Uncle Jamm's Army
||This article includes a list of references, but its sources remain unclear because it has insufficient inline citations. (February 2017) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)|
|Uncle Jamm's Army|
|Origin||Los Angeles, California, U.S.|
|Genres||Hip hop, electro-hop|
|Labels||Freak Beat, Dunk Yer Funk|
|Members||Egyptian Lover, Ice-T, D.J. Pooh Djkittkatt ,|
Uncle Jamm's Army is a former American hip-hop crew based in Los Angeles, California in the 1980s. Their singles "What's Your Sign", "Dial-a-Freak", and "Yes, Yes, Yes" were influential to the electro, old school hip hop, and early West Coast hip-hop genres.
Originally known as The Night Time Players, the group was originally formed in 1974 by Rodger Clayton, Charles "Alvon" Woods, Alphonse Finn, Renord Collins, Pernell Prothro, Tony Willis and Barry Harris giving house parties at 911 Stonebryn Drive in Harbor City. In 1978 the group trimmed down to Rodger Clayton, Charles Woods, Renord Collins and added Rodney Gardner to form Unique Dreams Entertainment. Rodger dubbed himself The Ace of Dreams (DJ). Later in 1978, Arthur "Gid" Martin, who was friends with Rodger at Narbonne High School and first met at Henry Clay Jr High School, and his brother Tony Martin were attempting to give a party and asked Rodger to DJ for them. Rodger suggested they join forces and start promoting dances together, with Rodger spinning under the name Ace of Dreams and later Mr. Prinze. But they needed a name, a name that would catch everyone's attention. Later that year Funkadelic released an album entitled Uncle Jam Wants You. The name Uncle Jamm's Army hit home and was adopted. The group became the number-one dance promoters and DJs on the West Coast of the United States. Clayton was no stranger to the turntables as he organized his first house party back in 1973, playing such classics as "Right Place, Wrong Time" by Dr. John, "Funky Worm" by the Ohio Players, "Let's Get It On" by Marvin Gaye, "Get on the Good Foot" by James Brown, and his favourite band the legendary Earth, Wind & Fire. Before forming Unique Dreams and Uncle Jamm's Army, Rodger spun records for a mobile DJ organization called LSD formed by Larry Grisby. Assemblyman of Gardena Steven Bradford & Former City Councilman of Carson Darryl Sweeney (Gardena High Alum's). After LSD stopped payment on his $25 check, Rodger told them that one day he would form his own organization and put them out of business. Uncle Jam's Army, along with Alonzo (Wrecking Crew) Williams (Gardena High Alum), were among the earliest hip-hop DJs on the West Coast and helped to bring the electro scene there. The group was influenced by Prince, Kraftwerk, East Coast electro. In the beginning, the Army first played funky disco but when Sugarhill Records started putting out great rap and funk hits, rap had finally reached the West Coast. Their major competitors during Uncle Jamm's run to supremacy was L.S.D., Z-Cars (Curtis Garrett- Locke High), JC2 Production (John Carter-Locke High School) and Bay Phi Si/Westchester Bay Lockers (Curtis Jackson- Westchester High). In December 1978, Alpine Village was the site of the groups Breakout Dance. Packing the house, standing room only! They never looked back, they were on the road to the top.
The "Alpine" Days
By the beginning of the 1980s, the Army's popularity had grown. Rodger saw that a larger venue was needed; and Alpine Village in Torrance CA was the site of the groups Breakout Dances to standing room only! They never looked back; and they were on the road to the top. Summer 1980 brought "Shake Your Pants" and what later to be known as "The Twins", "4th of July" and "Labor Day Groove". All three occasions set record attendances to dub Uncle Jam's Army, "The #1 Dance Promoters in Los Angeles. Other venues such as Long Beach State; Veteran's Auditorium, Culver City; Pasadena and Santa Monica Convention Centers; the Hollywood Palladium; the Los Angeles Sports Arena were among the major venues used to entertain the masses.
In 1982, Rodger opened his first Music Store, The DJ Booth (Slauson & Western Avenue), catering to all the local DJs and selling 12-inch records.
In 1983, the DJ group expanded further and Uncle Jam's recruited underground DJs and MCs who were creating a cult following. The most well-known being Greg "Egyptian Lover" Broussard, Tracy "Ice-T" Marrow (who used to dance for the group at the Sports Arena events), who was later a gangsta rap pioneer, and later Mark "DJ Pooh" best known for producing 3 Strikes and Friday 1, 2 & 3, and Bobby "DJ Bobcat" Ervin (Death Row Records). The group name also would change to the Uncle Jam's Army (dropping one "M" in Jamm). The electronic sound of the group was influential on West Coast hip hop, as G-Funk pioneered by Dr. Dre continued the tradition of an electronic sound in hip-hop music.
By 1988 the group disbanded as the music in the industry changed from Fun Rap to Gangster Rap and fights frequently broke out at the dances. A new era had arrived and violent music was the vice. But Rodger refused to disappear and forged forward with his love of music and started D.J.-ing at Pizazz Night Club in The Marina 1989. In 1990 Charles Alvon joined him splitting duties. By 1991 Pizazz shut the doors and Rodger proceeded to open his second store: DJ's Records in Pamona.
In 1995 his third store on Vermont and Imperial, DJ's Records, opened. From there Rodger and Charles Alvon started promoting Function at The Junction Dances for the next five years at The Cockatoo Inn, Crown Plaza Hotel, Westin Hotel and The Proud Bird while also promoting annual Uncle Jam's Army Reunions in which Rodger kept alive until his death. The remaining members of Uncles Jam's Army along with Adrienne Clayton (sister) Marcus, Marques Clayton (sons) and Janelle Clayton (daughter) intend to keep the legacy alive with a series of concerts and dances. Stay tuned! Uncle Jam's Army (U.J.A.) Unique Dreams Entertainment 2012 and Beyond.
"THE ORIGINAL "ARMY"
GROUND BREAKERS: Rodger Clayton, Charles "Alvon" Woods, Arthur(Gid) & Tony Martin, Rodney Gardner
1ST GENERATION DJ'S: Rene "Sir Jam" Williams (Bleeps); David "Dr. Funkenstein" Storms
GROUND CREW: Leslie "LE$" Andrew; Lionel Collins, Keith & Kenneth Morris, Louis and Wesley Hall,
SECOND GENERATION DJ'S & HONORARY MEMBERS: Greg "Egyptian Lover" Broussard (The Game Changer); Greg Martin, Dwayne "Muffla" Simon, Duane"Razor"Meadows, Darryl Ellis, Thurman Hilburn, Derrick, Troy, J.R., Lester, Digi Dave, Delphine (DJ Lady Dell), Bobby "Bobcat" Ervin, Dj Kittkatt,Lil Egypt. Dj Battlecat The Music People aka DJ4Hire (Edwin Vaultz, Duke McKneely, Andre' "Goochi" Jones, P.Body Cambell, "Horrible" Horace Vaultz, Reggie Jones, Eddie, Lance & Vance Kinney, Clint Mc Cray). Big Coco, Big Dad, Big Daddy, Cold Crush Cris, Joe Cooley, Keith Cooley, Dirty Red, DJ Pookie, Paul "Shadow" Neal, GI Joe, Ichy, Jammin Gemini, Lil Doug, Haley Mack, Madison Stanley, Chris "The Glove" Taylor, Tracey, The Taylor Sisters (Calynn the Stallion and Karen) "D.J.Vanity" Ainsworth
- "Dial-a-Freak" (1984), Freak Beat - 12-inch single
- "Dial-a-Freak (10 Minute Remix)" (1984), Dunk Yer Funk - 12-inch single
- "Yes, Yes, Yes" (1984), Freak Beat
- "What's Your Sign" (1985), Freak Beat - 12-inch single
- "The Roach Is On The Wall" (1985), Freak Beat - 12-inch single
- "Naughty Boy" (1986), Freak Beat - 12-inch single
- Gueraseva, Stacy (2005). Def Jam, Inc: Russell Simmons, Rick Rubin, and the extraordinary story of the world's most influential hip hop label. Random House, Inc. ISBN 978-0-345-46804-8