OFF THE COAST OF ME – 40TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION
Out on June 11th on 2C2C Music
Off The Coast Of Me was Kid Creole and the Coconuts’ first album release in 1980 on ZE Records. The album consisted of 8 songs:
Side One: Mister Softee, Maladie d’Amour, Yolanda, Off The Coast Of Me
Side Two: Darrio, Lili Marlene, Bogota Affair, Calypso Pan American.
Maladie d’Amour was the only single released from this album.
The album was then reissued in 2003 by Rainman Records. This version included all the original songs but also had 5 bonus tracks added by Universal Island Records: There But for the Grace of God Go I, He’s Not Such a Bad Guy After All, Darrio (12” B-side), Yolanda (12” Mix) and Maladie d’Amour (Mutant Disco Version).
Off The Coast Of Me received some fantastic reviews. Here’s what they said the first time round:
Andre S. Grindle
5.0 out of 5 stars
On The Coast Of A New Sound
During the time I was first becoming aware of Dr. Buzzard’s Original Savannah Band, One of the things I came to understand is that its band leader August Darnell eventually decided to shift the priorities towards actually having a trio of female backup vocalists rather than a female lead singer. The results were the Coconuts. And Darnell apparently re-christened himself Kid Creole. This 1980 album was discussed in the reading I was doing as being an important transitional album. All the same? Took awhile to locate it in a used vinyl bin. And today am very happy I did.
“Mister Softee” starts off the album with an upbeat pop/funk number led by tingly percussion and a low rhythm guitar. “Maladie D’Amour” is a finely orchestrated disco friendly mid tempo soul stomp-with some rhythm guitar and clavinet riffing on the refrains. “Yolanda” and “Darrio” are deeply grooving boogie numbers with some wonderfully processed bass/guitar on the former while the title song is a stripped down calypso with a distant,echoed vocal lead. “Lil Marlene” combines the boogie and calypso influences together while “Bogota Affair” has a strong salsa pop flavor. “Calypso Pan American” ends the album with a vibraphone charged boogie rhythm yet again.
One thing about this album I noticed immediately is that, for the most part it goes right for the jugular of the Afro-Latin, percussive pop/funk sound, with a harder rhythmic stomp than the more sweetly orchestrated music of Darnell’s original group. It was as I’d read a transitional album. There are some disco era elements of this album. But for the most part? This album has a more mic’d and raw production style than the extremely slick studio sound that it very easily could have very well with. In terms of the songwriting? It’s definitely leaning towards shorter pop structures as well. So it comes down to being an excellent introduction for them.
Robert Christgau wrote:
Off the Coast of Me [Antilles, 1980]
Reformed high school teacher August Darnell having split with black-sheep bro Stoney Browder, the music thins out–Dr. Buzzard’s progressive retro is hard to top, Darnell’s naturally sarcastic voice short on bottom. So the not exactly all-embracing “Calypso Pan-American” and “Off the Coast of Me” neither justify nor transcend their distanced tone (typically, the title tune affects a megaphone filter), while comedy numbers like “Bogota Affair” (the effete Creole as cuckold), “Mr. Softee” (the effete Creole as limp-dick), and “Darrio . . .” (the effete Creole as new-waver) are simple and strong. When clever means this clever, maybe we should settle. B+
Oh yeah the music. Shucks, it’s The Kid
Guy’s a deity of a band leader. Lyrics with wit, eclectic Disco Caribbe sounds +, for the ear. Dance that defies gravity and showmanship par excellence for the eye.
ZE stable studio wizard too. Ok maybe didn’t influence the music world nor broadway BUT didja ever see ’em live in person at a small venue ? Nuff sed!
John Verity wrote:
A Zillion Stars, or more
An absolutely, positively, totally, and completely great album, one of the best ever released. So smart, such musicianship, such sly lyrics, and what a beat. Listen once and you’ll be hooked, and dancing for the rest of time. No kidding. I ain’t exaggerating. If you disagree, your money back. “Off the Coast of Me” is one of the most delicious and sexy songs you’ll ever hear. It will make you wet, with perspiration.
This now brings us to 2020, where the Kid and Coati Mundi together decided to celebrate this debut album by releasing a 40th Anniversary Edition.
To be released on 2C2C Music to the U.S. market, the Kid’s very own record label, this version includes 17 tracks in total. It, of course, includes all the tracks from the original version but has some special never-before-released original demos, plus some cool upbeat Bootlegs by the Kid’s son, artist Youngr.
The first single released was ‘Mister Softee’, and the follow up single, due for release on July 10th, will be the title track ‘Off The Coast Of Me’.
Here’s the track list:
- Mister Softee
- Maladie d’Amour
- Off the Coast of Me
- Dario, Can You Get Me into Studio 54
- Lili Marlene
- Bogota Affair
- Calypso Pan American
- He’s Not Such a Bad Guy After All
- Off The Coast of Me (Youngr Bootleg)
- Yolanda (Youngr Bootleg)
- Dario, Can You Get Me Into Studio 54 (Youngr Bootleg)
- Bogota Affair (Youngr Bootleg)
- Mister Softee (Live at the Rock Lounge 1981)
- Off The Coast of Me (Original Demo)
- Bogota Affair (Original Demo)
YouTube of Mister Softee
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