The Complete Disco Guide to...

Sophie Ellis-Bextor

Sophie Ellis-Bextor is a singer from England. She used to be a member of a band called theaudience. After that, her first big worldwide hit was 2000's "Groovejet (If This Ain't Love)" with DJ Cristiano Spiller. The instrumental version was the lead track on the record "The Mighty Miami". One of the extended vocal versions of Groovejet is 7 minutes and 28 seconds long. It's based on the 1976 Salsoul song "Love is You" by Carol Williams. The disco sound of the song distinguishes it from most other dance songs from 2000 and seemed to have ushered in a new era of new disco songs by a wide variety of artists. Bextor told BBC's Radio 1: "I've never done any dance music before... I do think of it as a disco classic rather than a house dance thing. Not that I really know what house dance is." In any event, she continues the disco groove rolling on her first full album "Read My Lips" (summer 2001) with the singles "Take Me Home (A Girl Like Me)" and the even better follow-up "Murder on the Dancefloor". The British edition of the "Murder on the Dancefloor" single came with the additional song "Never Let Me Down".

Bextor has performed the disco classic "Yes Sir, I Can Boogie" (a Baccara song from 1977) live in concert, and her recorded rendition of it was included on the Maxi-CD single for "I Won't Change You", released in two packages, on December 2003 and February 2004. The 2004 multi-artist compilation "Discomania" from Mercury Records also included "Yes Sir, I Can Boogie".

In June 2002, her next dance single, an electronica/pop song called "Get Over You", was released. It debuted at #11 on the Australian pop chart and later reached #4. It reached #3 Pop in the U.K. A new companion song included on the "Get Over You" single is "Live It Up (Acoustic Version)". She also released a dance song called "Music Gets the Best of Me" in 2002 on the re-issue of her "Read My Lips" album, and it became the next single, released on November 4, 2002.

The electro-pop single "Mixed Up World" was released on October 13, 2003, and her second album "Shoot from the Hip" was out since October 27, 2003. Her next pop single, "I Won't Change You", was released on December 15, 2003 and reached the top 10 in Britain in January 2004. In March 2005 her house song "Circles (Just My Good Time)", by Busface featuring "Mademoiselle E.B.", was released and became a club hit, reaching number one on the Music Week Commercial Club Chart.

Her rock-pop single "Catch You" was scheduled for release on February 19, 2007 in the U.K. Her house dance single "Me and My Imagination" came out on May 12, 2007 in the U.K. with the equally electronic B-side "Move to the Music". Her mid-tempo ballad "Today the Sun's on Us" became a single in August 2007.


Classic Songs:
2000: Groovejet (If This Ain't Love)
2001: Take Me Home (A Girl Like Me), Murder on the Dancefloor
2002: Get Over You, Music Gets the Best of Me
2003: Mixed Up World, I Won't Change You, Yes Sir I Can Boogie
2005: Circles (Just My Good Time)
2007: Catch You, Me and My Imagination
2016: Come With Us
2018: Love is You


Read My Lips (2001)
TRACKS:   Take Me Home (A Girl Like Me)      Lover      Move This Mountain      Murder on the Dancefloor      Sparkle      Final Move      I Believe      Leave the Others Alone      By Chance      The Universe is You      Is It Any Wonder      Everything Falls Into Place      Extra track: Music Gets the Best of Me      Extra track: Get Over You      Extra track: Groovejet Live Mix
"Take Me Home" is a modified remake of the 1979 Cher original that became popular in Britain (it reached #2 Pop in the U.K. in August 2001) and New Zealand (where it reached #18 Pop). It's more electronic-sounding than "Murder on the Dancefloor" but it does have hints of a string section, particularly in one of the extended mixes. "Move This Mountain" is a power ballad. "Final Move" and "Is It Any Wonder" are also ballads. "Is It Any Wonder" was co-written by Moby. Critics are divided about the quality of the album. Barbara Ellen in The Observer characterized the album as "a misguided stab at early Eighties synth-pop" and Claire Allfree in This Is London claimed that it's "shallow pop". Some other reviewers agree, but others have been more favorable. For instance, in the Penarth Times Ceri Garner called the album "a fantastic effort" and called "Take Me Home" "an upbeat and catchy track". In Dublin, Ireland's Energy Magazine, Brian Foley wrote that Sophie has "archly deadpan vocals, clever and velvety" and added: "This is grown-up pop with a post-watershed groove that tells stories of love, desire and discos with grace and a mischievous tongue in its cheek." Andrew Arora, writing in Blue Coupe Magazine, remarked: "Read My Lips is sophisticated dance-pop that meshes synthesized rhythms and 80s soul, but it's the album's funky disco that allows Ellis Bextor to outclass her pop counterparts."

"Murder on the Dancefloor" -- which features the bass guitar of Guy Pratt, guitar-playing by John Themis, and strings by the Wired Strings (a British-based female quartet led by Rosie Wetter) -- reached #2 Pop in the U.K. in December 2001, #2 Pop in Ireland in January 2002, #5 Pop in Canada in May 2002, #3 Pop in Australia in February 2002, and #2 Pop in New Zealand in April 2002. It also became a radio hit in Japan, France, and Latin American countries and has got some airplay in Canada and the United States. On the American Dance chart it reached #26 in late 2002. "Murder on the Dancefloor" is one of the representatives of the return of disco music. It's so nice to hear contemporary dance songs with strings. CR-ed+ Gold called it "A dance classic in the making, this latest offering is superb. Catchy, memorable and totally addictive." Alan Braidwood, writing for BBC Radio 1, wrote "It's quite catchy in the way that 'Take me Home' was but not as good as 'Groovejet'." Mark Clapham wrote in "...while not as instantly delicious as 'Take Me Home', it does grow on you. With breathy vocals and disco beats, this is definitely one for discerning Xmas parties." Steve Canavan of the Bolton Evening News wrote: "This is an attempt at having another huge hit from the woman who famously beat Posh Spice to the Number One spot last year, and I think she's definitely succeeded. Very catchy and perfect for today's chart. Will be massive and then some." Billboard Magazine said: "...she possesses enough attitude and sass - and a hint of a British accent - to really raise the bar on this giddily inventive song."

"Murder on the Dancefloor" was included on Die Jury empfiehlt's 2004 CD compilation "Die Besten Disco-Hits" from BMG Deutschland GmbH (Ar-Express) along with another modern disco song, "Crying at the Discotheque" by Alcazar, and 1970s disco classics like "Relight My Fire", "I Will Survive", "D.I.S.C.O.", and "We Are Family".

Shoot from the Hip (2003)
TRACKS:   Making Music      Mixed Up World      I Won't Change You      Nowhere Without You      Another Day      Party in My Head      Love it is Love      You Get Yours      The Walls Keep Saying Your Name      I Won't Dance With You      I Am Not Good at Not Getting What I Want      Hello Hello

Trip the Light Fantastic (2007)
TRACKS:   Catch You      Me and My Imagination      New York City Lights      Today the Sun's on Us      If I Can't Dance      Distance Between Us      If You Go      Love is Here      Only One      New Flame      China Heart      What Have We Started
The catchy songs "New Flame" and "Love is Here" mark Sophie's return to disco.
Make a Scene (2011)
TRACKS:   Revolution      Bittersweet      Off and On      Heartbreak      Not Giving Up On Love      Can't Fight This Feeling      Starlight      Under Your Touch      Make a Scene      Magic      Dial My Number      Homewrecker      Synchronised      Cut Straight to the Heart
A Euro dance-pop album.
Wanderlust (2014)
Familia (2016)
TRACKS:   Wild Forever      Death of Love      Crystallise      Hush Little Voices      Here Comes the Rapture      Come With Us      Cassandra      My Puppet Heart      Unrequited      The Saddest Happiness      Don't Shy Away
Produced by Ed Harcourt. Bass by Richard Jones, guitar by Seton Daunt, strings by Dirty Pretty Strings, drums by Phil Wilkinson. The disco song "Come With Us" is quite good and was released as a single on July 19, 2016.
The Song Diaries (2019) Includes non-disco remakes of "Groovejet", "Murder on the Dancefloor", and "Take Me Home". Bonus tracks include her rendition of the disco classic "Love is You" by Carol Williams and, on some editions only, new disco versions of "Murder on the Dancefloor" and "Take Me Home" recorded with more orchestration than before.

Covers of Sophie's Songs:
  • "Murder on the Dancefloor" by the Prism Leisure singers (2001) - a 2-minute electro-disco remake
  • "Murder on the Dancefloor" by Girls Club (2010)
  • "Murder on the Dancefloor" by Plastiscines (2014) - rock-dance version
  • "Murder on the Dance Floor" by Jon Louisson (2014) - instrumental electrodance version
  • "Murder on the Dance Floor" by Marble Caves (2020) - alternative version
  • "Murder on the Dancefloor" by Sløtface (2020) - mellow indie rock version
  • "Murder on the Dancefloor" by Boye and Sigvardt (2021) - electro-pop-dance version
  • "Murder on the Dancefloor" by Girl Ray (2021) - electro-rock-disco-pop version
  • "Murder on the Dancefloor" by Kruel Intentions and Chunk featuring Abi Flynn (2023) - house version
  • "Murder on the Dancefloor" by Brown Eyed Girl (2024)
  • "Murder on the Dancefloor" by Geek Music (2024) - electro-rock-disco version
  • "Murder on the Dancefloor (Triple J Like a Version)" by Royel Otis (2024) - electro-rock-disco version
  • "Murder on the Dancefloor" by Martin Urrutia (2024) - electro-disco version
  • "Murder on the Dancefloor" by Amazonics and Brazil XXI (2024) - Brazilian-flavored slow jazzy version
  • "Murder on the Dancefloor" by CYREES (2024) - house version
  • "Murder on the Dancefloor" by Henry Hood (2024) - house version

    CD TITLEMerchant 1Merchant 2Merchant 3Merchant 4
    Read My Lips
    Shoot from the Hip
    Trip the Light Fantastic
    Make a Scene
    Today the Sun's on Us (single)
    Catch You (single)
    Me and My Imagination (single)
    Mixed Up World (single)
    Get Over You (single)
    Murder on the Dancefloor (single)
    Take Me Home (single)
    Groovejet (single)

    Related links:

  • Sophie Ellis-Bextor's Official Website
  • Disco Savvy Homepage