Vernon Burch - Playing Hard To Get (Spector Records Int. (SRI) SW 70005) (1982)
Do It To Me; Lovely Lady; Once In A Lifetime Thing; Playing Hard To Get; Joy & Pain; Always Sometime For Love; Simply Love; Born To Love You.
Produced, written & arranged by: Vernon Burch
Lovely Lady, again stunning introduction with Vernon's guitar and 'Ever Ready' Freddy Washington's bass thumb plucking bass line makes this track a winner.
There is also a nice ballad found within, Always Sometime For Love. The girlie voices on this album belong to The Walters & Maxine Willard. The Washington, D.C., singer/guitarist Vernon Burch spent two years backing the Delfonics as a teen sensation.
He was 13 when he joined them. He later played with the Stairsteps, and then with the Bar-Kays for four years. Burch began recording for United Artists in 1975. After recording for United Artists and Columbia in 1977, he moved to Casablanca's Chocolate City label in 1978 with his third album, Love-A-Thon. Burch hoped that this LP would be his big commercial breakthrough, but the album received very little attention.
Although competent, Love-A-Thon isn't as strong or as memorable as its predecessor, When I Get Back Home. That 1978 album was said to be his best. Love-A-Thon isn't a bad album; gritty funk items like "Baptized in Your Love" and the title song are OK, and so are the more laid-back tracks (which include Mama and Let's Make Love).
But Burch was capable of a lot more. However, it wasn't a lack of five-star material that caused this release to fall through the cracks a lot of albums that are merely competent become huge sellers. Inadequate promotion was the thing that caused Love-A-Thon to become a commercial flop.
Only the singles Changes (Messin' With My Mind) in 1975 and Do It to Me in 1981 made it into the R&B Top 20.
Burch probably gained more recognition and exposure for his role in the film Hollywood Nights in 1980, playing Marvin Gaye.
- I'll Be Your Sunshine United Artists (1975)
- When I Get Back Home Columbia (1976)
- Love-A-Thon Chocolate City (1978)
- Get Up Chocolate City (1979)
- Stepping Out Chocolate City (1980)
- Playing Hard to Get Spector Records Int. (1982)