i always think is a shame that most people only recognise chaka khan for ‘ain’t nobody’. its a breakdance classic and girls to the floor anthem but there is a lot more where that came from.
chaka started in the industry at 16 with a group called lyfe, and five years later in 1973 formed the group rufus, which would prove her first successful outing. she went solo in 1978 but continued to work with rufus well into the 80s.
twelve chaka tracks that aren’t ‘ain’t nobody’ – download here
sampled by dj sneak, this amazing disco tune has one of those memorable hooks you know instinctively.
do you love what you feel
quality 70s vocal funk as part of rufus. nice vocals from other group members.
moody chilled soul. a mel c lookalike butchered this on american idol last season with some of the scariest vocals and facial expressions i’ve ever seen.
this is my night
quintessential mid-80s synth soul, this was actually one of the first chaka songs i heard.
a rare decent cover version from mary j blige doesn’t quite overshadow the original.
i’m every woman
again, the whitney version from the bodyguard soundtrack now sounds dated in comparison to this disco monster.
another funk/soul classic. sampled for stardust’s ‘music sounds better with you’, if it sounds familiar.
i know you, i live you
dramatic, atmospheric soul would overpower many voices. chaka pulls it off.
i feel for you
actually her biggest hit. this was a remake of an obscure prince song, featuring stevie wonder on harmonica and a rap from melle mel.
once you get started
disco track, also featuring some nice 80s keyboards.
tell me something good
departure from their usual frenetic workout. slow and funky with pioneering vocoder. not like that awful cher track that made you feel queasy.
midtempo disco tune about butterflies.
whatcha gonna do for me
one of my favourites, perfect example of early 80s soul.