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D.I.S.C.O! Jive At Home With Disco Equipment

Mar 10, 2008
Disco is rooted in the soul music of the 1960s. It is derivative of soul music from Philadelphia and New York that was primarily developed by black musicians. The most notable aspect of the Philly sound is the flamboyant percussion which is an integral part of all disco music.

Another defining factor of disco music is the use of modern technological advances and disco music often makes use of the most recent technological changes and as a result often provides a modern sound for the time in which it is created. Early disco was a low profile affair with soul music being popular primarily with the black urban American audience however the popularity of the genre soon boomed with disco music hitting the US charts in the late 1960s.

One of the most important aspects of disco music that has had an effect on the entire future of music was the use of samples in the music. Disco musicians would use a sample and remix a disco track to incorporate influences from other songs. This trend had far reaching ramifications for all types of music. Rap music, hip hop, techno and pop also make use of the sampling technology that was first used in disco music. This has become increasingly popular in modern pop music with many of the most successful 'new' songs using samples of music from past successes.

Some of the finest examples of disco music are from artists such as the Jackson 5, the Bee Gees, Donna Summer, the village people and KC and the sunshine band. The sounds that these musicians created is quintessentially disco. The most distinctive factor of which is the fact that the music they created makes the listener want to dance. The tempo and beat of the tracks encourage the people listening to the music to move. For example who can listen to the Bee Gees night fever without instinctively strutting down the street.

Or who can listen the Carl Douglas classic kung fu fighting without shouting a large grunt at the right point. And if you can introduce me to a single person that doesn't know the moves to YMCA by the village people I would be very impressed. The high tempo and strong beat combine with flamboyant vocals to make people want to dance.

One of my favourite of all disco music tracks is the Donna Summer classic hot stuff. This song combines a thumping tempo with a powerful bass line and piercing lyrics to achieve everything that disco music should - it makes the listener want to dance. The song was featured in the 1997 hit British film the Full Monty. The song is famous for featuring in the scene where the men are waiting in the job centre queue. The song comes on over the radio and each of the men instinctively break into dance. It starts slowly with the men dropping their shoulders to the beat and tapping their feet but they eventually get caught performing a spin. This song has the same effect on the people that listen to it - they want to dance, however socially inappropriate it may be and as a result it is a great disco music tune.
About the Author
Expert disc jockey and distributor of numark, pioneer and technics disco equipment Shaun Parker has been involved in the music scene for many years.
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