Black Box

Profile:
Black Box is an Italian house music band that had a huge success in the late 1980s and early 1990s. It was comprised and founded by three Italian studio musicians (Daniele Davoli, Mirko Limoni and Valerio Semplici), collectively known as Groove Groove Melody, their imprint label.
Semplici was a clarinet teacher and played in the Music Orchestra in Bologna. Davoli was a well-known Italian club DJ (known as DJ Lelewel), and responsible for the hit single "Grand Piano", another prime example of "Italo-house", while Limoni was the computer and keyboard whizz kid of the trio.

The Groove Groove Melody team were established as one of the top production outfits in Italian dance music, churning out more than a dozen singles a year in their native country. They were also behind the production of Starlight's "Numero Uno", reaching the 9th position in the UK single charts. They turned out numerous further records under many other pseudonyms.

In 1989, Black Box released their first single "Ride On Time" which featured sampled vocals of Loleatta Holloway from her 1980's hit "Love Sensation". French model Katrin Quinol was hired to lip-sync the track on TV performances and stage and to be featured on the cover art as well, even though she didn't sing a single note. After Loleatta realised Black Box were using her sampled vocals without her permission nor giving her any credit, she and Dan Hartman, the composer of the original track, successfully sued Black Box for copyright infringement and unauthorized sampling. After that, Black Box was forced to remove "Ride On Time" with the original vocal samples from distribution and then they re-released it again this time re-recorded by the singer Heather Small. Besides the controversy, the single became the first of a series of Italian house records to crossover to the UK charts, staying at number 1 for six weeks and becoming the best dance selling record of all times (still today).

In April 1990, they released the album "Dreamland", which broke in the US charts as well as UK + the rest of the world, and featured the hit singles “Ride on Time”, "I don't know anybody else", "Everybody Everybody", "Strike It Up", and "Fantasy", a revamp of the Earth, Wind And Fire hit. They still had the French model Katrin Quinol lip-synching to the words on stage and music videos. All the other tracks of the album, except "Ride On Time", were sung by Martha Wash, who also sued the producers for not giving her vocal credit. Like Loleatta Holloway, she also won the case sucessfully and got her credits.

In 1993, Katrin left the project and Black Box producers started looking for somebody who could actually sing on their records. In 1995, the second studio album called "Positive Vibrations" was released, now featuring the American singer Charvoni, and including the singles "Not anyone", "I've got the vibration", “Native New Yorker” “Rocking to the Music” and "Fall into my love".

From the 2 albums, 12 singles were extracted and 8 videos were made.

Black Box is still active. They keep releasing material, mainly remixes of the old tracks. In 2018, they released their compilation album "Superbest" with one brand new song and some inedit mixes. To celebrate the 30th anniversary of the hit "Ride On Time", they remade the song in the Disco style featuring the original vocal samples of Loleatta Holloway and released it on all the digital platforms in 2019. In 2021 they released the album "Dreamlanders", which consists in new remixes and remakes from all the tracks of their debut album "Dreamland". They keep touring around the world with their current vocalist Celestine Walcott-Gordon.
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Artist

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Albums

50141, 50 141 2 + 2 — Black Box Black Box 2 + 2 (Album, Comp) Airplay Records, Carrere, Airplay Records, Carrere 50141, 50 141 France 1990 Sell This Version
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GGM 9011 Dreamland — Black Box Black Box Dreamland (Album) Groove Groove Melody GGM 9011 Italy 1990 Sell This Version
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BU-1840995 Positive Vibration — Black Box Black Box Positive Vibration (Album) Clubstitute Records BU-1840995 Indonesia 1995 Sell This Version
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GGM 2192 Dreamlanders — Black Box Black Box Dreamlanders (Album) Groove Groove Melody GGM 2192 2021
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Singles & EPs

14 843, 14843 Megamix — Black Box Black Box + Lelewel* Black Box + Lelewel* - Megamix (Single, Maxi) Airplay Records, Carrere 14 843, 14843 France 1989 Sell This Version
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GGM 8909 I Don't Know Anybody Else — Black Box Black Box I Don't Know Anybody Else (Maxi, Single) Groove Groove Melody GGM 8909 Italy 1989 Sell This Version
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RHR 4040 Ride On Time — Black Box Black Box Ride On Time (Single, Maxi) Rams Horn Records RHR 4040 Netherlands 1989 Sell This Version
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TMS-50533 Ride On Time — Black Box Black Box Ride On Time (Single, Maxi) Out, Lelewel Dee Jay TMS-50533 Argentina 1989 Sell This Version
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OUT 3261 Ride On Time / Numero Uno — Black Box Black Box / Starlight Black Box / Starlight - Ride On Time / Numero Uno(7", Jukebox) Discomagic Records OUT 3261 Italy 1989 Sell This Version
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95 186 Megamix — Black Box Black Box Megamix (Single, Maxi) Airplay Records, Carrere 95 186 France 1990 Sell This Version
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3A PT-44236 Blackboxedtotalmix — Black Box Black Box Blackboxedtotalmix (Single, Maxi) Deconstruction, RCA 3A PT-44236 Spain 1990 Sell This Version
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15 084, 15084 Get Down (Fantasy Rap) — Black Box Black Box Featuring Stepz Black Box Featuring Stepz - Get Down (Fantasy Rap) (Single, Maxi) Airplay Records, Carrere 15 084, 15084 France 1990 Sell This Version
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NP GGM 9013 Everybody Everybody — Black Box Black Box Everybody Everybody (Single, Maxi, EP) Polydor NP GGM 9013 Italy 1990 Sell This Version
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PB 43895 Fantasy / Get Down (Rappapella) — Black Box Black Box Fantasy / Get Down (Rappapella) (Single, Maxi, EP) Polydor PB 43895 Europe 1990 Sell This Version
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879 483-2 Bright On Time — Black Box Black Box Bright On Time (Single, Maxi) Polydor 879 483-2 Netherlands 1990 Sell This Version
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JB 010 I Don't Know Anybody Else / Get Into It — Black Box Black Box / Tony Scott Black Box / Tony Scott - I Don't Know Anybody Else / Get Into It(7", Jukebox) Discomagic Records JB 010 Italy 1990 Sell This Version
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GGM 9018 Bright On Time + The Total Mix — Black Box Black Box Bright On Time + The Total Mix (Single, Maxi) Airplay Records, Carrere GGM 9018 Italy 1990 Sell This Version
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RDJ 62160-2 Open Your Eyes — Black Box Black Box Open Your Eyes (Single, Maxi, EP) Polydor RDJ 62160-2 US 1991 Sell This Version
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9031741124 Strike It Up — Black Box Black Box Strike It Up (Single, Maxi) Polydor 9031741124 France 1991 Sell This Version
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70552210 Fantasy / I Don’t Know Anybody Else — Black Box Black Box Fantasy / I Don’t Know Anybody Else(7") RCA 70552210 Costa Rica 1991 Sell This Version
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BVCP-9006 Black Box Megamix — Black Box Black Box Black Box Megamix(CD, Maxi) Deconstruction BVCP-9006 Japan 1991 Sell This Version
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OUT 3398 Megamix N°2 — Black Box Black Box Megamix N°2(12", Off) Out OUT 3398 Italy 1991 Sell This Version
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863 240-2 Hold On — Black Box Black Box Hold On (Single, Maxi) Airplay Records 863 240-2 France 1992 Sell This Version
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GGM 9328 Rockin' To The Music — Black Box Black Box Rockin' To The Music (Maxi, Single, EP, Album) Deconstruction GGM 9328 Italy 1993 Sell This Version
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853 775-1 Not Anyone — Black Box Black Box Not Anyone (Single, Maxi) Airplay Records 853 775-1 France 1994 Sell This Version

Add Review

Alien5

Alien5

June 3, 2019
edited over 4 years ago
Black Box (Daniele Davoli team) are the pioneers of the modern copy-paste sampling-stealing music.....
Let's listen to music and put by side the fight about copyright.. Who take the first and who sampled first...
Bullshit.. Songs of Black Box are powerful , fill the dancefloor so let's listen and dance ...
tvsavage

tvsavage

January 10, 2016
100% agree with airwolf... If Black Box = "scumbags and thieves" then so are 90% of the house/dance music pioneers.

The fact that Black Box hired Martha Wash to sing vocals and then replaced her image with a hot model in music videos is well-known, but that was the status quo of the late 80's/early 90's as the popular music industry took a turn towards studio-based electronic club music, desperate to catch up with the underground scenes. Their first single "Ride On Time" was an unexpected MEGA HIT in the UK and put Black Box on the map overnight. The fact that they HAD TO brand themselves and put an image on their music is not their fault... that was (and now, still is) the price of being a hot shot in the popular music game. If you can manage to look past the technical sh!t and appreciate the music, it's some of the best dance music from the era! My favs are "I Don't Know Anybody Else" "Strike It Up (Original mix)" & "Everybody Everybody (Love Unlimited Edit)"
airwolffliesagain

airwolffliesagain

December 31, 2015
Black Box made and earned their place in the History of Dance music and Italo Dance. Their music will live forever. Sad to read idiotic comments from losers like the one down below.

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