Gimme A Break – The Rockets
The Rockets were formed in Cape Town in 1968 (1 year before another famous Rocket went to the moon) and played funky soul music in the style of motown bands such as The Four Tops and the like. They grew in popularity, winning the Battle Of The Bands competition in 1969 and went on to perform on the BBC music show ‘Top Of The Pops’ with Tom Jones and Marmalade.
They went through a number of line-up changes and by 1985 had Ronnie Joyce (formerly known as Little Ronnie Joyce, but presumably he grew up) on vocals when they recorded ‘Gimme A Break’. I have come across 2 versions of the song, one where the funk-o-meter is turned up and they sound somewhat like a circa 1983/84 Kool & The Gang. On the other version there is a thumping bass dance beat that falls just short of becoming Hi-NRG. It doesn’t matter which version you manage to get your grubby little paws on, as both are sufficiently dance injected and funk-filled songs to have toe-tapping at a bare minimum, as you won’t be sitting down to do so, you’ll be out there on the dancefloor.
The lyrics are not deep or insightful, but when you are shakin’ your thang on the dancefloor, you don’t want ‘save the world’ stuff thrown at you, you want light-hearted words about love and dancing. So, ‘Gimme a break, gimme a chance, gotta get down, dance dance’ is perfectly suited lyrics for a song of such a genre. It’s about enjoying yourself.
The song made it onto the Radio 702 charts back Novemebr 1985 and reached number 3 there.
Where to find it: (Vinyl) Thank You Thank You (1986), Mike Fuller Music, FML1011