Various Artists

Star Birth Records: 1978-1988 Anthology

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Cecil McCrary's Compton, California-based Star Birth label, active from 1978 through 1988, featured a small roster of seven artists who covered several styles, including sweet soul, disco-funk, proto-new jack swing à la Full Force, and even instrumental jazz-funk. Motivation IV displayed some versatility by making like dancefloor Kool & the Gang on "Put Your Foot in It" while switching it up for the Enchantment-like ballad "Where Has My Baby Gone." These are low-budget recordings with appeal to the collectors' market, highlighted by the Pierce Brothers' bumping “Party Person,” which is comparable to anything the Peter Brown/Greg Carmichael/Patrick Adams camp was doing at the time in New York. There are instances where aspects like mixing, instrumentation, and sound quality leave something to be desired, but that’s part of the charm that goes with independent labels as small as this one.

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