Thursday, August 17, 2017

Ray Parker, Jr. & Raydio – It’s Time To Party Now

Most Wanted! Ray Parker, Jr. & Raydio – It’s Time To Party Now (Arista)

Taken from the 1980 released ‘Two Places At The Same Time’. Even though not as well known as ‘Jack & Jill’ or ‘You Can’t Change That’, the aptly titled ‘It’s Time To Party Now’ stood the challenge of time. Considered by many as the cut from this album along with ‘Until The Morning Comes’. Quite illustrative of the bass-driven sound which the group developped earlier on with jams such as ‘Rock On’ or Hot Stuff’.

Overview
– Although mostly remembered for the main theme of the soundtrack of the Ivan Reitman 1984 directed supernatural comedy film ‘Ghostbusters’, Ray Parker, Jr.‘s legagy is just like a one of a kind…

Born in Detroit, MI, the man first came to light as a member of Bohannon‘s house band in the late 60’s. This being how he would come to write his first songs for the late Marvin Gaye. Touring with the (Detroit) Spinners as a musician, he would eventually work for Holland-Dozier-Holland‘s Invictus/Hot Wax labels. He also managed to appear on Lamont Dozier‘s first two albums for ABC Records.

Featuring on Stevie Wonder‘s ‘Maybe Your Baby’ back in 1972, he appeared as his lead guitarist when the latter served as the opening act on the Rolling Stones tour the same year. 1973 seeing him acting as a sideman in Barry White‘s The Love Unlimited Orchestra. He would give birth to Raydio 4 years after. A group which comprised Jerry Knight, Arnell Carmichael and Vincent Bohnam, along with Charles Fearing, Darren Carmichael, Larry Tolbert and Ollie Brown.

Responsible for an instantly identifiable sound, they dropped 4 albums from 1977 until 1981. From then, Parker started a solo career. He scored six Top 40 hits, including the hit single ‘The Other Woman’ in 1982 and ‘Ghostbusters’ in 1984.

Jerry Knight did the same, releasing 3 solo albums. He achieved moderate success though with cuts such as ‘Overnight Sensation’ or ‘Perfect Fit’. He would reach a higher status when teaming up with Ollie Brown. The twosome delivering the title track to the soundtrack of the 1984 movie ‘Breakin”. Knight also wrote and procuded for luminaries such as The Whispers, Patrice Rushen, DeBarge and Howard Hewett.

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