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Encyclopedia > Chic

CHIC is an American band that was formed in 1975/1976 by guitarist Nile Rodgers and bassist Bernard Edwards. They are best remembered for their disco songs, including "Dance Dance Dance (Yowsah, Yowsah, Yowsah)" (1977), "Everybody Dance" (1977), "Le Freak" (1978), "I Want Your Love" (1978), "Good Times" (1979), and "My Forbidden Lover" (1979). Bernard and Nile had former LaBelle and Ecstacy, Passion & Pain drummer Tony Thompson join the band. They performed as a trio, doing covers at various gigs for awhile. The trio needed a singer to front the band. That singer was Norma Jean Wright, who sang lead on their demotape and on all the songs on their first, self-titled album (1977). Right after the sessions ended for their debut album, CHIC began to work on Norma Jean's self-titled debut solo album, released in 1978. This album contained club hit "Saturday". To facilitate a separate but parallel (to CHIC's) solo career for their lead singer, CHIC had agreed to sign her to a separate contract and label from the band. Unfortunately the legalities of this contract eventually forced Norma Jean to leave the band in mid-1978, but not before taking part in the sessions for CHIC produced Sister Sledge album We Are Family. 1975 (MCMLXXV) was a common year starting on Wednesday (the link is to a full 1975 calendar). ... 1976 (MCMLXXVI) was a leap year starting on Thursday (the link is to a full 1976 calendar). ... A guitar is a stringed musical instrument. ... Nile Rodgers (born September 19, 1952) is a prolific guitarist and music producer. ... Bass guitars typically have four strings instead of six as found on regular guitars. ... Bernard Edwards (1953-1996), born in Greenville, North Carolina, was a bass player and record producer, both as a member of Chic and on his own. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... For the album by Ash, see 1977 (album). ... Le Freak was a 1978 hit disco single by Chic. ... 1978 (MCMLXXVIII) was a common year starting on Sunday (the link is to a full 1978 calendar). ... Good Times is a song by the band Chic, recorded for their 1979 album Risqué. Takeoffs Rappers Delight by The Sugarhill Gang was sung over an instrumental version of this song. ... This page refers to the year 1979. ... Labelle (with the b written in small caps, while the spelling LaBelle exclusivelly refers to the stage surname of the groups lead vocalist, Patti LaBelle) was an American R&B/soul group, who successfully melded dance music with funk and glam rock, resulting in such memorable songs as Lady... Tony Thompson (November 15, 1954 – November 12, 2003) was a session drummer with a long list of studio credits. ... In pop music a cover version is a new rendition of a previously recorded song. ... A demo version or demo of a song is one recorded for reference rather than for release. ... Sister Sledge is an American musical group formed in 1972 and consisting of four singers, all of whom are sisters: Kim, Debbie, Joni, and Kathy Sledge. ...

But before that, the immediate success of their debut album and the hits "Dance Dance Dance (Yowsah, Yowsah, Yowsah)" and "Everybody Dance" sent CHIC out on the road. They performed as a quartet until February 1978, but Nile & (Ber)Nard thought that their live performances would improve both in sound and visuals if they added another girl to front the band. Norma Jean suggested her friend Luci Martin, who became a member in late winter/early spring of 1978.

In late 1978 the band released C'est CHIC containing one of their best known tracks "Le Freak." The track was created in an unusual and unconventional way. Guitarist Nile Rodgers later commented:

"On New Year's Eve, 1977, we were invited to meet with Grace Jones at Studio 54. She wanted to interview us about recording her next album. At that time, our music was fairly popular — 'Dance, Dance, Dance' was a big hit and 'Everybody Dance', although more underground, was doing very well, too — but Grace Jones didn't leave our name at the door and the doorman wouldn't let us in. Studio 54 was that kind of place. Our music might be playing inside, but the place was packed for New Year's Eve and this was early in our career. Anyway, my apartment happened to be one block away, so Bernard and I went there to sort of quell our sorrows. We grabbed a couple of bottles of champagne from the corner liquor store and then went back to my place, plugged in our instruments and started jamming.
"And since we were feeling bad, we played music to make us feel good. We started jamming on the now-famous riff — Bernard and I were particularly good at making up riffs and jamming together. We were really into jamming and we'd often start writing songs that way, sometimes drawing on ideas that were floating around. In this case, however, the riff was super, super simple, so it didn't have to be pre-planned. It's not like I'd been saving it. It was just something that happened. I had always liked the Cream song 'Sunshine Of Your Love', and I wanted to do a sort of riff song for CHIC, although not a complete linear riff — that wouldn't be like CHIC — so I incorporated a little linear lick and we started singing, 'fuck off!' [Repeats the lick.] 'Aaaaahh, fuck off!'
"We were so fucked off at what had happened. I mean, it was Studio 54, it was New Year's Eve, it was Grace Jones, and we were wearing the most expensive outfits that we had — back then, in the late '70s, our suits must have cost us a couple of thousand bucks each, and our really fancy shoes had got soaked trudging through the snow. So 'Fuck Off' was a protest song, and we actually thought it was pretty good — 'Aaaaahh, fuck off!' It had a vibe. I was thinking 'This could be the anthem of everybody who gets cut off on the street by a cab driver or any kids who want to say this to their parents.' You know, 'Hey, I wasn't saying it, man! I was just playing the record.'
"We really had pretty big designs on completing the song as 'Fuck Off'. You've got to remember, we didn't think of that prior to sitting down and playing. Once we did sit down and play and started singing that hook, it sounded good; just as good as 'freak out'. In fact, had we not come up with ' off' we would never have written 'Freak Out' and some other song would have been our big hit record. We were screaming it: 'Aaaaahh, fuck off!' Bernard and I usually wrote the hook of a song first, and then once we felt we had a chorus that would pay off, the rest of the song would follow. So, that night we actually converted 'fuck off' to 'freak out'. That was part of the process that first night. First, we changed it from 'fuck off' to 'freak off', and that was pretty hideous. We were singing it and just stumbling over 'freak off', because it was so lame by comparison. Then, all of a sudden it just hit me. For one second the light bulb went on and I sang 'Aaaaahh, freak out!'"

The track was a massive success topping the US charts and selling over six million copies. Grace Jones (born Grace Mendoza on May 19, 1948, in Spanish Town, Kingston, Jamaica) is a model, singer and actress. ... The original Studio 54 logo. ... Cream (also The Cream) was a seminal 1960s British rock band which featured guitarist Eric Clapton, bassist Jack Bruce, and drummer Ginger Baker. ...

The following year the group released Risqué with the lead track being "Good Times" one of the most important and influential songs ever written. As well as featuring on the first Hip Hop A-side for The Sugarhill Gang, the track also formed the backbone of Grandmaster Flash's "Adventures on the Wheels of Steel" and has been endlessly sampled since by many dance and hip hop acts. The Sugarhill Gang is an American hip hop group, known mostly for one hit, Rappers Delight, the first hip hop single to become a Top 40 hit. ... DJ Grandmaster Flash was one of the pioneers of hip-hop DJing, cutting, and mixing. ...

At the same time, Edwards and Rodgers composed, arranged, performed, and produced many influential disco and R&B records for both established artists and one-hit wonders, including Sister Sledge, Sheila and B. Devotion, Diana Ross, and Debbie Harry. CHIC also helped introduce the world to an up-and-coming young vocalist named Luther Vandross, who sang on several of CHIC's albums. For the Sister Sledge project CHIC swapped songs with "He's the Greatest Dancer" originally intended as a CHIC song exchanging for "I Want Your Love" originally due to be performed by Sister Sledge. Rhythm and blues (or R & B) is a musical marketing term introduced in the United States in the late 1940s by Billboard magazine. ... Sister Sledge is an American musical group formed in 1972 and consisting of four singers, all of whom are sisters: Kim, Debbie, Joni, and Kathy Sledge. ... Definition 1: Sheila is the stage name of a French pop singer whose real name is Annie Chancel (she is not related to Jacques Chancel, the TV host). ... This article is about the American musician. ... Debbie Harry Deborah Ann Harry (born July 1, 1945 in Miami, Florida) is an American rock and roll musician who originally gained fame as the frontwoman for Punk band Blondie, which originated in the mid 1970s and achieved commercial success in the late 1970s and early 1980s. ... Luther Vandross Luther Vandross (born Luther Ronzoni Vandross Jr. ...

In the 1980s, the band struggled to obtain airplay and sales, and they eventually disbanded. Rodgers and Edwards separately produced records for a wide variety of artists. Rodgers was largely responsible for the breakthrough success of Madonna in 1984 with her Like a Virgin album. Thompson and Edwards worked with the supergroup Power Station on its 1985 hit LP as well as Power Station lead singer Robert Palmer's solo smash Riptide that same year (both of which Edwards produced). The 1980s decade refers to the years from 1980 to 1989, inclusive. ... To meet Wikipedias quality standards, this article or section may require cleanup. ... 1984 (MCMLXXXIV) was a leap year starting on Sunday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Like a Virgin (1984, see 1984 in music) is the second studio album by singer Madonna. ... Oil power plant in Iraq A power station or power plant is a facility for the generation of electric power. ... The Riptide album was Palmers best selling work. ...

In the early 1990s, Rodgers and Edwards regrouped and worked on new material: a single, "Chic Mystique" and subsequent album CHIC-ism, both of which charted. Edwards died of pneumonia on April 18, 1996 on tour in Japan at age 43, but CHIC continued to tour with new musicians. Thompson died of kidney cancer on November 12, 2003 at age 48. The 1990s decade refers to the years from 1990 to 1999, inclusive. ... April 18 is the 108th day of the year in the Gregorian calendar (109th in leap years). ... 1996 (MCMXCVI) was a leap year starting on Monday of the Gregorian calendar, and was designated the International Year for the Eradication of Poverty. ... November 12 is the 316th day of the year (317th in leap years) in the Gregorian Calendar, with 49 days remaining. ... 2003 (MMIII) was a common year starting on Wednesday of the Gregorian calendar. ...

In addition to defining the disco sound, CHIC helped to inspire other artists to forge their own sound. For example, The Sugarhill Gang used "Good Times" as the basis for their hit "Rapper's Delight", which helped launch the rap/hip hop music format as we know today. Queen got the inspiration for their hit single "Another One Bites The Dust" from CHIC's familiar bass guitar riffs after [Brian May]] allegedly met the band in the same studio. The Sugarhill Gang is an American hip hop group, known mostly for one hit, Rappers Delight, the first hip hop single to become a Top 40 hit. ... Rappers Delight is a 1979 (see 1979 in music) single by American hip hop trio The Sugarhill Gang; it is widely acknowledged as the first hip hop hit single. ... Hip hop music is a style of popular music. ... Queen is a British rock band that came to popularity during the mid-1970s, amassing an enormous worldwide fanbase that continues to exist to this day. ... Another One Bites the Dust is a 1980 rock song from the British rock band Queen. ...

On September 19, 2005 the group was honored at the Dance Music Hall of Fame ceremony in New York when they were inducted in 3 different categories: 1) Artist Inductess 2) Record Inductees for "Good Times" and 3) Producers Inductees, Nile Rodgers and Bernard Edwards. The Dance Music Hall of Fame was created in 2004 to honor the creators and innovators of dance music. ...



  • CHIC eponymous LP (Atlantic 1977)
    • Dance Dance Dance (Yowsah Yowsah Yowsah) 12" (Buddah 1976) (Atlantic 1977)
    • Everybody Dance (Atlantic 1977)
  • CHIC C'est CHIC LP (Atlantic 1978)
    • Le Freak (Atlantic 1978)
    • I Want Your Love (Atlantic 1978)
  • CHIC Risqué LP (Atlantic 1979)
    • Good Times (Atlantic 1979)
    • My Forbidden Lover (Atlantic 1979)
    • My Feet Keep Dancing (Atlantic 1980)
  • CHIC Real People LP (Atlantic 1980)
    • Rebels Are We (Atlantic 1980)
    • Real People (Atlantic 1980)
    • Chip Off The Old Block (Atlantic 1980)
    • 26 (Atlantic 1980)
  • CHIC Take It Off LP (Atlantic 1981)
    • Stage Fright (Atlantic 1981)
  • CHIC Tongue In CHIC LP (Atlantic 1982)
    • Hangin' (Atlantic 1982)
  • CHIC Believer LP (Atlantic 1983)
    • Believer (Atlantic 1983)
    • You Are Beautiful (Atlantic 1983)
  • CHIC CHIC-ism CD (Atlantic 1992)
    • Chic Mystique (Atlantic 1992)
    • Your Love (Atlantic 1992)

Produced by CHIC

  • Norma Jean (Wright) selftitled LP (Bearsville 1978)
    • Saturday (Bearsville 1978)
    • Having A Party (Bearsville 1978)
    • Sorcerer (Bearsville 1978)
  • Norma Jean - High Society/Hold Me Lonely Boy (Bearsville 1979)
  • Sister Sledge We Are Family LP (Cotillion 1979)
    • He's The Greatest Dancer (Cotillion 1979)
    • We Are Family (Cotillion 1979)
    • Lost In Music (Cotillion 1979)
  • Sheila & B. Devotion King Of The World LP (Mirage 1980)
    • Spacer (Mirage 1979)
    • King Of The World (Mirage 1980)
  • Sister Sledge Got To Love Somebody Today LP (Cotillion 1980)
    • Love Somebody Today (Cotillion 1980)
    • Reach Your Peak (Cotillion 1980)
  • Diana Ross diana LP (Motown 1980)
    • Upside Down (Motown 1980)
    • I'm Coming Out (Motown 1980)
    • Tenderness (Motown 1980)
    • My Old Piano (Motown 1980)
  • Johnny Mathis I Love My Lady LP (Columbia 1981) UNRELEASED!
  • Debbie Harry Koo Koo LP (Chrysalis 1981)
    • Backfired (Chrysalis 1981)
    • Now I Know You Know (Chrysalis 1981)
  • Fonzi Thornton unknown title LP (1982) UNRELEASED!, probably contained:
    • I Work For A Livin'
    • Riding
  • Various Artists Soup For One Soundtrack LP (Mirage 1982)
    • CHIC - Soup For One (Mirage 1982)
    • Carly Simon - Why (Mirage 1982)
    • Teddy Pendergrass - Dream Girl
    • Fonzi Thornton - I Work For A Livin'
  • Odyssey - Together on the LP Happy Together (1982)

Why, by Carly Simon, was one of a string of film-inspired singles from a less successful period in her career (specifically in the US). ...

See also

This is a list of number-one hits in the United States by year from the Billboard Hot 100. ... This is a list of recording artists who have reached number one on Billboard magazines pop singles chart(s). ... This is a list of number-one dance hits as recorded by Billboard Magazine’s Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart — a weekly national survey of popular songs in U.S. dance clubs. ... This is a list of recording artists who have reached number one on Billboard magazines Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart. ...

External links

  Results from FactBites:
CHIC - Tribute (134 words)
A tribute to Nile Rodgers and Bernard Edwards of CHIC
CHIC was the essence of style and groovy dance numbers.
The true impact of CHIC's work can't be measured, the group has had a decisive impact on rap history as well as large parts of British pop.
Chic | Music Artist | Videos, News, Photos & Ringtones | MTV (933 words)
Chic bucked the trend by stripping disco's sound down to its basic elements; their funky, stylish grooves had an organic sense of interplay that was missing from many of their overproduced competitors.
Chic's sound was anchored by the scratchy, James Brown-style rhythm guitar of Nile Rodgers and the indelible, widely imitated (sometimes outright stolen) bass lines of Bernard Edwards; as producers, they used keyboard and string embellishments economically, which kept the emphasis on rhythm.
Chic's distinctive approach not only resulted in some of the finest dance singles of their time, but also helped create a template for urban funk, dance-pop, and even hip-hop in the post-disco era.
  More results at FactBites »



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