Wednesday, February 17, 2016

The Fantastic Johnny C – "Boogaloo Down Broadway" (1967)

Come on, baby
It ain't hard to do
You've been doin' it
Ever since you were two

Broadway is the oldest north-south thoroughfare in New York City.  It runs some 33 miles from the southern tip of Manhattan Island north through the Bronx and Westchester County, ending just beyond Sleepy Hollow.

Broadway is the most significant exception to the strict east-west/north-south Manhattan street grid created by the Commissioners’ Plan of 1811.  Following an old Indian trail, it crosses Fifth, Sixth, Seventh, Eighth, Ninth, and Tenth Avenues diagonally as you follow it northward.

Times Square
The most famous stretch of Broadway is between 42nd and 47th Streets, where it intersects with Seventh Avenue and forms Times Square.  To most people, Broadway refers not to a street but to the 40 or so professional theatres in that neighborhood. 

Johnny Corley, a/k/a “The Fantastic Johnny C,” was discovered by record producer Jesse James, who heard Corley singing in a gospel music group that rehearsed at the Macedonia Baptist Church in Norristown, Pennsylvania – the church that both men attended.  (James later discovered Cliff Nobles – who had a gold record with “The Horse” in 1968 – at the same church.)  

The Fantastic Johnny C
Corley had four singles that cracked the Billboard top 100, including “(She’s) Some Kind of Wonderful,” which was a much bigger hit for Grand Funk Railroad several years later.

“Boogaloo Down Broadway” is the second boogaloo record in a row featured on 2 or 3 lines.  But that’s just a coincidence – it has nothing to do with the theme of this year’s “29 Songs in 29 Days.”

Here’s “Boogaloo Down Broadway”:

Click below to buy the song from Amazon:

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