KC & The Sunshine Band
The Bee Gees may have been the undisputed disco kings of the late '70s, but KC & the Sunshine Band weren't far behind.
From the mid- to late '70s, the multi-member and racially integrated group led by bandleaders Harry Wayne "KC" Casey and Richard Finch racked up some of the era's biggest and instantly recognizable dance hits. Casey and Finch first met in 1972 while both were employed by TK Records in Miami, FL, where among other chores, Casey served as a personal secretary and booking agent for artist Timmy Thomas. KC & the Sunshine Band officially formed in 1973, but a debut single, "Blow Your Whistle," sunk from sight upon release. But it was another Casey/Finch original, "Rock Your Baby," that R&B artist George McCrae scored a hit with in 1974 as KC & the Sunshine Band began issuing further albums and singles, quickly scoring big hits on their own. The group then began an impressive run of disco hits: 1977's "Shake Shake Shake (Shake Your Booty)," "I'm Your Boogieman," "Keep It Comin' Love," "Boogie Shoes" (the latter included on the monster-selling soundtrack to the hit John Travolta disco movie, Saturday Night Fever), 1979's "Do You Wanna Go Party," and 1980's "Please Don't Go." Despite earning nine Grammy nominations (receiving three awards) and selling millions of records, KC & the Sunshine Band were still susceptible to the backlash that disco bands felt by the dawn of the '80s, eventually leading to dwindling sales and the group's split by the early '80s (although KC scored a moderate solo hit in 1983 with "Give It Up"). Come the '90s, an appreciation of everything '70s swept across the U.S., which led to a renewed interest bands from the era, prompting KC & the Sunshine Band to re-form for concert performances. That decade saw the release of countless KC "hits" collections and even an episode of VH1's popular Behind the Music series that studied the group's ups and downs. ~ Greg Prato, Rovi