June 1st is considered the first day of meteorological summer in North America. I think we could all use a picnic with a chill vibe right now. With DJ Towa switched out for ANI, we have a sequenced track in the style of 1970s classic soul.
The music and the video are as innocent as it gets. Let’s have a peaceful summer this year.
Picnic In The Summertime was released as a single and I have the CD version. If you wan’t a sealed copy on vinyl, it’s $60 and up on ebay.
What is your favorite unique thing to bring to a picnic? Let us know in the comments.
I was in high school when I first heard “Grove is in the Heart” on the radio in Detroit. I remember hanging out with my best friend when the song came on. We both got really excited. For some reason one of us thought the song was actually produced by a local radio station as a promotion or something. I soon discovered otherwise. Indeed the track was by this groovy band called Deee-Lite with some help from Bootsy Collins. Deee-lightful!
First I bought the cassette single. As soon as the full album, World Clique, was released, I bought the CD and I still have it. It plays perfectly even though it’s 25 years old and has been played a thousands times.
My friends and I couldn’t wait for the next album, Infinity Within. I bought it the day it come out. It’s still in the original “Eco-Pack” low-plastic packaging. I loved that album too. At that point, I had to write them a fan letter. I never wrote fan mail before. I never thought I would be inspired to do that but there I was being a total fanboy.
Lady Miss Kier was so kind to answer my mail. First she sent a postcard. Then she had her publicist enroll me in the fan-club for the band for FREE. I received back issues of their fan-zine, press photos, fliers and stickers. I continued to get cool stuff from the fan club for the next two years.
This is a press photo I received in 1993. Kier signed it for me in 2007.
At some point in 1993 I landed a DJ job at my college radio station, WDMB Impact 89FM. I loved this job. It really helped me with my self esteem and communication skills. I needed both badly. I am still very thankful that they even gave me a chance.
While I as doing the DJ thing, I got a press card in the mail explaining about the forthcoming release, Dewdrops in The Garden. I called the given phone number and left a message. Two Weeks later my college station received the new CD. The band also sent us the 12inch remix EP of “Party Happening People” on white vinyl. Somebody on Etsy is selling this for over $70.
The station manager let me keep the remix record but he also scolded me for talking to the record company without going through the music director. WHOOPS!
Sadly, the band broke up shortly after. Several post breakup products were released such as a greatest hits album and remixes. DJ Towa went on to release a number of “solo” albums as well.
Fast forward to 2007. I found out that Lady Miss Kier was going to be performing at Duluth Pride. I just had to go see her. I rounded up some friends and we made the trek north. When I got there, I found Miss Kier’s trailer was on the grounds, roped off by security.
I walked up to the ropes and yelled out, “LOVE YOU LADY MISS KIER!”. Shortly after that, I was invited to meet her! All you need is love!
She was very kind to me in person. She signed a lot of the stuff I brought with, saved from the fan club. She even kissed a photo of the band with lipstick.
The Dee-lovely Lady then invited my group to dance on stage when “Groove is in The Heart” came on. I was too starstruck to do it but I took the cool photo at the top of this article.
Thank you Lady Miss Kier, and people who worked on the Deee-Lite records. They made the world a better place.
Wally Pleasant was a student at Michigan State University when he first started making up songs with his guitar. This is one of the originals and it’s perfect for the start of summer. It’s on the summer playlist here as well.
I got a chance to play his music on WDBM when I was a student DJ there. Then I saw him play live, solo, in front of the cafes in East Lansing. One day I ran into him at Office Max. He’s a funny dude.