Boy, do I love Cielo or what? It’s just my favorite nightclub in New York City since Twilo’s demise and the decommissioning of Centro Fly. Sure, I like Pacha too. I’m not much of a fan of Crobar. And, I haven’t been to Marquis, BED or the other bling spots, so I’ll reserve judgement. I’ve heard they are quite good in their own right.
A week ago Thursday, I had the pleasure of attending house music pioneer and legendary DJ/Producer, Frankie Knuckles birthday party. It was great to see the DefMix crew in full effect. From Judy Weinstein to Baby Hec Romero, Frankie’s posse held down the fort while presenting the Godfather of House a huge b’day cake just before he started off his set with the seminal deep house track, “Whistle Song.”
For those of you who don’t know who Judy Weinstein is, do your homework. She’s the founder of Def Mix and manager behind the work of Knuckles, David Morales, Hex Hector, “Baby” Hec Romero, Satoshi Tomie and more.
I got a chance to talk to Hec and ask him what’s been going on in the dance music scene around the world. His opinion was, that of all places right now, Canada is super hot. Hec appears regularly at Angel Morae’s Stereo nightclub in Montreal, where he says the scene is just the best there is right now. I asked him about Dubai. He hasn’t been there yet, and even though there’s been some mention of Dubai in the press, that it’s not all that hot at the moment for house music. Maybe for a the party scene, but not for four on the floor, soulful grooves. Canada seemed to bring a smile to his face, so I’ll take his word for it. Sure it’s pretty damn cold up there right now, but according to Romero, the country is bumpin to the undergound sounds. He’s also hot on South America, saying that Sao Paulo is still rockin. So, get out your party shoes and take a trip. There’s a lot going on in the world around us.
I also ran into Dot Dot Dot Records founder and a man I consider an amazing human being, Ramon Wells. It’s always great to see Ramon. He’s one of those rare individuals that you know, even it you don’t talk to him for a while, he’s been thinking about you and praying that your life is on track and things are going well. Ramon’s an iconic figure in the dance music industry. He’s played such a large role in the progression of dance music and continues to support the format when others have long since disappeared. Kevin Williams was also in the house. He’s a life long dance music veteran. When he’s in the club, you know there’s something serious going on.
Over the summer, I attended Magic Marketplace, one of the largest retail fashion trade shows in the country. Since we’d set up a StarStyle booth in North Hall of the convention center, I had the chance to meet a ton of fashion industry folks. While I was negotiating for a position around the dance floor at Cielo, by chance I bumped into one of those fashion folks, Tracey Hamilton, from 24/7 Media, a fashion industry recruiting agency. Here’s Trace and friends living it up at Cielo for Frankie’s B’day. The girl’s love house music and said they wouldn’t have missed this night for the world.
Here are some more pics of the night. Enjoy!
I even got a bit of video. It’s low quality, because I didn’t have enough light. But just to listen to the music and hear the crowd is enough.