Tell me about Mass Production
I've always liked large funk bands and really never got into Mass Production, but I've been listening to some nice funk and slow jams from the group on YouTube this morning. Pretty talented group. Tell me more about them, which albums should I get?
I always saw them as a second-rate Slave (the band, of course).
Mass Production was kind of a second-tier band that had the occasional song that I played until the grooves of the record wore out. Although they were making records when I was in high school (late '80s), they're not part of the soundtrack of my formative years. With that said, I had a few friends that thought that they were an excellent band and I encourage you to give them a listen.
I'm not sure, but I think that they were from the Baltimore area. "Firecracker" was their hit, but they also did "Turn Up the Music", which I dug a lot. I bought their album "'83" in (you guessed it) 1983 and found that it was very well produced and easy to listen to. Two songs in particular, "Creeping Into My Dreams" and "Style", were among the first that I digitized when I started hooking my turntable to my computer. Although I'll put these two cuts in the definitive 50 CD, 600 track discs that summarize my musical favorites, I don't think anyone else I know ever heard them except for driving around with me when I had a mix tape playing.
I always thought they were a bit of a follow on group from BRASS CONSTRUTION .. (the names are very similar) ..
Loved their "Welcome To Our World" which got quite a lot of airplay here in merry olde England when it came out ..
And they did a fabulous Jazz/Funk/Disco tune called "Cosmic Lust" ..
I never thought they sounded like SLAVE though Soulster .. the only connection I could see was that they were on the same record label....
i couldnt get into them.they were (to me)well behind brass construction,bt express (1st lp anyway) and slave and a load more besides.their logo was a brass construction rip,riveted steel typeface and the lp covers with 2nd rate artwork,i know covers arent that important as the groove inside but there was an air of cheap imitation.there was a track i liked a bit,havent a clue what it was called tho'.i dont want to put you off discovering them for yourself and if you do like them i wouldnt argue with that,just my opinion.actually i might go and have a rediscover for myself as my mind could be changed after all these years
'Welcome To Our World' was a big club favourite in the UK (and I played it a lot at the time) and was a great record. To my ears their sound was similar to Brass Construction. As Roger says, it got radio play on the right shows which helped it get to 44 on our pop charts (it reached 68 on the US Hot 100). They had two pop chart hits in the UK, the other being 'Shante' which got to 59. I don't remember hearing 'Firecracker' here - I see it got to 43 on the US pop charts and was their only other Hot 100 placing. But the group fared far better on the Billboard soul chart, with 12 entries, the highest being 'Firecracker' (4), 'Welcome To Our World' (32) and 'Turn Up The Music' (36). On the back of the 'Welcome To Our World' LP sleeve there's "Thanks to Ronald, Kelly, Rudolph, Marvin, Chris & Ernie". I wonder whether they were either 'talent spotted' by the Isleys, or if the group helped Mass Production in some way? According to the All Media Guide, Mass Production was based in Richmond, Virginia.
That was another problem: name recognition. I'm sure a lot of people confused them with Brass Construction, although they were two different bands. No wonder Brass Construction morphed into Skyy.
Originally Posted by roger
Great answers, thanks. I've also been listening to Brass Construction a bit, another fine group. I'm a big Slave fan and think they're a notch above both of those groups, though much different sounding. It's fun getting into these old groups I sort of ignored or didn't buy when I was younger, mostly because even the second string groups are better than most of the stuff today ... then again there are few large funk groups today.
Hearing a lot of their tunes on YouTube, I'm really getting into them. Fine horn playing, nice male and female lead singers, good sound. Very impressed. Yes, perhaps not hitting up there with my favorite funksters Ohio Players and Slave, but they're not chopped liver either.
I know Randy Muller played piano in Brass Construction and helped mold Skyy's sound after they caught his attention
but I wouldn't say BC morphed into Skyy at all anymore than I'd say Funkadelic morphed into Bootsy's Rubber Band...
Firecracker to me was a masterpiece almost on a par with Slave's Slide. But then nothing else I heard from rose any hairs
on my arms. I'm not saying they never did anything as good but if so I never heard it because I was too busy listening to
Slave evolve, The Ohio Players latest, Con-funk-shun's grooves, The Gap Band's rise, Cameo's audacity not to forget
all of the output of my beloved P Funk. I wasn't very impressed with Cosmic Lust because I'd already heard that
territory covered by early (Pre JT!) Kool and The Gang. I'm not saying their music I couldn't enjoy if I heard it at a party
or club, just that I didn't feel a need to own it...If someone knows of a piece that nails a bed to a floor like Firecracker
did and can post it , I'd gladly give it a listen...
It's kinda weird though, I remember wondering if someone would come along afterwards with a group called Class Destruction or Ass Obstruction, etc....
I hear you Splank.....IMHO.....I consider Slide a Funk Anthem.....whereas Firecracker was a, or in my city, The Summer Jam. At least in my taxonomy. There was another cut on that album that my guys and I played....but for the life of me, I can't remember anything else about it. Firecracker eventually did rise to anthem status.....kinda..... It was used as a sample for "Me So Horny"..... Love it...Hate it....Anthem nonetheless.
Originally Posted by splanky
and Howsabout Butt Eruption?
And I'm stealing that line about beds and nails......you're get a full credit as always......and your check is in the mail.
Last edited by destruction; 07-28-2012 at 10:32 PM.
Reason: I screwed up the quote
I'm the only one who referenced this jam. Am I the only one who remembers it or just the only one who liked it?
Dang, Jerry, I just felt a dendrite pop! I had completely forgotten about Turn Up The Music! They got back to the
stank with that one which for some reason was left off of my "Best Of" cd...That, I want to own.
To be truthful I can't take credit for that line, it was introduced to me by an old friend I haven't seen in many years.
She'd use it in question form when she wanted to be, ahhh, pleasured...