The weather is heating up, Memorial Day is upon us and the summer vibe is in the air. As a result I give you Summer Madness and some music that it inspired. Kool & the Gang's Summer Madness has haunted me for years. It's the tune that Rocky Balboa puts on the first time we see his apartment in 1976, but it does not receive a listing in the credits. I'd been trying to figure out what this song was for years with no luck. It was my friend Andy aka DrewLove (and I believe his brother) who finally tracked it down for me some 10 years later. Since then I give this track a spin about once a week and can't believe I went so long without knowing it. I have since discovered a number of tracks that borrow elements from this soul classic. Dig it.
Kool & the Gang: Summer Madness
Here's the 1974 original found on the LP Light of Worlds. A late night groove that's as funky as it can be. That piercing synthesiser gets me every time.
Bill Conti: Reflections
My search initially led me to this track that is featured on the Rocky soundtrack. While it borrows many elements from the Kool track, it was not what I was searching for. Still, a great groove.
Dimitri from Paris: Encore Un Terlude
A short interlude from Dimitri's 1996 album Sacrebleu. We hear that familiar synth. I wish this track was about three minutes longer.
DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince: Summertime (Extended Club Mix)
Everyone knows this 1991 summer classic. Here it is in its extended form from the Summertime singles collection. All the clues were here for me even a mention of Summer Madness. Hindsight is 20/20!