John Abbey talks to the dazzling new group who have just hit the top spot on the U.S. singles chart

IT'S NOT very often that a relatively new group literally hits the top spot in the States but it does happen every now and then. Well, that privilege has just been endowed upon a quintet of musicians from Atlanta who sport the colourful tag of Brick!

"Our guitarist, Regi Hargis, was trying to come up with a name and he saw this pile of bricks and the name stuck," is Jimmy Lord Brown's explanation when you ask about the derivation of their unusual name. And how can you argue with that?

Anyway, Brick's debut release on Bang is the disco favourite, "Dazz", and after a mere six weeks of being on the streets, the record is now safely tucked away in the highest position a record can reach. And it is now attaining the same degree of acceptance in the pop stakes, as well as having just seen the light of day as a special Disco 12".

"We felt it might go," Jimmy quietly added, "but we never dreamt it might end up No. 1. When the album — "Good High" — came out four months back, this was the track that everyone was requesting so it really was released by public demand. And it just seems to have grown from there."

A fair question might be, then, just what is "dazz" anyway?

"Well, it's a form of music, really," Jimmy explained patiently. "It's a cross between funk, rock and even Country, but we tend to think of it as Disco Jazz and that's where the actual title comes from."

The group's actual source goes back to 1972 when three of the current quintet formed a group in their home city of Atlanta and called themselves Hellaphanalia. The trio were Raymond Ransom, bass; Reginald Hargis, Guitar; and Donald Nevins, keyboard.

They had just one release, called "Ain't Nothin' Superstar 'Bout Me" on Ray Charles' Crossover label. Unfortunately the record was released just as Ray's label was getting started and it never really registered outside of the Atlanta area.

A year later, they were joined by the other two guys who make up today's Brick — namely, Jimmy Lord Brown, saxophone, trombone, flute, trumpet etc.; and Eddie Irons, drums. It was then that the name change took place.

Last year, Brick had their first record released and it became a small regional hit. Entitled "Music Matic", it was released on the independent Mainstream Records and it was the latter company (who also manage the group), who secured a contract with the most productive company in Atlanta, Bang Records.

Incidentally, "Music Matic" is also included in the "Good High" album. It's also worth noting that the group penned all nine cuts on the album themselves.

It's really no surprise that their manager, Bob Lee, acclaims that "infinity is their future" when you realise that they write their own material, play their own instruments, co-produce their own sessions and then have the ability to put it all over on stage.

Now with the added ingredient of a No. 1 record, they look set to Dazz-le their captive public!




Members Comments