Creating A Disco Mix For A Groovy Friend
Hey, it’s DJ Mad Luuk here with another birthday mix for an old friend! When I say old, she’s turning the ripe old age of 32 and loves 70’s disco music. The kid’s got taste, so why not oblige her with a musical treat!
I was a child when the disco craze hit. I can recall seeing the crowds outside of Studio 54 on TV all clamoring to get inside of the club. I can remember listening to the music on the airwaves in car and transistor radios. Yeah okay, I’m old, but you’ll have old fart stories someday too!
Just as with the 80’s mix that I made for Isabel, mixing disco has its share of challenges. Music production has changed over the decades with drum machines being the backbone of today’s dance music. Back then, however, musicians “got down” playing grooves on drum kits. Therefore, timing sometimes fluctuates because it’s people playing instruments instead of software. Personally, I think it adds a certain charm knowing there’s tiny imperfections in the timing of songs. I feel almost reassured knowing that the end product can still be great even if it isn’t technically “perfect.”
Disco music is one of my favorite musical genres. So many of the songs bring me back to my childhood and to a simpler time when people wore bell bottoms and afros. In the late 70s, social media meant actually hanging out with your friends and listening to records together. While I was too young to go to discos, I remember the effect that it had on our culture. Everyone wanted to learn how to do the Hustle, the Bump and the Cha Cha. There was even an old TV disco dance competition, kind of like Dancing With the Stars called Dance Fever.
Let’s talk about Stephy’s mix. The playlist starts off with a clip from the movie Saturday Night Fever when Tony gets rejected by Stephanie (not to be confused with Stephy, please!). The music then starts off with lower beat-per-minute (around 105 BPM) selection of songs. Most of the first half I use the “cut” technique to transition between songs. The song that I chose to start the mix with is the tune “Native New Yorker” in tribute to Stephy’s roots. The lyrics say it all: “You grew up riding the subway/running with people/up in Harlem, Down on Broadway.” Damn stinky MTA subway doesn’t ever change!
About halfway through the mix, the BPM increases to about 128 and the energy picks up. Donna summer starts the second half of the mix off with “I Feel Love” (my favorite disco track ever recorded) and is transitioned with beatmatching to another amazing Giorgio Moroder production, “Midnight Express Theme (The Chase).” Most of the tracks in the last half of this mix are mostly beatmatched between transitions until the final track, “Disco Inferno.” I chose that track last because it’s said that Disco Inferno was the first Disco song ever recorded with the 4 to the floor style of drumming.
I hope you enjoy Stephy’s Disco Mix! Happy birthday to a groovy friend and may you have many more, Stephy! Enjoy the mix and please let me know what you think in the comments below! Also, make sure to follow Glitter Grooves on Instagram. As we used to say back in the day, Peace in the Middle East!