Not to be confused with the 1990 U.K. vocal group of the same name, the original 1970s-era Honky, also from England, was formed in the middle of that decade by vocalist Ray Othen, drummer Bob White, guitarist Trevor Cummins, bassist Cliff Barks, and saxophonists Ron Taylor, Clark Newton, and Malcolm Baggott. Signed to Creole, and with their focus squarely aimed to coincide with the rise of disco, the band plied clubbers with a brutal mix of dirty funk and classic disco, an assault which culminated in their 1977 hit "Join the Party."
Written by Cummins and produced by Ken Gold, who brought Northern funkers Real Thing to the top in 1976, the song broke through solely on the strength of its club status, despite little radio play or label promotion. Backed by the disco-driven "Funky Time, Party Time," the single crept into the U.K. Top 30 in May 1977, ultimately spending five weeks in the charts.
The band followed it up with their self-titled Honky LP in 1978. Cut very much in the same mold as the hit single, the album utterly failed to make any great statement at all, and oddly included neither "Join the Party" or "Funky Time, Party Time" -- perhaps one of the reasons the record (like the band) promptly sank without a trace.