Lastbingotexas 2012-06-21 14:04:49
Heil Chairman Dahl
To commemorate this landmark, WTTW11 is airing a one hour Teamworks
Media documentary called Disco Demolition 25th Anniversary: The Real
Story (July 12th, 8:00 pm – that’s tonight!).
someone hold a rap demolition!
Jgmclean0 2012-06-21 14:04:54
Ah, the memories. One of the odder nights of my life.
SavoyBG should see this — the perfect storm of baseball and pop music
controversy. Too bad I can’t get WTTW from 800 miles away.
Goggle 2012-06-21 14:04:57
I take issue with your perspective.Disco has been unjustifiably bad
mouthed by people who never cared much for ANY kind of Black music
period.Some of it was very trite but you can’t tell me that songs like
Bad Luck,Disco Inferno,Hot Stuff,Knock on Wood,I Love Music,Heaven
Must Be Missing an Angel,Shame,Night Fever,etc were not great tunes
and very danceable.
What I remember about the whole Disco Demolition is that a bunch of
long haired white kids went straight up crazy about some music they
had very little understanding of.
And please don’t tell me they were just representing the REAL Black
music of Little Richard and Ray Charles cause I ain’t buying into that
Bjb 2012-06-21 14:05:00
Yep, that’s how I remember it too. Only long haired white guys watching a
ball game on the south side of Chicago. There weren’t and females of any
race nor any blacks or Hispanics or Asians in there at all. Just long haired
white guys. Photo of the DD bear this out. Oh yeah, there were some photo
that seemed to show other races and other sexes out on the field, but we
both know that they were really long haired white guys in disguise.
A place for everyone, and everyone in their place.
Jgmclean0 2012-06-21 14:05:01
Well, in 1979 the White Sox crowd was pretty caucasian to begin with, despite
the team’s South side location. Plus that particular promotion was obviously
going to draw from that radio station’s core audience, which consisted almost
exclusively of LHWGs. There were plenty of females present at some point in
the game, but things had already gotten pretty ugly in the stands by the time
the first game ended, and lots of females and couples had already left when
things got out of hand. Plus it seemed to be the LHWGs who had the unstoppable
instinctive drive to run around like idiots on the field.
But your overall impression is still mostly correct!
Ngrobbieuk 2012-06-21 14:05:06
Thankfully, disco didn’t die.
It made me laugh to see a bunch of no-hopers whinging about black music.
What did we have?
Chic – great!
Styx and REO Speedwagon – oh purlease…
Mombu 2012-06-21 14:05:08
They didn’t like gay folks much either–g!
Yep. Nile Rodgers and Bernard Edwards were the Dr.
Dre/Holland-Dozier-Holland of their day. As was Giorgio Moroder.
Part of it was there was a lot of bad disco towards the end
there–par for the course with any pop genre. And disco was
dominating the airwaves to such a degree it seemed like there was no
other music around. Part of it was money/class issues–you had to
have money to dress/hang out at disco clubs and once that whole
Studio 54 thing got rolling, disco got this snotty air about it.
But a good part of it was also mainstream insecurity. Whenever a
particular race seems to “dominate” a field, some white folks get
crazy. See, it’s supposed to be people like them succeeding at
everything, and everyone else should be content with the occasional
token that breaks through. 😛
Some did have a point that the music was too slick and repititous.
But more often than not those who hated disco weren’t exactly
Lastbingotexas 2012-06-22 09:01:14
there were good disco songs. but disco fashion was bad. it was like a
bad flaky parody of the soul funk thing. disco lacked a core,
something soul had. disco was too nightclub-centric, too dance
oriented without being musical in its own right. today, most disco
stuff sounds fluffy. it was, at best, great booty shaking music, but
not much more.
as for the longhaired white kids, i suspect their musical tastes were
even worse. probably AC/DC, foreigner, judas pries, and that s***.
but, it’s true that for awhile disco was overhyped and just
everywhere. and it was very very cheesy.
everyone comes and goes; folk rock, psychedelia, punk, disco.
actually, i think disco demolition was immortalized by dahl’s antics.
i’ll bet punkers were jealous that their music was given such a great
i wouldn’t mind having a rap demolition, heavy metal demolition,
grunge demolition, and country demolition. yuck.
Trotsky 2012-06-22 09:01:25
in article 40F36617.C0FEE533@mindspring.com, email@example.com at
It had nothing to do with race. Disco was the epitome of superficiality and
shallowness, and the music certainly followed suit. Rock and roll was the
exact opposite: it didn’t matter what you looked like or how you dressed.
It’s not complicated. Looking back on it now disco wasn’t really offensive,
just a novelty act. But at the time it was pretty offensive, as least to
somebody who was weened on rock and roll like myself.
Jgmclean0 2012-06-22 09:01:32
The anti-disco movement, in Chicago at least, was quite a bit about race, also
about social class and homophobia. It’s no coincidence that Disco Demolition
took place in what was then still the most highly segregated and racially
begrudged of the major US cities.
There had been plenty of superficial and shallow music (including disco
experiments) from established pop and rock acts that went by without protest.
It was only when “they” began taking over “our” radio stations and bars, and in
some cases the neighborhood girls, that an outcry about the crappiness of the music began.
This is laughable. ’70s rock, in its own way, was as conformist a scene as
disco ever was. As someone mentioned earlier, if you look at the photos from
the Disco Demolition you don’t exactly see a lot of diversity in dress or style.
Alice Cooper, now *there’s* a novelty act. But was it really *offensive* to
you? Sure, disco radio pretty much sucked in ’78 and ’79, but so did the easy
listening and country stations down the dial, and nobody was blowing up those
records. Anti-disco was fed out of *fear* — fear not of bad music but of a
different set of values that appeared to be taking over.
So who saw the show? How was it?
Jim 2012-06-22 09:01:46
Which was the whole purpose of disco…
Zaragon23 2012-06-22 09:02:02
The anti-disco movement was a whole load of racist ignorance. These
clueless, lame brained AOR geeks thinking they were “saving” rock n’
roll. Thanks, but the new wave was handling *that* job just fine.
They had very little understanding of music, period. But what could
you expect from a region of flare wearing, hick teens reared on Styx, REO, and Foreigner.
They knew nothing about real music, black or white.
One comment that summed up 1979 quite accurately came from Trouser
Press, who that December remarked “despite shrill protests from
anti-disco no-nothings, rock was in very good form during 1979.”
And for that you can thank the Stranglers, XTC, the Boomtown Rats and
the Clash. And the Bee Gees, Chic, Earth Wind and Fire and Donna
Had the protest been a burning of AOR records, it might not have gone
down as such a shamefull blight on history.
John_doe the 2 2012-06-22 09:02:40
Wha…wha…wha… So f****** what. I thought it was funny as s***.
Understanding of music? What’s there to understand? Robotic
cookie-cutter music that faggots and n****** danced to.
Nothin’ to understand there.
‘Real music’ Hah!
All of whom sucked.
We should do it more often. Like rap records, next. Let da ‘lil sambos
know whitey means business.
Goggle 2012-06-22 09:02:44
As with so much in life,a person’s musical loves often stem from
their personal journeys of the time and what they were experiencing.I
started not liking disco much and was still waiting for a rock group
to come out with an album like Surrealistic Pillow or
Sgt.Pepper.Sadly,it was not to be.Then I started hanging with a
racially mixed group who liked to go to clubs and I started hearing
the music known as disco in a different way.I remember my first real
disco trip-in 1977 after an Esther Phillips show at The City in SF.I
walked into the upstairs disco there and the song Devil’s Gun by CC
and Company blasted from the sound system.It was completely
mesmerizing and I was hooked on the disco scene the next three years.
The Lake Tahoe scene was fabulous during those years with this
great disco at Harrahs and the famous Monte Vista Club over at Round
Mike mooney 2012-06-23 04:09:28
I can’t agree that disliking disco in the 70s was necessarily a sign of
racism. I loved (and still do) black music pre-disco – jazz, blues, r’n’b,
gospel, soul. The problem I had with disco was the actual style of playing –
they took the Motown formula of “catchy pop with a dance beat” and reduced
it (in many cases) to “poor songs with an absolutely rigid bass/drum style”
(that godawful “b**-clap, b**-clap” thing). It was just too “formularised”.
And I knew black guys of the same generation as me who felt the same way.
It’s an age (and plain old personal preference) thing, not a race thing –
trolling idiots elsewhere in this thread notwithstanding.
Taliesyn 2012-06-23 04:09:38
I’ve always considered Disco the Seventies reincarnation of Sixties
Bubblegum. If you loved one, chances are you loved the other. Today
both are generally highly ridiculed. I’m not here to ridicule either;
they don’t need any further assistance from me. ;-)…
“I’m So Dizzy…” >>>>>>>>>> “Night Fever, Night Fever…”
Jgmclean0 2012-06-23 04:09:42
Since I was one who commented on this let me make clear — I don’t claim that
not liking disco implies racism, not at all.
I’m claiming that the *anti-disco movement* (things like destroying records
on the air, or in a public place as exemplified in the Disco Demolition thing
— there was even some minor vandalism of discos) was underpinned and
strengthened by racial attitudes (as well as social and sexual attitudes).
Lastbingotexas 2012-06-23 04:09:46
had it just stayed in the nightclubs, it would have been fine. but it
was hyped all over all night and day and it got stale.
Sslaghtaca 2012-06-23 04:09:56
That was my take on it. It stayed far too long in the mainstream via hype and
promotion from the record labels.
Radio was simple then. There was simply FM rock and T-40 in those days. If you
listened to T-40 in the late 70s, you heard a lot of disco-dance music. What
were you supposed to do to when you heard some mindless disco song for the
1000th time while driving in your car? Pull over and dance?
People truly were sick to death of it by the time of the disco record
demolition in.. whatever year it was. But it wasn’t always that way.
Disco went through a period of going mainstream in (approx 74-76). It was
actually kinda hip and definitely launched a lot of parties and kept the newish
phenomenon of singles bars -and their dance floors- filled. Fairly quickly club
owners copied the underground discos which had spawned the music, put in kick
a** recorded sound systems and mainstream ‘discos’ sprang up everywhere.
But the dance band circuit I was playing in the mid 70s several years took
several years to fade. At least here it lasted till the mid 80s. In that
(fulltime, 6 nights a week) dance -cover showband, we gradually saw that disco
get very hot and become good for our business when it broke mainstream.
Being a show band playing dance covers, we could and did play anything that was
familiar/on the charts and danceble. So we were far from 100% disco tunes even
at it’s most omni-present. At first it was cool as KC or someone would put out
a simple (stupid) disco song and we could learn it well enough in one practice
to play that night. All you needed for a lot of disco tunes was a good singer
and a loud kick drum:) Other types of tunes took much more work to put into the
But eventually some hostility came from people who had issues with disco or
were simply sick of it. “Disco Sucks” was a catchphrase years before it was
used as the rallying cry to blow up a pile of records at a baseball game.
“Rockers’ used to come to the dance clubs we played, though there were several
clubs in town which featured only rock, originals and covers of current hard
rock tunes. The dancefloors were usually empty in those places, as were the
bars. The money was in the dance clubs where a huge party was going on for
millions of boomers who were now into their 20s and wanting some fun and
As time went by we noticed more and more rockers coming into our dance clubs,
cause that’s where the women were. We had some danceable rock songs in our
sets-but also (eventually) plenty of disco -which had replaced most of the
danceable funk we’d played in earlier 70s years.
After Saturday Night fever peaked and waned, I’d sometimes hear ‘disco sucks!’
yelled at us from the dancefloor or the side of the stage, by some drunk long
haired rocker (who looked just like I probably looked 7 or 8 years earlier.)
When I heard this stuff, I’d sometimes go on the mic and yell back, “If disco
sucks, then what are You Doing Here?” This usually got some laughs and never
got me in trouble. The guy was there for the same reason everyone else was: to
get drunk, dance and try to get lucky.
From my perspective disco was never a racial thing. Disco wasn’t black music,
it was dance music. As far as soul, it’s mostly pretty soul-less music. Master
disco producer Georgio Moroder perfected the sterile, mechanical kick drum
sound which drum machines would do so well on later techno recordings..years
before the first drum machines were in use.
In the 1974-77 era I watched some great R+B groups (who put out songs we loved
to cover) have their careers ended by the disco fad as a whole new school of
disco artists emerged from that scene- which was really a producer’s, not
artist’s, medium. Like dance music continues to be. Of course the disco artists
would see their careers end or decline rapidly when disco died a few years
later. That’s showbiz. Live by the fad, die by the fad.
By the turn of the decade disco was stale and had overstayed it’s welcome by a
couple years. It took a groundswell of mainstream opposition to get the message
through to T-40 programmers that enough was enough. And it worked.
Admittedly my experience with disco was from a unique perspective, a biased
one, as I was in a show band which usually had to also fill dancefloors (except
in the Nevada casinos:) And we used disco as long as it worked though we were
very tired of it and uninspired by it towards the end.
We were an all white band which could play funk convincingly/legitimately (and
rock too) and played in mainly white mainstream dance and show clubs, though
the crowds were definitely mixed. Things seemed a little looser back then as
far as mixed audiences. I sorta think we’ve taken some steps backwards in ways
as time has passed, but I don’t work in nightclubs nightly anymore. so I can’t
Through the 70s I was paying ultra close attention to all kinds of pop and rock
music, the whole mainstream scene as far as I could tell. I did this for my job
and our band’s dream of securing a recording contract. We used the money we
made playing covers to record originals and release albums- very much rock
material, not dance (but that’s another story).
Radio was simpler then and had a lot of power. People didn’t have the choices
we have today (or 40 years of great boomer favorites to load onto your hard
drive or IPod) in the 70s. People still kept coming and dancing to the current
disco songs radio had in rotation, which we felt obligated to learn and play
(probably 4 tunes out of a 10 song set at disco’s peak for us).
But once radio changed and disco was pushed off the charts and the air, people
were more than ready for the next big thing – which turned out to be commercial
new wave (the danceable songs) and Michael Jackson. And the 80s were upon us.
As I’ve said many times, dance music never leaves us, it just changes clothes.
There are several semi-current dance tunes which mix perfectly with 70s and 80s
disco or dance tunes. A favorite mix of mine currently is “Billy Jean’/M
Jackson 1983 into ‘Hella Good’/No Doubt 2003. Exactly the same beat.
And, of course, for years there’s been a racial and strong cultural element in
rap and hip hop music which I never remotely saw in disco.
Disco was the soundtrack for the multi-year party society now generally refers
to as ‘The 70s.’
Lastbingotexas 2012-06-23 04:10:24
alot more white folks are respectable to black music than blacks are
to white music. so who’s are the closed minded bigots?
disco was cheesy and overhyped. there was no soul demolition because
whether one liked it or not, it was cool.
disco was just so shamelessly tacky and kitschy. it had some really
great dance songs but it tried to be a way of life and as such, it was
Mike1 2012-06-23 22:42:06
Disco sucked….until rap came along and made booger-twanging a more
talanted expressive form.
Reply to mike1@@@usfamily.net sans two @@, or your reply won’t reach me.
Drug smugglers and gun-runners are heroes of American capitalism.
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Pat wong 2012-06-27 06:37:30
My apologies if this has already been mentioned in this thread (haven’t read all of it), but
speaking of bad disco, I think Ethel Merman’s disco album takes the top prize! Talk about
cheesy. Interestingly, this one has been reissued on CD. You can listen to several song samples
| Part of it was there was a lot of bad disco towards the end
| there–par for the course with any pop genre.
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Brigitzkrieg 2012-06-27 06:37:47
did kids make fun of your name in school? there’s so much that can
be done with wong. am i white or wong?
Pat wong 2012-06-27 06:37:50
| “Pat Wong” wrote in message news:<%FSOc.221710$XM6.101249@attbi_s53| | did kids make fun of your name in school? there's so much that can | be done with wong. am i white or wong? Wong...er, wrong newsgroup. I think you need to go to alt.spam. -- Spammers, please reply to email@example.com For everyone else, please contact me through my website. Thanks. ~8^) Pat Wong http://www.napathon.net/ – Music Around The World
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Evilrevreplies 2012-06-28 21:00:20
Hated Disco passionately…had nothing to do with racism or homophobia.
Had everything to do with:
1) A “scene” that was exclusionary & conformist
2) A form of music that “spoke” to me on absolutely no intellectual or
emotional level whatsoever
People who claim racism & homophobia are, IMHO, a bit dishonest
Avoided Disco, WI
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Greg ioannou 2012-06-28 21:00:42
Exactly. Nicely said.
I once had a guy accuse me of racism when I tried to argue that the best
dance music of the 70s was reggae, not disco. Huh?
-action/man 2012-06-28 21:00:44
Even if it was based on both of those things, who cares? Big f****** deal.
Rander3127 2012-06-28 21:00:46
Yes, I used to like how Johnny Fever reacted to it’s mention or playing
on WKRP In Cincinatti. “Droid, syntha-music.”
Dave 2012-06-28 21:00:55
Disco arose, though, not from classy clubs like slick Studio 54,
but from humbler gay, black and Latino clubs. One of the regular
post-ers to this forum has pointed out that the very disco beat:
“tss-NN tss-NN tss-NN tss-NN” is a direct adaptation of a Dominican
RHINO reviewer Paul Grein has pointed out that shouting “Disco sucks”
carries with it some pretty hefty racist and homophobic baggage.
Was lack of money really a problem to get into discos? If Tony Manero
and his pals could afford to get in, anybody could.
Best, DAVE BROOKS
Part of it was money/class issues–you had to
Demorat 2012-06-28 21:01:00
Does that mean everybody’s supposed to ‘like it’?
F***, I hope not…
Greg ioannou 2012-06-28 21:01:02
That doesn’t seem to make any sense. Yes, homophobia is potentially implicit
in the “sucks”. But I don’t see how racism enters into it. Remember, the
most visible faces of disco were the Village People and the Bee Gees — not
exactly Black icons.
Dave 2012-06-29 15:17:39
I hear ya. Yet it is my feeling that, just as with rock ‘n’ roll in
the 1950’s (and the Little Richard/Pat Boone-type situations) disco
emerged first with black artists and then was picked up and mage hugely
visible by the Bee Gee’s, Village People, Yvonne Elliman, Barbra
Streisand, Rick Dees, etc.
I don’t know if music can really be “stolen” from one group by another (as
Little Richard, Miles Davis and Ike Turner, to name a few, have
But the first mainstream records I can think of that truly presage Disco to
me were things like “Want Ads” and “One Monkey Don’t Stop No Show” by The
Honey Cone, “Aquarius/Let The Sunshine In” by The Fifth Dimension,
“Pillow Talk” by Sylvia, “Jungle Fever” by Las Chakachas,
“Backstabbers” by The O’Jay’s, “Why Can’t We Live Together?” by Timmy
Thomas, “Doctor’s Orders” by Carol Anderson, and the oft-cited
“Rock Your Baby” by George McCrae. Even Diana Ross’s version of “Ain’t
No Mountain High Enough” (1969, IIRC) strongly seems to presage Disco
and is still a staple in every black drag-queen’s repertoire even today…
(and it is surely *her* version of the song that gay audiences most cherish
today, not the one that actresses lip-synch to in every third Hollywood
To my way of thinking, the 70’s Disco by black artists (Cheryl Lynn,
The Whispers, Chic, Spinners, Donna Summer, Grace Jones, Patti
Labelle, McFadden & Whitehead, Barry White and many others) remains
the “genuine article”, and their records, IMHO, have survived
the decades better than the Bee Gees.
Goggle 2012-06-29 15:17:48
I would never say that EVERYONE who hated disco was racist!yet
there was an anti-Black element from that time who seemed to hate all
and B and “soul”music.I would constantly get comments about”n*****
music”and how”those peopl’es”music sounded the same.
Disco wasn’t exculsionary at all.Even a doofus type dude like me
could go to the disco and pull a nice looking woman.And,unlike rock
clubs,there was a great racial mix to chooose from.No fights or
gangsta activity either.I loved the disco era.
Robertjroman 2012-06-29 15:18:02
The lead singer of the Village People was always black.
Playboy interview, September, 1962: *
PLAYBOY: In your field, music, don’t some Negro jazzmen discriminate against
DAVIS : Crow Jim is what they call that. Yeah. It’s a lot of the Negro
musicians mad because most of the best-paying jobs go to the white musicians
playing what the Negroes created. But I don’t go for this, because I think
prejudice one way is just as bad as the other way. I wouldn’t have no other
arranger but Gil Evans — we couldn’t be much closer if he was my brother. And
I remember one time when I hired Lee Konitz, some colored cats bitched a lot
about me hiring an ofay in my band when Negroes didn’t have work. I said if a
cat could play like Lee, I would hire him, I didn’t give a d*** if he was green
and had red breath.
* thanks Fred
Dave 2012-06-29 15:18:24
And lack of money wasn’t even an obstacle in getting looped: if you just
hung around the disco long enough, you were sure to get offered a free
tipple, toke, toot or tab of something…
(or so I’ve heard [-; )
…even if you looked like Quasimodo. That’s how giddy and generous the
Disco wasn’t exculsionary at all.Even a doofus type dude like me