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(Almighty Mixes of Cher, Sugababes, Girls Aloud!)
SINCE THE DAY THAT ALMIGHTY RECORDS OPENED as a record stall just off the dance floor of one of London's historic clubs, its mission has always been devoted to DJs, dancers and dance music. Launched and staffed by disc jockeys and club enthusiasts for twenty years, the first 12-inch release on the Almighty label was a cover of a Limahl single, chosen because the artist's original label had unwisely let the extended version of that song go right out of print, while club-goers still wanted to dance to it and buy it.
Almighty wore its pop-dance heart on its sleeve, remaking the lifelong sentimental favorites and new obsessions of the staff and close friends; licensing in and updating the club classics of the disco era; and - most crucially, it turns out - audaciously covering the most popular chart songs of the current week that had no dance mix, or whose officially commissioned dance mixes did not completely satisfy the club audience. The producers hired the cream of London's session singers - numerous of them already famous as recording artists and even hit songwriters - to sing top-notch lead vocals that would compete with the singers of timeless classics and newly-released smash hits.
Responding to club and DJ demand with a high creative standard and the same kind of DJ instinct that would pack a dancefloor (or, inevitably, on occasion, clear it) was more than second nature to Almighty - it was, in each and every release, the primary and essential motive. In retrospect, it looks inevitable that the global pop-dance updraft of the 1990s and post-2000 period would carry that kind of a label and production team to worldwide success.
Rightly famous for pouncing on chart singles and, in their way, correcting the mistakes of major label dance departments, independent Almighty's early catalogue looked like a list of the greatest songs ever written - with two special successes describing the essence of the company: Abbacadabra's 'Dancing Queen' and Sarah Washington's 'I Will Always Love You', both massive and defining pop records whose originals had never been remixed for clubs. For Almighty, taking on these imposing songs turned out to be an opportunity to make their own timeless records, as both of them played year after year in clubs around the world, and Washington's single was a national U.K. hit, peaking at No. 12.
Dance promoters started putting two and two together and hiring the Almighty team to remix upcoming releases, and a turning point happened when Almighty was commissioned in advance for one of the epochal records of pop and dance, Cher's 'Believe'. In the first of her farewell tours, Cher chose the Almighty version for her finale reprise of the song, playing herself offstage to it. She returned to Almighty for further remixes, triggering a stampede of remix jobs from both sides of the Atlantic.
Stay tuned for further volumes of Almighty Essentials, tracing the 20-year worldwide success story of Almighty Records.
New York, September, 2009
Martyn and Graham would like to thank the past and present staff, supporters and friends of Almighty, as well as all of the music people around the industry who have made it possible for us to work with the greatest artists and songs of our lifetime, and to compile them here:
At Almighty: Jon Dixon, Jon Musgrave and Lynn Cleckner; not forgetting Alison Travis, our business advisor Laurence Gilmore and all of our Almighty Club Members.
The independent producers and retailers: Ian Stephens, Ian Gant, Ian Levine, Tom Moulton, Stephen Munns, Dean Ferguson and all the team at Absolute.
At Curb Records: Bryan Stewart. At Universal Music Group: Harry Weinger, Andy Skurow, Kevin Phelan, Colin Smith and Daryl Easlea. At Sony Music Entertainment: Alan Brown and special thanks to Steve Ripley. At Warner Music Group: Craig Kallman, Gary Hartnell and Steve Allen. At Mute: Shaun Connon.
2 CD SET
|1.||Sugababes — Too Lost In You (Almighty Mix)||Listen|
|2.||Diana Ross — Upside Down (Almighty Anthem Mix)||Listen|
|3.||Pink — Get The Party Started (Almighty Mix)||Listen|
|4.||Christina Aguilera — The Voice Within (Almighty Mix)||Listen|
|5.||Abbacadabra — Dancing Queen (Almighty Anthem Mix)||Listen|
|6.||Sandy & Junior — Love Never Fails (Almighty Mix)||Listen|
|7.||Erasure — Oh L'Amour (Almighty Essential Mix)||Listen|
|8.||Sarah Washington — I Will Always Love You (Mighty Mix)||Listen|
|9.||Respect feat. Hannah Jones — Young Hearts Run Free (Love To Infinity Classic Paradise Mix)||Listen|
|10.||Liza Minnelli — Losing My Mind (Almighty Mix)||Listen|
|1.||Cher — Believe (Almighty Definitive Mix)||Listen|
|2.||Agnetha Faltskog — When You Walk In The Room (Almighty Mix)||Listen|
|3.||Girls Aloud — Jump (Almighty Mix)||Listen|
|4.||Cilla Black — Something Tells Me (Almighty Mix)||Listen|
|5.||Almighty Cover Girlz — Hot N' Cold (Almighty Anthem Mix)||Listen|
|6.||Jamie Knight — Bleeding Love (Almighty Anthem Mix)||Listen|
|7.||Steps — Chain Reaction (Almighty Mix)||Listen|
|8.||Cilla Black — Anyone Who Had A Heart (Almighty Definitive Mix)||Listen|
|9.||Diana Ross — Touch Me In The Morning (Almighty Definitive Mix)||Listen|
|10.||Paul Keating — Positive Role Model (Almighty Mix)||Listen|