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The Bronx-born Godfather of house music, Frankie Knuckles, has passed away. Upon moving to Chicago in the late 70s, the legendary DJ and producer helped change the face of dance music and culture with the advent of Chicago house music. Some words from Maurice:
We are all deeply saddened to hear about the passing of Frankie Knuckles. When I first came to New York from England in 1987, I knew dance music and culture. It wasn’t until I heard Frankie Knuckles DJ at The World that I discovered House Music and my life changed forever. Without Frankie Knuckles’ influence, there would be no Giant Step plain and simple. Dance music has lost its Godfather; he is gone but will never be forgotten.
UK guitarist Ronny Jordan has passed away at the age of 51. The acid jazz pioneer helped lead the way in blending R&B, hip hop, and jazz, cementing his influence on music history. He received a Grammy nomination for his 2000 release, A Brighter Day.
After the jump, watch two clips of “The Jackal,” a popular song Ronny did in collaboration with Dana Bryant (a former Giant Step artist). The first clip is the music video for the track, while the second one shows the track featured front and center in a lip sync on the beloved TV series West Wing.
Our friend Amir Abdullah has been working with the owner of legendary Detroit Jazz label, Strata Records, to release a slew of unreleased gems from their catalog. Unfortunately, owner Barbara Cox is in jeopardy of losing her home and the master tapes due to unpaid real estate taxes. She is 75 and lives on Social Security.
Though the indiegogo goal has been reached, Amir is asking for additional contributions from those who are able so Barbara can avoid such an ordeal in the future as well.
Loving the breathy vocals from Samantha Urbani on this version of “West Drive” by the ever talented Blood Orange. 80s vibing all day to this one!
On a more serious note, our hearts go out to Dev Hynes (aka Blood Orange) who lost his apartment, all of his possessions, and his dog Cupid in a fire last night. Dev was not in the apartment and is safe.