“Said you were my lady, and your love was true.” If you know that line from the song you are probably a club head from the late 80’s and early 90’s in the Chicago music scene.
I am proud to have grown up not only a part of the Chicago club scene, but eventually becoming a DJ and playing some of the music that made Chicago the innovator and creator of House Music.
Not to take anything away from music today, but house music, specifically, Chicago Club music, was the only music that could make you stand alone in the middle of the night club by yourself and scream, “Hell Yeah”, when the record asked you, “Is it all over my face?”
Where else in the world could an individual make an instrumental music track in his basement, take it to the club, ask the DJ to play it, and get the crowd to react by taking their clothes off, sliding across the dance floor, spinning in a circle, kicking your leg up, doing a ballerina stance and Jacking it Up….
This week the blog is an ode to Chicago House Music. “Jack is the one who could bring nations and nations of all Jack-ers together under one house”. “You may be black, White, Jew or Gentile, Protestant or Catholic”. “It don’t make a difference in our house; and this is fresh.”
Sometimes you don’t realize exactly how good the music created in your generation was until another generations’ music has been crowned the undisputed champ. I believe the house music in the 80’s-90’s, hell, all music from the 80’s and 90’s regardless of the genre, was and is better than the music today.
I also believe the Chicago House Music explosion was capped with Lil Louis’, “French Kiss” from, “The Mind of Lil Louis” album and his follow up, “Club Lonely” from, “Journey with the Lonely”. Those releases along with the success of Ten City’s club singles, “Devotion” and “Right Back to You”, sealed the deal crowing Chicago the place to be if you wanted to make hit dance music.
Artists like Crystal Waters, Samantha Fox and CeCe Peniston all owe their chart toppers to the Chicago Hit Makers and DJ’s who did the remixes and placed their music in rotation at the clubs or on the weekend mix shows.
FYI everyone in the Chicagoland area listened to the mix shows. WBMX had all the stations faded with the original HOT MIX 5. But radio stations like WGCI, B96, 106 Jamz and college radio stations WNUR, WHPK and WKKC also had DJ’s that added their own flavors to the House Music sound. Pharris Thomas, Boolu Master, Steve Miggidy Maestro and Pink House(Rest in Peace) used to have me running to Imports Records, Gramaphone, 2nd Hand Tunes and Daves trying to find out what the heck is Pharris playing with the blacked out vinyl. DJ’s did not want you to see the tracks they were playing. Man.. I’m still mad it took me 20 years to find out who made, “It Ain’t No Big Thang”. Thanks guys.
Long before Funk Master Flex there was Farley Jackmaster Funk, Lil Louis, Frankie Knuckles, Ron Hardy, Bad Boy Bill, Jullian Jumpin Perez, Mike Hit Man Wilson, Steve Silk Hurley, Marshall Jefferson, Vinnie Divine, Hula, Fingers, Maurice Joshua, and I could go on but this blog wouldn’t be big enough.
Safe to say in every local neighborhood, city and suburb there was a DJ CLAY, BAKE B REAL, REGGIE T, ERIC BITOY, SUPERMAN FRANZ, MR BOLD, TERRY J,DJ SHELLAC or DJ FINK spinning tracks from their prospective communities.
Demographically speaking, House music served its purpose. If you partied in or around the Rivera night-club you were going to hear more T.K.A and White Knight, if you partied in or around the Warehouse you were going to hear more Mike Dunn and Pierre’s Pfantasy Club, if you partied at Chic Ricks you were going to hear more Farley Tracks. Man I miss Chic Ricks.
As I finish working on this blog I just saw that Tony Bitoy is having an Old School Reunion Party at Excalibur. Maybe we should break out the BENGAY and head over there. Hmmnn. Let’s see; married, three kids, and pleasantly plump…. You guys can tell me how it turned out. I got three bad knees ☺.
Here is the link if you are interested in going.
Just seeing Tony Bitoy’s name reminds me of the preparation that one would go through just to get ready to go out to the club.
I remember spraying on Venture’s(remember Venture), Generic cologne while driving to the Bismark Hotel, the Warehouse, La Mirage, AKA’s, The Edge of the Looking Glass, The Lasalle Club, Medusa’s, the Mendel Parties, or one of the Tony Bitoy Productions. All venues and promotions made us grow up together as one Chicago. House music placed us in the frame of mind to accept any and all cultures. That is what I loved and love about House Music. And… That is what I love about Chicago.
The only thing that mattered to us was if you could, “Move Your Body.”
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Tags: 106 JAMZ, 2nd Hand Tunes, AKA's, B96, Bad Boy Bill, Boolu Master, CeCe Peniston, Chic Ricks, Chicago, Club Lonely, ClubbinTV, Crystal Waters, Daves, Devotion, DJ CLAY, DJ FINK, Farley Jackmaster Funk, Fingers, Frankie Knuckles, French Kiss, Gramaphone Records, HOT MIX 5, House, Hulu, Imports Records, Jack Your Body, Jullian Jumpin Perez, La Mirage, Lil Louis, Marshall Jefferson, Maurice Joshua, Medusa's, Mendel, Mike Dunn, Mike Hit Man Wilson, Move Your Body, Muisc, Pharris Thomas, Pierre's Pfantasy Club, Pink House, Right Back To You, Ron Hardy, Samantha Fox, Steve Miggidy Maestro, Steve Silk Hurley, T.K.A, Tastemaker Television Network, Ten City, The Bismark Hotel, The Edge of the Looking Glas, The Lasalle Club, Vinnie Divine, Warehouse, WBMX, WGCI, White Knight, WHPK, WKKC, WNUR