Karl Kamakahi is one of the gold standards of house music in Seattle. Founder of Seattle’s De La Creme crew, Karl learned to DJ in 1989 in his home Pearl City, Hawaii, taught by legendary Hawaiian DJ James Coles. He began experimenting with freestyle, transitioned into techno, and eventually felt the most at home with house music in the early years of the house movement in 1992. Playing parties and residencies Minneapolis, Denver, San Francisco, Portland, Madison, and St. Paul, Karl’s latest efforts in Seattle caught the notice of Brian Lyons and Wesley Holmes of the world-renowned Flammable crew. Karl was asked to join as resident DJ several years ago, and released the first ever mix CD to represent Seattle’s flagship house music party, now the longest running house music night on the west coast, nearly 20 years of house magic.
In Seattle, Karl has played and created terrific parties in venues such as Re-bar, The Woods, The Cuff, Electric Tea Garden, Expansions on KEXP, The Underground, The Baltic Room, Havana, The Monkey Loft. In addition to Flammable Sundays at ReBar, Karl is the creator of Seattle house pillars like Proper at Baltic Room and Soft Option at Monkey Loft.
[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/204284269″ params=”auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false&visual=true” width=”100%” height=”450″ iframe=”true” /]
DJ Chris Camplin is a resident of Handsome which is monthly party at East Bloc, London. Chris is a classically trained pianist whose stylistic roots go back to the drum and bass, garage, house & techno of the late nineties, where artists as diverse as Jeff Mills, Masters at Work, DJ Hype and Zed Bias provided the soundtrack to his formative years. During his teens Christopher was deeply involved with London’s underground club scene – where he carried out promotional work for Trade, DTPM and Nag Nag Nag. He was influenced by the disco revival as pioneered by Horse Meat Disco, and his love of house and techno matured as he travelled to Ibiza’s infamous DC10, Space, Bora Bora and Berlin’s Berghain where he heard a complexity of dance music that inspired him to become a DJ. He has now played gigs in Berlin, Spain & Italy, Secret Garden Party, LoveBox & Eastern Electrics.
[soundcloud url=”https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/173162826″ params=”auto_play=false&hide_related=false&show_comments=true&show_user=true&show_reposts=false&visual=true” width=”100%” height=”450″ iframe=”true” /]
A psychedelic scorcher from Rhines of the Innerflight crew, his live closing set from closing our recent Seattle party with Elite Force (Stereophoenix, One Series, DISTRIKT, London UK). If you missed it…I’m sorry. It was really, really good. Elite Force smashed it and Rhines in came in with acid to dissolve the pieces.
You can also download it for deeper listening on your device of choice (right click and save): http://spon1080.com/djsets-share/Rhines-RecordedLive@Concentric.mp3
All of the house heads are in mourning today as we lost one of our forefathers, Frankie Knuckles, who died unexpectedly at age 59 yesterday afternoon, reportedly to causes related to Type II diabetes. Frankie was beloved worldwide for both his music and his spirit.
From the Guardian, UK:
One night in 1981, Chicago DJ Frankie Knuckles was driving through the city’s suburbs with a friend when he saw a sign in a bar window: “We play house music.” “Now, what’s that all about?” he asked. “It means music like you’re playing at the Warehouse,” his friend replied. And that’s how Knuckles realised he’d inadvertently invented a new genre.
Knuckles had begun his residency at the westside club in 1977 at the height of disco fever, but by 1980 a backlash had swept the craze away. Knuckles began playing obscure imports and re-editing oddball disco records for maximum dancefloor impact. The crowd, overwhelmingly black and gay, went nuts for this new style, which became known as “house” as the new underground style spread to clubs across the city. Knuckles’s and fellow pioneer Ron Hardy’s merging of Salsoul classics with mutant disco, electro and European synth-pop paved the way for the first tailor-made house tracks in 1984. Six years later, Knuckles proudly described his creation as “disco’s revenge”.
Frankie is probably most known for the Whistle Song:
Personally, I loved “Baby Wants to Ride”:
A recent mix (thanks to Timothy Latz):
And thanks to Xan Lucero for the graphic.
Wes Baggaley was found abandoned in a field somewhere in the north of England in the mid 70’s and raised on a diet of lipstick and eye shadow by a pack of transvestite wolves. At the age of 12 the feral tranny Wes was captured by a group of leather clad homosexuals and forced to listen to nothing but Hi-Nrg and disco for 4 years. When he finally escaped at the age of 16, he was picked up whilst hitch-hiking by a group of bug-eyed ravers and taken to the Hacienda. That evening the DJ collapsed from a poppers overdose and Wes jumped over the DJ booth and played the best set the clubbers at the Hacienda had ever heard in their lives. Rumour has it, Wes invented acid house in the late 80’s trying to communicate by emulating the sound of the wolves howls and the disco and hi-nrg music as these are the only noises he had ever heard. Wes is still unable to speak proper English so instead he communicates through the medium of acid house and techno at various sleazy, poppers fuelled parties around the U.K. such as Hotwired, Recon, Little Gay Brother and Tranarchy.
If you don’t know Flammable’s Wesley Holmes, you should. And if you do, you know Wes will be serving the children gorgeous house music with fat, chunky basslines for days.
I downloaded Wesley’s new mix “Resistance4” this weekend, co-produced by his eminence and homie’s homie Gene Lee, to my phone and found myself screaming in my car when the bass hit. Great stuff–GET IT. Love these boys…among Seattle’s finest and a credit to our burgeoning electronic music community.
A mix from London, UK’s Chris Camplin, Live at Little Gay Brother – The Slumber Party at Dalston Superstore. I’ve been hanging out with this mix a bit lately and it is SOLID. Deep, housey, and a touch of techno.
Great work, Chris! (Photo by Joseph Sinclair.)