Alex Gutierrez Miami Disco Project

Top 40 Disco Tracks

Top 40 Lists of Disco music are so very different in every city where they are compiled. Miami is unique because we embraced alot of the more energetic tracks like my #1 Romeo and Juliette which to my surprise doesn’t even scratch the Top 10 of other lists I’ve seen. I have seen some lists with Cheryl Lynn’s ” Got to be Real” as their #1 , great song but really wasn’t a nightclub favorite down here ( assuming you are located above me ) Miami was a city whose Disco music was not defined by radio hits . We created our own hits. Each club had that particular track that could not be heard in any other nightclub. The DJ prided himself in being unique. 9 times out of 10 when the song hit the radio the track would immediately be removed from the club playlist. The ” cool” factor was gone. The song would belong to the fickle masses who would consume it, burn it out and move on the next song FM radio would feed them. Djs protected their music. Cultivated an artist. Grace Jones was an excellent example of an artist that DJ’s slowly eased into the dancefloor. Her music was appreciated by the jocks, but the crowds had to be trained to accept her arrangements and unique abrasive vocal style. Djs would champion artists and groups and slowly train their audiences into accepting new sounds. Today’s DJs follow radio’s cookie cutter patterns and it is not unusual to hear the same artist or song for that matter 2 and 3 times per night .Blasphemy in the 70s and early 80s. It is difficult to compile such a list,without discussion. I have spoken to a variety of local jocks of the era asked them to give me their opinion based on audience reaction and not so much personal tastes. We would have had alot of obscure tracks in the list .In many cases my number 10 was their number 12 and so on but overall the unanimous #1 was in fact Alec R. Costandino’s ” Romeo and Juliette” considered by all of us a ” Disco Masterpiece” Comment below with your thoughts.

TOP 40 Miami Nightclub Disco Tracks

Compiled by DJ Alex Gutierrez
Based on Club Play from a select sampling of South Florida’s Nightclub DJs 1975- 1981 members of The South Florida DJ Association

1. Romeo And Juliet (Acts 1 &2) – Alec R. Costandinos
2. Heaven must be Missing an Angel -Tavares
3. I’ve Found Love (Now That I’ve Found You) – Love And Kisses (Alec R Costandinos)
4. Come to Me – France Joli
4. Souvenirs – Voyage
5. If There’s Love – Amant
6. Babe we’re Gonna Love Tonight- Lime
7. Gonna Get along without You – Viola Wills
8. Supernature – Cerrone
9. Zodiacs – Roberta Kelly
10. McArthur Park – Donna Summer
11. Mandolay – La Flavour
12. Give Me Love – Cerrone
13. Love Disco Style – Erotic Drum Band
14. Jungle DJ – Kikrokos
15. Honeymoon in Puerto Rico – Paul Jabarra
16. You’ll never Find- Lou Rawls
17. Woman – Barrabas
18. You Make me Feel ( Mighty Real) – Sylvester
19. Forbidden Love – Madleen Kane
20. Everybody Get Dancin- The Bombers
21. Never Gonna Say Goodbye- Poussez
22. Mongouse Ye – Black Brother
23. Devil’s Gun – C J & Co
24. From Here To Eternity- Giorgio Moroder
25. Feels like I’m in Love – Kelly Marie
26. Ten Percent- Double Exposure
27. That’s Where The Happy People Go- Trammps
28. No Romance Just Wanna Dance – Theo Vaness
29. Best Part Of Breaking Up – Roni Griffith
30. In New York- Passion
31. I’m Ready- Kano
32. Love in C Minor – Cerrone
33. Instant Replay – Dan Hartman
34. Can’t Get Enough of Your Love Babe – Barry White
35. La La Peace Song – OC Smith
36. Swear To God – Frankie Valli
37. Disco Nights – GQ
38. Love Insurance – Front Page
39. Move on up – Destination
40. The Break – Kat Mandu

Look for The Fever, Disco reunion Club on Facebook

Original post December 11, 2014

Alex Gutierrez Miami Disco Project

Classic Halloween Selections

Ok so you’re having a Classic 70s & 80s themed Party on Halloween Night and you want to keep the feel going without going too far off into left field or get too ” Dark”. You want to keep it Fun . Of Course you have your standard favorites like Monster Mash and Thriller and Purple People Eater ready to go,but You want to select tracks where the Chorus repeats something related to Halloween. Don’t assume that the people at the party are paying too much attention to the lyrics ( they are Not) but they will pay attention to a phrase that’s repeated over and over. For example one of my favorites is “Frankenstein – Edgar Winter Group” but the song is an instrumental and it’s only connection to this holiday is the track’s title . .Familiar Movie themes such as ” Halloween” and ” Tubular Bell”s from the Exorcist, Adams Family,Poltergeist, Amityville Horror, The Munsters all of these always work well ( Not much for dancing though) But if you really want to scare a 70s and 80s audience ….play a Reggeaton or Bachata….Just Kidding ( No I’m not)
So with that said here are some tracks that I believe will be useful in these types of events . They’re not all Disco , but can played in a 70s themed event . Can you you think of any others? Leave your Comments below., and Have a great Halloween !!
The Following List ( in no Particular order) takes tracks from the 70s and 80s that these crowds could identify with.
Monster Mash – Bobby ‘Boris’ Pickett
CJ and Company – Devil’s Gun
Black Magic Woman – Santana
Superstition- Stevie Wonder
Ghostbusters – Ray Parker
Rockwell – “Somebody’s Watching Me” (1984)
DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince – “Nightmare On My Street” (1988)
Disco Inferno- The Trammps
Mike Oldfield – “Tubular Bells Pt. 1” (Theme From ‘The Exorcist’) (1973)
Rocky Horror Picture Show’ Soundtrack – “The Time Warp” (1975)
Peter Brown – They Only Come Out At Night
TWILIGHT ZONE – Manhattan Transfer
Cerrone – Supernature
Hot Blood – Terror On the Dance Floor
Patrick Cowley- They Came At Night
Whodini – Haunted House of Rock
Michael Jackson- Thriller
Abracadabra- Steve Miller Band
Rock Lobster/Planet Claire/Strobe light- B 52s
Devil in Disguise – Elvis Presley
Devil Went Down To Georgia – Charlie Daniels Band
Spooky – Classics IV

Alex Gutierrez Miami Disco Project

The James Bond Disco Connection

I’m a huge James Bond fan,so you can imagine when in the opening credits of ” The Spy Who Loved Me” 007 evades several machine gun wielding adversaries while on a pair of skis to a hard pouncing, dance floor worthy Disco theme,complete with scratching wa -was.I wasn’t a big Fan of Roger Moore but the producers ,or should I say Composer Marvin Hamlisch hit it right on the head !!The soundtrack to the film was composed by Hamlisch, who filled in for veteran John Barry. Released in August of 1977 it was almost as if Albert R. Broccoli had predicted the coming of Disco.
Biddu Orchestra ‎– James Bond Disco Theme was released in 1978 but never appeared in a James Bond film.

Alex Gutierrez Miami Disco Project

Kool & The Gang " Summer Madness"

You are sitting in front of your computer when Kool and the Gang’s ” Summer Madness” comes on. The trans-formative power of music is evident in productions such as this. You are compelled to share these sounds with everyone in hopes to expose someone new to this experience. The track possibly more recognizable as The 1991 song “Summertime”, via a sample by DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince was released in 1974 on the ” Light of the Worlds” LP.Previously Kool and The Gang had released a track with a similar feel ,1973’s Wild and Peaceful” but with ” Madness” they found the right mixture of sounds to create an instrumental submersive, relaxing, audio experience.
The Fresh Prince/Jazzy Jeff is actually a tolerable ” rap” version
12 inch kool

Alex Gutierrez Miami Disco Project

Alec R. Costandinos Exclusive Interview on Open House Radio

This is something we are extremely proud of.Growing up and listening to his records and then years later being able to actually have a conversation with the Master himself was a real privilege. My number one all time Disco Hit has always been Romeo And Juliette. Listen to the voice that brought us all this beautiful music.No matter hoe he appeared as Love and Kisses, Sphinx,Sumeria,Tony Rallo his productions are testament to the quality that Disco music could achieve. Open House radio is our weekly Disco program heard all over the world on stations such as Generation Soul Funk Disco and AmyFm in France. Wepa.FM in Miami, Disco 935 New York, Radio Sigma and Cultura Web in Brazil and countless more. Enjoy and help ” Keep the Music Alive”

Open House Radio #54 Alec R. Costandinos by Open House Radio on Mixcloud

Alex Gutierrez Miami Disco Project

Ecstacy, Pete & Lenny's "South Florida Disco History"

When you walked into Pete and Lenny’s you were never really certain if the band or the DJ was playing. Ecstacy were that good. It was rare to find a group performing current material, let alone nightclub hits usually reserved for the club’s DJs . “Of all the house bands that went through Pete & Lenny’s (and there were some great ones like Quickstep and Babe. Even La Flavor did a stint), Ecstacy was the truest to the music. At a time when clubs were transitioning away from live music to DJs, this put them head and shoulders above everyone else.

Pete & Lenny's DJ Rick Alonso
Pete & Lenny’s DJ Rick Alonso

These guys were so good that the transitions from me to them and back to me were flawlessly on beat and sounded as close to a DJ mix as you could get without going vinyl to vinyl (remember, this was wayyy before CDs, much less mp3s LOL).
Ecstacy, I just wish they had been as on time as they were good…. “LMAO” recalls resident DJ Rick Alonso who provided the sounds for this entertainment complex in the heart of Broward County A massive tri-level Pete & Lenny’s became THE place to see and be seen. The club attracted some heavyweight headliners who performed there including The Village People, Vicky Sue Robinson, Tavares, Donna Summer, Odyssey, Al Green and many more. Starting in 1977, two nationally broadcast television shows – Disco 77 and Disco Magic were filmed there, giving the club massive exposure and ensured that the place was always packed.
The original band members included Michael Holland (vocals); Jay Martin (guitar); Jessie Acevedo (guitar); Alex Villalobos (bass); Al Muzaurieta (drums); Michael Romano (keyboards); Lee Thornburg (trumpet) and Fermin Goytisolo (congas). Later versions of the group also included Jimmy Carrion (vocals); Burt Acevedo (drums) and Arana Hernandez (percussion)The band’s massive appeal was evident every weekend where their performance was greeted with the same enthusiasm as the club’s DJ, a rarity in those days. Between 1975 and the mid 80s the band recorded original material. Now for the first time is a comprehensive retrospective of one of the finest house bands of the disco era.petelenny-fl-ecstacygroupshotRecente
Track Listing
Living In Ecstacy
Can’t Help Myself / Ecstacy’s Theme
There Must Be Love
Give Me a Reason
Never Can Say Goodbye
I’m Hot Tonight
You Take Me Higher
Make It Tonight
Living In Ecstacy (Extended Mix)
Can’t Help Myself / Ecstacy’s Theme (Extended Mix)
First Time (Edit)
Never Can Say Goodbye (Edit)

Alex Gutierrez Miami Disco Project

He Made us Feel " Mighty Real "

December 16 marked the 26th anniversary of the death of one of Disco’s greatest performers, Sylvester born Sylvester James, Jr. September 6, 1947 in Watts, Los Angeles, California.His music was a staple of nightclubs throughout the world and continues to be included in every Disco set played today. although he had a previous release in 1977 Sylvester first came to our attention with the release of his 1978 ” Step II” which include Dance ( Disco Heat ) ” Gotta a Match?” and Mighty Real on the Fantasy Label.The DJ Promo 12″ was released in 1978, with “Dance (Disco Heat)” as the A-side and “You Make Me Feel (Mighty Real)” on the B-side. Most club DJs at the time programmed both cuts with equal enthusiasm , but my favorite was ” Mighty Real” which in my opinion embodied the feel of the Disco experience as opposed to the grittier ,soulful, Gospel -like ” Disco heat” which was the mainstream favorite. His 1979 album ” Living Proof” produced the mediocre ” Body Strong” which basically used the same drum pattern as ” Disco Heat” .It wasn’t until Sylvester’s album “Stars” that I believed he was back on top of his game with the title track ( stars) and my favorite ” I Who Have Nothing” previously performed by Ben E. King in 1963.The track was a killer , explosion of sounds on a quality nightclub sound system and re-established Sylvester as a leader in the genre. His later more electronic work with producer Patrick Cowley’s Megatron Label on ” Sex” ” Don’t Stop’ ” Trouble in Paradise” and His mega club hit ” Do You wanna Funk” kept him in the spotlight until his death in in 1988. The Unofficial ” Queen” of Disco ,no telling where he would be today musically if he was still alive. sylv Rstepsylsyl3Slyvester

Alex Gutierrez Miami Disco Project

The Four Seasons "December 1963"

In 1994, A Remix of The Four Seasons’ “December, 1963 (Oh, What A Night)”written by original Four Seasons keyboard player Bob Gaudio, re-entered the US Hot 100, where it stayed for 27 weeks, just as it did when it first charted in 1976. The combined Chart presence established a record for the longest total chart appearance in US chart history. In 1993, the song was remixed by producer Ben Liebrand and re released as a single.The lead singer on the first verse was their drummer Gerri Polci – Frankie Valli comes in on the second verse.

Alex Gutierrez Miami Disco Project

Foxy " Get Off Your Ahh and Dance"

Produced by Disco Music Icon Ray Martinez founder of Paris International Records and creator of the groups Amant and Passion, Foxy was formed in 1976 here in Miami. The group consisted of vocalist Ish Ledesma ,percussionist Richard “Richie” Puente ( son of Tito Puente), keyboardist Charlie Murciano, bass guitarist Arnold Paseiro and drummer Joe Galdo . Carl Driggs later joined on their second album as vocalist/percussion and shared songwriting credits.
Their big international hit of course was ” Get Off” but it was this track ” Get Off Your Ahh and Dance” that introduced alot of local club patrons to Foxy. The track was tailor made for Hustle Dancers , Ray Martinez’s signature sound is evident throughout the track complete with violins, flute and the tropical percussion that would cement Martinez’s image as the creator of ” Miami-Style Disco” Unfortunately this beautiful piece of music was obscured when several months later the better promoted T – Connection released a similar sounding ” Disco Magic” also on TK’s Dash Label. The track continues to this day to be one of the ground breaking records that defined the early disco Era.foxy2foxy coverRay Martinez

Ray Martinez ( Producer)
Ray Martinez ( Producer)

Alex Gutierrez Miami Disco Project

Land of 1000 Dances " El Watusi/La Bamba " 12 inch Version… Still a Classic

Since it’s release on Casablanca Records in 1983 Rags to Riches ” El Watusi/ La Bamba ” has been a standard must play in the progamming schedule of every veteran DJ here in the South Florida Area . Of course our large Hispanic population may play a major role in this decision by the jocks, but far from being another straight ahead Remake of ” La Bamba” like Antonia Rodriguez’s 1978 dancefloor hit, Rags to Riches ( 12′) builds it up with a long percussive intro ( 2:51) where a female voice ” narrates” her intentions to steal another girl’s boyfriend ( in Spanish) it is this intro that ” sold” the track to the DJs.The intro weaves seemlessly into ” La Bamba” is a classic style which originated in the Mexican state of Veracruz and combines Spanish, and African musical elements, yet the female voice on the track is speaking with a Carribean Latin Accent ( Dominican,Puerto Rican)aRod12 inch1000
Album Tracks
A Land Of 1000 Dances Medley 22:07
B El Watusi / La Bamba (Special Dance Mix Version) 6:43
“Land Of 1000 Dances” medley:
Land Of 1000 Dances
Twist & Shout
Cool Jerk
Walkin’ The Dog
El Watusi
La Bamba
Mashed Potato Time
Land Of 1000 Dances – Reprise