Colin Curtis Presents Jazz Dance Fusion


2017 saw Colin Curtis celebrate his 50th anniversary as a DJ. He is one of the scene's leading figures as a result of his legendary '70s partnership with Ian Levine at the Blackpool Mecca.

This is Colin's own story: "By 1979, the development of Jazz rooms at major soul/funk all-dayers was providing a much-needed outlet for the more discerning collectors and the fanatical jazz dancers. . . . I had started to experiment with the jazzier side of dance tracks at Blackpool Mecca in around 1976 with artists like Patrice Rushen, Bill Summers, Azar Lawrence, Charles Earland, Johnny Hammond, Donald Byrd, etc., all artists I had discovered using the inner sleeves of Blue Note, Fantasy, Prestige, and Mercury labels. . . . [As a collector] I was thriving on searching out more of this amalgamation of jazz styles adding fusion, percussion, vocals and tempo to this burgeoning genre. As the jazz room identity increased within this environment for me Birmingham, Nottingham, Leeds, Manchester all became prominent in their enthusiasm for jazz dance. . . . Baz Fe Jazz, Chris Reed, Shaun Williams, Simon Mansell, Jonathan Woodliffe, Paul Murphy, Eric & Floyd, Hewan Clarke, and many others were willing to push the barriers. This jazz dance explosion spread across the country with DJs like Dr Bob Jones, Colin Parnell, and Boo Sylvester adding to the London connection via clubs like The Electric Ballroom and The Horseshoe. . . . [This] compilation acts as an introduction to this electric, cool and uplifting music that was affecting so many enthusiastic dancers and DJ/collectors. All the tracks on here are taken from one of the most prolific and emerging labels for this genre, Muse Records, that offered the complete spectrum of styles to fit in with this emerging scene crossing over with jazz fusion, be bop, vocals, electric keyboards, and percussion."

Double-CD version features Michele Hendricks, Richie Cole, Emanuel K. Rahim & The Kahliqs, Dom Um Romao, Dave Pike, Mark Murphy, Viva Brasil, Walt Barr, Ron Eschete, Eric Kloss, Charlie Earland, David Schnitter, Dom Salvador, Dave Matthews' Big Band, Harold Ousley, Michael Carvin, and Bill Hardman.

Further reading in this interview by Greg Wilson: