Edwin Starr – H.A.P.P.Y Radio (1979): Review


Edwin Starr enjoyed a renaissance in the singles chart at the turn of the 70s, moving from the soul that had made him famous to light disco, and scoring a major hit the previous year with “Contact”, a cold slab of electronic funk with the most insistent Moroder styled synth bass line, similar to Donna Summer’s “I Feel Love”. It was a worldwide smash and still appears on many disco hit compilation albums. The follow up, “Happy Radio” follows a similar vein, although there is less electronic rhythm and more horn fills; bearing similarities to the Earth Wind & Fire sound that was very popular at the time.


The single and title track is a nagging disco stomper, with a driving memorable bass line and chattering horn interruptions and would be a sure fire floor filler for a number of years. The rest of the album is pretty lightweight, following exactly the same pattern as the title track, except the hooks aren’t as strong and songs like “I’d Rather Fight Than Switch”, and “It’s Called The Rock” sound about 5 years out of time. It’s interesting that barring the excellent title track the two traditional soul numbers are worth listening to (“Drown My Heart”, and “My Friend”), which probably come too late in the album for the listener, who may have already turned off.

Prepare for disappointment.


Track Listing
A1 H.A.P.P.Y. Radio 6:45
A2 Rip Me Off 4:13
A3 It’s Called The Rock 7:25
B1 I’d Rather Fight Than Switch 4:12
B2 Drown My Heart 3:34
B3 My Friend 3:56
B4 Patiently 4:34

4 responses to “Edwin Starr – H.A.P.P.Y Radio (1979): Review

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