Most Wanted! Delegation – Heartache No 9 (Mercury)
Whatever the genre / mood could be, the Brits have always managed to turn it their own way. Therefore marking the difference with their U.S. alter egos. One could speak about Soul, Jazz, Funk, and later on about R&B, Hip-Hop or House… The remark remains the same. This most likely explaining why havin’ a hit in the U.K. has never been synonymous with doin’ the same Stateside! Delegation‘s profile in America perfectly illustrating this, as seen as one hit wonder along with ‘Oh Honey’…
Ironically, the rhythmic guitar led ‘Heartache No 9’ which Mercury released in the U.S. would become their most in demand gem on the second hand market. An infectious sparkling gem which Ken Gold produced as the opening track to their 1979 ‘Eau De Vie’ album. The latter most likely marking their peak with extra memorable cuts such as ‘You And I’ and ‘Darlin’ (I Think About You)’. Not to mention ‘Put A Little Love On Me’.
Ricky Bailey, Len Coley and Roddy Harris gave birth to Delegation in Birmingham back in 1975. Teaming up with producer Ken Gold who masterminded The Real Thing, they released a string of classy grooves. From ‘Where is The Love (We Used To Know)’ back in 1977 to ‘Oh Honey’ the following year.
Len Coley left the band with Bruce Dunbar takin’ his place. In the meantime, Delegation had left State Records to sign a record deal with Ariola. They made their debut for the label in 1979 with the ‘Eau De Vie’ album. An album which spanned the classics ‘Heartache No 9’, ‘You And I’ and ‘Put A Little Love On Me’. Therefore bringing them a huge following abroad.
By 1980, Ray Patterson replaced Roddy Harris. Delegation releasing their eponymous album the year after. Rather than takin’ on where ‘Eau De Vie’ left, it didn’t generate noticable success, despite the presence of the infectious ‘In The Night’. As a matter of fact, its follow-up (‘Deuces High’) followed in that vein, marking the progressive decline of Delegation.
Upon signing with Epic, American singer Kathy Bryant replaced Bruce Dunbar. The band delivering only one single – ‘It’s Your Turn’ – for the label before disappearing from the radar.
Ricky Bailey eventually wrote ‘Stand Up’ for American band Revelation back in 1981.