Iconic Chicago nightclub, The Warehouse, has made its return with a series of parties across the city — beginning last weekend at the Chop Shop with Juan Atkins, Shaun J. Wright, KC Wray and CtrlZora.
There are also plans for the bi-monthly series, run in collaboration with the nightclub's original founder Robert "Robbie" Williams, to pitch its tent across America and then Europe.
Helming the project is KC Wray AKA Casey Dittmer, one of the performers from the Warehouse presents series debut. Dittmer told Resident Advisor that the project begun as a means to inject some much needed authenticity back into the Chicago scene.
Everyone behind Warehouse Presents "felt the current state of the industry has commodified house in such a way that its core progressive values have been completely sanitised," according to Dittmer.
He cites the disparity between Beyoncé and Drake winning Grammys for "their own brand of house-music inspired albums" and house music's origintaors "hold[ing] no equity within dance music."
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Robert Williams agreed, saying in conversation with RA that Chicago and its music has "become commercialised" and "lost its unity."
"The focus should be on the dance floor, but egos have taken centre stage instead."
The Warehouse, established in 1977, was a pillar of Chicago's LGBTQ+ community and home to resident DJ Frankie Knuckles soon after its inception. Knuckles began experimenting with rhythm makers and drum machines while mixing disco classics at the venue, with this inspired move taking over the local scene and becoming the defining sound of house music - the genre's name widely credited as a play on the Chicago's nightclub title.
In 1982, Knuckles moved to start his own club, the Power Plant, later named the Powerhouse, and in response The Warehouse, which had by then doubled its admission fee, was became the Music Box. The Music Box came influential in its own right, with Ron Hardy a notable resident.
[via Resident Advisor]
Tibor Heskett is Mixmag's Digital Intern, follow him on Twitter