The mission of The Department of Afro-American Research Arts and Culture to identify the global significance of the creative contributions pioneered by an international diaspora of Blackness
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Monday, December 1, 2008

Stargard - Stargard Featuring Theme From Which Way Is Up
Stargard. Heavily influenced by Labelle and the Pointer Sisters, Stargard was a
female R&B vocal group that was best known for providing the theme song
from the 1977 film Which Way Is Up. Rochelle Runnells, Debra Anderson,
and Janice Williams — who comprised Stargard's original three-woman
lineup — didn't go for the type of breathy, sweet, girlish vocals that
the Supremes and the Three Degrees were known for. Like Labelle and the
Pointer Sisters, Stargard favored robust, aggressive belting and
brought a gospel-like passion to its funk, soul, and disco. Stargard
signed with MCA in 1977, when its first single, the ultra-funky "Theme
From 'Which Way Is Up'" (a Norman Whitfield gem), soared to number one
on the R&B singles charts. Stargard's self-titled debut album came out
in early 1978, and later that year, MCA released the trio's sophomore
effort What You Waitin' For. That album's funky title track (also
written by Whitfield) became a Top Ten R&B hit, but after that,
Stargard lost its commercial momentum. In 1979, Stargard left MCA for
Warner Bros. and recorded its third album, The Changing of the Gard,
which was produced by Robert Wright and Earth, Wind & Fire's Verdine
White (Maurice White's brother) and contained the single "Wear It Out."
That superb album had the makings of a smash, but regrettably, it
didn't do nearly as well as it should have. In 1980, Anderson left the
group, and Runnells and Williams decided to carry on as a duo instead
of hiring a replacement. As a duo, Runnells and Williams recorded
1981's Norman Whitfield-produced Back 2 Back for Warner Bros. and
1982's Nine Lives (which Runnells produced) for MCA. Both of those LPs
received very little attention, and in 1983, Stargard broke up.

Artist Stargard
Title: Stargard
Label: WB
Year: 1978
Producer: Mark Davis

A1 Three Girls (3:51)
A2 Smile (3:18)
A3 Love Is So Easy (3:37)
A4 Don't Change (3:13)
B1 Theme From "Which Way Is Up" (7:00)
B2 The Force (3:30)
B3 I'll Always Love You (3:30)
B4 Disco Rufus (3:18)

Provided by Vincent from 4BB through Funkback

Anyone who's able to track down more of the funky music in the movie are welcome to tip us off.