Nile Rodgers

Born 19 September 1952, New York City, New York, USA

The guitarist in the awesome "composed, arranged, performed and produced by CHIC" supergroup.  He made a few solo albums on his own, has produced many artists, and has played on dozens of records. Strangely, none of his solo albums have guitar as good as on the group's work, it seems he wanted to stretch out on keyboards and vocals on his own.

Nile's corporate/official web site has an excellent summary of his work.

"Adventures in the Land of the Good Groove"

Cover: Latinized map of Manhattanus Islandus.

A solid collection of good grooves, but not great.  I recall Nile was criticized for the naughty lyrics on "Yum Yum" ("Poontang, Poontang, where you want it/ Slept all night with my hand on it/ Give me some of that yum yum/ Before I sleep tonight").

"B-Movie Matinee"

Cover: Murky poster for a sci-fi movie.  It came with 3-D "red/blue" cardboard spectacles.

Nile wanted to use lots of sound effects and clips from B movies, but couldn't get the rights.  Traces of the original plan remain in songs like "Plan 9 (Make 'Em Dance)" and "Stay out of the light".

This has an even brighter synth-pop drive.  "Plan 9 (Make 'Em Dance)" is very reminiscent of his work with Sister Sledge on "When the Boys Meet the Girls".  The clinical feel works a lot better when it's offset against warm female vocals.

Tommy "Rock" Jymi plays on some songs and is credited as co-producer.  Some people theorize that he's  Nile Rodgers working under a different name.

There's one sweet song with a hook, "Wavelength" ...


Cover: Some comic book drawn characters and a big hand.  Dark and gloomy.  Big bald dude looks like Nightcrawler of the X-Men comic book.

Warner Brothers WE 851 LC 0392 ©1987
LC 0392 CD: 9 25 632 - 2 ; Vinyl LP: 925 632 - 1

A couple of people on the 'Net (thanks!) mentioned this supergroup/solo album that Nile was briefly involved in, and I found it on eBay.  The other musicians are Felicia Michele Collins (now in the CBS Orchestra on the Late Show with David Letterman) and Philippe Saisse.


Nile Production Work

Nile has produced dozens and dozens of artists on his own separate from CHIC.  Often he gets to play guitar and write or co-write songs.

I hate to say it since Microsoft is an evil self-serving destructive force in the software industry and beyond, but their "music central" site is pretty good at tracking down a lot of Nile's work.  Search on Nile Rodgers and you get 69 links, and it's still incomplete.  You can also go to and find the 7 albums for which Nile wrote music.

For example,

NCannon353 says:

I've also seen Nile get credit on albums by Laurie Anderson(Big Science, I believe) Nona Hendryx, Michael Jackson (History) Cyndi Lauper (Change of Heart), etc.
Tommy "Rock" Jymi (who may be a Nile Rodgers pseudonym plays on Stevie Wonder's "Characters" album for a reference to that name.
Mattius Anderson sez Carole Davis made an album Heart Of Gold in 1989 for Warner Bros, produced by Nile Rodgers.
I don't know much about Carole Davis other than that she is a huge fan of Prince and to some extent sort of a protege of his. He wrote a song for her that is placed on this album. Carole Davis probably never made it big and soon was dropped from Warner I suspect. The album sucks, but perhaps you could use this info for your page!


From the wonderful imdb:

Beverly Hills Cop III (1994)
Blue Chips (1994)
Earth Girls Are Easy (1989)
White Hot (1989) (additional music)
                           ... aka Crack in the Mirror (1989)
Coming to America (1988)
Alphabet City (1984)
Soup for One (1982)

Recent Activities

Nile Rodgers is busy doing all kinds of stuff, check out the bottom of the timeline on his site. He:

Appendix: Nile Rodgers on "Best of Fresh Aire 8-31-96"

I found this searching on Yahoo, search for "Nile Rodgers fresh".
Best of Fresh Air (8/30/96) - Best of Fresh Air for the weekend of August 30 - September 1, 1996. Record producer and former guitarist for the band Chic, NILE RODGERS. --
The Web page has a link to a 50-minute RealAudio feed of the entire show. It's mainly an interview with Nile Rodgers, but the interviewer Terry Gross plays good-sized chunks of "Le Freak", "Est-ce que c'est chic, ou simplement ordinaire", "Everybody Dance", and Madonna's "Material Girl".

There are two 40-70 second gaps in the transcript (and they aren't commercials).

A few months before the interview CHIC were packing stadiums in Japan, on the tour during which Bernard Edwards died. Terry Gross did not know about his death for most of the interview, but apart from that she does a good job and is familiar with their work.

Nile Rodgers was featured on a VH1 Music of the 70's show the week before ($$ I gotta get a tape of this)

Here are some nuggets from the interview (also see "disco guy"'s great CHIC page for more CHIC biographical information):

CHIC Early Days

Before Nile and Nard formed CHIC, they were in, a Rock Band called "The Boys", gigging around New York, even doing Bar Mitzvahs in the Catskills. They couldn't get a record contract once record companies realized they were black -- this was long before "Living Color" broke through as black rockers.

They decided that the band had to have an image and a look. They got the name from seeing "KISS", the flashiest group of the day. CHIC was the same letters.

"Everybody Dance" was the first song they ever wrote (!!!!). The original was 10 1/2 minutes ($$I want that 12-incher!) Kept the grooves going as long as they could, so you could stay on the dancefloor for as long as possible with the girl.

The obsession with BPM (beats per minute)  came about from DJ's filing records by speed so that they could keep the groove going.

Nile used to teach Karate and Kung Fu to Black Panthers, he did security at Fillmore East.

They did "Real People in response to the Disco backlash, and that was the beginning of the end. (Yet I like the album, it's a stretch that mostly works.) Nile doesn't even mention the stripped-down grooves of "Take it Off" and "Believer".


S Page, last updated February 5, 2000