The Second Disc

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We Want “Muscles” and Other Diana Ross Albums for RCA, Expanded by Funkytown Grooves

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Diana RossDiana Ross is well-known as the Queen of Motown, but for real record geeks and catalogue enthusiasts, it’s her post-Motown works – released in the U.S. on RCA Records and on Capitol/EMI worldwide – that deserves a revisitation, thanks to its high energy dance grooves supplied by several very famous collaborators. This fall, Funkytowngrooves is doing what Diana’s fans have wanted for years: remastering and expanding her six albums from 1981 to 1987 for the first time ever.

After two decades with the famed Detroit label, as a member of The Supremes and an increasingly popular solo starlet and actress, Ross left Motown on a high note with 1980’s diana, featuring backing and production from CHIC founders Nile Rodgers and Bernard Edwards. (The duo were initially slated to produce her first RCA effort, but bowed out due to other commitments.) With a $20 million dollar deal in hand, Ross’ first effort was a modest dance record, Why Do Fools Fall in Love, anchored by the title track (a cover of Frankie Lymon & The Teenagers’ immortal doo-wop classic), a new solo version of “Endless Love” (her No. 1 duet with Lionel Richie) and “Work That Body,” co-written with Donna Summer collaborator Paul Jabara and noted session man Ray Chew. (The latter was a Top 10 U.K. hit.) “Muscles,” off of follow-up Silk Electric (1982), was another Top 10 hit, one written and produced by Michael Jackson right before Thriller took off. (Muscles was the name of his pet boa constrictor.)

1983’s Ross saw production duties divided between Ross, Steely Dan producer Gary Katz and Ray Parker Jr., a year before “Ghostbusters.” Swept Away, issued a year later, was an all-star affair, boasting production, vocals and songwriting from Lionel Richie (“Missing You”), Bernard Edwards (“Telephone”) Daryl Hall and Arthur Baker (“Swept Away”) and Julio Iglesias (“All of You”). Eaten Alive, from 1985, boasted near full writing and production from the Bee Gees (Michael Jackson returned to write the killer chorus to the title track alongside the Gibbs’ verses). Her final effort for RCA, Red Hot Rhythm and Blues (1987), was a considerably greater success in Europe than the U.S., as evidenced by the heavy presence of single mixes on the EMI label as well as several tracks that didn’t make the album Stateside. In 1989, she rejoined Motown with the Nile Rodgers-produced Workin’ Overtime.

Funkytowngrooves has remastered all six of these underrated albums with the help of Sean Brennan at Battery Studios. All will feature single mixes and/or B-sides as bonus tracks (including all U.S. and U.K. mixes for Red Hot and one unreleased outtake); the first three albums are single-disc presentations while the latter three are double-disc sets. The label has opened up discounted pre-orders on their site, anticipating to receive their stock for September 29; after that date, the price will go back to normal and will be open to buy through Amazon.

Now looks the time to get in on this exciting set of releases by one of soul music’s most beloved divas. Hit the jump for specs and links!

Why Do Fools Fall in Love: Expanded Edition (released as RCA Records AFL1-4153, 1981 – reissued Funkytowngrooves FTG-383, 2014) (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.)

  1. Why Do Fools Fall in Love
  2. Sweet Surrender
  3. Mirror, Mirror
  4. Endless Love
  5. It’s Never Too Late
  6. I Think I’m in Love
  7. Sweet Nothings
  8. Two Can Make It
  9. Work That Body
  10. Mirror, Mirror (7″ Mix) (single A-side – RCA PB-13021, 1981)
  11. Mirror, Mirror (Radio Mix)
  12. Work That Body (7″ Mix) (single A-side – RCA PB-13201, 1981)
  13. Work That Body (12″ Mix) (12″ A-side – RCA PD-13202, 1981)
  14. Work That Body (Extended Mix) (12″ A-side – Capitol 12CL 241, 1981)
  15. Endless Love (Edit) (single A-side – RCA PB-13013, 1981)
  16. Endless Love (Vocal)
  17. Endless Love (Instrumental)

Silk Electric: Expanded Edition (released as RCA Records AFL1-4384, 1982 – reissued Funkytowngrooves FTG-384, 2014) (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.)

  1. Muscles
  2. So Close
  3. Still in Love
  4. Fool for Your Love
  5. Turn Me Over
  6. Who
  7. Love Lies
  8. In Your Arms
  9. Anywhere You Run To
  10. I Am Me
  11. Muscles (7″ Version) (single A-side – RCA PB-13348, 1982)
  12. Muscles (12″ Version) (12″ A-side – RCA PD-13382, 1982)
  13. So Close (7″ Version) (single A-side – RCA PB-13424, 1983)

Ross: Expanded Edition (released as RCA Records AFL1-4677, 1983 – reissued Funkytowngrooves FTG-385, 2014) (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.)

  1. That’s How You Start Over
  2. Love Will Make It Right
  3. You Do It
  4. Pieces of Ice
  5. Let’s Go Up
  6. Love or Loneliness
  7. Up Front
  8. Girls
  9. Pieces of Ice (12″ Mix) (12″ A-side – RCA PD-13568, 1983)
  10. Pieces of Ice (12″ Instrumental) (12″ B-side – RCA PD-13568, 1983)
  11. Pieces of Ice (7″ Mix) (single A-side – RCA PB-13549, 1983)
  12. Up Front (7″ Mix) (single A-side – RCA PB-13624, 1983)
  13. Up Front (Special Club Mix) (12″ A-side – RCA PD-13625, 1983)
  14. Up Front (12″ Mix) (12″ A-side – Capitol 12CL 306 (U.K.), 1983)
  15. Let’s Go Up (7″ Mix) (single A-side – RCA PB-13671, 1983)

Swept Away: Deluxe Edition (Funkytowngrooves FTG-386, 2014) (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.)

Disc 1: Original LP (released as RCA Records AFL1-5009, 1984)

  1. Missing You
  2. Touch by Touch
  3. Rescue Me
  4. It’s Your Move
  5. Swept Away
  6. Telephone
  7. No One Makes Me Crazy Like You Do
  8. All of You (Duet with Julio Iglesias)
  9. We Are the Children of the World
  10. Forever Young

Disc 2: Bonus material

  1. Swept Away (12″ Long Version) (12″ A-side – RCA PD-13865, 1984)
  2. Swept Away (12″ Instrumental) (12″ B-side – RCA PD-13865, 1984)
  3. Swept Away (7″ Single Mix) (single A-side – RCA PB-13864, 1984)
  4. Touch by Touch (12″ Single Mix) (12″ A-side – Capitol 12CL 337 (U.K.), 1984)
  5. Touch by Touch (12″ Instrumental) (12″ B-side – Capitol 12CL 337 (U.K.), 1984)
  6. Touch by Touch (Alternate Single Mix) (single A-side – Capitol CL 337 (U.K.), 1984)
  7. Telephone (Single Version) (single A-side – RCA PB-14032, 1984)
  8. Missing You (7″ Single Mix) (single A-side – RCA PB-13966, 1984)
  9. Fight for It (7″ Single Version) (B-side to “Swept Away” – RCA PB-13864, 1984)

Eaten Alive: Deluxe Edition (Funkytowngrooves FTG-387, 2014) (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.)

Disc 1: Original LP (released as RCA Records AFL1-5422, 1985)

  1. Eaten Alive
  2. Oh Teacher
  3. Experience
  4. Chain Reaction
  5. More and More
  6. I’m Watching You
  7. Love on the Line
  8. (I Love) Being in Love with You
  9. Crime of Passion
  10. Don’t Give Up on Each Other

Disc 2: Bonus material

  1. Eaten Alive (Single Mix) (single A-side – RCA PB-14181, 1985)
  2. Eaten Alive (Single Mix Instrumental)
  3. Eaten Alive (Hot Extended Dance Mix) (12″ A-side – RCA PD-14183, 1985)
  4. Eaten Alive (12″ Instrumental) (12″ B-side – RCA PD-14183, 1985)
  5. Experience (Special Dance Mix) (12″ A-side – Capitol 12CL 400 (U.K.), 1985)
  6. Experience (Instrumental) (12″ B-side – Capitol 12CL 400 (U.K.), 1985)
  7. Experience (Single Mix) (single A-side – Capitol CL 400 (U.K.), 1985)
  8. Chain Reaction (Special Dance Mix) (12″ A-side – RCA PD-14267, 1985)
  9. Chain Reaction (Special Single Mix) (single A-side – RCA PB-14244, 1985)

Red Hot Rhythm and Blues: Deluxe Edition (Funkytowngrooves FTG-388, 2014) (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.)

Disc 1: Expanded LP (released as RCA 6388-1-R, 1987)

  1. Dirty Looks (U.S. Album Version)
  2. Stranger in Paradise
  3. Summertime
  4. Shine
  5. Tell Me Again
  6. Selfish One
  7. Cross My Heart
  8. There Goes My Baby
  9. It’s Hard for Me to Say
  10. Shockwaves
  11. I Am Me (B-Side to “Shockwaves” – EMI EM 22 (U.K.), 1987)
  12. Mr. Lee (from U.K. pressing – EMI EMC 3532, 1987)
  13. Tell Mama (from U.K. pressing – EMI EMC 3532, 1987)
  14. Sweet Soul Music (previously unreleased)

Disc 2: Bonus material

  1. Dirty Looks (Remix Version) (12″ A-side – RCA 6416-1-RD, 1987)
  2. Dirty Looks (Instrumental) (12″ B-side – RCA 6416-1-RD, 1987)
  3. Dirty Looks (Bonus Beats) (12″ B-side – RCA 6416-1-RD, 1987)
  4. Dirty Looks (U.K. Album Mix – EMI EMC 3532, 1987)
  5. Shockwaves (12” Remix) (12″ A-side – EMI 12EM 22 (U.K.), 1987)
  6. Shockwaves (Instrumental) (12″ B-side – EMI 12EM 22 (U.K.), 1987)
  7. Shockwaves (7” Remix) (single A-side – EMI EM 22 (U.K.), 1987)
  8. Mr. Lee (Swing Mix) (12″ A-side – EMI 12EM 73 (U.K.), 1988)
  9. Mr. Lee (Rare Groove Version) (12″ A-side – EMI 12EMX 73 (U.K.), 1988)

Written by Mike Duquette

July 23, 2014 at 12:35

Posted in Diana Ross, News, Reissues

5 Responses

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  1. Looks like this label really did its homework looking for existing 7″/12″ mixes for tracks released as singles. Some labels have missed the boat by being incomplete on reissues like these. And…I STILL scratch my head over the magnificent UK #1 “Chain Reaction.” Why on earth did American radio stations ignore this, one of the best solo tracks Ms. Ross ever recorded? There must be a bald spot by now…

    Charles Klaus

    July 24, 2014 at 08:08

  2. FunkyTownGrooves is very good at finding mixes. I think some fans will be disappointed there is a lack of unreleased tracks but it will be great to have these back in print.


    July 24, 2014 at 10:27

  3. The lone unreleased track in this reissue campaign, “Sweet Soul Music,” is nothing more than a cover version of the 1967 Arthur Conely hit. Miss Ross opened up her 1987 ABC-TV special “Red Hot Rhythm + Blues” with a performance of the song.

    Eric M. Vaughnes

    July 26, 2014 at 22:12

  4. Much praise to FTG for these thoughtful reissues. Looking forward to their proposed Dionne Warwick expanded remastered reissues from her Arista years.


    July 28, 2014 at 13:04

  5. are they going to be availble digitally??? I have preordered all on amazon but i want them on spotify too! haha #greedy


    September 30, 2014 at 23:18

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