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Svyatoslav Gromov
Svyatoslav Gromov

Old School House Music S



While disco was taking over airwaves throughout mainstream culture during the 1980s, deep in the underground producers were experimenting with jacking rhythms to establish the foundation of house music. It was a special time. Innovators like Larry Heard, Marshall Jefferson, Frankie Knuckles and more might not have realised they were revolutionising the music industry, but the result was a captivating and infectious vibe that will rule over clubland for the foreseeable future. Let there be house!




Old School House Music s



Many of the classics produced before 1990 were well ahead of their time, and select tracks stand out as setting the stage for house music culture to progress. DJs wanted their beats harder in order to set dancefloors ablaze with energy and the evolution of house during the 80s revealed a clear transition to a more rhythm-focused sound profile, while still retaining a melodic nature. With that in mind, Mixmag has compiled a collection of timeless tracks from the days when house music was only just beginning to take form.


Todd Terry strikes again with another simple riff and another stone cold banger. Terry only made a couple of records under the Black Riot alias but it left a mark on today's house music landscape. The warped string sound comes from speeding up and playing a section of Sequal's 'It's Not Too Late' backwards, creating an almost proto-hoover type sound and minting one of house's identifiable trademarks. Combine that with the hectic bongos of the break and a couple stuttering samples and you have a classic that will live on forever.


There really is no denying the impact of Frankie Knuckles and Jamie Principle's 'Your Love', a tune you voted one of the best dance tracks ever. Knuckles and Jamie Principle built house with 'Your Love', with every roundabout arpeggio laying down another brick for the genre that would eventually take the world by storm. We can't thank the godfather and his friend from Chicago enough.


When this writer picked up a Royal House compilation for 2, he didn't think much of it. Maybe there would be some throwbacks, maybe some classics that could be busted out at a party everyone once in awhile. But the second track in changed everything. Julian Jonah's 'Jealousy & Lies' is one of the coolest, smoothest and vibiest tracks on this list, full of pumping sub bass and slamming warehouse drums that's best heard via the medium of vinyl. It's all topped off with a tantalising vocal from the man himself who is somehow not even from New York or Chicago but the UK. He had us fooled.


If you didn't notice already, the earliest house tracks were all about rhythm. Much like the disco and funk drummers before them, house producers were always trying to find the groove and fit into the pocket. That was when you could really make your dancers jack, a dance move that swept Chicago's clubs in conjunction with house music. The Basement mix of 'Can't Stop The House' by Thompson & Lenoir (a production duo that only released a few other records afterwards) is the perfect example of locking into a rhythm for the dancefloor. The 909 bumps, the vocals stay minimal and rhythmic, and the bassline bounces up and down, much in the same way a dancer's body might. Thank fuck it got repressed not too long ago.


Released in early 1987, Nitro Deluxe's 'This Brutal House' really captures the transition from disco to house and the influence of the European sounds that had for so long been spread by the likes of Kraftwerk. It slowly builds like a normal house track, all flailing hats and chipping clave before the sprinkling of light strings gives it an ominous tone. Then, out of nowhere, a synth stab so weighty it sounds like it's come from a naughty tech-house track from 2017. It's like listening to musical history being made and if that doesn't make you emotional then we don't know what will.


Marshall Jefferson knew a thing or two about house music. Throw one of the greatest house vocalists of all time, Byron Stingily, into the mix (plus guitarist Herb Lawson and keyboardist Byron Burke) and you know you've got something special. Witness! Check out a special 'Sax Mix' for more 'Devotion' here.


Is it really a list of the best pre-90s house tracks without one from the legendary Hot Mix 5? Farley Jackmaster Funk was by the far most successful producer and despite producing 'Love Can't Turn Around', THE tune that launched the sound across the pond, we went with his deep, moody classic 'Funkin' With The Drums' as one of the best. Much like with all of these tracks the key is in that growling bass. Before house came along that level of aggression in a bassline that wasn't played on four strings of nylon hadn't been heard. This shit is dark, man. Coupled with an ominous, lonely synth and some washy FX, it was truly futuristic.


This track from a little-known Chicago duo demonstrated that stripped-back, minimal house could still carry a killer groove. The percussive rhythms, wandering bass, occasional synth hits and whispery vocals are all beautifully simple, making for a laid-back, funky gem when mixed together.


This energetic club anthem bore all the musical trademarks of its creators, Louie Vega and Kenny Dope, better-known under their Masters at Work moniker: chopped-up soulful vocals samples, jazzy chords and a pulsing, carnival-tinged beat that evolved from the funkier end of disco. Impossible to resist in a club. Or anywhere else, in fact.


To those who regard electronic music as being devoid of emotion, we give you this staggering 1986 masterpiece from the saintly Larry Heard (under his Mr Fingers alias). The ultimate break-of-dawn anthem, the combination of butt-shaking low-end acid bass and bleary-eyed synths make this more vivid than an acid flashback.


House is a music genre characterized by a repetitive four-on-the-floor beat and a typical tempo of 120 beats per minute.[10] It was created by DJs and music producers from Chicago's underground club culture in the early/mid 1980s, as DJs began altering disco songs to give them a more mechanical beat.[1]


House was pioneered by African American DJs and producers in Chicago such as Frankie Knuckles, Ron Hardy, Jesse Saunders, Chip E., Joe Smooth, Steve "Silk" Hurley, Farley "Jackmaster" Funk, Marshall Jefferson, Phuture, and others. House music expanded to other cities such as London, then New York City and became a worldwide phenomenon.[11]


House has a large effect on pop music, especially dance music. It was incorporated into works by major international artists including Whitney Houston, Janet Jackson, Madonna, Pet Shop Boys, and Kylie Minogue, and also produced many mainstream hits such as "Pump Up the Jam" by Technotronic, "French Kiss" by Lil Louis, "Show Me Love" by Robin S., and "Push the Feeling On" by the Nightcrawlers. Many house DJs also did and continue to do remixes for pop artists. House music has remained popular on radio and in clubs while retaining a foothold on the underground scenes across the globe.


In its most typical form, the genre is characterized by repetitive 4/4 rhythms including bass drums, off-beat hi-hats, snare drums, claps, and/or snaps at a tempo of between 115 and 125 beats per minute (bpm); synthesizer riffs; deep basslines; and often, but not necessarily, sung, spoken or sampled vocals. In house, the bass drum is usually sounded on beats one, two, three, and four, and the snare drum, claps, or other higher-pitched percussion on beats two and four. The drum beats in house music are almost always provided by an electronic drum machine, often a Roland TR-808, TR-909,[12] or a TR-707. Claps, shakers, snare drum, or hi-hat sounds are used to add syncopation.[13] One of the signature rhythm riffs, especially in early Chicago house, is built on the clave pattern.[14] Congas and bongos may be added for an African sound, or metallic percussion for a Latin feel.[13]


Sometimes, the drum sounds are "saturated" by boosting the gain to create a more aggressive edge.[13] One classic subgenre, acid house, is defined through the squelchy sounds created by the Roland TB-303 bass synthesizer. House music could be produced on "cheap and consumer-friendly electronic equipment" and used sound gear, which made it easier for independent labels and DJs to create tracks.[15] The electronic drum machines and other gear used by house DJs and producers were formerly considered "too cheap-sounding" by "proper" musicians.[16] House music producers typically use sampled instruments, rather than bringing session musicians into a recording studio.[17] Even though a key element of house production is layering sounds, such as drum machine beats, samples, synth basslines, and so on, the overall "texture...is relatively sparse".[18] Unlike pop songs, which emphasize higher-pitched sounds like melody, in house music, the lower-pitched bass register is most important.[18]


House tracks typically involve an intro, a chorus, various verse sections, a midsection, and a brief outro. Some tracks do not have a verse, taking a vocal part from the chorus and repeating the same cycle. House music tracks are often based on eight-bar sections which are repeated.[18] They are often built around bass-heavy loops or basslines produced by a synthesizer and/or around samples of disco, soul,[19] jazz-funk,[8] or funk[19] songs. DJs and producers creating a house track to be played in clubs may make a "seven or eight-minute 12-inch mix"; if the track is intended to be played on the radio, a "three-and-a-half-minute" radio edit is used.[20] House tracks build up slowly, by adding layers of sound and texture, and by increasing the volume.[18]


House tracks may have vocals like a pop song, but some are "completely minimal instrumental music".[18] If a house track does have vocals, the vocal lines may also be simple "words or phrases" that are repeated.[18]


One book from 2009 states the name "house music" originated from a Chicago club called the Warehouse that was open from 1977 to 1982.[21] Clubbers to the Warehouse were primarily black, gay men,[22] who came to dance to music played by the club's resident DJ, Frankie Knuckles, who fans refer to as the "godfather of house". Frankie began the trend of splicing together different records when he found that the records he had were not long enough to satisfy his audience of dancers.[23] After the Warehouse closed in 1983, eventually the crowds went to Knuckles' new club, The Power House, later to be called The Power Plant,[21] and the club was renamed, yet again, into Music Box with Ron Hardy as the resident DJ.[24] The 1983 documentary, "House Music in Chicago", by filmmaker, Phil Ranstrom, captured opening night at The Power House, and stands as the only film or video to capture a young Frankie Knuckles in this early era, right after his departure from The Warehouse. [25][26][27][28] 041b061a72


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