October 2, 2008

Jerome Derradi's Jerome Derradi presents The American Boogie Down

Print More

One of the strangest fads in recent music has been the “disco revival,” epitomized by Hercules and Love Affair’s heavily hyped debut. This “revival” is “strange” and a “fad” because disco’s influence is neither; the racist, homophobic legacy of the reactionary “disco sucks” backlash of the ’80s overshadows the truth about this music.
Drum machines? Synthesizers? Rap? DJs as artists? All these now-standard music modalities owe their ubiquity to disco. Unfortunately, it is no surprise that the current revival emphasizes a gimmicky Italian subgenre over the music that sprung from mostly gay African American communities in the mid ’70s.
Jerome Derradji’s The American Boogie Down is something like an antidote. Carefully mixing elements of rare or unheard jams from disco’s earliest era, DJ/Producer Derradji tells a story of a music that, while drawing on earlier R&B forms, imagined utopian futures in both sound and rhetoric. With evocative narration by Detroit MC Paul Randolph, Boogie Down is likely to make you do just that. Look up Derradji’s brilliant, freely downloadable Still Music mix on the Resident Advisor website for more.