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Sunday, November 23, 2014

What is Dance Music?

I've have been pro House Music since I first moved back to Chicago. How could I not be pro House when I was a Disco head when it was OK to like Disco. This is the crazy thing: The categorization of all things Dance. It's Dance Music, for goodness sakes! If you want to dance when you hear it then it is Dance music. I bring this up because I was on Facebook and one of my associates shared a video of a dancing monkey which made the statement,"We all know somebody who dances like this."  The problem I had with it was the additional statement by the guy that shared the video which was "EDM IS LIKE PUNISHMENT."   

I guess my question is why is there such hatred for EDM from the "Traditional" House Community? Is it because they don't think it's legitimate music? I think it's a combination of things but mostly I think that the traditional House guys are mad that EDM makes all this money and gets all this attention. Do they even know what EDM is? Sometimes i think they just throw a blanket statement over anything that is not traditional Dance and call it EDM. Did you know that, by definition, Acid House is EDM? Half the stuff you guys are spinning today is, by definition, is EDM. (EDM is Electronic Dance Music) Here is my statement to the producers on the issue: IF YOU ARE NOT PLAYING INSTRUMENTS IN A BAND AND RECORDING IT IN A STUDIO THEN YOU ARE EDM, TOO!

Cut out all that hate and get on with the music.

P.S.   The funny thing is some of the EDM producers are starting to produce and play "Deep House" at their EDM shows with the statement that they "love House Music."

P.P.S.  There was a similar hatred shown for Disco from the Rock community saying that Disco wasn't real music which resulted in the "Disco Demolition Day" at Comiskey Park in 1979.  Some say that the event led to the birth of House Music because Disco people had to go underground.

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Wednesday, November 19, 2014

False alarms, alarming responses and delayed response time

The last time I posted an update it was about a young kid that was using my name.  I got a couple of rabid responses from what I thought was his relatives but I found out from his actual father that those guys were just well wishers.  The kid's dad is a good dude and he and I communicated without incident so I was satisfied that there was no malicious intent although to two people that responded first need to be on medication (they were very hostile!).   I hope the kid continues to pursue DJing as a career, especially since his dad supports him through the process.

The G.E.T.O. DJ'z Compilation
Traxman - 4 To Tha Floor
G.E.T.O. DJz present The 160 Project

In the meantime, I have been supporting three releases and two events behind the scenes for the G.E.T.O. DJ'z during what I believe to be the off season.  I have several tracks on two of those releases.   Partying in a place like Chicago can be very challenging once the weather stops cooperating.  There seems to be a mad scramble for places to spin throughout the Winter that starts as soon as the temperature drops below 40 degrees (Fahrenheit.  You know Americans are too stubborn to stop using that scale and convert to Celsius.)  and to hold up until the weather breaks in the Spring.  The crazy thing is that music drops year round and you would think that you would hear a lot of new stuff over the Winter.  The problem is the Chicago scene.  New music seemingly has to be spoon fed to the South Side House Community.  You have to introduce new stuff each party until your crowd either starts asking to hear the new songs or they just get used to hearing them.   The only other way to introduce new songs is to make mix CDs and sell them/give them away at your sets.   You may get a very few forward thinking DJs that pick up the new songs and play them but not here in Chicago.  It's crazy because it's almost like an out-of-town DJ has to bring the new music to Chicago THAT WAS PRODUCED HERE IN CHICAGO!

I think that part of the problem is the current ruling body of DJs spinning in the city only get their music from a small reservoir or sources.   That is a shame because there is a world of new, good music out there and, because these few "elite" only deal with certain sites or producers directly, the "new" music in Chicago is actually several years old by the time it hits here.  Normally I wouldn't worry too much about such a thing but, considering the fact that Dawn Penn made "No No No" in the 70's and it didn't hit for her until the 90's, I just want to make sure I'm still around once people start appreciating my music.

I recently had a couple of my DJ buddies bring me a video they made in Seattle, WA.  The young guys that were spinning at the moment played one of my songs and they were commenting on it.  The song in question was something I made nearly 20 years ago but they were playing it as if it was something new.  I hadn't released that particular song digitally so they had to have purchased the record and transferred it to a digital file on their own.  I was happy that I was getting played but I wondered if these kids knew that i had a ton of new music as well.  I hope I'm not on that 20 years cycle like Ms. Penn because I'd like to enjoy seeing other people groove off my stuff and not be some 90 year old guy in the corner of the club with people tipping me because they think I'm on my break from being the restroom attendant.

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Wednesday, October 01, 2014

DJ Flint vs DJ Flint vs DJ Flint vs DJ Flint

I like to give all sides of conflicts so that people can make their own judgements based on all the facts.  I received this message from who I assume is this kid's father or relative.  If he is not then he is playing Devil's Advocate.  The following is a direct copy of his post:

" Really? Where's the trademark that says you own ALL rights to the FAKE Name? IF you were any professional of any kind, you would not even DARE think of even saying you were going to fight anyone, let alone a 12 year old boy, who lives clear across the USA. Real Classy buddy... If you did any research (which I'm sure you didn't) you would Know that the name "Flint" is the real middle name of the young man you wanna "fight", so this IS in fact his REAL Name he is using, UNLIKE yourself. People like YOU give Hard working, High end DJ's of any kind, (Mobile,Club,Cruise line, or ballroom) a bad reputation for your low life actions, childish remarks, lack of professionalism! Go Back in the hole you crawled out of, because you WILL NOT Win this battle!!!"

Let me clarify something here.  Our community is a tight knit one and I would have felt the same way if someone had said they are RP BU, Traxman, Waxmaster or DJ Funk which are all "made up names" that these people have put a lot of blood, sweat and tears into making their own.  If I saw a young man saying he was any of those guys the first thing out of MY mouth would have been "No, you are not."  I do not discourage this young man from joining our ranks.  In fact, I applaud his efforts because Lord knows we have too many so called DJ's that are not true to the craft like Paris Hilton, to name one of many, and if he were near me I would lend him all of my support in the fashion of a mentor .  I had to learn it on my own.  And as for the name?  It was given to me and is a memento of my service in the Army so it is dear to me.  I don't mean any harm but I have been called this for the last 27 years so I have grown attached to it.  The reason I may have come off as hostile is because there is a guy in India calling himself DJ Flint and he is trying to record under that name and I felt it as another attack on my livelihood.

This all started about 14 years back when I heard of someone saying that he was DJ Flint.  It wasn't a big thing to me until I heard that he was showing people my 1996 release on Dance Mania Records sand saying that he was the one that put that out.  Oh, really?  Now it's a problem.  I can't stop someone from saying they are "DJ anything" but the guy was saying he was me.  Ever since then I have had my eye out for such shenanigans.  This new kid had just got caught in a crossfire not intended to discourage his ambition.  I hope he does well but I don't want the backlash of when he starts running into people who either know me or know of me to come his way.  I am known around the world, although I may not be a household name.  Yet.

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Friday, September 26, 2014

And now this...

So I was on Facebook, checking out my crew from the GETO DJ'z, Inc., and I see one of my guys posting about how his logo is on its way.  One of the other guys starts poking fun at him and then a third.    Suddenly it becomes a pissing contest with everyone posting logos.  I decide to join in but I'm lazy so I Google my name to get some of my old logos.  Suddenly, I see DJFlint.com pop up.  What is this?  I had never seen this before so I check it out.  "Oh," I say to myself, "it's just a little boy who is trying to be a DJ."  At first I don't have a problem with it until I see his blog page address is "http://flintandsteal.blogspot.com."  Really, young sir?  You are going to "Flint and Steal?"  Now I have an issue with this.  I'll fill you guys in on how this turns out.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Everyone is not supposed to get it

The age old question of "Play what the people want VS Play new shit" has reared it's ugly head once again. Of course everyone was going to jump on the "play what the people want" bandwagon because they believe in the old adage "the customer is always right.' I submit to you that every successful company out there today exists because they went against the grain. Nobody was making fast burgers when McDonalds started doing it. Nobody was making rubber toed running shoes when NIKE started doing it Nobody was making custom coffees when Starbucks started doing it. Nobody was making custom flavors when Ben and Jerry's started doing it. You get the picture. Sure there are successful companies that stay with the status quo but they will always be just successful enough to get by. Many of those companies shut down every year while others pop up to replace the ones that shut down the previous year.

There are two types of patrons: The ones that frequent clubs that play what they want to hear and the ones that go to hear what the DJ is going to do that night. The latter being the ones that are true fans of that DJ. The former don't care who the DJ is just as long as they hear what they want. I'd rather be the DJ they come to see because I'M playing.

Also, at some point in the history of your "favorite song" that song was new and never heard before. Someone had to have the balls to play it the first time so that it could become your "favorite song.'
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Slaves to a system

I recently ran into a new artist trying to hawk her wares. I wasn't interested myself but one of my peers took an interest and volunteered the resources of those present so I went along with it. In taking up that cause he provided some information that would make her ascension to the top of the charts proper if not easy. The problem was that the information she was receiving was contrary to the information she had either received or gathered from bad sources and she was hesitant. That seems to be the problem with all starters in this business. Sometimes we get the "if you know so much why aren't YOU rich?" question from people. The answer to that is simple: We know the how. We choose to do it without the backing of the industry so it will take longer to reach our goals. When you see those artists who get signed to those big deals they are financial slaves to a system. When an artist gets an "advance" the system tells you up front what it is but you don't recognize the language. An "advance" is exactly what it sounds like, a loan. "I am advancing you money I think you will make my label." It may take you 4 years to make that back so when you ask for a "royalty" be prepared to discover exactly how much money you owe to the label. Get your minds right about this business and quit signing your lives away for fame and glory. Learn the craft and you will learn the rules.

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Sunday, July 20, 2014

The State of music today

A recent discussion between a proven producer and an unproven, wannabe artist:

(I'm paraphrasing here because I was not present for the actual conversation but I witnessed the resulting session)

Producer: Let's work on this song. Here is the hook and I need you and your buddy to put some enthusiasm into it.

Artist: The beat is dope but I don't want to work on the hook because my generation will not listen to a song about that subject.

Producer: Ok. What do you want to work on?

Artist: I was hoping you would say that! Let me take your super mega extra dope ass beat and spew gibberish over it that I know they will love in the hood.

Producer: Ok. Let's try it your way, unproven young person that wouldn't know a dope ass lyric if a doctor put it in an I.V. and infused it with your blood.

After 52 niggas, 17 threats of violence, 3 gang affiliations (to a set that would have violated him 34 times by now) and 5 claims to firearms that would have had him in jail for possession alone, this dude and his friend wastes everyone time and he doesn't even have a basic knowledge of song structure.  

How the conversation would have gone had I not been in the other room:

Producer: Let's work on this song. Here is the hook and I need you and your buddy to put some enthusiasm into it.

Artist: The beat is dope but I don't want to work on the hook because my generation will not listen to a song about that subject.

Me: Well, considering the fact that the producer here and I are proven recording artists who have music that has had radio play, sold internationally and we both have music backgrounds that span more years than you have been alive, we could allow you to waste our time talking about the only things you have experienced to this date. I believe that would include staying at your Mama's house, improper use of a belt and grinding your little Petey Weatey on someone's THOT daughter's stretchy pantsed mini camel toe along with your vision of gangster life that has been derived from the 17 movies you've watched on the subject. Sure, I think that would be a great idea so we can have a song that your generation will like.

Artist: Man, you don't know what you are talking about. I got them hot bars! The shit your producer friend wants us to say will not get any love from the hood.

Me: You may well be correct, young sir. If we do it your way everyone in the hood will have your song on their phones, listening to it on the bus while everyone else scrambles for their headphones so they can escape your assault on their ears. I'm sure that when they attempt to play your song on the radio the 72 blank spaces created by the editing they will have to do because of your limited vocabulary will not be distracting at all. In fact, they will love the beat because that will be about the only part of the song left intact.

Artist: You are old, man. They don't listen to the shit your producer wants us to say.

Me: Maybe so. I'm sure your version will get plenty of attention from the hood. You will get 1,000,000 views on Youtube and everyone in the hood will download your song...illegally. The check for $1000 will split up nicely between you, your buddy and the producer. Promise me you will let me ride that shiny, new bike you will buy with your end. Maybe you will make some extra money from that tour with Chief Keef. Oh, wait. He won't tour with you because you are in an opposing gang. How would he know that, you say? Because that is the set your are throwing up in your verse. Oh by the way, 12 bars is not proper song structure for this project. We will give you time to go reference your diary in your hope chest for 4 more bars.

Artist: You're a hater! (runs into studio and throws himself on the couch, sobbing into his Pelle Pelle jacket)
This is why I no longer work in rap.
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Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Coming around the bend....

50 cent said that a new artist should develop a relationship with an up and coming videographer so that they can both develop content together. I've always thought this but everyone wants to get paid right out of the gate. Not only do you have to run a few races but you have to win a few before you get put out to stud.Follow deejayflint on Twitter

Monday, May 26, 2014

Trying to stay ahead of the game is hard if you don't know what game you are playing

When I started in the DJ game I quickly realized that I was at a disadvantage because I didn't make my own tracks.  My first attempt at making tracks was pitiful at best.  As I started to get better and  gained access to better tools I found that the next hurdle was to find a concept that was catchy.  That is not always easy.  Eventually, I found a few phrases and melodies that worked but every time I would get over that hurdle another one would spring up behind it.  I started to see a pattern in the process and my tracks got better.  I soon found that allowing others to "touch" a track brought flavor that you may not have discovered.  Here is an example of a remixer I know that has honed his skills to a level that makes it seem as though his remix is a stand-alone, original song.  Listen here.

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Monday, April 28, 2014

One time for the crew

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Update: Last night I came out of DJ retirement and I jacked so hard on and off the turntables that I broke my glasses. I also fell in love three times and got crushed twice with a potential third time on the horizon. I had the wrong cord for my hard drive but I made it work until DJ Roc moved the computer and all music stopped instantly. King Farley Jackmaster Funk and DeejayDeeon Boyd posed for an epic photo. I don't drink but I had plenty of water. April DiscoGoddess bought me a beer and I was thankful although I don't drink. Greedy Brisco got me there and Clenton DjClent Hill got my home (HSE in effect!). We had a moment of silence for Rashad Teklife. Overall, I had a great time although I'm sore as hell today and can't see worth a shit. Good times.

Monday, April 07, 2014

Corky Strong - Wave

This is from my label, Halsted Street Entertainment.  You can get it on Beatport

Corky Strong - Wave

This is from my label, Halsted Street Entertainment.  You can get it on Beatport

Friday, April 04, 2014

House music loses a legend

Recently House music legend Frankie Knuckles passed away.  I did not know the man personally but his influence and loss has been felt throughout the industry.  What is really crazy is that, with his death, all types of people are trying to throw parties in his name.  Now don't get my wrong.  I'm all for a good party but it seems more opportunistic than honoring this man to me and I'm not the only person that thinks this way.  Facebook has been all ablaze with opinions debating all positions of this issue.  Some are for it and some against.  The only valid point in my opinion is why not have just one party where all the people can come together as one.   Why is this not the only solution?  Because it is not about honoring this man's memory, the movement and culture at all.  It's an opportunity by a few individuals to make money off the death of a person that  they may or may not have even known personally.  So how did they come to this decision?  Was it like "Hey did you hear that Frankie Knuckles died?  Let's throw a party in his honor!"?  I find it very strange that so many parties have popped up all of a sudden.  One person even went as far as invoking the name of another House legend to honor as well in the form of a Frankie Knuckles/Ron Hardy tribute.  Well here is the thing with me.  If you want to truly have this celebration then make it free to the public.  If you are truly broken up about his death then come out of your pocket for this tribute.  If that task is too overwhelming get with the other people throwing their parties and split the bill, hold just one party in one spot and let's all come together as a whole and celebrate this man's life's work without trying to make a profit off his demise.  I will probably take a lot of flack off this but that is just my opinion on the matter.

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Beyonce being Beyonce

There is old footage of Beyonce floating around the interwebs from an interview of  Destiny's Child.  It shows Kelly Rowland making a statement that she was the group's "second lead singer" to which Beyonce had a passive aggressive response.  It shows what Beyonce thought of her "group" at the time.  This is why if you decide to live a public life you need to watch what you say about people.  It will ALWAYS come back to bite you on the ass.

 Beyonce throwing shade at Kelly

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Monday, March 10, 2014

Boy bands

The music industry is always trying to manufacture a new sensation. They take a group of young, almost talented people and slam them together with a producer and, with a little training and a ton of PR, the industry has the next sensation. I don't even think these kids like each other and then they are on a world tour. The problem is once they reach maturity they are abandoned by the industry for a new, fresh group of suckers. It's kind of like dudes that date young women. Every now and then they trade them in for younger women.
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Monday, February 10, 2014

Record Union: Something New

Record Union: Something New

So I decided that, since I nearly died in 2013, I will start releasing more music.  I know it's morbid but I want to leave a better legacy than songs about camel toes and 69ing with fat booty girls.  This will be out in about a week and I hope you will\ enjoy the tracks.   I will be in the lab working on new stuff.