Jheri Curl June: D-Train’s “‘D’ Train Theme”

It’s been a while since we last spotlighted James “D-Train” Williams–since 2015, to be exact, when we wrote about Paul Hardcastle‘s 1985 remix of D-Train’s 1981 breakout hit, “You’re the One for Me.” And frankly, that’s too long to go without some Vitamin D–especially now that we know it was Williams who sang the much-more-soulful-than-required hook to the original Pokémon anime’s “Pokérap,” thus completing the weirdest possible Venn diagram of Callie‘s interests and most likely fulfilling an ancient prophecy that will ultimately lead to the apocalypse.

Unfortunately, the Pokérap does not count as an example of Jheri Curl Music; but 1982’s “‘D’ Train Theme” decidedly does, and folks, it is a banger. Recorded when “D-Train” was not only Williams’ stage name, but also a full-fledged duo comprising the singer and keyboardist/producer Hubert Eaves III, the “Theme” opens with a recorded announcement from the New York subway line, before launching into a nasty bass and drum-machine groove that lays the foundation for a synth hook positively dripping with J.C. juice. The lyrical content is just about what you’d expect–a series of exhortations to “get up on the funky D-Train”–but fans of the aforementioned Pokérap will be excited to hear Williams lay down some capable bars himself. “‘D’ Train Theme” may not teach you the names of the 150 original Pokémon, but it is funky as hell, and really, that’s what matters most.

You can get on board the funky JC-train with the playlists below; see you tomorrow!


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