1

Throwback: Diana Ross-Upside Down

Diana Ross’s 11th studio album was simply titled Diana and it would make the biggest impact of her solo career. Nile Rodgers and Bernard Edwards exclusively produced the album and gave it classic danceable grooves that crushed the disco backlash.  Their work as the group Chic was one of the best things about music in the ’70s and no one could forget “Le Freak” and “Good Times.”  Influential DJ Frankie Crocker had warned Ross about the album failing because of the attitudes towards disco at the end of the decade and she had it remixed by Russ Terrana. The original energy of the album was still present despite the changes that included speeding up the songs and removing lengthy instrumental segments. 

“Upside Down” was the first single from Diana and it went to number one on the Billboard 100, Soul and Disco charts. Radio, rollerskating rinks, club DJs and house parties made “Upside Down” one of the biggest songs of Ross’s career. She had attended the famed Studio 54 club in New York City and saw how Rodgers and Edward’s music lit up the dancefloor and she reached out to them for her album. The idea for “Upside Down” came from her literal words to them to turn her career “Upside Down” so she could have fun again. The success of Diana made it the highest seller of Ross’s career and  MC Lyte, Xscape and Tom Jones are a few artists who have sampled “Upside Down.” Diana was remastered in 2003 and released as a double CD with the original mixes from Rodgers and Edwards as well as the Motown version. 

In 2021 Diana Ross’s 25th studio album Thank You was released through Decca Records.