Wed. May. 23, 2018

52nd Street – Tell Me (How It Feels)

Classics: 52nd Street – Tell Me (How It Feels) (Extended Version) (10 Records)

The first half of the 80’s saw the establishment of a typical synth led electronic sound in the production. Kinda hard to clearly say who happened to be its/their originator(s) as a matter of fact. Even though a deeper look at history tends to give indications. Beginning with The System on the memorable ‘You are In My System’ back in 1983. But also Mtume with ‘Juicy Fruit’ that same year. If not the Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis produced ‘Just Be Good To Me’ for The S.O.S. Band. The first name comin’ to mind in the U.K. being the one of Loose Ends. Although 2 years after with the evergreen ‘Hangin’ On A String (Contemplating)’. With the same applying (to a lesser extend though) to Mancunian band 52nd Street with ‘Tell Me (How It Feels)’…

No need to have studied in Cambridge to feel the connection between Loose Ends and 52nd Street at the time. This simply havin’ to do with the fact that they both chose to work with Philadelphia-based producer Nick Martinelli. The latter producing another British act by the likes of Five Star (‘Let Me Be The One’). Meanwhile, hard to not feel something of Fatback‘s ‘Is This The Future’ in the jazzy sax part of ‘Tell Me (How It Feels)’. With the latter givin’ us the opportunity to enjoy another facet of the late Diane Charlemagne‘s obvious talent.

What’s the value of your vinyl record?

I guess it won’t be an offense whenever saying that 52nd Street‘s road has sort of been too windy to be long. With this resulting in the group releasing only 2 albums – ‘Children Of The Night’ and ‘Something’s Goin’ On’ – respectively in 1985 and 1987. With the reason of this obvious instability comin’ from regular internal disagreements. This resulting in unceasing changes in terms of line-up. From their early days under the Factory management to their last hours. With both Diane Charlemagne and Tony Bowry endin’up leavin’ to give birth to Cool Down Zone

As a matter of fact, ‘Tell Me (How It Feels)’, from their 1985 released ‘Children Of The Night’ debut-album, is their most accomplished effort. And it would be their biggest success ever, dubbed with the lesser known ‘Smiling Eyes’. With thanks to producer Nick Martinelli who brought them to another level. With other gems worth the listen from them including ‘I Will Wait’ which saw the light as the flipside of ‘Say You Will’. Then ‘I’ll Return’ with production and remixing work respectively by the likes of Lenny White and Timmy Regisford.

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