Ladies Night: Expanded Edition / Kool & The Gang
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Kool & The Gangs 1979 release produced by Eumir Deodato featured a smoother and more pop focused sound from the band that strengthened their grip on both the R&B and Pop charts on both sides of the Atlantic. This remastered expanded edition features 6 bonus tracks and extensive liner notes.
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Enter Eumir Deodato, Brazilian wunderkind producer and a hit maker in his own right. With Deodato handling production duties, first order of business was bringing in an identifiable lead singer that would take Kool and the Gang into a new yet radio friendly direction. With a velvety yet emotionally powerful voice and movie star good looks, James “J.T.” Taylor was a perfect fit for the group.
The album opens in a big way. Title track is a bona fide Disco classic. With its’ persistent base line and killer groove, “Ladies Night” is everything that a night out at the Discotheque is all about. Crossover was what the band needed and they got it in a big way as “Ladies Night” became a Top 10 hit on Top 40, R&B and Disco charts. The remaining 5 tracks on the album do not disappoint. “Hanging Out” also became a Top 5 Disco and R&B hit and with good reason. “Got You Into My Life” sounds like a prelude to Kool and the Gang’s later hit “Joanna” but it’s far funkier. Speaking of funk, Kool and the Gang did not forget their funk roots. “Tonight’s The Night” kicks up the funk and received plenty of club play throughout 1979. “If You Feel Like Dancing” continues the party theme and also became a club favorite.
While most of “Ladies Night” is geared towards the dance floor, its album closer “Too Hot” that is a true masterpiece here and finishes the album in grand style. A heartbreaking story of a lost love, “Too Hot” gave Kool and the Gang another Top 5 Pop and R&B smash and became an eternal Quiet Storm classic. James “J.T.” Taylor’s aching vocals are a marvel and his emotional pleadings towards the song’s end are unforgettable. The one two punch of the title track and “Too Hot” gave Kool and the Gang exactly what they needed: Two Gold Singles, a Platinum Album and commercial and critical acclaim. In 1979, that was a good place to be in the music industry.
Big Thanks as always must go to Big Break Records for re-mastering “Ladies Night”. As is customary with any BBR re-master, the sound is great, the liner notes are fascinating and informative and there are 6 Bonus tracks here and they are a treat. “Ladies Night” and “Hanging Out” are presented here in their very rare 12” Disco Versions and are also available here in their Single versions. The album’s sexy and chic original album cover art front and back is preserved as well. A must have for any Disco/R&B lover and collector.
Kool And The Gang's "Celebrate" and "Something Special" albums in the same series.
This outstanding album is the pinnacle of the group's output, and a disco / funk classic.
Every track sounds like a hit, except maybe Tonight's The Night, which is still fine filler.
The 12" and 7" versions of Hangin' Out are the nice remixes with some different vocal lines
added and taken away, just as they were released on original vinyl.
NOTE: The track listing says track 9 is "If You Feel Like Dancing" (Single Version),
but the track on the CD is actually "Tonight's The Night" (Single Version).
Both were released as B-Sides, but only Tonight's The Night was edited for single release.
(the version of If You Feel Like Dancing on the flip of the single Ladies Night was the same
as the album version.)