Jumpin': Classics From the Original Disco Underground, Vol. 2

Various Artists

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Jumpin': Classics From the Original Disco Underground, Vol. 2 Review

by Andy Kellman

The Harmless label issued the sequel to Jumpin' in 1998, a year after its predecessor, and it's almost as solid, running through the club classics of the late '70s and early '80s that have sustained significant staying power as longtime favorites of young house and disco DJs and original, still-active jocks alike. No dance music collection can be considered complete until at least half of these tracks are obtained, and the lesser cuts hardly qualify as fluff. The material culled here seems evenly split between the easy to obtain and the difficult to obtain; even if you're duplicating a couple songs with this, it's still worth tracking down; if you want everything here in its original vinyl state, you'll have to fork over an amount that easily exceeds the price of this one disc. Black Ivory's "Mainline," featuring a young LeRoy Burgess on vocals (one of house music's prime instigators, albeit unintentionally), is the most golden song here, and is arguably one of the greatest disco songs recorded. Other highlights include Martin Circus' "Disco Circus" (a brilliant number that has spent time on the turntables of Ron Hardy, Larry Levan, Derrick May, and Juan Atkins, to name only four), Roy Ayers' "Sweet Tears" (an overlooked jazz-funk/disco gem thanks to the popularity of his "Running Away"), and Dexter Wansel's "Life on Mars" (a speedy funk jam with spacy synthesizers that would go surprisingly well with the Steve Miller Band's "Fly Like an Eagle"). Like the first volume, Jumpin' 2 covers a lot of ground and acts as both a documentation and a collection of great dance music.

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