France Joli is a Canadian vocalist who became a teenage sensation during with her disco hit “Come To Me” in 1979. Growing up in the Montreal suburb of Dorian,Joli’s mother (a teacher) tutored her so she could concentrate her spare time on her musical development. She recorded two albums with musician/producer Tony Green-including her self titled debut and its follow up Tonight in 1980. In 1981,she began working with Ray Reid and William Anderson of the band Crown Heights Affair. The result was her 1982 album Now,on which her music evolved to embrace the post disco/boogie funk sound.
My personal discovery of the Now album came quite by accident. Located it Bull Moose Records in Bangor on CD. Before seeing the name,I thought the record was a lost Teena Marie album based on her appearance. Had no idea who France Joli was,or the fact the singer was only 19 when this album was recorded. Its a wonderful album overall,consisting of nothing but strong material. In particular one of her biggest hits in the uptempo bass/guitar oriented “Gonna Get Over You”. The song on the album which got my attention most is the opening number “Your Good Lovin'”.
This is one of those songs where every element of the instrumentation is built around its chorus. This chorus consists of a hard dance beat with a brittle pump of a synth bass line. A very Nile Rodgers style rhythm guitar plays the main melody of the song,with bursts of Minneapolis style synth brass and processed electric piano accenting it all. Along with climatic string arrangements. A brief refrain has the chord changes to a minor one and the strings and synth provide a more Asian style groove. The bridge of the song features an early hip-hop style drum/hand clap groove before fading out on the main chorus.
‘Your Good Lovin'” is an amazing song. Joli’s vocals are very powerful,even torchy. On the other hand,it provides just the type of soulful and jazzy touches that a funkified groove like this requires. Its a very stylized boogie funk arrangement too. The song does have a naked rhythmic attitude right in line with the early Minneapolis sound-with its synth bass and brass. Yet the arrangement,with the rhythm guitar and strings,have an ornate approach that provides a significant contrast between the disco and post disco/boogie era. So far,its my favorite of France Joli’s hit grooves.