Saturday, June 27, 2009

ROCK Orgy: "Genius of Love"

ROCK Orgies are songs where everybody gets rewarded.

Here's another example of a giant shout-out to other musicians. The rhythm section of The TALKING HEADS, bassist Tina Weymouth and drummer Chris Frantz, had more to say with their side project, The TOM TOM CLUB. Their celebration of funk, soul, reggae, and dance heroes became a surprise summer hit in 1982 with massive influence.

Listen for the call-outs to James Brown, Bob Marley, Smokey Robinson, Hamilton Bohannon, George Clinton, Bootsy Collins, Sly and Robbie, and Kurtis Blow. My favorite line is "Clinton's musicians such as Bootsy Collins/ Raise expectations to a new intention!"

Also beloved is the graffidelic video, based on the album art of James Rizzi.

THE TOM TOM CLUB -"GENIUS OF LOVE" (1981)




The song was a perfect synthesis of the early 80's New York scene, where Disco, Punk, HipHop, Dub, and noizey Jazz were intertwined in the clubs, vinyl, art, and indie films. Naturally it had an immediate impact in HipHop where responses were swift. Here's one of the best:

GRANDMASTER FLASH & THE FURIOUS FIVE -"IT'S NASTY (GENIUS OF LOVE)" (1982)


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From there it became one of the most sampled songs of all time, popping up in tracks by Dr. Jeckyl & Mr. Hyde, The X-Ecutioners, Redman, Cam'Ron, 2nd II None, Fresh Kid Ice, Tupac Shakur, Mark Morrison, Busta Rhymes, Ant Banks, P.M. Dawn, Annie, Menajahtwa, and Eric Sermon. It also dreamt up Mariah Carey's huge hit "Fantasy". "Genius of Love" is a shout-out song that got plenty of amen corners itself!


"There's no beginning and there is no end/
Time isn't present in that dimension..."

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