Every Tuesday, the Analog Kid blog goes back in time and features some groovy R&B/soul songs from a specific year. Sometimes you’ll hear songs from individual artists, and other times you’ll get an entire full-length classic LP ripped directly from the Analog Kid’s vast vinyl vault. Warning: by R&B/soul, I also mean disco. I could go KC & The Sunshine Band on your ass at any given moment, so just be ready!
Champaign’s debut album was released in 1981, but the sound of How ‘Bout Us is pure ’70s soul. The title track reached #12 on the Billboard Hot 100, and was also a Top 5 single in the UK. The band named themselves after their hometown in Illinois, which also happens to be the home of REO Speedwagon. REO’s “Keep On Loving You” hit #1 in March of 1981, making 1981 a pretty good year for bands from Champaign.
How ‘Bout Us was recently issued on CD for the very first time, but it is already out of print and very hard to find. The songs below were ripped from my original vinyl copy, so please enjoy some lovely crackles and pops with your Champaign on this New Year’s Eve…
Champaign: How ‘Bout Us
Columbia Records, 1981
Vinyl rip courtesy of the Analog Kid
1. “Can You Find The Time?” (McLane/Mackey)
2. “Party People” (Shaddick/Craig)
3. “Whiplash” (Day)
4. “I’m On Fire” (Ruff/Ruff/Evaro)
5. “How ‘Bout Us” (Walden)
6. “Spinnin'” (Day/Maffit)
7. “Dancin’ Together Again” (Fasman/Reicheg)
8. “Lighten Up” (Day/Carman)
9. “If One More Morning” (Walden)
The first rule of The Analog Kid blog is that if you write about a song on the Analog Kid blog, you share the song on the Analog Kid blog.
Champaign: “How ‘Bout Us” [Single Version] (Walden)
Columbia Records, 1981
REO Speedwagon: “Keep On Loving You” (Cronin)
From the album High Infidelity
Epic Records, 1980
Champaign for New Year’s – your clever bastard.
I lived in Illinois, about 16 miles from Champaign/Urbana until August 1981. WLRW was the station to listen to back then and the hometown bands were indeed very huge. Over on Chicago’s mighty WLS, Champaign got no absolutley love but REO was HUGE.
Another Funky Town Grooves winner! You snooze you looze.
Some tasty analogue syndrums were peppered through the title song, as well as the other tunes. Still a classic, still going strong in 2018! Thanks a lot Analog Kid!