Saturday, June 27, 2009

ROCK Orgy: "Genius of Love"



ROCK Sex Orgies are songs where everybody gets rewarded.

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Here's another example of a song giving a giant shout-out to other musicians.

The rhythm section of Talking Heads, bassist Tina Weymouth and drummer Chris Frantz, had more to say with their side project, TOM TOM CLUB. "Genius Of Love", their celebration of funk, soul, reggae, and dance heroes became a surprise dance hit in 1981 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.

"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.

TOM TOM CLUB -"Genius Of Love" (1981)


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"We met (Grandmaster Flash) and he said to us, 'You know this is a very cool beat. You're going to be hearing a lot of this.' I said 'Oh really?' He said 'Oh definitely.'"
-Chris Franz


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

Here's are the first two HipHop responses made:

DR. JECKYLL AND MR. HYDE -"Genius Rap" (1981)


GRANDMASTER FLASH & THE FURIOUS FIVE -"It's Nasty (Genius Of Love)" (1981)



From there it became one of the most sampled songs of all time, popping up in tracks by 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..."



© Tym Stevens



See Also:
-The Real History of Rock and Soul!: A Music Player Checklist

Read:
Life and Death on the New York Dance Floor, 1980–1983, by Tim Lawrence


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