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Monday, March 28, 2011

Midnight Star - No Parking On the Dance Floor

Midnight Star was an electro funk band that originated from Frankfort, KY. On June 6th of 1983, they released their fourth and most successful album of their careers - No Parking On the Dance Floor which went to number 27 on the US Billboard Hot 200 and number 2 on the US Billboard R&B chart.


Side one starts out with “Electricity”, which has that signature Midnight Star sound to it (synthesized voice and driving beat). This song was popular in the dance clubs as it mixed well with some of the other hit tracks on the album.

“Night Rider” is next. It continues the dance-party with a slightly different beat and approach to the vocals from the first track.

“Feels So Good” slows things down a bit and allows Belinda Lipscomb to take the lead on vocals, adding to the variety of the band‘s sound.

The side ends with the single “Wet My Whistle”, another club favorite. It went to number 61 on the US Billboard Hot 100, number 60 in the UK, number 15 on the US Dance chart and number 8 on the US Billboard R&B chart.

Side two starts out with “No Parking (On the Dance Floor)”, my favorite song from this album. It was a must-dance-to tune back in the day; if it came on in the club, I had to be out on the floor getting a move on my body (or they'd be forced to give me a ticket - so get with it!). As a single, it charted at number 81 on the US Billboard Hot 100, number 44 on the US Dance chart and number 43 on the US Billboard R&B chart.

Next is the third single “Freak-A-Zoid” which went to number 66 on the US Billboard Hot 100, number 44 on the US Dance charts and number 2 on the US Billboard R&B chart. Like the previous track, it too has that signature Midnight Star sound to it. On the album, it appears in its full extended eight minutes of glory.

Like side one, side two puts a slower tune in the third spot - “Slow Jam”. After fourteen minutes of dancing, they figured we'd need it.

The final track is “Playmates”, picking up the tempo one more time. Belinda takes lead on the vocals once more.

By the time I discovered the hit singles, I was well into my Freshman year of college in the fall of 1983. I would hear them at dances and out at bars/clubs. I picked this album up on cassette from a local store in the mall nearby and quickly became a fan of all the songs. I played the heck out of No Parking on the Dance Floor, wearing the tape out from constant rewinding and replaying of specific tracks.

Just re-listening to all of these songs again, I get the urge to boogie around the living room. This is one album I’d love to replace on CD as all the songs are fantastic R&B dance grooves/slow jams. However, it only appears to be available as an expensive import. More likely I’ll have to settle for getting the MP3 downloads from iTunes to fill in the gaps in my collection for this one. Luckily they’re available - which just goes to show how this album endured the passing of almost three decades.

2 comments:

Tendraftsdeep said...

wow, I had totally forgotten about “No Parking (On the Dance Floor)”.

I remember that well, rocking through the back and red headphones of
my Mura "highstepper" (Sony Walkman copy) many years ago.

Nice review.

Martin said...

Wow, I had not thought about Sony Walkmans in ages. With the advent of the iPod (now in my life for three plus years), I can't imagine how I survived without one. Can you imagine if we had this kind of tech back in the day? To be able carry around your entire music collection your pocket - it would have blown my mind.