Soulful Sunday's at Chant
An extended weekend started Saturday evening at Chant. Presented by Rhonda and Koko, Soulful Saturdays happens at Chant restaurant located in the Hyde Park Neighborhood in Chicago. It is a night of soulful house music, strong cocktails and Asian inspired appetizers. The mood at chant was relaxed and carefree. A light menu of popular appetizers was available to patrons. The sound conductors for the evening were resident DJ Torin Edmond and special guest DJ Greg Grey who provided a sexy and soulful soundtrack to an evening full of good vibes and positivity. A Small yet intimate dance floor gave patrons room to groove, while most enjoyed music and cocktails while hanging with friends and fellow house people.
A Celebration for Frankie Knuckles
Sunday night, I headed to the Northside to Metro, a popular concert venue for a special celebration in honor of Frankie Knuckles. Born on January 18th, he is fondly known as the “Godfather of House Music”. His untimely passing in 2014 left a deep void in the house community. Queen in association with FKF hosted this event with an all start DJ lineup. Covering the Metro and Smartbar, DJs Mike Dunn, Ron Trent and Derrick Carter played to an electrifying crowd at Metro, while DJs Michael Serafini, Garrett David, Shaun J. Wright and Eris Drew grooved the crowd in Smartbar. This party benefitted the Frankie Knuckles Foundation (FKF), headed by Fredrick Dunson and is focused on music in schools, LGBTQ youth homelessness and Aids and Diabetes research, prevention and education. The evening was electric with DJs interweaving some of Frankie’s signatures songs with excerpts from various inspirational speeches from Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. It was inspiring, heartfelt and as I looked out into the jam packed crowed filled with various races, genders, sexual identities, my heart was full. This was who Frankie was and the evening personified what he was all about; uniting people through music. It was an outstanding night filled with music and love for the legend that was Frankie Knuckles.
House Music Monday's
After spending the entire day in bed recuperating from the Frankie Knuckles celebration, I headed to the Family Den, a local favorite on the south side of Chicago. Hosted by Devo Entertainment, this weekly house party is always jammed packed. This evening featured resident DJs, L-Boogie, Mickey Calvin and DJ Lil John. The special guests DJs this week were Al Hern, Steve “Miggety” Maestro and Grammy Nominated Producer and DJ, Terry Hunter. From the moment I entered the den, I could feel the music pulsating through the speakers. With sounds by Jakz Zoundz, the music was loud, clear and crisp. House people packed the dance floor covered in sweat as each DJ played with intensity and authenticity. Each delivering musical delights in their signature sounds. The “Den” was filled with familiar faces coming to enjoy a musical beat down before resuming the workweek.
It was another great weekend on the Chicago House Music Scene. I enjoyed the diversity of the music played at three very different venues by some of the best sound conductors in the business. More importantly, I’m reminded of a quote by Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.:
“Unity has never meant uniformity”
The truth is this scene isn’t always unified. We divide ourselves by race, gender, ethnicity, and sexual orientation. Musically we divide ourselves by the genre of house music we enjoy, the side of town we are from, petty beefs and disagreements. However in the midst of this, there are special moments when you see how beautiful this music and our house community is. How rich in musical diversity and eclectic audiences. At our core, that’s what unites the Chicago House Community…it is and will always be because of the music. On the day we honor Dr. King for his vision and his legacy along with the birthday of Frankie Knuckles, this weekend serves as a great reminder of the strength of what unites us.
Have an outstanding week full of great music! Until next time…
See ya on a dance floor!