Delegation has had a big impact on Disco producers today. They were something as rare as a British Disco/Funk band. Delegation was formed in the United Kingdom in 1975, by Ricky Bailey, Len Coley and Roddy Harris.
They debuted with “The Promise of Love”
and followed it with “Where Is The Love (We Used to Know)”.
But it wasn’t until they wrote and recorded “Oh Honey” that luck struck big. That was in 1977. The song was top 10 in several countries.
Shortly after Len Coley left and was replaced by Bruce Dunbar. They soon recorded au De Vie, on the Ariola label, and on that you’ll find one of their defining songs “You & I”. There are loads of edits of that one, but to me Disco Tech’s version hits truest.
By 1980, Harris was replaced by Ray Patterson, and success diminished again. They recorded self titled Delegation that year, but it was only moderately successful. “Delegation II” followed the year after, with a brand new sound. But alas, fleeting success again.
In 1982 the band recorded their second to last album, “Deuces High”. It contained what is easily one of their finest songs “What Took You So Long”. An extremely well written pop song focusing heavily on synths, yet keeping the by now standard rhythm funk guitars, which are in most respects eponymous with their signature sound.
Tonbe aka Loshmi from Serbian based labels Disco Fruit, Hellcat Tunes, Fruity Flavor and Cherry Cola, has made some really fine edits of Delegation tracks.
In 1984 Dunbar quit the band, and was replaced by Kathy Bryant. The record It’s Your Turn, on Epic was successful only in France, although did well on the club scene across the United Kingdom, and The Mix on Scorpio Records, a segue compilation of five of their greatest hits, also sold poorly.
Bailey formed Euro-Jam Records in the mid 1990s, to repackage Delegation’s earlier recordings into new compilation albums, and reformed the group to release Encore in Europe in 1999, but this was Delegation’s final recording.
Delegation is a band of great importance, especially for the European Disco scene, and never got the platform and recognition they deserved.