As much of a buzz as that event created before, during and after, it all lead up to Wednesday's "House music legacy" stream that had fans waiting by their digital devises for the live feed to begin. That night featured acid house creators "Phuture" reunited with original members DJ Pierre and Earl "DJ Spank Spank" Smith and newest member Lothario Lee performing live. The excitement behind this set was due to the fact that Pierre and Spanky would be reunited and at the controls of those little silver boxes that put them at the head of the pack and had countless people emulate their sound for years to come. There was some talk during the stream and when the video went online that this was not the first time the duo had performed together in 20 years as some had stated. As the story goes, Pierre had moved to New York in the early 1990's to pursue a brief stink as A&R at Strictly Rhythm records and started working on productions for other artists when his solo career began to blossom. Things began to drift apart with being in the group with Smith and the duo stopped producing all together as Phuture in 1992. Pierre still supported the group and signed a few releases while working at Strictly when Smith continued on as Phuture under a few different plays on the name and with different members over the years but never again with Pierre. The most recent being "PHuture 303" with Rio. That duo had performed live last year at Chicago's Metro venue and as "Phuture"with Pierre at Paris's Rex club. But this will truly be the first time that Pierre and Smith would be performing as Phuture in Chicago with a whole new live show in almost 25 years. As an added bonus, vocalist and original Pierre's "Phantasy club" singer J.R. Jordan also performed with the group getting the crowd going singing a version of his and other Chicago great Felix The Housecats classic track "Fantasy girl" who was also produced by Pierre back in 1987. Phuture also had support from fellow Chicago talent Angel Alanis who was seen off to the right of the trio during their set. Angel had helped the trio work on sync'ing all their equipment together and with their live show.
As far as the rest of the line up went, I heard a few people say that it was all DJ's you could catch playing in Chicago at one time or another but to me it was the perfect mix of style, skill and diversity to have at an event like this to really show what Chicago artists are all about and what some out there may been missing out on. You had Strictly Jazz Unit member and Cajual recordings artist Glenn Underground who many have said had the best set of the night. Multi talented and production king with over 200 E.P's under his belt Paul Johnson. Detroit hero now living in Chicago of Inner city and solo artist fame and one of the founding fathers of Techno Kevin Saunderson who went back to back with his son Dantiez Saunderson who's now following in his footsteps. And Ron Hardy protege Mr. Gene Hunt who started off the night and had the vibe going from the time they opened the doors. As a added bonus and surprise, Roy Davis Jr. who was a last minute add to the lineup performed and closed out the night and also had back to back Boiler Room streams with a set the floowing week in London.
Roy Davis J.r
I was fortunate enough to have been able to come down to the venue before the night started and saw first hand how these live video streams worked and got to met with a few of the artists before they opened the doors. I arrived at Primary night Club in Chicago's Gold coast neighborhood around 4pm and preceded to walk in not knowing what to expect. This was the first time I had been to Primary for an event and I must say I was impressed with the lay out and general feel of the club. The crew from Boiler Room were still running cables, setting up cameras and getting things together as well were the staff of the club. Walking around and talking to people already in attendance, there was just as much excitement from those setting up as there was from those who were waiting online to watch And from those who got emails about making the RSVP list to get in. A rep from Roland was also there handing off the new AIRA line of production gear for Phuture to use during their set and taking pictures. This was the first time the group were getting their hands on the equipment and using them so they were getting a crash corse on some of the features. So some of what they did towards the end of their live set was totally live and on the fly.
When the doors finally opened, it was an family reunion of sorts with many Chicago artists and contributors to the music scene and friends of the artists making their way around the club. Some of those in attendance that I saw were DJ Hyperactive, DJ Skull, Boo Williams, Robert Armani, Mark Almaria, Bucky Fargo, DJ Metal X, Rees Urban, DJ Gant-Man and Tim Baker to name a few. I also had the honor of meeting Robert Williams for the first time. Williams, Owned the legendary Warehouse in Chicago where he introduced The Godfather of house, the late Frankie Knuckles to Chicago and where some say the term "House music"originated from. And the Music Box where Ron Hardy took the art to a whole new level. Also in attendance was Cajual recording artist, vocalist and DJ Rousoull who was MC'ing the night along with one of "House Preservation Society's" founding members Davey Dave who also had mic duties on Tuesday's stream. I also heard that they interviewed the artists for a documentary of sorts. Getting the story's behind the music and history from those who were there and involved. I believe these sessions will become available sometime later on their website and no doubt will get as many views as the streams. When they do I'll make sure to add them here and share them with you.
As from what many of you who tuned in live that night saw unfold and for those who will hear on these audio streams, It was a night to remember and I feel sparked a fire that will burn for a long time to come both here in Chicago and around the world. It's rumored that the Boiler Room crew are in talks to do a regular stream from here in the future and I hope they do. If the comments, audience feedback and excitement from these two streams alone are anything to go by, they might have struck gold with the talent that us in the windy city already know are worth more than their weight in it.
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Hope this finds you all well.