Various Artists - The Ladies of Too Slow to Disco [How Do You Are? - 2016]A year after the release of the wonderful Too Slow to Disco Vol 2 comes the follow-up, The Ladies of Too Slow to Disco. Featuring 19 tracks of delightful, super catchy, female driven pop, this compilation is a very worthy addition to the Too Slow to Disco series. And, although there are some well known acts on here like Carly Simon and Carole King, this entry keeps true to form and highlights a lot of lesser known artists.
Although softer on the surface that previous volumes, The Ladies still features some heavy hitting, funky, yacht rocking numbers. Solidly constructed groove machines like Lyn Christopher's "Take Me With You" and Evie Sands' "You Can Do It" beg to be modern hip hop backbone samples (if they're not already...checks the-breaks.com). Outliers to the compilation, sure, but these are great examples of how strong female driven music in the 70's was. Sadly overshadowed by their male counterparts, these artists were shockingly underheard by the masses. Familiar sounding gems like Rickie Lee Jones' "Chuck E's In Love" make one wonder if the theme from Full House ripped this off or it's just a coincidence (it also makes me wonder if everyone at work is sick of me walking around singing it, but, really, I'm only improving their workplace atmosphere). Showing that talent runs rampant within families, Mama Cass' sister, Leah Kunkel's "Temptation" (with members of Toto playing session) begs repeated listens and sing alongs. Along side these lost gems is Carole Bayer Sager's "It's the Falling In Love." No matter how gorgeous a song can be, a bigger name doing a straight cover can always relegate the original to the shadows. Coming one year after Carole's track, Michael Jackson recorded a tight cover of this for his Off the Wall album, and, well, the rest is history.
Wonderfully singable, massively grooveable, The Ladies of Too Slow to Disco captures a fantastic slice of 70's female artistry. While many went on to write songs for other artists, a lot were lost to time as footnotes. This is unfortunate, as these songs are well written pop that stand up against their contemporaries. So, thank you DJ Supermarkt for bringing a lot of these lost gems to light. I eagerly await the next installment in this series.Paul Casey