First Choice (group)  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

First Choice was an American band from Philadelphia. They are known for such disco hits as "Armed and Extremely Dangerous" (1973), "The Player" (1974), "Let No Man Put Asunder" (1977) and "Doctor Love" (1977).

Norman Harris produced their uptempo cuts with that classic Salsoul/Gold Mind feel. Shep Pettibone later remixed "Let No Man Put Asunder" [it's not over...over] and "Doctor Love", with great dance floor acclaim. Rochelle Fleming continued to pursue her music career during the 1990s. For the Larry Levan spotters there is his mix of "Double Cross" (Gold Mind, 1979). And finally for the Tee Scott aficionados: he produced a twelve inch on Gold Mind "Love Thang" (1979), said to be his first remix.


Group members

The group was originally made up of:


Fleming was the main vocalist. The group was originally known as "The Debronettes".

Local DJ Georgie Woods introduced the trio to Norman Harris, guitarist with MFSB, to produce their debut single, "This Is The House Where Love Died". Although it sold poorly, the record led to a recording contract with the Philly Groove record label, and the release of "Armed and Extremely Dangerous". Also produced by Harris, the song was a hit first in the UK, where it reached the Top 20 in the UK Singles Chart on Bell Records.

U.S. success followed and the later singles, "Smarty Pants" and "The Player", sold equally well. While producer Harris was associated with numerous hits during the disco boom of the late 1970s, the only later chart entry for First Choice was "Dr. Love" and in 1984 First Choice split up. The group's "Let No Man Put Asunder" was remixed that year for club play, and since become both a staple for urban DJ's and a classic for listeners.

In 1987 Fleming re-formed the group with her cousin Laconya Fleming, and Lawrence Cottel, to record "Love Itch" (Prelude Records). In the same year a reissue of their 1977 track "Let No Man Put Asunder" was a dancefloor hit in the UK.

Over the years, the group has seen some new success, as many of their songs have been remixed and re-released. Larry Levan remixed their "Double Cross" (Gold Mind, 1979) track, plus Tee Scott's first studio mix was "Love Thang" (1979). First Choice benefitted somewhat when Rhino Records put their "Armed and Extremely Dangerous" into the Soul Hits of the 70s: Didn't It Blow Your Mind series, and also when the Salsoul catalog was digitally remastered and released in the 1990s.

Fleming has also provided guest vocals for the occasional house release over the years.


Studio albums

Year Title Peak chart positions Record label

1973 Armed and Extremely Dangerous 184 55 Philly Groove
1974 The Player 143 36
1976 So Let Us Entertain You 204 53 Warner Bros./Philly Groove
1977 Delusions 103 Gold Mind
1979 Hold Your Horses 135 58
1980 Breakaway
"—" denotes a recording that did not chart or was not released in that territory.

Compilation albums

  • The Best of the First Choice (1976, Kory)
  • Greatest Hits (1992, Salsoul)
  • Philly Golden Classics (1994, Collectables)
  • The Best of First Choice (1994, Southbound)
  • Greatest Hits (1996, The Right Stuff)
  • The Best of First Choice (1997, Charly)
  • The Best of First Choice: Armed & Extremely Dangerous (1999, Philly Groove)
  • The Ultimate Club Collection (2001, Philly Groove/The Right Stuff/Capitol/EMI)
  • The Anthology (2005, Suss'd)
  • The Greatest Hits: It's Not Over (2006, Koch)
  • The Best of First Choice (2007, Metro Doubles)


Year Title Peak chart positions Album



6|year=1993|publisher=Australian Chart Book Pty Ltd, Turramurra, N.S.W.}}</ref>

1972 "This Is the House (Where Love Died)" Armed and Extremely Dangerous
1973 "Armed and Extremely Dangerous" 28 11 55 16
"Smarty Pants" 56 25 99 9
1974 "Newsy Neighbors" 97 35
"The Player (Part 1)" 70 7 68 The Player
"Guilty" 103 19
1975 "Love Freeze" 61 align="left" rowspan="1" Template:N/A
1976 "Gotta Get Away (From You Baby)" 64 16 So Let Us Entertain You
"Let Him Go" 97
"First Choice Theme" / "Ain't He Bad" (medley) 7
"Are You Ready for Me?"
1977 "Doctor Love" 41 23 8 28 Delusions
"Love Having You Around" 68
1979 "Hold Your Horses" 73 Hold Your Horses
"Double Cross" 104 60
"Love Thang" 52
1980 "Breakaway" 80 Breakaway
1983 "Let No Man Put Asunder" 13 47 Delusions
1984 "Doctor Love" (Special Remix) 61 align="left" rowspan="5" Template:N/A
1997 "Armed and Extremely Dangerous" (1997 Remixes) 88
1999 "Doctor Love" (remixes) 22
2001 "The Player" (remixes) 7
2002 "Ain't He Bad" (remixes) 89
"—" denotes a recording that did not chart or was not released in that territory.

See also

"Love and Happiness"

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