The Bee Gees
may have been the undisputed disco kings of the late '70s, but KC & the Sunshine Band
weren't far behind. During the mid- to late '70s, the multi-member and racially integrated group -- led by bandleaders Harry Wayne "KC" Casey
and Richard Finch
-- racked up some of the era's biggest, most recognized dance hits. Casey
first met in 1972 while both were employed by TK Records in Miami, where among other chores, Casey
served as a personal secretary and booking agent for artist Timmy Thomas
. KC & the Sunshine Band
officially formed in 1973, but a debut single, "Blow Your Whistle," sunk from sight upon release. It was another Casey
original, 1974's "Rock Your Baby," that R&B artist George McCrae
scored a hit with as KC & the Sunshine Band
began issuing further albums and singles, quickly scoring big hits on their own.
Beginning in 1975, the group sustained an impressive run of disco hits: 1975's "Get Down Tonight" and "That's the Way (I Like It)," 1976's "Shake Shake Shake (Shake Your Booty)," 1977's "I'm Your Boogieman" and "Keep It Comin' Love," 1978's "Boogie Shoes" (included on the monster-selling soundtrack to the hit John Travolta disco movie, Saturday Night Fever), and 1979's "Do You Wanna Go Party" and "Please Don't Go."
Despite earning nine Grammy nominations (receiving three awards) and selling millions of records, KC & the Sunshine Band
were still susceptible to the backlash that disco bands felt by the dawn of the '80s, eventually leading to dwindling sales and the group's split by the early '80s (although KC
scored a moderate solo hit in 1983 with "Give It Up"). Come the '90s, an appreciation of everything '70s swept across the U.S., which led to a renewed interest bands from the era, prompting KC & the Sunshine Band
to re-form for concert performances. That decade saw the release of countless KC
"hits" collections and even an episode of VH1's popular Behind the Music series that studied the group's ups and downs. Casey
led a studio album, 1993's Oh Yeah!, as well as the concert album Get Down Live! based on tour dates throughout North and South America. The group continued to appear on the oldies circuit, also appearing in the studio for occasional albums such as 2001's I'll Be There for You, 2007's Yummy, and 2015's Feeling You! The 60's.