Ghettotek Graduates

TO THE FOOTWORK fanboys and b-girls outside of Chicago, it can be confusing to hear juke lumped into the genre of house music.

Chicago has a long and storied tradition of producing, even originating, house music, but the claps, drum snaps, booming bass and rickety rhythms that define juke seem alien and unrelated to four-on-the-floor sounds of Frankie Knuckles, the Music Box, and the early days of electronic music.

At least at first listen.

Breaking it down in terms all us n00bs can understand, footwork godfathers DJs Rashad and Spinn explain the origins, trajectory, culture, scene, even where the term ‘juke’ comes from, as part of the Red Bull Music Academy lecture series.

From the early days of Crystal Waters “Gypsy Woman” straight house, to its evolution into ghetto house, with a slight detour into Detroit techno, juke finally emerged out of need for people like Rashad, Spinn, Gant-man and others to fill the vacuum left after pioneering Chicago electronic label Dance Mania dissolved, providing the people with something new to dance to.

An extremely insightful and necessary history lesson, DJs Rashad and Spinn’s lecture is a must for those infatuated with juke like jazner, or those still weary and skeptical of its abrasive sound. Get learned, know your history, and compensate for your lack of dancing skills with the amount of knowledge you’ve amassed from this RBMA video.


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