Black Box – Ride On Time

„Ride On Time“ is a song by the Italian music group Black Box.
It was released as a single in July 1989 and later included on their debut album Dreamland (1990).
The song was a chart success in many countries and a number-one hit in the United Kingdom, Iceland and Ireland.

„Ride On Time“ was written and produced by the Italian production team Groove Groove Melody, consisting of DJ Daniele Davoli, programmer Mirko Limoni and musician Valerio Semplici.

The team worked with French model Katrin Quinol, who was the face and image for the group Black Box. In the video and in live performances Quinol lip-synced to the original vocals.

The song sampled Loleatta Holloway’s 1980 disco hit „Love Sensation“ (written by Dan Hartman) and attracted some controversy for the uncredited use of Holloway’s vocals from that song. Holloway’s counsel engaged in a press attack on Black Box, successfully securing a settlement that paid the singer an undisclosed sum; the group had legally cleared the samples with Salsoul Records, who had released the original track, but Holloway was in arrears for advances from the label and thus was not recompensed by Salsoul.

A re-recording of the song with uncredited vocals by Heather Small was released in the second week of September 1989, and the original Holloway version was discontinued from distribution. This version was released as the „UK Remix“ and contained the same three mixes as the original, but with Heather Small’s vocals in place of Loleatta Holloway. The Original Mix, Garage Trip Mix and Pianopella Mix became Massive Mix, Epsom Mix and Ascot Mix respectively.

The song’s title derives from a sample of Holloway singing the lyrics „Thank you baby, ‚cause you’re right on time“. Daniele Davoli explained in Channel 4 documentary „Pump Up The Volume“ that, owing to his limited knowledge of English and the song being sung in an American English accent, with t-flapping so that „t“s sound like „d“s, he thought that Loleatta Holloway sang „Ride On Time“ instead of „Right On Time“.

„Ride on Time“ became a massive hit in Italy and then worldwide, after legal rights were obtained in all territories. The song spent six weeks at No. 1 in the United Kingdom, ultimately becoming the biggest selling single of the year. It fared less well in the United States, where it failed to chart as a pop record, although it did reach No. 39 on the Hot Dance Club Play chart. It was the first high-profile example of an Italo house record.
The genre is noteworthy for extreme amounts of „borrowing“, usually in single phrases, sometimes in couplets, the lyrical „hooks“ from other compositions.

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