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October 16, 1979 - Image 12

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1979-10-16
Note:
This is a tabloid page

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Page 2-Tuesday, October 16, 1979-The Michigan Daily

The Michigan Daily-Tuesday, Oct

Just can't stop that boogie-oogie-o

OLYMPUS

(Continued from Page 16)
established disco stars seem to be in a
rut. More and more, new albums by
popular groups like Chic and the
Village People are sounding like mere
restructurings of past releases.
We could not leave the subject of
disco-overkill without mentioning the
queen of disco herself, Donna Summer.
As many may know, Summer rocketed
to success on the sales of a song called
"Love-to-Love-You Baby," which
featured orgiastic gasps and moans
dubbed over a hot disco beat. Although
a representative for Susan Muneo
Management (Summer's manager) at-
tributed Summer's initial success to the
record's musical impact, it is clear that
sexual innuendo did most of the work.
Summer's latest album, "Bad Girls,":is
a prime example of how sensationalism
sells, and sells, and sells. "Bad Girls"
is a mediocre collection of songs that
almost totally rely on formerly proven
techniques. And yet the album is
without a doubt the biggest seller for
Casablanca records to date.

"Bad Girls" is doing swift business
because it features a formulaic ap-
proach used in past Summer albums,
namely, telling a somewhat campy
story through songs and complemen-
ting it with a slick, romanticized cover
that ties in with the approach. "Once
Upon a Time" was Summer's 1977 fan-
tasy-salute to urban working girls.
"Bad Girls" is her 1979 salute to
prostitution. The cover features a
seductive Donna, decked out in slutty
garb, alternately standing under lam-
pposts, talking with 'johns,' and coun-
ting wads of $50 bills.
Whereas "Once Upon a Time" was
charmingly fresh, "Bad Girls" is
tasteless exploitation marketed with a
cheap-shot shock-value approach. The
songs, including "Hot Stuff" and "Bad
Girls" are pedestrian, with sur-
prisingly poor back-up material from
German synthesizer geniuses Giorgio
Moroder and Pete Bellotte. Only one
cut, the poignant "Sunset People"
comes close to living up to Summer's
potential. Her representative said that

Donna saw the prostitute gimmick of
the album as a bitter commentary on
American morals. That the record is
selling is a bitter commentary on
American gullibility.
GIVEN ALL this substandard fare,
perhaps it is possible to conclude that
disco still sells because people still
want to boogie. This is especially true in
heavily populated urban areas, where
disco and discotheques do best. Cer-
tainly, Studio 54 and major chain discos
like Regines, Xenon, and Mingles have
helped create an ongoing urban disco-
culture that continues to pay - eviden-
ced by Studio 54's recent $2 million
dollar facelift and expansion. The local
disco scene in Ann Arbor has grown,
with the opening of the slightly tacky
Bananas and Mingles discos in the past
year, joining that much-loved haunt,
The Rubaiyat, where bad taste is a way
of life (and fun to boot), for straights
and gays. Many are still mourning the.
loss of Don Cisco's, but overall, for a
mid-west college town, the A disco
scene has more to offer than could be

expected. 0'
a predomin
munity, ant
having a di
explain why
Arbor accou
records sol
major recoi
possibly coi
disco is a ph
ban areas lik
Perhaps o
the saturati
be dropped
production r
prefer Tim
"do the roclk
p

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