Cultures Of Soul Records

Sparkle

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In a genre that has classically been driven primarily by hot twelve-inches, it can sometimes be hard to find a disco album that delivers the goods from end to end—let alone a disco LP that could be described as “perfect.” Does such an animal even exist? We’re pretty sure it has to, and we can probably think of a few candidates ourselves. Cultures of Soul Records presents Sparkle’s self-titled album which many disco aficionados would put into this category. Sparkle was a female vocal trio from Connecticut, assembled by the producer Harold Sargent, erstwhile drummer of the sterling funk band Wood, Brass & Steel, and creator of manifold drum breaks that would go on to be sampled for decades. Originally released in 1979, the album and the group are fittingly titled as the music is a scintillating, radiant collection of shimmering disco and dazzling funk, performed by Too Much Too Soon—the multiracial R&B band that featured Evan Rogers and Carl Sturken, the writing/production team that would discover Rihanna and power her career to global dominance fifteen years later. Also on hand is musical prodigy Rahni Harris, whose Sargent-assisted club classic “Six Million Steps” is also included on the album. The result is an album that by far exceeds the sum of its parts, delivering a truly transcendent disco experience.

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COS 030 LP

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27.00
Tracklist: 

Side 1
1. Six Million Steps
2. You
3. Let Yourself Go
Side 2
1. Disco Madness
2. Dabooza
3. Down The Way
4. The Rock

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Smooth Operator

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Cultures of Soul is very excited to announce this killer tropical reggae cover of Sade's Smooth Operator. Recorded at Circle Sound Studios in Miami the backing track was recorded by members of the famous reggae outfit Inner Circle with vocals by local area rising star at the time, Sabrina Rich. Sabrina (her real name is actually Sabrena) had been making records in her and her ex-husband's studio in their garage for years. The result of which was the disco 12" Exit/Whispering. Around this time Sabrina was performing in the Palm Beach / Boca Raton area of Florida and performed with Jimmy Bo Horne. Some time after Sabrina worked with a man named Kenneth Corey who mastered her recordings. Kenneth referred her to Roger and Ian Lewis of Inner Circle to help press up their vinyl. They became friends and around 1985 recorded Smooth Operator. During this time they were working and partying hard and experimenting with different ideas and sounds. The track was originally released in small numbers as sort of a demo and never really took off. Shortly after Inner Circle went on tour in Europe and the single went into obscurity until many years later when copies of the record turned up in New York and Toronto. This 12" includes a special discomix edit by Duckcomb a.k.a. Patrick Billard, DJ and record collector extraordinaire.

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COS 50812

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14.00
Tracklist: 

Side 1
1. Sabrina Rich - Smooth Operator
2. Fat Man Ridim Section - Dub-Operator
Side 2
1. Sabrina Rich - Smooth Operator (Duckcomb Discomix)

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Fighting For Survival

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Having remained continuously active since 1971, the Yoruba Singers are the longest-running musical group in Guyana. Emerging from a music scene mostly dominated by slick, commercial entertainment, the Yoruba Singers brought a new dimension to Guyana popular music, cooking up a potent stew of afrocentric vibes, steeped in a committed invocation of the country’s African heritage. The Yoruba Singers released several recordings during their imperial period in the nineteen seventies and eighties, but what is broadly regarded as the group’s magnum opus is the 1981 album Fighting for Survival. The album sums up the group’s first decade of operation, serving up a heavy mix of calypso, jazzy funk, reggae and afrobeat. Initially released on the short-lived Interculture label and later reissued on a Guyana-only compact disk, the album has long been more talked about than actually heard. But thanks to Cultures of Soul a new edition is now available in wide release, and with it comes the opportunity to experience some of the deepest grooves the Caribbean has to offer!

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COS 025LP

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32.00
Tracklist: 

Side 1
1. Frustration
2. Revolution Day
3. Lingo
4. Abiola
5. Bleeding With Hate
Side 2
1. Fighting For Survival
2. Drums Make The World Go Round
3. Me Selwyn Buddy Clyde
4. Amara Joe
5. Zamin
6. Swarie: A Country Festival

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We Want A Piece Of The Pie

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The album We Want A Piece Of The Pie is the product of a joint effort between Los Angeles songwriter/producer Anthony Browne and the Woolfolk Brothers of Oklahoma, with their seven-piece funk band, Septimus. The two parties sent tape reels back and forth to each other in the mail to assemble this masterpiece of buoyant and spiritual R&B... and 36 years later, those tapes have found their way into the hands of Cultures of Soul Records! Remastered from the original tapes, this new edition of We Want A Piece Of The Pie presents the legendarily rare LP to a broad market for the first time, radiating all its sunny optimism and infectious dance grooves.

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COS 022LP

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32.00
Tracklist: 

Side 1
1. We Want A Piece Of The Pie
2. You're A Mind Blower
3. Take Love Where You Find It
4. The Funks On You
Side 2
1. Love Will Find A Way
2. Jeepers Creepers
3. Party Ya'll
4. We Want A Piece Of The Pie (reprise)

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Evans Pyramid

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Reissue! Cultures of Soul Records is proud to bring to you an anthology of the music of Evans Pyramid. This album features all of the officially released singles plus four previously unreleased tracks. Andre Evans was the mastermind behind Evans Pyramid, a seasoned performer and session player in Boston throughout the '70s. Full of unique disco and boogie stylings, the LP includes all of the rare singles such as “Never Gonna Leave You,” “Dip Drop,” “No I Won’t” and “I Want Your Body,” as well as a recently discovered 45 that featured two top-notch disco tracks - “Dance A Thon” and “Rubber Band.” The album also includes a download card to four unissued tracks from the original demo tapes.Thanks to praise and adulation from Gilles Peterson, DJ Kon, the Noble brothers and Joey Negro, as well as other respected DJs and collectors around the world, Evans Pyramid is the undisputed king of Boston boogie.LP is a limited edition, individually hand-numbered pressing of 1,000

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COS 004LP

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28.00
Tracklist: 

Side 1
1. Never Gonna Leave You
2. Dip Drop
3. No, I Won't
Side 2
1. Soul Petrol
2. I Want Your Body
3. Simply Say I Love You
4. Rubber Band
5. Dance A Thon

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Tokyo Nights: Female J Pop Boogie Funk 1981 To 1988

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Following successful disco excavation from the Caribbean to South Africa, Boston-based label Cultures of Soul booked a first class ticket to Narita to bring you the latest release, Tokyo Nights: Female J-Pop Boogie Funk: 1981 to 1988. This compilation presents 12 of the most memorable and sought-after songs of the era recorded by female artists. The music is a reflection of the unbridled optimism, technological achievement, excess and exuberance of Bubble-era Japan. More than catchy melodies and funky baselines, these are reflections of a time when Japan was the center, and future of the world.The Bubble can be characterized as an endless, extravagant party where personal and corporate wealth soared through the explosion of real estate and stock prices. Scores of young Japanese men and women moved to cities in search of affluence, transforming them into neon wonderlands. Changes in morals, values and gender roles followed suit. Prosperity leads to indulgence, and the taste for nightlife, from flashy restaurants to glitzy discotheques, was unquenchable. A soundtrack to this new, lavish lifestyle was necessary and the latest sound, City Pop (urban pop music for those with urban lifestyles), epitomized these attitudes.While influenced by American R&B and boogie, elements of fusion, YMO style Technopop, and adult-oriented rock (AOR) are front and center. Sung primarily in Japanese (with a word or two of English sprinkled in), City Pop is Japanese music for Japanese people. Producers like Tatsuro Yamashita, Toshiki Kadomatsu, and Haruomi Hosono were quick to embrace the latest studio equipment and technology. Synthesizers like the Yamaha DX7, Roland Juno-60, ARP Quadra, Moog Polymoog and Oberheim OB-8, as well as drum machines like the Linndrum, were prevalent. Digital reverb was applied liberally.Compiled by Eli Cohen (Alliance Upholstery) and Deano Sounds (Cultures of Soul), Tokyo Nights includes tracks by Hitomi Tohyama, Junko Ohashi, Mizuki Koyama, Kaoru Akimoto, Aru Takamura, Mariko Tone, Rie Murakami, RA MU, Kikuchi Momoko and Yumi Seino. Each selection celebrates the unique traits and meticulous production that define the sound. Think sandy beaches and metropolitan skylines, illumination and romance. Embrace the feeling of movement, from a coastal highway stretching towards the horizon or the city sprawling into the future. Turn on the hi-fi and slip into these Tokyo Nights.

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COS 021LP

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38.00
Tracklist: 

Side 1
1. Hitomi Tohyama - Exotic Yokogao
2. Hitomi Tohyama - Wanna Kiss
3. Mizuki Koyama - Kareniwa-Kanawanai
Side 2
1. Junko Ohashi - Dancin'
2. Junko Ohashi - Sensual Night
3. Kaoru Akimoto - Dress Down
Side 3
1. Aru Takamura - I'm In Love
2. Mariko Tone - Broken Eyes
3. Rie Murakami - TNT
Side 4
1. RA MU - Love Is The Work Of Mind
2. Kikuchi Momoko - Mystical Composer
3. Yumi Seino - Sky Restaurant

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Original
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Trying To Hold On

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Cultures of Soul is back! This time it's with a new set of 12"s - the Carib Boogie Synth series. Featuring the iciest synths, the slickest basslines, and other '80s-sounding vibes from the Caribbean islands, all of the tracks are fully licensed. First up in the series is the killer Junior Byron track "Trying To Hold On," written and produced by Wild Fire's Oliver Chapman and originally released on the Wild Fire label back in 1985. The A-side includes the original mix as well as the Version. On the B-side we've got the epic "Megamix." The track was reworked by Gerd Janson, who created the mix old-school style with two copies of the record, a mixer, and an EFX box. Adding the final touches to this track is mixing and mastering engineer LOPAZZ, who mastered many of the best techno tracks in the Get Physical catalog and released the seminal dance-classic "I Need Ya" on Output.

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COS 50712

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18.00
Tracklist: 

Side 1
1. Trying To Hold On
2. Trying To Hold On (version)
Side 2
1. Trying To Hold On (Gerd Janson Megamix)

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Original
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Banko Woman

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For over forty years, the Apostles of Aba have stood as the jewel in the crown of the music scene in Eastern Nigeria. Since their formation in 1973, the band has turned out memorable performances in a variety of styles including rock, soul, funk, pop and reggae. Even today, the Apostles continue to thrill audiences in their hometown of Aba with dazzling shows. Cultures of Soul is proud to present one of the Apostles’ more obscure—yet relentlessly funky recordings in a full-color custom reverse board jacket. Banko Woman, originally released on the eponymous LP on Love Day Records in 1977. Straddling the world realms of afro-funk and disco, the track has long been a coveted dance floor filler amongst DJs, and for the first time is available for a wider audience. On the B-side is “Faith, Luck & Music,” also from the original Banko Woman album.

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COS 1157

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15.00
Tracklist: 

Side 1
1. Banko Woman
Side 2
1. Faith, Luck & Music

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Friendship Train

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SJOB Movement's Friendship Train was the second LP by the group and one which saw the group rise to new heights. It's a masterpiece of African music with it's fluid afro beat grooves and spaced out Moog synthesizer sounds. Here is an excerpt from the liner notes written and researched by Uchenna Ikonne:"Prince Bola Agbana might hardly be the most immediately recognizable name in the constellation of Nigerian music stars, but for a significant portion of the last half-century he labored in the shadows, dutifully serving as one of the key movers in its development: An in-demand session musician. An early and respected exponent of funk. A catalyst in the retrofit of juju into a modern pop genre. Most of all, though, he is recognized as the founder, leader, drummer and principal vocalist of the SJOB Movement.SJOB: Sam, Johnnie, Ottah, Bola. For a moment in the mid-1970s, they were le dernier cri in modern Nigerian music, representing the next step in the evolution of afro rhythms, and a new paradigm for the band economy. Their first album, 1976’s A Move in the Right Direction, was a minor sensation and was swiftly followed by Friendship Train in 1977. Then it appeared that the movement stopped moving, and SJOB disappeared from the scene."

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COS 019LP

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30.00
Tracklist: 

Side 1
1. Friendship Train
2. Love Affair
3. What Could It Be
Side 2
1. Odiaria
2. Let's Do It
3. Halleluyah !!

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Non
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Re-Issue
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Flash A Flashlight

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Benjamin Ball's "Flash A Flashlight" is the first preview of the next Cultures of Soul compilation, Boogie Breakdown -South African Disco 1980 to 1984. WIth the help of DJ Okapi, Cultures of Soul has tracked down many of the great synth boogie artists of the 80s in South Africa including Benjamin Ball, Don Laka, Al Etto, Neville Nash, Harari, and many others. Benjamin Ball's "Flash A Flashlight" came out just after Brenda & The Big Dudes’ massive hit "Weekend." Ball's unique reggae-tinged synth boogie was nearly as big and became the second bubble gum anthem of the era. Highly respected house DJ/producer and co-founder of the Running Back label, Gerd Janson gives us two nice edits of "Flash A Flashlight." Gerd provides two funked up rerubs of the track, one with vocals and one without. Licensed directly from the artist and housed in a custom disco sleeve these edits won't be available on the compilation.

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COS 50512

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20.00
Tracklist: 

Side 1
1. Flash A Flashlight (original mix)
Side 2
1. Flash A Flashlight (Gerd Janson vocal edit)
2. Flash A Flashlight (Gerd Janson dub edit)

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