beach for the Memphis based Ecko Records star, following up The Bop from 2011. With no prior professional singing experience, Ms. Jody made a visit to Ecko for an audition in 2006 after much encouragement from close friends. Now, seven years and eight albums later, she has become their most popular female artist. Ms. Jody received the Blues Critic Southern Soul Artist of The Year Award for 2012. 

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Sir Jonathan Burton

 

The Coastline Band recorded and released She Poured It On on their 1997 Live Bait album and still do a killer performance of it in their live shows. The song, however, was written and first recorded by Jonathan Burton. Sir Jonathan, as he is now known, is going as strong as ever in both the Beach and Southern Soul markets. His Too Much Booty Shakin' monster hit single was #34 for 2010 and #17 for 2011 on the Smokin' Top 45 year ending charts. Also a big hit on the Southern Soul side, Burton's three albums in the last two years have produced additional charters on The Party Don't Start 'Til I Get There, Meat On Dem Bones, Leave The Drama Alone and the current Can't Touch This.

 

Sir Jonathan's career stretches back several years to studio and stage gigs with such artists as The Manhattans, Chairmen of the Board, Regina Belle, Drifters, Parliament and Cameo, among others. His session work as a guitarist and keyboard player have always been in high demand as well as his accomplished talents as a songwriter, arranger and producer. Now based in Charlotte, Burton's unique recording style and sound have been pretty consistent for twenty plus years. The new music output from Sir JB just keeps on coming -  the outstanding tune You Should Know By Now did not appear on any of his recent albums but is included on KHP's  Back In The Day Cafe compilation and is getting radio and club play. His latest album, Juke Box Party, has several good tracks, one in particular is Better Off Now, that has that booty shaking groove. There's more, look for a new Sir Jonathan tune, When I Win The Lottery, included on the most recent Carolina Shag V from Sisbro Records, which is definitely suitable for dancing!

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Among the multitude of stars lined up for this year’s CBMA Award Show is the headliner from Chicago, Mr. Gene Chandler, forever known as the ''Duke of Earl''. Although it was his biggest hit, Gene had a total of thirty-eight singles make the Billboard Top 100 charts between 1962 and 1986.

Chandler, along with Curtis Mayfield and Jerry Butler, are credited with much of the development of the Windy City Soul music scene in the '60's. In fact, Butler and Chandler combined on a great duet album in 1971 entitled Gene & Jerry: One & One.

 

 Chandler, although it is not as well known, was also an accomplished songwriter - most of the songwriting credits, however, were under his birth name of Eugene Dixon. Gene has made the Beach Music Top 40 of the Year with hit singles seven (actually eight singles, the last charter was a two sided hit) times. Here are those songs, their final chart position, year achieved and the original songwriters of each hit tune:

 

 

Song Title

Chart Position

Year Charted

Songwriter(s)

Duke Of Earl

25

1962

Eugene Dixon/Earl Edwards/Bernie Williams

You Threw A Lucky Punch

32

1963

Don Covay/Smokey Robinson/Ronald White

Think Nothing About It

22

1964

Curtis Mayfield

Nothing Can Stop Me

20

1965

 

Curtis Mayfield

Will I Find Love?w/ Barbara Acklin

19

1969

Eugene Dixon

Groovy Situation

11

1970

Herman Davis/Russell Lewis

Let Me Make Love To You /

 

 Does She Have A Friend For Me

2

1980

Eugene Dixon/ James Thompson

 

Mark Gibbons/Bob Stone

 

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New Band To Be Known As Punch'                                         

 

Beach Bits:   The rumor is now confirmed as fact – a new band called Punch has been formed that includes current members of The North Tower Band. They will hit the ground running in January, primarily featuring a combination of current tunes and '70's thru '90's dance hits. North Tower, with many bookings already in place for next year, will replace and regroup, continuing to provide the high quality entertainment that made them a Hall of Fame inductee last year..........One rumor that has persisted most of 2013 has been found to be false. The Legends of Beach have not totally disbanded as was previously reported earlier in the year. The group will continue to work a schedule of selected gigs while most if not all the members also participate in other bands as time allows........Five time Female Artist of the Year Rhonda McDaniel continues to turn out hit songs. She currently has two tunes, That's All I Want From You and I Love You Babe, on the Beach music charts...........

 

KCO, led by former Chairmen of the Board member Ken Knox, have just recorded a high energy tune entitled Ready Willing And Able. It is not the same song with the same title previously recorded by General Johnson and released on the Arista label in 1976.......Does Terri Gore have a new band called Classic Soul? The group had a recent song release, a slick rendition of High Blood Pressure.........Have you heard the rendition of My Girl from Crazy Zack? Great stuff, already getting spins in the UK,  an album full of strong tunes may be in the works in the near future.......While mama drank all the liquor, daddy went shagging!! The Miller Brothers, which includes Night Move Band keyboard player Mike Miller, have a cool new tune called Daddy's Gone Shaggin' Again, which has a very similar rhythm track as the King Tyrone hit from 2008. It could be considered the answer song to mama's drinking! ......

 

Preston Honeycutt has left the sound board of the Fantastic Shakers and is now playing guitar in Atlantic Groove. Certainly one of the best technical guys in all of Beach music, we wish him well in his latest endeavor.......The recent Back In The Day Cafe compilation (mentioned above in the Sir Jonathan Burton article) on the KHP label is one of the more successful releases in the last several years with well over half of the seventeen songs hitting the charts. The title track from Southern Soul artist Andre Lee was originally on his Stories Of Life album, released on the label started by the late Bill Coday..........Some artists may be hesitant to record and release their music because they are not part of a touring band. That is not necessarily always a requirement for success. Case in point, the Fabulous Jellyrolls, a studio group, has had some killer tunes over the years and were sitting at #1 on the Rhythm 'n' Beach Top 40 survey on Cammy Weekend in 2000 with Bring Your Own Money........

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Eugene 'Hideaway' Bridges is one nationally recognized artist that has been in tune with the Beach music scene since he first had a charting hit here. The Texas native scored big in the shag world with Movin' And A Groovin' in 2002. He has had some dynamite tunes in our market since that time including She Wants To Dance With Me, I Found It, You're The One, I'm Going Back (To Myrtle Beach) and Dance With You. What is amazing is that Bridges has written 95% of the songs that he has recorded across eight albums released since 1998. Eugene's current hot tune on the beach is My Baby Loves Me from his recent album release of Roots And Vines. Check out the detailed review on this latest album by staff writer Mike Little in the ''Have You Heard'' section of this website.

 

 

Artists, DJ’s, Club owners etc. send me your latest news for potential inclusion in Beach Buzz at nealfur@aol.com.