Friday, April 4, 2014

R.I.P.: Frankie Knuckles

Nobody can agree on who invented the blues or birthed rock & roll, but there is no question that house music came from Frankie Knuckles, who died Monday afternoon (March 31, 2014) at age 59. One of the Eighties and Nineties' most prolific house music producers and remixers, Knuckles is, hands down, one of the dozen most important DJs of all time. At his Chicago clubs the Warehouse (1977-82) and Power Plant (1983-85), Knuckles’ marathon sets, typically featuring his own extended edits of a wide selection of tracks from disco to post-punk, R&B to synth-heavy Eurodisco, laid the groundwork for electronic dance music culture—all of it.

The sound he created was copied by literally thousands of DJs and producers for over 40 years. And yet, an ear trained to the nuances of club music can detect a Frankie Knuckles mix and distinguish it from so many of his contemporaries and followers because first and foremost it's musical — there are harmonies and melodies and counter-melodies in it that you just can't create without working with musicians schooled in music theory and classical composition. His sound is earthy yet ethereal, without gravity. MORE HERE & HERE

Frankie Knuckles : Beyond The Mix

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