“So Many Men, So Little Time”: Miquel Brown’s Hi-NRG hit highlights 1983’s “Video Gallery: Sex”

By on March 30, 2018

Nearly eight minutes into Night Flight’s “Video Gallery: Sex” – which originally aired on March 22, 1983 — we’re treated to Miquel Brown’s video for “So Many Men, So Little Time,” a Hi-NRG dance club smash hit.

The video to the the song — about a woman who sleeps with countless willing sex partners but wakes up to find she’s unable to remember the name of the dude sharing her bed — features Miquel slinking through a steamy gym populated by semi-naked, muscular and occasionally mustachioed hunks of gyrating man-flesh.

Watch it tonight, with the lights turned low, on Night Flight Plus.

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By 1979, disco was mostly dead, although there were still a few small but profitable disco record companies releasing keyboard-heavy disco-funk dance rhythms that replicated what had once had been performed by full string orchestras with lavish studio production.

Many of the late ’70s and early ’80s disco hits were actually being classified as “Hi-NRG” (“high energy”), a new sub-genre fusing ’60s Motown, ’70s Philly, late ’70s Giorgio Moroder-style disco and ’80s electronics.

These songs were created and marketed for the gay market, even though these songs were mostly sung by women about men, expressing sexually-charge gay sentiments covert enough to achieve mainstream chart success.

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Often female vocalists on Hi-NRG hits were yawping about the availability of men to sleep with, which might not have not have had the same chart success had the songs been sung by men about men.

Another example was the Weather Girls’ 1982 smash “It’s Raining Men,” which had originally been offered to Diana Ross, Donna Summer, Cher, and Barbra Streisand before being accepted by Martha Wash and Izora Armstead of the Weather Girls.

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Ian Levine

The initial 12″ single of “So Many Men, So Little Time” — a percolating Hi-NRG synth & drum machine-dominated dance track — was released in June of 1983 on Record Shack Records, a tiny UK record label that was set up by British deejay/songwriter/producer Ian Levine.

In 1983, Levine had been offered £2,000 to set up the new joint-venture label, operating out of Record Shack store, located on Berwick Street in London’s Soho neighborhood.

“So Many Men” went on to sell some two million copies.

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Read more about Miquel Brown’s “So Many Men, So Little Time” below.

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Miquel Brown was born Michael Brown in Detroit, Michigan, on the border with Windsor, Ontario, Canada, in 1949.

Curiously, most sources online still list Montreal as her birthplace, even though sheclearly says its Detroit on the back of her “So Many Men” single.

At some point, then short-haired Miquel changed the spelling of her first name (it’s pronounced the same), so that she wouldn’t be confused with being a boy named Michael.

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Miquel grew out her hair and moved to London in May of 1973, where she was cast in a leading role in the musical Decameron at the Roadhouse.

A few years later, she made an uncredited appearance in 1975’s Rollerball, starring James Caan, and landed a role in the BBC’s “Armchair Theater” made-for-TV movie Regan.

Thereafter, she balanced acting (both film and theater) and singing jobs, later citing Plastique Bertrand, Donna Summer and Grace Jones as artists she wanted to emulate.

While performing with the pioneering ’70s UK singing-dance group Second Generation, she continued to make occasional appearances on numerous UK TV shows and musicals.

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In 1978 — the same year she appeared as “Reporter #8″ in Richard Donner’s Superman — she recorded her first album, Symphony Of Love, and enjoyed her first UK success with the single “The First Time Around.”

By the early ’80s, she’d crossed path with Ian Levine, the principle deejay at London’s legendary gay nightclub Heaven.

Levine’s Irish-born co-writing/arranging partner Fiachra Trench had, by then, already enjoyed quite a varied musical career of his how, even arranging the strings on the Boomtown Rats‘ hit, “I Don’t Like Mondays.”

Levine mixed and wrote lyrics whilst Trench was the primary musician, composer, and arranger, and they began writing specifically for Miquel’s voice, finding immediate success with “So Many Men, So Little Time.”

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The origin of the title had come from West Hollywood, California, where Levine says he saw a man wearing a T-shirt emblazoned with those same words at Circus Maximus, a massage parlor on La Cienega Boulevard (it shuttered its doors in 1985).

Levine came back to London, and worked on the track with Trench, focusing on his naughty-but-nice concept about a woman who has lots of sexual escapades with male partners who finds she can’t remember any of their names the morning after.

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“So Many Men, So Little Time” — the first single and title track from the album of the same name — reached #88 on the UK Singles Chart on June 11, 1983, peaking at #2 on the club chart.

The single went to #1 in France and Mexico, and #2 on the U.S. dance charts.

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Miquel continued to release singles and albums on a variety of labels, including TSR (who’d picked up U.S. distribution of “So Many Men”), finding additional chart success with “He’s A Saint, He’s A Sinner” and “Close To Perfection” (1985). She continued to release a few singles in the ’90s, including her cover of the Pet Shop Boys‘ “It’s A Sin” (1997).

Since then she has primarily focused on her acting career, appearing in French Kiss (with Meg Ryan) and An American Haunting (with Sissy Spacek).

Levine later produced Bronski Beat, Erasure, the Pet Shop Boys and Dan Hartman.

Watch Night Flight’s 1983 edition of “Video Gallery: Sex” — also featuring videos by David Bowie, Mary Jane Girls and Duran Duran — on Night Flight Plus.

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About Bryan Thomas

Bryan Thomas has been a freelancing writer/critic for All Music Guide, and a contributor to Launch, Music Connection, Big Takeover and numerous other publications and entertainment websites, blogs and zines, most of them long gone. He's written more than sixty sets of liner notes. He’s also worked for over twenty years at mostly reissue record labels -- prior to that he worked in bookstores and record stores, going all the way back to the original vinyl daze. He lives in the Miracle Mile neighborhood of Los Angeles, CA.