B + Birthday + Boogaloo = DYNAGROOVE

Connie T Empress, The Empress of Soul and Phast Phreddie the Boogaloo Omnibus swing at the DYNAGROOVE!

Connie T Empress, The Empress of Soul and Phast Phreddie the Boogaloo Omnibus swing at the DYNAGROOVE!

On Friday August 8, a very special DYNAGROOVE took place at Teddy’s Bar & Grill in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Our pal Kiki Lenoue rounded up a bunch of our friends to celebrate the birthday of one of our inspirations: The Empress of Soul, Connie T Empress. It was really her birthday on the second, but who cares when it can be celebrated with such fabulousness at the DYNAGROOVE!

As you may know, The Empress was the den mother of the Empire State Soul Club—New York City’s first soul club, which held forth from the mid eighties to the mid nineties. When DYNAGROOVE (and BOOGALOO BAG) host Phast Phreddie the Boogaloo Omnibus first came to New York in 1992, he went to an Empire State Soul Club event that December and was greatly impressed. He then attended whenever he could. The Empress was always there, looking fabulous in her tiara and playing fabulous records. So it was a special pleasure for The Boog to be the host (of sorts) for her birthday party. After the traditional singing of “Happy Birthday to You,” The Boog played the most excellent Impressions record, “The Woman’s Got Soul.” The Empress also agreed to play a few records that night, kicking it off in an appropriate manner with “Soul Girl” by Jeanie and the Darlings on Volt. All hail The Empress!!!


Phast Phreddie the Boogaloo Omnibus and Sheila B swing at the DYNAGROOVE!

Phast Phreddie the Boogaloo Omnibus and Sheila B swing at the DYNAGROOVE!

However, none of this should eclipse the shine that belongs to the official guest DJ of the evening: Sheila B—who is a world-renown collector of girl group records. She had heavy involvement with one of the greatest CD reissue box-sets of all time: One Kiss Can Lead to Another – Girl Group Sounds Lost and Found, a four CD compilation of some of the finest and sublimest girl group records ever made, all packaged in hat box. Usually when she DJs out, she plays some of the fantastic records from this collection. So it was particularly special for the DYNAGROOVE when she actually played some records by men!! Miss Sheila B is a class act and we hope to get her back to the DYNAGROOVE again real soon.

For his part, Phast Phreddie the Boogaloo Omnibus admits to having been swayed to play more soul records and more records by female singers than usual (especially later in the evening), as the following list of the records he played can attest:

  • Charlie Parker–Now’s the Time (Columbia; UK)
  • Clyde Dickerson and the Tear Drops–Cool Weekend (Eastern)
  • Stu Phllips presents The Golden Gate Strings–I’m a Believer (Epic)
  • Ornette Coleman–Una Muy Bonita Part 1 (Atlantic)
  • Donovan–Preachin’ Love (Epic)
  • The Jim Conley Combo–Nite-Lite Slop (Dempsey)
  • The Music of David Seville–Almost Good (Liberty)
  • Byron Lee and the Dragonaires–Slow Run (JAD)
  • The Stylistics–People Make the World Go Round (Avco)
  • Road Runners–Every Man for Himself (Funk Prophecy)
  • Slim Smith–Ain’t Too Proud to Beg (Jaguar; Jamaica)
  • The Soulful Strings–Groovin’ [from EP Groovin’ With The Soulful Strings] (Cadet)
  • The Zombies–Walking in the Sun [from EP The Zombies at Work (n’ Play)] (Big Beat; UK)
  • Gerald Wilson Orchestra–California Soul (Pacific Jazz)
  • Harvey Mandel–Wade in the Water Part I (Philips)
  • Willie Hobbs–Do Your Own Thing (Seventy 7)
  • Massie Patterson & Lord Zebedee–Shimmy Like a Lady [from EP The Calypso Carnival] (Columbia)
  • Peter Duchin–Light My Fire (Decca)
  • The Cha Cha Rhythm Boys–Son Dos Luceros (Fiesta)
  • Lincoln Chase with Billy Mure’s Medicine Men–Deep in the Jungle (Part I) (Spalsh)
  • Susan Barrett–It’s No Secret (RCA Victor)
  • Frankie Love–First Star (Loma)
  • The Jazz Tribe–Wa-Pa-Cha (Little Star)
  • The Mighty Confuser with Claude ‘Fats’ Greene Orch.–Space Man Glenn (Cab)
  • Letta Mbulu–Aredze (Capitol)
  • James Darren–(Let’s Worry About) Tomorrow, Tomorrow (Warner Bros.)
  • Les Sultans–Je T’aime Bien (Jeunesse Franco; Canada)
  • Pete Jolly–A Sign of the Times (Columbia)
  • Lee Dorsey–Why Wait Until Tomorrow (Amy)
  • Jacob Miller–Shakey Girl (Joe Gibbs Record Globe; Jamaica)
  • The Soul Providers–Soul Jasper (Desco)
  • The Casper Trio–The Beat Goes On (Casper)
  • Etta James–Two Sides (To Every Story) (Argo)
  • B.J. Baker–Anywhere (Decca)
  • Miss LaVelle–Run to You (Duke)
  • The Hornets–Seven Days to Tahiti (Columbia)
  • Ramsey Lewis–Soul Man (Cadet)
  • Chris Clark–Don’t Be Too Long (V.I.P.)
  • Barbara Feldon–99 (RCA Victor)
  • The Ventures–Ginza Lights (Dolton)
  • Bobby Emmons–Mack the Knife (Hi)
  • Prince Buster and His All Stars–Get Ready (Part I) (Prince Buster; Jamaica)
  • Frank Armstrong and the Stingers–Stuffed Peppers (Modern)
  • Emy Jackson–Don’t Break My Heart (CBS; Japan)
  • The Impressions–Woman’s Got Soul (ABC-Paramount)
  • The Platters–Shing-A-Ling-A-Loo (Musicor)
  • The Five Blobs–The Blob (Columbia)
  • Russell Evans and the Nite Hawks–The Bold (Atco)
  • The Isley Brothers–Don’t Give It Away (T-Neck)
  • Mike Sharpe–Funky Serenade (Liberty)
  • Kenny Hamber–Show Me Your Monkey (De Jac)
  • Hermanas Benitez–El Monkey (Discophon; Spain)
  • Sugar Boy–Jock-A-Mo (Checker)
  • Sir Issac and the Do-Dads–The Big Dipper (Volt)
  • Earl Lett Quartet–Do the Thing (Wild)
  • Chuck Bernard–Hobo Flats (Maverick)
  • Toots & Maytals–I Can’t Believe (Starapple; Jamaica)
  • The Vibrettes–Humpty Dump pt. 1 (Lujon)
  • The X-Citers Unlimted–Soul to Billie Joe (ABC)
  • Tony Roman–Mustang Sally (Canusa; Canada)
  • Ernie K-Doe–A Certain Girl (Minit)
  • Sam & Dave–I Thank You (Stax)
  • Rhetta Hughes–You’re Doing With Her–When It Should Be Me (Tetragrammaton)
  • The Realistics–What’cha Gonna Do (Loma)
  • The Gladiators–Girl Don’t Make Me Wait (Direction; UK)
  • Samantha Jones–Ford Leads the Way (Ford; UK)
  • Miss Ursela Walker–The Javelin Beat (American Motors)
  • Joe Tex–I Wanna Be Free (Dial)
  • Bobby Byrd–Gonna Need My Lovin’ (Smash)
  • Los Valldemosa–Mendocino (Phiips; Spain)
  • Sylvie Vartan–De Ma Vie (Rescue Me) (RCA Victor; France)
  • The Rev-Lons–It’s Gonna Happen Some Day (Reprise)
  • The Third Rail–The Shape of Things to Come (Epic)
  • The Wild Ones–Aozora No Arukagiri (Capitol; Japan)
  • The Animals–Baby Let Me Take You Home (M-G-M)
  • Fats Domino–Have You Seen My Baby? (Reprise)
  • Ramsey Lewis–Ain’t That Peculiar (Cadet)
  • Ella Fitzgerals–Sunshine of Your Love (Prestige)
  • La Lupe–Down on Me (Roulette)
  • Carmen Rivero y Su Conjunto–Pata Pata (Discos Columbia)
  • Vicki Anderson–Baby Don’t You Know (King)
  • Bar-Kays–Knucklehead (Volt)
  • The Impressions–Check Out Your Mind (Curtom)
  • Jimmy McGriff–Let’s Stay Together (Groove Merchant)
  • Arthur Lyman–Afro Blues (HiFi)

None of these records are for sale!  Photos by Nancy Gardner.

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