Friday Night Music Byte
Originally established as a side project from Talking Heads, Tom Tom Club comprised a loose aggregation of musicians, sound engineers and artists of the Compass Point All Stars family, including Tina Weymouth’s sisters and guitarist Adrian Belew, the latter of whom toured with Weymouth and Frantz in the expanded version of Talking Heads in 1980 and 1981.
Named after the dancehall in the Bahamas where they rehearsed for the first time while on hiatus from Talking Heads in 1980, Tom Tom Club enjoyed early success in the dance club culture of the early 1980s with the hits “Genius of Love” and “Wordy Rappinghood”, both of which were taken from their self-titled first album released on Sire in the US and Island Records elsewhere in 1981.
“Genius of Love” has been sampled or reinterpreted by many artists, including MC Redman, Funkdoobiest, and Mariah Carey in her hit single “Fantasy”. “It’s Nasty” (1982) by Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five was one of the early hip-hop versions of the song, however the sample was re-recorded by a live band rather than just taken from the original recording, as was common practice at the time. Another version, “Genius Rap” (1981), by Dr. Jeckyll & Mr. Hyde, was the first cover version. Max B also sampled “Genius of Love” in his single “Get Outta Jail”.
Tom Tom Club appeared in the Talking Heads concert film Stop Making Sense in 1984, performing “Genius of Love”. The following, is a video clip of that performance which took place during the time that Talking heads frontman David Byrne was offstage and changing into his famous Big Suit. Please enjoy!