Journey into Paradise: The Larry Levan Story

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Andy Kellman
One look at Journey into Paradise: The Larry Levan Story will incite skepticism from many longtime disco collectors. How can the Warner-distributed Rhino justify a title so definitive when the compilation is so heavily weighted toward Warner-distributed material? Levan did happen to remix and play a lot of Warner-distributed singles. Why are Patrice Rushen's "Haven't You Heard," Talking Heads' "Once in a Lifetime," and Phreek's "Weekend" -- three Warner-distributed tracks played by Levan -- included instead of non-Warner tracks that were both remixed and played by Levan, such as Central Line's "Walking into Sunshine," Padlock's "Seventh Heaven," and Class Action's ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Andy Kellman
One look at Journey into Paradise: The Larry Levan Story will incite skepticism from many longtime disco collectors. How can the Warner-distributed Rhino justify a title so definitive when the compilation is so heavily weighted toward Warner-distributed material? Levan did happen to remix and play a lot of Warner-distributed singles. Why are Patrice Rushen's "Haven't You Heard," Talking Heads' "Once in a Lifetime," and Phreek's "Weekend" -- three Warner-distributed tracks played by Levan -- included instead of non-Warner tracks that were both remixed and played by Levan, such as Central Line's "Walking into Sunshine," Padlock's "Seventh Heaven," and Class Action's "Weekend"? Rhino probably opted to save some money on licensing. Why are so many of these songs appearing on CD for the umpteenth time? Because they've never been concentrated quite like this, and some of the preceding compilations take some effort to track down. Potential bellyaching aside, Journey into Paradise is another excellent way of commemorating the late Larry Levan, the Paradise Garage DJ, remixer, and occasional producer who exacted an immeasurable impact upon disco's underground culture and many of the singles that would eventually bubble up to the top of the disco and club charts. The project was handled with great care, from the colorful packaging to the extensive and insightful liner notes penned by the very plugged-in Adam Goldstone. These two discs complement the anthologies that focus on Levan's remix work for Salsoul and West End, though there is some overlap: Taana Gardner's "Heartbeat" one of the sexiest, sweetest, slowest post-disco singles and Inner Life's version of "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" a towering, sprawling, life-affirming anthem are too crucial to be left off, as they also exemplify Levan's creativity as a remixer. If you were to compare Levan's work to the original mixes of these tracks, you'd really get the full effect of his instincts and mastery. His mixes of Janice McClain's "Smack Dab in the Middle," Dee Dee Bridgewater's "Bad for Me," and David Joseph's especially radical "You Can't Hide Your Love from Me" have also appeared on CD before, but they have a very long way to go to threaten "I Will Survive" as the most-compiled disco single. Not nearly enough people have heard them, and odds are good that some clubbing vets haven't reconnected with them in years. The addition of tracks that Levan merely spun only enhance the set, because they're all dynamite -- they include Chaka Khan's "Clouds," Sister Sledge's "Lost in Music," Trussel's "Love Injection," and Change's "Paradise" which could also be titled "The Glare of Love". Issues or no issues, this is one of the finest compilations of late-'70s and early-'80s dance music, and it is no mere coincidence that Levan is inextricably linked to everything on it.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 4/11/2006
  • Label: Rhino
  • UPC: 081227334123
  • Catalog Number: 73341
  • Sales rank: 26,468

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Paradise - Change (5:14)
  2. 2 Weekend - Phreek (8:15)
  3. 3 Clouds - Chaka Khan (4:30)
  4. 4 Haven't You Heard - Patrice Rushen (6:47)
  5. 5 We Got the Funk - Positive Force (7:18)
  6. 6 Smack Dab in the Middle - Janice McClain (6:51)
  7. 7 Bad for Me - Dee Dee Bridgewater (8:34)
  8. 8 Heartbeat - Taana Gardner (9:53)
  9. 9 You Can't Hide (Your Love from Me) - David Joseph (6:46)
  10. 10 Love Honey, Love Heartache - Man Friday (5:19)
  11. 11 Don't Make Me Wait - Peech Boys (7:25)
Disc 2
  1. 1 Baby I'm Scared of You - Womack & Womack (5:41)
  2. 2 Lost in Music - Sister Sledge (6:38)
  3. 3 Why Leave Us Alone - Five Special (10:12)
  4. 4 Love Injection - Trussel (7:52)
  5. 5 Can't Play Around - Lace (5:30)
  6. 6 Ain't No Mountain High Enough - Inner Life (10:31)
  7. 7 It Should Have Been You - Gwen Guthrie (7:08)
  8. 8 A Lover's Holiday - Change (6:28)
  9. 9 Situation - Yazoo (5:46)
  10. 10 Once in a Lifetime - Talking Heads (4:20)
  11. 11 Love Has Come Around - Donald Byrd (7:53)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Larry Levan Primary Artist, DJ
Paolo Gianolio Conductor
Malavasi Conductor
David Romani Conductor
Janice McClain Track Performer
Technical Credits
David Byrne Composer
Jerry Harrison Composer
Patrice Rushen Arranger, Composer, Producer
George Duke Producer
Sheree Brown Composer
Bernard Edwards Composer, Producer
Nile Rodgers Producer, Remixing
Patrick Adams Arranger, Producer
Reggie Andrews Producer
Nick Ashford Composer
Ron Banks Composer, Producer
Leroy Burgess Arranger, Composer, Producer
Greg Carmichael Producer
Charles Veal Composer
Vince Clarke Composer, Producer
Michael DeBenedictus Composer, Producer
Sly Dunbar Producer
Brian Eno Composer, Producer
R. Bernard Fowler Composer
Chris Frantz Composer
Paolo Gianolio Arranger, Producer
Tony Green Composer
Isaac Hayes Producer
Raymond Johnson Composer
François Kevorkian Remixing
Stewart Levine Producer
Godwin Logie Producer
Malavasi Producer
Arif Mardin Arranger, Producer
Daniel Miller Producer
Alison Moyet Composer
Jacques Fred Petrus Producer
Eric Radcliffe Producer
Sylvia Robinson Producer
David Romani Arranger, Composer
Robbie Shakespeare Producer
Jocelyn Shaw Vocal Conductor
Valerie Simpson Composer
Steven Stanley Producer
Deborah Thomas Composer
Darryl Thompson Composer
Ron Tyson Composer
Fred Wesley Producer
Tina Weymouth Composer
Albert Williams Composer
Cecil Womack Composer
Linda Womack Composer
Larry Levan Composer, Producer
Charles Mims Jr. Composer, Producer
Hannon B. Lane Composer
Reggie Collins Discographical Annotation
Johnny de Mairo Executive Producer
Tanya Willoughby Vocal Conductor
James Calloway Composer
Rick Essing Remastering
Adam Goldstone Song Notes
Nate Edmonds Composer, Producer
R. Tyson Producer
Dennis Menace Weeden Arranger
Brodie Williams Composer, Producer
Kenton Nix Arranger, Composer, Producer
Thom Page Composer, Producer
Milt Tennant Composer, Producer
Allen Richardson Producer
Brenda Reynolds Composer
Robin Hurley Executive Producer
Masaki Koike Art Direction
Mel Marcelo Art Direction, Illustrations
Billy Jones Producer
William Duckett Composer
Ronald Smith Composer
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