I've been back to the seventies. Musically, but when music comes the memories come with it. Something - I don't know what - put me in mind of Althia and Donna and their glorious hit Uptown Top Ranking. Here's a picture of my copy!
Anyhoo (sic - American) it took me right back. Apparently it was released in 1977 and got to number 1 in the Hit Parade (oh how I miss that term) in February 1978. I thought it was earlier but the interweb tells me otherwise. Not to mention the date on the record. I like to think that I was ahead of the game and bought it in 1977 but I really don't know. What I do remember - vividly, sharply and with a stab to the heart - is the effect it had on me. I had no idea what they were singing about and I don't think I ever did (until yesterday when I Googled the lyrics) but that song bypassed my brain and went straight to the viscera. It was wild. It made me jump up and down. It filled me completely. I wasn't well-versed in reggae - possibly my only exposure at that stage would have been Desmond Dekker's The Israelites (or "My Eyes Are Alight" as the mondegreen has it. Do you know about mondegreens? Another time.) I was more of a Roxy Music/Pink Floyd/T Rex/Jethro Tull/Blondie sort of girl. Perhaps I somehow knew that two women (and they were young - 17 and 18) singing reggae was unusual. Perhaps it was that one of them wore big glasses (I would have seen them on Top of the Pops, but possibly not initially). Perhaps it was those horns. Perhaps I did understad the lyrics on some level. All I know is that it electrified me. And still does.
Here it is then - I chose the clip of them on TOTP so you can see them, but it doesn't beat putting your own copy on your own record player (yes, I still have one) and dancing round your front room in your nightie, like I've just done. And wining up your waist like billy-o.
Thanks for listening - see you soon...