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EXPANSION

Hilton Felton

Be-Bop Boogie

    Hilton Felton was a jazz organ player from Norfolk, Virginia. He at one time played with Chuck Brown and The Soul Searchers. He later recorded on a live album session with Eva Cassidy “A Man For All Reasons” is his signature solo album from 1980, now impossible to find on LP vinyl. It includes this 'rare groove' jazz funk dancer “Be-Bop Boogie” recorded at the same studio as Gil Scott-Heron's "The Bottle”. At over nine minutes long, the 7” breaks this down into Parts 1 and 2, a rare Japanese 7” edition doing the same from 2011 now commanding £75. Over the years, breaks from the track has been sampled by Bill Riley, DJ Sensei and Chris Energy

    TRACK LISTING

    1. Be-Bop Boogie (Part 1)
    2. Be-Bop Bogie (Part 2)

    Ethel Beatty

    I Know You Care / It's Your Love

      Ethel Beatty is an artist from New York who primarily worked as an actress in theatre, appearing in Broadway musicals. She appeared in “Dreamgirls”, “Sugar Hills”, “Bubbling Brown Sugar” and (with Gregory Hines) in “Eubie”. Her most significant recording is this double header with writer/producer and master of the vibes Roy Ayers on Uno Melodic Records. While both songs have been reissued on 7” and compilations over the years, it is still the 12” people that people want. Rare original copies have sold for £500. “It’s Your Love” is co-written by another soul jazz icon, Dee Dee Bridgewater, both tracks having that Roy Ayers vibe that makes this record extremely sought after by rare groove fans. Both tracks continue to be endlessly sampled within the hip hop and R&B scenes.

      TRACK LISTING

      1. It's Your Love
      2. I Know You Care

      Leo's Sunshipp

      Give Me The Sunshine / I'm Back For More

      "Give Me The Sunshine" is one of the most iconic and enduring rare groove tracks. It was composed by Johnny Simone at the time he was working with Stevie Wonder at Motown. Others in the group were Kenny Stover and Alvin Few, all three of them born under the 'Leo' star sigh. Kenny worked as a songwriter at Motown and lived in the same house as Marvin Gaye at the time "What's Going On" became an idea. He co-wrote "Inner City Blues" but was only credited much later. The original "I’m Back For More" included here has equal standing in the soul world too, the song later reaching new insights when covered by Al Johnson featuring Jean Carne. Bothe songs come from the album "We Need Each Other" long associated with Expansion Records. The two songs featured here first appeared on Expansion 12" in 1986, the launch year of the label which in 2021 celebrates in 35th Anniversary.

      TRACK LISTING

      A1. Give Me The Sunshine
      B1. I'm Back For More

      Randy Brown

      I'm Always In The Mood / Love Is All We Need

      Randy Brown is from Memphis, Tennessee who recorded a body of work on the late 70s and early 80s as a solo artist having left The Newcomers. His soul albums for Parachute, Chocolate City and Stax are highly regarded and sought after. Furthermore his debut single “I’m Always In the Mood” has become a modern soul dancefloor classic, but extremely rare (selling for £200). Equally anthemic on the dancefloor is “Love is All We Need”, astonishingly never previously available on 7” single until now. Absolute quality from 1978, a golden era of soul.

      TRACK LISTING

      1. Love Is All We Need
      2. I'm Always In The Mood

      Cajun Heart

      Got To Find A Way

        1960s Northern Soul re-release.

        TRACK LISTING

        Lover's Prayer
        Got To Find A Way

        Stephen Michael Schwartz

        Get It Up For Love

          “Get It Up For Love” is a classic dance song written by Ned Doheny. This version from 1974 is the first, later recorded by Tata Vega, the Average White Band (featuring Ben E. King) and Ned himself. Original 7” copies on RCA Records (featuring the single version only) of this exchange hands for between £50 and £100. It is coupled with the full-length album version, generally unknown from this little known artist. The new Diplomats Of Soul label through Expansion aims to deliver lesser know gems of the highest quality and desirability alongside the group’s own releases moving forward.

          TRACK LISTING

          A Get It Up For Love (3:28)
          (Single Version)

          B Get It Up For Love (4:08)
          (Album Version)

          Rockie Robbins

          Good Life / Let's Groove

          Rockie Robbins is back! From a brand new album released in March 2019 comes the title track single “Good Life”. Robbins is from Minneapolis but moved to Los Angeles in 1979 when signed to A&M Records. From his work with Skip Scarborough, Leon Ware, Richard Evans, Bobby Martin & Jerry Peters came a legacy of timeless quality music including the global hit ‘You & Me’, rare groove ‘We Belong Together’ and the celebrated interpretation of Earth Wind & Fire’s ‘Be Ever Wonderful’.

          TRACK LISTING

          1. Let's Groove
          2. Good Life

          Coke Escovedo

          I Won't Change A Thing / Rebirth

            Mexican/American percussionist Coke Escovedo was brother to Pete Escovdeo and uncle to Sheila Escovedo (Sheila E.). He performed live with artists including Santana and Cal Tjader, and recorded three solo albums in the mid-70s for Mercury Records. His version of the Johnny Bristol song “I Wouldn’t Change A Thing” (featuring lead singer Errol Knowles) is considered the best, and the most played song from his 1976 album “Comin’ At Ya”. It has become a modern soul room classic, and copies of the first 7” release twelve years ago now exchange hands for vast sums. An essential reissue. “Rebirth” is another classy track and features the vocals of Linda Tillery.

            In demand northern/crossover soul record. Original copies exchange hands for £150

            TRACK LISTING

            1. Rebirth
            2. I Wouldn't Change A Thing

            Sylvia Striplin

            Give Me Your Love - Reissue

              “Give Me Your Love” by Sylvia Striplin is an iconic album of the early 80s and was first released on Uno Melodic Records, a label belonging to jazz and soul legend Roy Ayers. Sylvia previously sang with Aquarian Dream as lead on “You’re A Star” before joining Roy as a member of the group Eighties Ladies. “Give Me Your Love” is soul, disco, boogie and ‘rare groove’ all in one. This is an album of timeless gems which on both LP and CD has exchanged hands for hundreds of UK Pounds in both original and reissue formats. These are signature tracks from a golden era of music.

              TRACK LISTING

              1. Look Towards The Sky
              2. Toy Box
              3. You Can't Turn Me Away
              4. All Alone
              5. Give Me Your Love
              6. Will We Ever Pass This Way Again
              7. Searchin
              8. You Said
              9. You Can't Turn Me Away (7" Mix)
              10. Give Me Love (7" Mix)

              Debra Laws

              On My Own / Very Special

                Debra Laws is sister to Ronnie Laws, Hubert Laws and Eloise Laws, all of whom have enjoyed solo success. The family came together in 1981 on Debra’s solo album “Very Special” with vocal, musical, songwriting and production contributions alongside other outstanding names of the day. “On My Own” was written and produced by Ronnie Laws who also features on sax. The song was one of the classiest dance floor records of its day and has become sought after again on 12” vinyl. “Very Special” again features Ronnie Laws and features Arthur Adams on guitar. It is co-produced by Hubert Laws, original 12” copies of this exchanging hands for up to £150. It has been sampled by Jennifer Lopez (featuring LL Cool J), Big Daddy Kane, Mary J. Blige and others. This is the first time both these tracks have been combined on the same 12” release.

                TRACK LISTING

                1. Very Special
                2. On My Own

                Chuck Cissel

                Don't Tell Me You're Sorry / Do You Believe

                  Chuck Cissel, from Tulsa, Oklahoma, recoded just two albums in 1979 and 1982 respectively, both for Arista at the time and reissued together on CD by Expansion in 2014. He is best known in disco circles for ‘Cisselin’ Hot’, but over the last two decades has become renowned for “Don’t Tell Me You’re Sorry” in northern and crossover soul circles. Today it is his most sought after record, original copies worth £150.

                  Willie Hutch

                  Easy Does It / Kelly Green

                    Willie Hutch wrote huge soul hits in the 60s and 70s (co-writing “I’ll Be There” for The Jackson 5) and released sixteen Motown, Whitfield and independent label solo releases between 1969 and 2002. From his period with Norman Whifield’s label through Warner Brother in 1978/79 he is best known for “Easy Does it”. Arranged by Gene Page, it was previously issued only on 7” as a B-side to “Come On And Dance With Me”, original copies now exchanging hands for large sums.

                    Two in demand soul tracks from an iconic soul artist

                    TRACK LISTING

                    1. Easy Does It
                    2. Kelly Green

                    Dionne Warwick

                    Move Me No Mountain / (I'm) Just Being Myself

                      Dionne Warwick is one of the most classic and iconic soul singers of all time. Over her career she has recorded a string of hits and a legacy of music of outstanding quality. “Move Me No Moiuntain” was first released in 1975 on Warner Brothers and has since become her most played song on the ‘modern soul’ scene. “(I’m) Just Being Myself” comes from an earlier album (1973) produced by Holland-Dozier-Holland’, a connoisseur soul track gaining support in recent years.

                      Two in demand soul tracks from an iconic soul artist

                      TRACK LISTING

                      1. Move Me No Mountain
                      2. (I'm) Just Being Myself

                      Bobby King

                      If You Don't My Love / Lovers By Night

                        Louisiana Soul singer Bobby King first recorded as a solo artist in 1973 for the Reprise label where he also sang for Ry Cooder. In 1981 he switched to the main Warner Brorthers imprint and recorded what has become for soul fans a most highly regarded self-titled album. “If You Don’t Want My Love” became a single, an original pressing for this ‘modern’ dancefloor record recently onsale for £300. It is coupled with an exceptuional track from the album “Lovers By Night” not previously available on 7” vinyl.

                        Rare A side, in-demand B Side first time on 7”

                        TRACK LISTING

                        1. If You Don't Want My Love
                        2. Lovers By Night

                        Expansion’s most successful and longest running compilation series returns with a 2017 edition. The concept remains the same, fifteen must-have modern soul room gems taken from the year’s biggest dance floor spins on the soul scene. While tracks here have topped UK soul charts, many have not been available in all formats. Once again, attention is paid to the ‘flow’ of the 15 gems chosen here from shuffling beats to boogie to more soulful house as played at modern soul events. Participants this year include Omar with Los Charly’s Orchestra, Tawatha Agree (voice of Mtume’s “Juicy Fruit”) with Aeroplane, Kenny Thomas with Thames River Soul produced by and featuring Incognito, and both Wez and The Groove Association formerly members of Brit Funk group Second Image. Leela James is here after her stint in a US realty TV show “R&B Divas: Los Angeles”, other guests including Amp Fiddler, Faith Evans, Trina Broussard and Lifford.

                        Biggest modern soul room tracks of 2017 Most tracks released on physical format for the first time.

                        TRACK LISTING

                        1. History - Los Charly Orchestra Feat. Omar
                        2. Love On Hold (Extended Mix) - Aeroplane Feat. Tawatha Agee
                        3. 2nd Time Around - Tuxedo
                        4. Love X Love - Thames River Soul Feat. Kenny Thomas
                        5. There 4 U - Leela James
                        6. When I Luv - Mike City Feat. Faith Evans
                        7. Lost Without You - Will Sessions And Amp Fiddler
                        8. T's All Divine (extended Boogie Back Mix) - James Day
                        9. Good Kinda Lovin - Jay King
                        10. Doublin' Down - The Jack Moves
                        11. Keepin' Love New (Club Mix) - Wez
                        12. Flowered Tears (DJ Spen Soul Flower Remix) - S.E.L
                        13. One For The Money (Gold Digger Mix) - The Groove Association Feat. Georgie B, Wez & Everis
                        14. Back To You - Paul Craver
                        15. Kissing You (Original Mix) - Wipe The Needle Feat. Lifford

                        Retta Young

                        Young & Restless

                          The LP and CD are the first reissues of this album from 1976. The LP is re-issued in its original format due to demand that has driven the value of the pressing on All Platinum to in excess of £400. The CD is the first issue here in this format and comes complete with two preceding singles and a post album release of the 12” mix of “My Man Is On His Way” in 1978, the only 12” release on all Platinum. This makes the CD the complete collection of Retta Young songs including her UK Top 40 chart hit “(Sending Out An) S.O.S. which appeals to both northern soul and disco audiences. The complete album is a gem for connoisseurs of quality modern soul from the 70s.

                          First release on CD for this classic 1976 soul album. Re-Mastered from the original master tapes CD includes bonus tracks to make this the complete anthology of Retta Young songs on All-Platinum

                          TRACK LISTING

                          1. Really Really
                          2. Now Or Never
                          3. Just Look Into His Eyes
                          4. We're So In Love
                          5. I Love My Jim
                          6. My Love Is On His Way
                          7. That's How Some Men Are
                          8. Our Way Of Loving
                          9. Let's Make Up For Lost Time
                          10. You Beat Me To The Punch
                          11. (Sending Out An) S.O.S
                          12. My Man Is On His Way (12" Mix)

                          Lamont Dozier

                          You Made Me A Believer / Starting Over

                          Following his role establishing the Motown sound as part of Holland/Dozier/Holland, Lamont went solo and these two tracks come from his 1981 album “Working On You”. Originally released by Columbia in the smooth, lush sounding style of the day, complete with Lamont’s signature vocal, neither of the two tracks here were released as single despite finding huge favour with modern soul audiences. “You Made Me A Believer” is one of his most enduring soul night floorfillers. Expansion also released the full “Working On You” album on remastered CD.

                          TRACK LISTING

                          1. You Made Me A Believer
                          2. Starting Over 

                          Gordon Grody

                          Exclusively Yours / After Loving You

                          Gordon Grody recorded an album “Exclusively Yours” for RCA in 1977 and the title track became a dance floor success without being released as a single. He came to RCA via working with Vicki Sue Robinson a year earlier Gordon would become a background singer appearing in the 1978 movie “The Wiz” and proving accompany vocals with Phyllis Hyman (“Somewhere In My Lifetime”), Change (“Miracles”), Spyro Gyra (“Morning Dance”), George Benson (“20/20”) and numerous others.

                          TRACK LISTING

                          1. Exclusively Yours
                          2. After Loving You 


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