Monday, August 15, 2005

I'm Your Boogie Man, Honestly

A few years ago, TV Guide published a special issue featuring the 50 most memorable TV characters of all time. Inexplicably, they omitted Hawkeye Pierce of M*A*S*H. When called on the error by readers, the editors had no other explanation than to say "we blew it" and publish a 51st character profile featuring Hawkeye.

So to reader Dave P. and the rest of you: When I assembled a list of disco records that do not suck and omitted KC and the Sunshine Band, I blew it. I can't imagine how I missed them, as they're one of my favorite guilty pleasures. That I made such a howling error just a week or two shy of the 30th anniversary of their first Number One song only compounds the error. So here's a brief list of five KC records that do not suck, in not-sucking order.

5. "Please Don't Go" (1980)
4. "Boogie Shoes" (1978)
3. "That's the Way (I Like It) (1975)
2. "Get Down Tonight" (1975)
1. "Keep It Comin' Love" (1977)

Critics of KC complain about the way he repeats himself, over and over--yet performers with higher critical reputations do the same thing. For example, Van Morrison believes that if you repeat yourself enough while singing, the words become a sort of mantra and the experience of singing takes on a deeper spiritual dimension. While nobody would go looking for deep spiritual dimensions in KC and the Sunshine Band, repetition usually works for them, too. When they find a groove they stay in it, and repetition makes it deeper. Just listen to the long version of any of the top three tunes on this list.

In addition, even white men who claim they can't dance can dance to KC.

When KC and the Sunshine Band scored three Number Ones in a single year, "Get Down Tonight," "That's the Way (I Like It), and "(Shake Shake Shake) Shake Your Booty" between the fall of '75 and the fall of '76, they became the first act since the Beatles in 1964 to do it. That's good company.

Damn, how did I forget them?


At 9:17 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't be too hard on yourself. KC produced "Rock Your Baby," so he was kind of on your list.


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