Thursday, July 26, 2012

DJ Disciple Resident DJ In Motor Lounge, Detroit 1999

One of my favorite residencies was playing in Motor, Detroit Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket

DJ Disciple Old School Days!

In 1988 I was one of the very fortunate to have his own radio show on the FM dial.  The station was 91.5 FM, WNYE. I called the show New York's Best Kept Secret. Tuesday afternoons with DJ Disciple was a treat for kids coming home from school that needed a fix of House music.

Get a sample here:

Sometimes I felt like I was burning the candles on both ends doing this show. On one end I was driven to push the envelope musically by staying with the most current trends of House music (Chicago, Acid, Bleep, Atmospheric , or disco sampled). Hearing DJ'S like Roman Ricardo, Johnny Dynell, and Roman Ricardo helped shape that side of me. On the other end I was heavily intrigued by where the music came from. I missed the whole Paradise Garage experience and for the clubbing vets I wanted to prove that I could relate by playing music on my radio show that was played at the Garage. It wasn't until I went to a club called Space that I met David Camacho and he showed me what classics (real classics) was. Camacho heard about me from the college scene and also listened to my radio show.

Disciple Flyer             Dave Camacho
Photobucket Photobucket

In 1989 there was a shift in the House music community in New York. The music was becoming more conscious and at the same time rappers were making successful records for the college audience I played for. Artists like the Jungle Bros., Kyze and Doug Lazy bought out the hardest thugs to loving house music while records like 'Sweat' by Jay Williams and 'Motherland' had black youthful women wearing beads, earings on their noses and multifaceted african gear.

All in all this music still made me linger to go back to its roots. So here I was giving you 75% of new music but the other 20% had to be dedicated to playing classics. There were those who frowned upon this move. Some spatting 'he never went to the Garage' why is he playing this music? to, what is this he's playing? go back to Todd Terry and give me that Acid House' and finally to wow this guy is playing the real deal, where can I hear him play?

It was Sabrina Vasquez who put me on to the Choice. It was the original Loft from David Mancuso's space. Richard Vasquez was renting it out and was using it. Larry Levan was one of their residents. Larry was the first person that I heard play Bang The Party's 'Bang Bang, You're Mine'.

I was hooked instantly. Not only by Larry's playing but by how the atmosphere was at the Choice.

I came up to Richard Vasquez and asked him if he could give me a shot at playing at the Choice on a Thursday night. Richard along with Joey Illanos had heard about me and was willing to give it a try. At the same time I had been asking Camacho to have me play at his Wildpitch party.
Having 91.5 fm was my demo to let New York hear how good I was.  It sounded good on paper but in some areas I never lived up to what some expected of me.
 Wildpitch had me debut at The World with Bobby Konders. With a two hour set I aced the gig. The buzz was strong. When I got to the Choice it was a different deal altogether.

Because there was a number of DJ's playing at the Wildpitch parties I would be able to play all the latest House cuts and leave the rest for Camacho or Nick Jones. Not so with the Choice. Even though I could play great music up until 4 am I did not and was not schooled on playing music at 5 am or 7 am.  I started off alternating my Thursday nights with Larry Levan and then eventually Basil.
 It was the Choice, Wildpitch and learning how to play music at that time frame that gave me the inspiration to become a better DJ. Larry Levan was the first person to show me how to properly work a sound system. Basil was the first to ever challenge me by taunting 'Suprise me' at 5 am. It was my clue to step up my DJ skills. Whatever I thought I knew about classics I had to be re-schooled again.

Another testing point came calling when the X- Clan movement in Queens called on me to DJ at their Mysteries Parties in Queens. It was there that I came into the full grasp of Circle Culture. Dancers would spend hours in a circle. Enjoying the beats but driving me crazy at the same time trying to figure out how I could stop the circle and make people party. To the Mysteries crowd, the circle was the party.
By the time I got to Fantasy's Black Ball Party at the Octogon I was more than primed to know how to play for a variety of clubbers. My experience was far from over

By 1990 New Jersey came calling.  A promoter named Lafeef had me come up every Friday night to play at a club called 280. Zanzibar was our competition, but not for long. By bringing in a new sound, new talent and dancers that came up from New York to hear me play it bought a different energy. Tony Humphries, not long after had given up his residency and Lateef bought me on board to do our new Friday Night's at Zanzibar. It didn't last long. While I was trying to push my sound and music and create a new energy in the club, the club itself was the foundation that Tony Humphries built and no one else could compete.

In the meantime my reputation on the radio grew stronger than ever. I went from playing the newest vinyl to playing cassettes from Masters At Work, Roger Sanchez, and Kerri Chandler before the record labels even had a copy. Camacho and I were the first to break records like 'Hot Music', 'Follow Me', and 'Deep Inside'. Records that transcended more than one clubbing generation.

Being a DJ is a emotional roller coaster at times.  Bumps on the road. Seasons when you're just lousy, coming short on your goal for the night. DJing, It can test you. Put you at your wits end, even consume you. In the end you love it, but it don't love you back.

To be continued. Enjoy the flyers of old! Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket