Saturday, January 06, 2007

BBC Radio 2 - The Record Producers: Nile Rodgers


BBC Radio 2’s hour-long documentary on Nile Rodgers, originally broadcast last Monday January 1st is now (finally) available online.

This last show is the latest installment in their ‘Record Producers’ series, hosted by Richard Allinson and Steve Levine. I’ve been listening to it for the last couple of days and for anyone else out there who's a Chic fan, like myself, it's well worth a listen or two, or three..

For this program, Nile Rodgers had given the BBC exclusive access to some of his multitrack masters here, most notably for Chic’s “Le Freak” and “Good Times.” They then proceeded to deconstruct the masters, analyzing and isolating some of those small, but key elements which made those records as classic as they are.



BBC Radio 2 - The Record Producers: Nile Rodgers


Just being able to hear them isolate the drums and bass of “Le Freak” alone was worth the price of admission (which in this case is free, but certainly feels much more exclusive). Listening to Nile talk about the concept behind “Good Times” while hearing it's string, guitar and bass parts by themselves only affirms why "Good Times" is one of their most, if not one of the most iconic records of that time.

If I'm not mistaken, this is possibly the first time the Chic sound has been taken apart, analyzed and put back together in this way. After 1979/1980, being one of the biggest victims of the disco backlash, hearing a program like this certainly speaks to the respect and credibility they’ve gained over the past 30 years or so.

Although I’m focusing on Chic, Nile Rodgers’ career, of course, went well beyond; recovering from the disco backlash to become one of the hottest producers of the 1980s. The last part of the program goes past his 'Chic Organization' work with Bernard Edwards and into many of those landmark solo productions, like David Bowie’s “Let’s Dance,” Duran Duran’s “Notorious,” and naturally, Madonna’s “Like A Virgin.”

Music aside, hearing Nile’s commentary and his many personal anecdotes was the other major highlight of the program. Hearing him tell his tales of working on the Sheila & B. Devotion album as well as his own personal interactions with Diana Ross and David Bowie is just about as entertaining as the songs themselves.

For anyone wants to hear more, Nile Rodgers was previously interviewed by BBC in January 2005, for Radio 4’s “Front Row.” On this particular show, they touched on some other elements of “Good Times” and the Chic sound which weren’t discussed on this latest ‘Record Producers’ program. The Front Row broadcast is still available for listening on the Front Row website (fast forward to 13.10 on the Real Media file).

LINKS:
BBC RADIO 2 - THE RECORD PRODUCERS: NILE RODGERS (JANUARY 1, 2007)
BBC RADIO 4 - FRONT ROW: INTERVIEW WITH NILE RODGERS (JANUARY 6, 2005)
WIKIPEDIA - NILE RODGERS
DISCOGS - NILE RODGERS
ALL MUSIC GUIDE - NILE RODGERS
ALL MUSIC GUIDE - CHIC THE CHIC TRIBUTE
 WIKIPEDIA - CHIC
CHIC INTRODUCTION AND PICKS

PREVIOUS RELATED ENTRIES:
DISCO DELIVERY #2 - NORMA JEAN WRIGHT - NORMA JEAN (1978, BEARSVILLE)
UPCOMING RELEASES & REISSUES (CHIC AND MORE!): (DECEMBER 1, 2006 - JANUARY 22, 2007)
UPCOMING REISSUES & RELEASES (APRIL 25-MAY 30)


CATEGORIES: INTERVIEWS, DISCO NEWS

15 comments:

Anonymous said...

Excellent write up. I heard this live on ewn eyars day, and shall rip it I hope tonight. I had tears in my eyes when they went through good times, such a rich sound, music was never so luxurious as this before. Luke.

Tommy said...

Thanks Luke! :)

"Rich And Luxurious," that's a great way to put it.. It definitely gave me an even greater appreciation for their work and overall genius. There's been so much praise showered on Chic lately, but I have to say they deserve it.

Anonymous said...

Nile makes for great copy. I still can't get over the liner notes for the reissue of "Diana" (a/k/a "The Upside Down Album").

I can no longer listen without thinking of the battle between Diana and the CHIC organization, as Nile recalls it.

Anonymous said...

The show is not available anymore.

file not found :rtsp://rmv8.bbc.net.uk/radio2/r2_recordproducers.ra

Can someone put the show somewhere
to download please ?

M.E. Grant said...

Great interview. Thanks for the crash course in greatness.

FunkyChris said...

Very interesting!!! :D

Tommy said...

Glad you all liked it! :)

Anon, after I saw your comment, I put a direct link to the full real audio broadcast.. Hope there are no problems now..

I agree, Nile does make great copy.. His stories were half the fun of listening.. About the Diana album, maybe it's the novelty of it, but I think those original Chic mixes are awesome! Now that you mention it, imagining Miss Ross throwing a hissy fit only enhances the listening experience.. :D

arturo said...

Hola saludos desde Chile "sudamerica" tu web es muy buena. con musica con hoy no se encuentra por ningun lado, lindo recuerdo de la musica disco de los 70" te doy las gracias por quer en tu web e encontrado disco que estaba buscando por mucho tiempo. espero que leeas mi correo. quiero pedirte el siguiente disco. Showdown de arpeggio.este http://www.discomuseum.com/Arpeggio.html . muchas gracias bye

Anonymous said...

This is golden--thanks for posting these.

However, I'm no longer able to download the full interview from the links provided, as they have expired.

If anyone is still checking this and has the full interview file, I (and perhaps others) would be eternally grateful for a re-post!

The excerpts only whetted my taste. Thanks again regardless.

Tommy said...

Hey!

The sendspace and speedyshare links to the full interview should still be working. The full program is in Real Audio, the link is right below the two mp3 links..

Anonymous said...

the link of the entire show is broken. please repair if you can, I really would love to hear more from the legend, Mr. Nile Rodgers...

Jon said...

Please please please mend the links so I can listen to this show - or can someone advise where I can hear it?

Thanks - great site

Anonymous said...

Where can a copy of this broadcast be found? Can someone **please** upload this again some site like Mediafire or Rapidshare?? THANK YOU.

Londres said...

i listened to this when it came on and it was incredible, but like other commenters here, i must add my name to the petition seeking a re-post.

this was SUCH an informative interview and if there was a place i could pay to hear it again, i would... but please don't make us wait until the BBC decides to get around to it!

Tommy said...

It's several years too late, but I've finally reuploaded this Nile Rodgers doc, for anyone who still stumbles upon this..

Unfortunately I lost the original RealAudio file in a computer crash several years back. Got a copy of that original RealAudio file back not long ago, and have just converted it to a streaming mp3 above..

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