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Don’t Leave Me This Way original

Don’t Leave Me This Way original & two covers

In the mid 70s, American songwriters Kenneth Gamble, Leon Huff and Cary Gilbert wrote “Don’t Leave Me This Way”. It’s a song about yearning and loss for a loved one who has left the relationship. The song is gender neutral – the object of desire is simply addressed as “baby”. This worked out well seeing male, female, straight and gay artists performed “Don’t Leave Me This Way”. English duo the Communards released a Hi-NRG version that was the UK’s biggest selling single of 1986. Up and coming Motown artist Thelma Houston released a disco version in 1977 which was also a number one hit. However, in 1975 Harold Melvin & the Blue Notes recorded the “Don’t Leave Me This Way” original with vocals by Teddy Pendergrass.

Check out Communards music

Remember Me Original

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Woman of the Ghetto – the Remember Me Original

Note: this article refers to the 1997 song by Scottish DJ Blue Boy and the “Remember Me” “original” – Marlena Shaw’s “Woman of the Ghetto”. It is not about the song of the same name from the 2017 Pixar film, Coco.

The lyrics, “Remember me? I’m the one who had your babies, I,” refer to African-American maids raising white children for barely any pay. Blue Boy took the song’s title from a line sampled from Shaw’s live performance of “Woman of the Ghetto” at the 1973 Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland. Blue Boy arranged his song around two samples from Shaw’s performance.

The “Remember Me” “original” – “Woman of the Ghetto” – is a 1969 soul song, originally recorded for Shaw’s second album The Spice of Life. The version we discuss comes from her album 1974 soul-jazz album Live At Montreux. Blue Boy’s “Remember Me” is technically a sample rather than a cover but since it’s so heavily built around Shaw’s lyrics, we wanted to explore it here. Both are very interesting songs held together by that iconic refrain “ging, gi-gi-gi-gi-ging”.

Check out the Live at Montreux album

Waiting for Tonight Original

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In 1997, Maria Christensen, Michael Garvin and Phil Temple wrote “Waiting for Tonight”. The song is a dance-tune about a woman eagerly awaiting the arrival of her new man. Jennifer Lopez’s 1999 version became a celebratory anthem associated with the eve of the new millennium. The “Waiting for Tonight” original was recorded two years earlier by Christensens’ girl group 3rd Party. This version had a decidedly more Europop sound to it.