Joe Simon ~ Get Down, Get Down (Get On The Floor) 1975 Disco Purrfection Version
Joe Simon was born September 2, 1943 in Simmesport, Louisiana. Like so many of his contemporaries, he began vocalizing in his father's Baptist church choir. In 1958, his family moved to the Oakland, California area and he joined the Golden West Gospel Singers. By the end of the 50's he embarked on a recording career with "Little Island Girl" with the Golden Tones in 1959. His solo career was assisted by various labels like VeeJay who released his "My Adorable One", then again with "Let's Do It Over" in 1965. Radio DJ John Richbourg found him offered to manage him and got him signed to legendary Monument Records where he enjoyed a run of hits. After embarking on a career in country music a la Ray Charles, Joe Simon worked with songwriter Harlan Howard who had written "Busted", a major crossover hit for Ray. The song he brought to Simon was "The Chokin' Kind" a song that Waylon Jennings had already recorded. Simon's version was a #1 R&B hit for three weeks in May of 1969. He laid low for a few years and then struck gold with the then new duo of Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff. Richbourg encouraged Simon to sign with Spring Records in 1970 and the duo were already actively writing and producing. His first single with them was "Drowning In The Sea Of Love", a #3 R&B hit and peaked at #11 on the Hot100. Next was their "Power Of Love" which was a #1 R&B hit for two weeks and hit #8 on the pop chart. His biggest hit came in the form of a disco song, the funky and soulful "Get Down, Get Down (Get On The Floor)", a #1 R&B hit for three weeks and a #8 hit on the Hot100. Executives at Spring Records felt that Simon's time had come for another hit and paired the singer with songwriter/producer Raeford Gerald who brought him "Get Down" with the intention of helping him crossover on radio and that he did. Towards the end of the 70's, Simon began reviewing his life and returned to his gospel roots. His last secular LP was "Glad You Came My Way" in 1981. In 1983 he became an evangelist preacher and produced gospel music and even released his own gospel album "The Story Must Be Told" in the spring of 1998. The following year, he was inducted into the R&B Foundation with a Pioneer Award. Rap remixers like Outkast, 50 Cent and Memphis Bleek found his catalog and mined his music for beats.